Category Archives: Web Design

The Biggest Web Design Mistakes and How to Fix Them

People Working on Web DesignWeb design has come a long way since the 1990s, but when it comes to small business websites, the same issues remain.

The problem is that most business owners are not trained in web design. So it helps to look up web design experts in Connecticut – who can help create a web page that’ll boost your online presence. According to Coforge Marketing, an expert’s insight helps you figure out the biggest blunders you are making with your web design and how to fix them. These are the most common design errors in web pages.

1. Cluttered pages

Too often, people think a busy web page filled with too many elements is an impressive web page, but that’s not the case. Provide some breathing room for your visitors by adding a lot of white space and focusing on only one or two of the most important elements on the page.

2. Unorganized content

People will not read an article unless they really have to, and unless you make it easy for them to do so. Use headings, subheadings, bullets, and a lot of short paragraphs to make the content look more palatable for the busy Internet user.

3. Poor use of images

Fancy images and animations have their purpose, but going overboard with them will turn readers off. Most people do not have the time, patience, or resources to accommodate all those images and videos. If you must use them, give your readers the option to skip to the next page.

4. Poor navigation

If your readers can’t find their way around, they would rather leave, than figure their way around your maze of a website. There should be a navigation bar where users can easily see it. A search bar will also help them look for specific items on your website.

The design of a website is something most people don’t really think about until we encounter it. Good web design should be unobtrusive. Instead of jumping out at readers and begging for their attention, a good web design quietly sits in the background to let users enjoy a good experience on your website.

Outdoing the Bad Guys: IT Security Overtakes Viruses and Malware

Cyber CriminalEvil never sleeps: hackers constantly seek new ways to attack computers and terrorize the cyber community. They have even improved “classic” spyware and malware, as well as revived certain viruses that have been inactive for years.

The SQL Slammer, for instance, made a sudden comeback recently, after more than a decade of inactivity. The computer worm, which first appeared in 2003 inflicted distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks against random IP addresses worldwide. The attack caused routers and servers to overload in mere minutes.

There’s no need for the public to fret, however, as security researchers are also finding new ways to improve their defenses and knowledge, even going as far as to seek help from companies, such as CertBlaster, to help them secure certifications.

Outdoing the Bad Guys

To combat threats to cyber security, professionals are looking at one solution: fast action. This means they need to move fast after detecting sketchy activities. They are also looking at containing and shutting down attacks in real time.

According to Derek Manky, global security strategist at Fortinet Inc., the slow, manual work is what jeopardizes security. By the time the individual downloads an update that can solve their problem, it's already too late. This is what makes time and speed critical when solving such problems.

Building intelligence

Some Internet security companies have decided to focus on building what they deem were the most vital aspects: automation, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. They say that by improving these three aspects, they are making data, and even threat intelligence, actionable.

Companies are also looking to gather relevant data and combine them with transparent security controls. Some have joined Cyber Threat Alliance to learn new information and solutions about how to deal with these threats, as well as gain new ways to disseminate any new facts to the public more efficiently.

While it’s true that cybercriminals won’t be ceasing their attacks on users anytime soon, security experts are just as determined to stay ahead of the game. They are now prioritizing automation and creating machines that can move fast without waiting for orders. 

The Paradigms of Web Design and Their Connection to SEO Success

Web Design to SEO Success in PerthWhen you design your website, you have to factor in several aspects other than appearance and aesthetics. You have to consider its navigability, responsiveness to other platforms and other features that make the experience worthwhile for visitors and searchable in results pages.

Parallax Design

This concept means your entire site is on one page; this is definitely unique and striking to visitors, especially when combined with a beautiful background that fully utilises its distinct structure. Adding menus that drop down to particular parts of the page gives it more flair. This approach is most effective in contest or home pages.

This approach is risky because everything’s on one page; you might dilute the keywords and diminish their effectiveness. This may also make it difficult for search engines to decipher the website because of its varied content.

Infinite Scrolls

SEO consultant, viperonline.com.au, cites that this design concept is ideal for those who want all their content on a single page, but want their websites to load fast. This approach loads and displays content as a visitor scrolls down, much like Twitter and Facebook. The quick loading time is ideal for the impatient browser who wants their sites to show everything they need in a short while.

