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VisionSite January 2015 Newsletter Forward to a Friend   Submit Question
VisionSite believes in positive, long-term relationships with our clients! As a full-service website company we can help you with all things internet. Email or call us anytime and we'll be happy to help you! | 866.525.9500
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Maximizing Your Website and Why You Need Professional Help
In some situations it may be tempting to cut corners, but when it comes to your website, it is not a good idea. Some are tempted to go what they believe will be the cheaper and easier route and do it themselves, or maybe they have a tech saavy friend or relative that offers to set it up for them. The truth is, in order to be successful you need a professional that can give you good sound advice for setting up and maintaining the website, as well as someone who can help you with your search engine optimization (SEO) ranking.

(SEO) is a term that is used a lot among website marketing, yet unfortunately many people do not know what it really means. (SEO) stands for Search Engine Optimization and is the process in which a website is modified and promoted to appear at the top of the rankings in the major internet search engines, among the most popular nowadays, Google. Google's ranking and their methods for determining rank are not disclosed publically and are always changing. VisionSite has a great deal of experience in developing effective and proven SEO strategies; we would be happy to discuss options with you to help you achieve your ranking goals and objectives.

With social media becoming ever more popular, some organizations are at risk to stay in touch with the most critical piece of their overall web marketing strategy - their website. As obvious as this may sound, businesses sometimes forget that their website should serve as the foundational component that drives and supports all of their other online efforts, not the other way around. While the Facebook, Twitter, and so on, can be highly effective, their goal is to provide additional methods for the business to connect with their clients and get them to the ultimate destination, the website. A Facebook page or blog cannot provide the in-depth content, detail, and strategic messaging that a website can.

Some tips for maximizing the effectiveness of the website include:

Fresh Content - How long has it been since the website was last updated? Just like your Facebook page, you need to keep content on the website updated, so you can maintain visitor interest.

Message Consistency - Are your social media pages and blog saying the same thing as your website? It is critical that your targeted content from the website is carried over to all of your other channels.

Optimization - Is your website easy to find on Google? Blogs and social media can only boost search engine optimization (SEO) efforts if there is already a solid strategy for the website in place.

While there isn't a set standard for making updates to a website, many suggest a two part approach that includes making small changes and additions on a regular basis (every month or so), and updating the overall look and feel of the website every two to three years. We are happy to provide a review of your current website (at no cost) and discuss options, ideas, and techniques to update and enhance your web marketing efforts. Please contact us if you are interested!

Building Your Own Website vs. Letting Someone Else

Permeating the Mystery of the Cloud: Weighing its Advantages and Risks
Cloud computing, is something you may or may not be familiar with as a small business owner. There is a good chance however, that you've heard of the term and wonder how it affects your business' future. Cloud computing, or the practice of storing "data in an off-premise system in which users outsource their data needs to a third party provider," is a concept I first heard about when given a permission/privacy waiver to sign at back to school night a few years ago for the purpose of streamlining the written assignments for our high school children.

It is now fairly standard for students to write their documents directly onto the Google Docs website, instantly submitting their homework directly to each teacher, as well as providing a medium for students (or co-workers) to collaborate on projects. Being used in a myriad of ways, many teachers applaud the advantages of efficiency and the interest it generates among students as opposed to the traditional paper and pencil. Some teachers may also require their students to turn in a hard copy of their work, but not necessarily. This is only one small example of how computer technology is advancing into the most basic areas of our lives, regardless of whether or not you have school-age children.

There are three main types of cloud services and it can operate publicly or privately. Like Amazon Web Services, public cloud computing sells any kind of products or services over the internet. A private cloud is a network owned as property, or a data center hosting services to a set number of people. These services are generally divided into three categories: Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). To learn more details about the meaning of each, check out the article, Cloud Computing.

When our professional web designers and programmers at VisionSite build and maintain your company's website, it saves your company a substantial amount of time. The implementation of a website can be a time-consuming and costly affair. This is particularly true as information is being stored, increasingly accumulating in the nebulous cloud of the internet. As technology becomes more sophisticated, so do the risks that come with these advances. Computer hackers have been a threat from the beginning and are not leaving anytime soon. The most recent debacle in Sony's security breach, its fallout for employees, Hollywood elites, and government public relations, is a significant warning. Each business owner needs to decide whether the risks of cloud computing (storing your company's information through internet services), is worth the benefit and if so, does the company have the internal technology and professional resources to handle all of the designing, maintenance, and security?

The good news is that according to a 12/19/14 article from the Wall St. Journal, 'Most attacks are low-skill and low-focus people using common hacking tools against thousands of networks world-wide. These low-end attacks include sending spam out to millions of email addresses, hoping that someone will fall for it and click on a poisoned link. Against a sufficiently skilled, funded and motivated attacker, all networks are vulnerable. But good security makes many kinds of attacks harder, costlier, and riskier. Against attackers who aren't sufficiently skilled, good security may protect you completely.'
(WSJ - "Sony Made It Easy, but Any of Us Could Get Hacked")

VisionSite's team not only alleviates the stress and time required to update content, resolve cyber threats, corrupted data base files, broken links, or other potential problems that any busy website eventually confronts, it also provides a greater level of security for your clients' information. Our network security specialists create your company's website, maintain it for the convenience of professional layout, search engine optimization, and keep it highly protected from internet threats.

Outsourcing: The Soft Underbelly of Cyber Risks
8 Reasons to Fear Cloud Computing
Essential Guide to Cloud Computing

The collective wisdom of web service professionals is that you should update your home page content regularly. Once a month is often recommended.

Remember, you want people to visit your site regularly. So, think about ways to provide new and useful information, rewards for checking your website, answers to common questions, seasonal reminders. What about a "Thought of the Month" or a fun facts feature? This also helps gain priority in search engine page rankings!

Have trouble remembering to do this? Contact your Account Manager for ideas on how we can help.
VisionSite believes in positive, long-term relationships with our clients! As a full-service website company we can help you with all things internet. Email or call us anytime and we'll be happy to help you! | 866.525.9500

VisionSite | | 503.525.9500
PO Box 2310, Portland, OR 97208



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