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3 Secrets of Successful Small Businesses

computer software companiesStarting a business is difficult. You might have a great business idea, an excellent product, and even a team of hardworking employees, but it’s still extremely hard to get off the ground and actually start seeing some profit gain. 

Because the business market is so competitive in 2017, it’s important to not give up if you’re serious about succeeding and growing your company. Here are a few secrets of successful businesses that you should attempt to apply to your own business model in order to see success for your company. 

Pay attention to the market
Be sure to spend plenty of time researching your industry to find out as much as possible. Learn about the history of your industry, find out how the market is doing as a whole, and always be reading your trade magazines. Also, it’s essential that you pay attention to what your competitors are doing and find out exactly how they are doing it. Are they succeeding? Are they failing? That is important information, but it’s even more important that you determine why exactly they are failing or succeeding. 

Work with an experienced website and software development company
Without working with professional computer software companies and experienced web designers, your business will likely have a poor digital presence. If your web-based app isn’t functional, your users will become frustrated quickly. If your website isn't well-designed, it will be nearly impossible for you to acquire new customers and retain them. Online users form an opinion about a website within 50 milliseconds of the page loading, so you might want to make sure you’re focusing on professional website development. These experienced professionals can also help with website security, which is more important than ever nowadays. 

Don’t do everything yourself
Although you’ll be doing the majority of your company’s work, especially in its infancy, you still need help. Asking for assistance from your staff is an essential part of success. If you attempt to do everything on your own, you are going to burn yourself out and your business will likely suffer as a result. 

If your business is in need of assistance from computer software companies and web design professionals, contact Facet Web Tech today.

Web Based Applications: What They Are and Why They're Useful

software solutions companyIt's no secret that corporate America is becoming increasingly decentralized. In the matter of a few short decades, we have jettisoned the world of LAN lines for more agile cloud computing solutions. 

While all this progress gives businesses new and innovative ways to store their data and interact with their clientele, many companies struggle to keep up with the explosion of progress.

In this blog, we'll dive into one of the most vital and common new technologies in any software solutions company's arsenal: Web Based Applications.

What is a Web Based Application?
An application is software designed to address a specific goal. Databases, word processors, or music players are all types of common applications. For more specific goals, an application can be created by a software solutions company.

While many software companies build both mobile applications and web applications, web-based apps are specifically designed to work on a web browser. The other major kind of applications, mobile and desktop apps, are designed to be downloaded onto your device's hard drive and run from the device, rather than a web browser. 

Advantages of Web Based Applications

  1. Greater Accessibility
    The primary advantage of a web-based application is that it can be easily accessed through your web browser. That means that users will have an easier time interacting with your application.

    That is valuable whether you are using your application on the back end, as a tool for your employees, or if you plan to use it to allow your customers to more easily interact with your business. Often, applications can be integrated with a business's website, such as a live customer support app. So long as these applications do not slow down or clutter your site, they can be a great way to enhance your customer experience.

    Remember, the design of your site is important, with 38% of visitors reporting they will not engage with an unattractive site and layout. A software solutions company can build you an interactive application that can keep your site's visitors satisfied.
  2. Better Integration
    One of the key advantages of having a software solution company build you a web-based application is that it is significantly easier to integrate and coordinate between different applications this way. If you need to pull information or data from one app to another, software designers can ensure these API calls always run smoothly, reducing the amount of time you spend inputting and double checking information.
  3. Increased Adaptability
    One of the best problems you will ever have with your application is too much traffic or use. This shows that your application is actually getting used, but the more pressure placed on your application, the more likely you are to experience glitches or other problems. A web-based app can more easily adjust to this problem, since you can add additional resources in one central location, rather than having to issue a major update to every user. Instead, a single call to your software company may be the only solution required.

Understanding what type of software is best for your business can be difficult. There are a number of computer software companies, all developing unique tools that may or may not be for you. Understanding the categories of tools and what they mean can help you narrow the field.

Why a Custom Website Is the Right Choice for Startup E-Commerce Sites

website securityIf you are a fledgling e-commerce startup, it can be tempting to purchase a turnkey style template website. After all, money is tight when you are starting out and you have to watch where you allocate your resources.

Unfortunately, failing to invest enough into your website could be the biggest mistake your new startup makes. In a recent study, 94% of people said that poor web design was a serious reason to mistrust or outright reject a website.

In this post, we will break down why custom website development is so important to your e-commerce or startup site.