Fixed Position Navigation

This design concept means that the site has a menu that stays in its place while the rest of the website scrolls up or down with the user. This allows visitors to move around the site quickly even when they’re deep in the content. Fortunately for website owners, the impact on search engine optimisation is low. However, make sure that the navigation widget installed is index-able so that search engines can find the pages easily.

HTML5

This makes the web a more beautiful place because it allows for embedded animation and videos to load faster, both of which are types of content that users and search engines love.

These design concepts are potent in their own different ways; choose which is appropriate for your business and SEO goals.

Product Variability and Failure Costs and the Role of Stress Testing

Product Failure CostDefects in a product, regardless of the brand authority and reputation, will always result in the decline of the business itself. That’s why it’s important to match the testing procedures to the complex components of the modern product items today.

According to Qualmark.com, “The last thing your organization needs right now is yet another investment in a solution based on speculation. If your product reliability is creating issues that are escalating warranty costs, chances are you have already made product reliability improvement investments trying to find a solution.”

Regardless of the industry you’re in, as long as you have a product and brand to maintain, anticipating their potential failures and weaknesses should be the top priority. For more information about product variability to failure costs and the role of stress testing, read on.

What is Product Failure Cost?

A product failure refers to the lapses originating from the manufacturing phase, preventing the item to deliver its claimed benefits or advantages. Typically, when people talk about cost in general, they only see the production process. But, there’s also the product failure cost. The cost is reserved to address the following:

  • Scrapped items (product materials that’s impossible to recycle)
  • Scrap Logistic (funding needed to legally transfer unusable items to landfills)
  • Re-production (cost of remedying wrong product specs and quality)
  • Quality Assurance (inspection of re-produced products)
  • Emergency Procurement (expense to replace a depreciated or defect material in the product)
  • Quality Variation (wrong information in the labeling, packaging, etc.)
  • Downgrading (changes in the face value of a product when adjusting price points)
  • Supplier rework (costs attributed to supplier defects)

Reductive Properties of Stress Testing

A good measure of a successful business is by having little to no need for tapping into the product failure cost reserves. So, even before an item is rolled out, stress testing should be initiated to mitigate the potential damage once the mass production and distribution start.

For regular and nominal product items, Highly Accelerated Life Test (HALT) and Highly Accelerated Stress Screen (HASS), which provide a turnkey stress testing solution, should provide a competitive measure.

The Way to Your Casino Players’ Hearts: Rewards Programs

Rewards Programs in CasinoWhen it comes to any kind of casino games, almost all players out there choose establishments that offer them something in return for their patronage. And while almost all casinos in Australia already offer free drinks and beverages to their players, there are other ways to your customers’ hearts: through a gaming rewards program.

Rewards Program 101

There are many different ways for you to enforce a rewards program for your patrons, including reward cards, loyalty cards, and VIP cards. Nowadays, thanks to cashless gaming solutions providers, you will have an easier time managing your rewards programs as they can come up with the best and most appropriate plans for you.

Factors to Take into Consideration

Although rewards programs vary, most of them have something to do with earning points for various games that they play. When developing a program, it is crucial to consider the bet size, length of playing hours, game type played, as well as the frequency of playing.

Reward Cards with a Point System

Most reward programs have a point system based on the above-mentioned factors. Players can accumulate points through these factors, and once they have enough points, they can have it converted into a reward. You may choose a point-to-cash conversion or earn points to purchase non-gaming items, such as those they can buy from gift shops, eating at restaurant or food courts, free resort stays, free hotel accommodations, free movies, and free room service, among many others.

Loyalty and VIP Rewards

Another great idea for a rewards program is a loyalty or a VIP reward. For instance, new members start out with a basic level, and the more they play, the higher their level goes up. For their patronage, you then reward them with an upgrade, which comes with even more benefits and rewards. The rewards can take the form of items or privileges like longer free hotel accommodations, special restaurant seating, huge discounts, and many others.

Everyone loves rewards, and through implementing such a program in your establishment, you can increase your chances of retaining your patrons’ commitment to it and even have them recommend your business to their friend and family.

Making the Work Zones of Your Workers Safer and Healthier

Clean Air ActAs the Clean Air Act and the Environmental Protection Agency cites, particulate matter, as well as ozone, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, lead, and sulfur dioxide, are well-known and well-documented pollutants regarded widely as a threat to public and environment health and safety.

Although not all of these are present in industries like manufacturing, sand blasting, construction, and demolition, each one of them produces high amounts of toxic particular matter, including hazardous dust. To help capture dust and initiate a cleaner working environment, you can start by investing in a high-quality down draft table.

Airborne contaminants: A leading cause of occupational lung diseases

Airborne contaminants include airborne dust, smoke, fume, sprays, and mists. All these should make it to the must-control and must-contain priorities of employers, due to their association with numerous varieties of occupational lung diseases. Pneumoconioses, lead poisoning, and aluminum toxicity are just a few examples.

Airborne dust can also cause other types of ailments, including asthma, allergies, irritations, and even cancer. So whenever workers inhale these contaminants at work, they put themselves at huge risk of occupational diseases.

The worst part is, even in a developed country like the United States, overexposure to dust remains a leading cause of disease, injuries, disabilities both temporary and permanent in nature and even fatalities.

The role of proper ventilation in these work environments

Ventilation is a necessity in facilities where high levels of toxic dust can become airborne. Through well-designed and well-placed ventilation systems, employers can prevent the development of indoor air quality problems that can make people sick and even suffer from debilitating illnesses.

Adding air treatment for better indoor air quality

Use of proper air treatment solutions will remove air contaminants while also serving as an efficient control of work zone humidity and temperature. Air treatments come in the form of electronic cleaners, filters, and charcoal-activated chemical solutions.

For the best possible results of making your work zones safer and healthier, invest in top of the line dust capture and removal systems such as down draft tables.

3 Features Users Hate the Most about Any Website

Denver Web DeveloperAs technology advances and people spend more time on the Internet, the expectations from websites are getting higher. Especially if you’re trying to sell something, you have to be creative to woo prospects and convert them into actual customers. In most cases, online users would judge your business by your website.

This is why an experienced Chicago or Denver web developer, designer, and content creation team on your side should never be underrated, according to an expert from Denverdata.com. Your site must have a great user interface and provide the trouble-free user experience. Each of your pages shouldn’t only look and feel good, but function properly too.

But before you build an online real estate everybody love, find out first the main things that tick off online users today. This way, you don’t have to learn these lessons the hard way:

Slow Loading Time

In a fast-paced digital world, slow-loading web pages have no place on the Internet. As the attention span of people is shorter than ever, you know nobody has the patience to wait for about 10 seconds just to see your content.

In order for your web pages to run fast, you should combine creativity and technical expertise to build your site for speed. This is one clear example your web designer and developer should collaborate closely.

Confusing Navigation

The fluidity of the browsing experience doesn’t only depend on the set of menus through which the user communicates with your site; content plays a crucial role too. Having ambiguous copy and lacking call-to-actions are unacceptable in content creation.

If you’re serious about getting every single lead or sale from your traffic, tell visitors what you want them to do. Your compelling content is worthless if users would only reach a dead end and have no clue what to do next after getting your message.

Annoying Auto-Playing Content

Nothing raises the ire of users more than auto-playing multimedia content. It disrupts an otherwise stress-free browsing session. Especially if the stop button, or the media itself, is painfully hard to find. If this is your way to catch the attention of your visitor, you can still do this without ruining the user experience.

For best practices, follow the lead of Twitter and Facebook. Set your videos on autoplay, but set them on mute until the users intentionally make them audible.

Building a user-friendly website is all about knowing your visitors from head to toe. Unless you know the things that please or irate them, you may have to endure a long process of trial and error to perfect the right mix of techniques.

Become an IT Professional: Advice for the Beginner

IT ProfessionalIT professionals and experts are becoming more popular among businesses these days because no company can afford to run without using modern technology that allows them to communicate and make work faster and safer.

Many IT experts are paid ridiculous amounts of money because of their knowledge. While this may be what you are after in the long term, the real good news for now is there are more companies willing to shop around to get a bargain. They need younger or less experienced IT people for the less complicated tasks because the best IT employees or consultants are costly. 

If you’re only learning IT, this is an opportunity to earn money while getting more experience and a deeper understanding of the industry.