  1. Credibility
    As we mentioned before, the visual layout of your website is incredibly important for consumers. In fact, it only takes 50 milliseconds for someone to form an opinion on your website. Offering bold visuals and unique features beyond what you can find on a template-based website is a great way to establish yourself as a serious digital presence.
  2. Navigation
    Few customers use the search bar when looking through your website. That is why it is so important that you have a website that is not only clearly laid out, but also has excellent mapping from one page to the next. With a turnkey service, you will be forced to attempt to do this mapping yourself, which can easily result in mistakes. With a professional website development team, you can trust that your site will be clear and easy to navigate.
  3. Mobile Compatibility
    We've discussed the importance of mobile optimization in the past, but it's important enough that we will revisit it now. As more and more people abandon traditional desktops and laptops for tablets and smartphones, your website will need to be able to adapt to a number of different environments. While template websites have some tools to help your site adapt, a custom website will allow you to offer the very best web experience no matter what platform it is being viewed on.
  4. Strong Security
    Many companies that offer professional website development offer specialize in website security solutions. Considering how important it is for an e-commerce site to protect the information of their buyers from hacker attacks, website security should be a top priority. 

    When comparing template sites and custom made ones, there is no doubt that custom sites offer the very best in website security software. That means that your consumers will be able to purchase from your site without concern.

In the digital age, your website is your storefront. If you want to retain customers, it must be well organized, engaging, and secure. 

For Your Website, Mobile Optimization Is a Must. Here's Why.

website developmentIn the digital age, you can't fool around with your website development. Long gone are the days when your site would be viewed only on one type of device or browser. Now, your site needs to provide the same high-quality experience whether it's viewed on a laptop with Google Chrome or a PC with Firefox. And you can't afford to forget other devices like tablets and smartphones. If you do, you'll be missing out on a lot of business and you could even end up hurting your search rankings. Let's take a closer look at why your professional website development needs to include mobile optimization.

  • Conversions: Firstly, customers are starting to abandon big devices like computers in favor of mobile gadgets. Many consumers rely solely on their smartphones to conduct internet searches. What's more, these people are ready to buy. Mobile shoppers want quick and easy results; they don't want to waste time navigating a desktop website on their device. In fact, one-third of customers will abandon a transaction if the site isn't mobile-optimized, according to statistics cited in the Huffington Post. But 62% of companies that have a site designed with mobile users in mind experience sales increases. If you want to make it easy for customers to spend money with you, mobile optimization is a no-brainer.
  • Experience: No one wants to deal with a website with difficult navigation, slow load speeds, tiny fonts, or a cluttered layout. Unfortunately, when many desktop sites are viewed on mobile devices, this is what happens. Technology has provided us with many wonderful things, but an increase in patience isn't typically one of them. Rather than struggling with your site, customers will backtrack and look elsewhere for services or products. Don't want your customers to head for the hills (or to your competitors' sites)? Make sure your site provides the same great experience no matter where it's being viewed.
  • Rankings: It might surprise you to learn that failing to optimize for mobile will have a poor effect on your search rankings. Your bounce rate (i.e., the time it takes for customers to click back to their search results) will be high and Google's crawling bots will probably find that your site isn't living up to others' in your industry. As a result, it'll be difficult to achieve the web ranking you want. You'll end up buried in page after page of results, which means it might be nearly impossible for potential customers to find you. When you have higher aspirations for your business, you need to do everything you can to ensure you aren't penalized by Google.

If you're struggling to convert leads into customers or aren't seeing the progress you'd like, it's possible that your lack of mobile optimization could play a part. From website security solutions to basic development, we're here to help. To find out why we're the finest firm for website development Illinois has to offer, contact Facet Web Tech today.

3 Common E-Commerce Web Development Mistakes (And How to Fix Them!)

software companiesThe world of e-commerce has grown exponentially in the last few years. In fact, according to Lemonstand, e-commerce was already a $1.6 trillion market by the end of 2015. That being said, there's no shortage of professional website development mistakes to be made in e-commerce. 

Do you know what those mistakes are? And more importantly, do you know how to fix them? Users will form an opinion of your page within 50 milliseconds of it loading, so you better have all your ducks in a row! If you're concerned about your e-commerce site, here are three of the most common web development mistakes and what you can do to solve them. 

The Problem: Long or Confusing Checkout Processes 
If there's one mistake many e-commerce sites make, it's how they organize their checkout process. For a customer to be satisfied, they should be able to hand over their credit card information and make their purchase as soon as possible. If they can't do that, all bets for a returning customer are off. 

The Solution?
The ideal checkout process involves as few steps as possible. A single page for customers to enter their shipping and billing information, followed by a confirmation page before finalizing the purchase is a great model to follow. Just making pages appear shorter gives the illusion of a shorter checkout process. 

The Problem: Requiring Account Creation with Every Order 
Unfortunately, requiring a customer to sign up for an account before making their purchase is just another step in the way of completing their order. If anything, it's going to discourage customers from completing their purchase. 

The Solution? 
There's an easy solution that most website development software companies will tell you for this issue: offer account creation as an option after the checkout process has been completed. It might sound overly simple, but the truth is customers are more likely to sign up for an account if they had a good checkout experience. 