How to Prepare for a Career in IT

Preparation is always good. A career in IT is no exception when it comes to how preparation can help you become better. Here are some ideas.

  1. Get an education – Education benefits anyone. There are ways to learn IT in a school setting even if you can’t afford the cost of an expensive university. There are short courses to help you with the basics, at least. There are also online courses; they’re just a Google search away.
  2. Tests and certification – Some institutions and organizations offer certifications for IT professionals. There are written and practical exams involved, including network+ practice tests intended for ensuring you will pass the actual exams. Passing such exams and getting certified is one way to get more clients or to be accepted in more companies.
  3. Practice – Nothing beats experience when it comes to learning anything. This is what makes practice important. You can’t just understand theory; you need experience in application. Get on-the-job training experience to help equip you in becoming a better IT professional.

A career in IT is a great way to learn new things and make more money. The demand is not going anywhere soon. So prepare yourself to be an IT professional and get your game on.

Win Customers Over Before They Even Enter the Store

Girl in a Grocery StoreIf you want people to use your services or buy your products, understanding how they make purchasing decisions is a must. The Internet made it easier for potential customers to review a business’ offerings, even before they enter a store. Competition is stiffer online but it also opens new opportunities for you to make a sales pitch to your target market.

Reciprocity

This principle cites that when someone gives you something, you often feel compelled to give something back. When you offer a customer a sample of your products, this will influence or even oblige them to make a purchase.

Will this also work if your potential customers browse your website? This is possible when you offer a free gift with each item bought. Even if you don’t advertise the freebies, slipping them in with a shipped product will create a feeling in your customers of having received a gift. This might earn you a second loyal customer or at least a second purchase. People counting systems like CountWise allow you to measure this strategy’s effectiveness on your profits and in-store foot traffic.

Consistency is Important

This principle states that people will do anything, even if these are sometimes irrational, to appear consistent in their actions and words. As a store owner, if you get your consumers to make a commitment to your brand, like signing up for a magazine, newsletter or product updates, they are likely to go to your store to buy your products.

Likable Brand

Certain things act as influencers on the purchasing decisions of people, one of which is the likability of your brand. If your company’s branding makes a connection with your intended audience, the likelihood of purchase and loyalty increases. This is one of the reasons some companies hire celebrities to act as their endorsers or ambassadors. You don’t have to hire an A-lister to become likable; telling your story or using people that your market relates to creates a similar effect.

Marketing online, branding and offering freebies are part of the out-of-store strategy that will increase in-store foot traffic and the likelihood of purchase.

Waking Up Terrified: Avoiding the Serious Case of False Alarms

False AlarmsThe security alarm shoots off in the middle of night.

You pick up your baseball bat and check downstairs. You then carefully investigate the doors and windows, the living room, the kitchen, the basement — but nothing seems wrong.

So, you run upstairs to check if the kids are OK, and they are. And as you check what happened the following morning, it’s the same problem before: another false alarm.

Indeed, with tons of home security systems on the market today, the quality can sometimes feel questionable. This is true especially with the ones you can install yourself; knowing if you placed the sensors correctly is a highly debated household chat you’d rather not have.

For your guidance and safety in dealing with security alarms, NorthStarHome.com shares the common causes of false alarms and their resolutions.

Human Error

Alarms can’t actually identify your friends and family from strangers. This is why when someone from your house arrives late at night and types the wrong password, the alarm would naturally go off the same way.

Solution: Have a formal chat with everybody in your home and teach them about the security system you have in place. Ask them to memorize the codes and the process of disarming wrong alarm activations fast.

Battery-dependent Sensors

Some old security systems rely on the battery for power. When sensors are short in charge, there’s an increased chance for them to malfunction.

Solution: Be mindful of the battery life for each of your security devices. Create a calendar or even just a reminder to change batteries in a particular set of time.

All Pets that Move

It’s no secret that some pets react very differently during the night. When your cat or dog becomes playful at night while you’re sleeping, there’s a tendency for them to trip one of the sensors such as the motion sensor.

Solution: Some sensors are less sensitive to movement, but you don’t want that. To avoid this, place your sensors in areas where your pets can’t trigger them.

There is a sound resolution to every problem. To solve the case of false alarms, you either consult a technician or do the necessary adjustments yourself.