The Problem: Poor Shopping Cart Design 
The only thing worse than a lengthy and complicated checkout process is a poorly designed shopping cart. If your cart doesn't allow users to easily customize their purchase, you've got a serious web development software issue on your hands. 

The Solution? 
An e-commerce cart should allow users to add items without leaving the page they're on. In addition, customers should be able to adjust the contents of their cart from the page they're currently visiting. This is something computer software companies can craft an excellent fix for! 

If you find your site making any of these errors, it might be a good idea to let web development software companies get involved. Not only can they craft creative solutions to your issues, they can help you create a better foundation for the future of your business.

5 Reasons You Need to Consider Outsourcing Web Development

software companyIn today's digital age, having a web presence is absolutely essential in creating a successful business. And what's more, having an attractive, efficient website is becoming more and more ingrained in a business's sales. In fact, according to Inspired Magazine, businesses have approximately 10 seconds to make a good first impression on users. 

You might be wondering how to do all of this work on your own. Fortunately, you don't have to. Outsourcing website development to a software company is an option for countless businesses, and it's one you should take advantage of. Here are just a few reasons why. 

  • Cost Effective
    Hiring and training an entire professional website design and development team is not only a daunting process, it's a pricey one. If your company doesn't have the resources necessary, outsourcing can help meet your web design needs on a budget.
  • Freeing Up Your Time
    If you're not worrying about web development, you can focus on actual business development. Stretching yourself too thin can have serious consequences for your company as a whole. But the more time you have to actually dedicate to your business as a whole, the more opportunities you'll create for success.
  • Experience
    Above all else, a professional web development and software company will be able to provide results based on experience. Unfortunately, experience is something members of your team might not have in that field. when you outsource, you're investing in quality experience.
  • Competitive Advantage
    In a world obsessed with the Internet, you need a competitive edge to your web development strategy. Hiring a professional website development and website security company can give you the edge you need to get ahead.
  • Security
    If you're looking for advanced website security solutions, look no further than a web development company. Outsourcing your work to these experienced professionals can create important opportunities to work on your online security.

Creating a good website simply isn't enough anymore to secure a following. If you want bigger, better results and a web presence that actually matters, it's time to consider outsourcing your web development needs. When you consider all of the advantages listed above, hiring a web development company seems like a no-brainer!

How Your Outdated Website May Be Influencing Your Online Presence

website securityWebsites are visual indicators of what your business is and what they do. If a website is sub-par, it can easily have a detrimental influence on a business' online presence. Out of all online visitors, 38% will stop engaging with a business' website if there's an unattractive layout or design.

When a website shows poor quality or if it looks as if it hasn't been updated since the 1990s, your potential consumers will interpret your business to be the same. Therefore, it's important to keep your website up to date with modern standards.

The following signs may be a clue that your website may need some professional website development.

The design isn't strong
Some blogs may claim that 1990s web design style is soon to make a comeback. Don't believe them. Some popular characteristics of 1990s web design included: patterned backgrounds, animated scrollbars, too much content, hit counters, and looping background animations. If your website includes any of these designs, scrap them.

Patterned and animated backgrounds are distractions to your content and online users typically come to websites for fast, easy information. That means that if there's too much text and the user is unable to find what they're looking for in the first few seconds (the equivalent of waiting to be noticed at a fast food restaurant), they're going to leave.

Have a software company and website development team update your website using white space, simple images, and modern font choices and your online presence is sure to spike.

The website isn't mobile-friendly
Phones these days double as small computers. However, mobile Internet use is different from computers as phones are typically for necessary information such as the location of a business, the hours they're open, what the weather is going to be like, etc. Phones are for when the user is on the go, which means their mind is on the go. If your website isn't mobile-friendly and fails to adapt to the size of the phone screen, it can easily cause irritation with the user and therefore impact how that user sees your business.

You're regularly dealing with viruses
If you're regularly dealing with viruses on your business' website, odds are your website security is outdated. Website security is what keeps your business safe from spyware and malware which may steal information and lead to identity theft. Have website security software installed that's from this year for the best results for your business' safety.

Having a modern website is important to the marketing of your company. Your website is the online face of your business and so when that website is poor quality, the online consumer will interpret your business as poor quality and not worth their attention. Therefore, utilizing website development companies in order to maintain the face of your business online and to ensure the future of your company's online marketing ability.

Does Your Business Need a New Website? 6 Red Flags

computer software companiesImagine a grocery store with half empty shelves, broken lights, and no signs on top of the aisles telling you where to find "Cereal" and "Pasta." On top of that, the automatic sliding doors won't open all the way, the shopping carts all have one broken wheel, and you can't find any employees to point you in the right direction.

That's the effect a bad business website has on new leads.

In the same way that the manager of a brick and mortar store would make sure the premises are clean, safe, and well lit, your business's website needs to reflect the quality of your brand. If your website is in desperate need of an upgrade, redesign, or total renovation, then working with computer software companies will help you improve the look, feel, and functionality of your website to stand out against your competitors. 

But how do you know when it's time to work with a trusted web development software company?Keep reading for our new business website checklist and ask yourself these six simple questions.

Does each web page load within a reasonable time?
When your website -- or even a single page -- doesn't load quickly enough, chances are the users aren't going to wait around. On the Internet, five seconds feels much, much longer. That means your potential customers will take their time and their money elsewhere, most likely to one of your competitors. A reasonable amount of time doesn't mean within the first 30 seconds, either, but much faster than that. Roughly 47% of online users expect a web page to load within two seconds.

Try your website on several different computers and locations, or run tests to measure the exact loading time. If you don't like what you find, experienced computer software companies can help improve the response time. 

Is my company’s website optimized?
Search engine optimization (SEO) is an essential part of running a business in 2017. In addition to the look and functionality of your website, it's important that users can easily find your listing on a search engine results page. That means your website must be optimized for search engines as well as people. 

Is my business capturing as many leads as it can?
If you feel like your website isn’t bringing in or converting enough leads, it might be time to change some aspects of your digital presence. Business software professionals can help find creative and innovative ways to improve the way your website generates leads and converts customers.

If you don't know how to gather this information, examine your analytics to keep an eye on your bounce rate. This metric measures the number of people that come to your website but immediately leave. Don't be intimidated by this number; depending on your industry, a 50% bounce rate isn't abnormal. However, a 75% bounce rate could be a major red flag that your business web site is in dire need of a refresh (click here to see average bounce rates by industry). If that's the case, talk to business computer software companies to get started.

Does my company look out of touch because of its website design?
If your website looks like it was created in the late 1990s or early 2000s, it’s obviously time to upgrade. Unfortunately, because the internet evolves so fast, if your business looks like it was created in 2014, it's probably time to upgrade, too. Working with business web design professionals can help improve your company’s website and will provide you with a much more modern design. 

Does my website look too similar to competitor businesses?
Having a custom designed website will not only help give your site a more modern look, but can also help your business stand out from your competitors. If your website is too much like your competitors, it might be difficult for your customers to distinguish between the two, resulting in a potential loss of clients. 

Can my customers easily maneuver through my company’s website?
Your business’s website can be the fastest, best looking site in the world, but if it’s too difficult for your average customer to find what they’re looking for, your business is going to suffer as a result.

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you may need professional website development.

To speak with trusted computer software companies, contact Facet Web Tech today.

Want a Successful Website? Don't Make These 3 Web Design Mistakes

software solutions consultingThe Internet has changed a lot of things about the way businesses work and how customers interact with them. Now, almost 48% of consumers list a website's design as the number one factor in deciding how credible a business is. 

In an age as technical as this one, your web design matters. Here are a few professional website development mistakes you need to avoid at all costs. 

Speed is the name of the game in today's age of instant gratification. If your website is cluttered and chaotic, it's going to load slower than a lot of others. For the most effective, user-friendly website, you need to think like a minimalist. Your design should be sleek, simple, and most importantly, mobile friendly. 

Mobile compatibility plays into the same category. A huge number of people now use their smartphones to access the internet, which means you need a responsive website design. When you're thinking about this, it's important to thoroughly utilize software solutions consulting, as it can help you create a new site that's responsive to your audience. The more responsive and sleek your design is, the better. 

Bad Navigation 
The best websites have intuitive navigation built right in. If a consumer is looking at one page, a list of related pages should be displayed somewhere close to the content they're already reading. Ideally, a website's navigation should be stationary and at the top of every page. The most important thing to remember? Organization. If the navigation is organized in a logical way that leads consumers to the items they need, you're going to have more positive user experiences across the board. 

Stock Photos 
There's nothing wrong with a good stock photo here and there, but what are they ultimately doing for your company? The point of website photos is to showcase your unique business and help users understand who you are and what you do. If you're not careful, too many bad stock photos could make it seem like your website security software is letting spam ads in. Professional photos might seem pricey, but bad photos can cost you more than just money; they can cost you a whole customer base! 

Whether you're looking for software solutions consulting for your site or you're in the midst of updates, make sure you're not making these mistakes.

4 Reasons Mobile Compatibility is Essential for Small Businesses

website security solutionsOperating and marketing a small business in such a technological age can be a challenge, to say the least. But what can you do to help increase web traffic and physical sales at the same time? The answer is simpler than you might think. If you have a website, optimize it for mobile use! Here's why: 

Like it or not, we live in an age that places a lot of importance on smartphone-related technology. Considering that Apple sold 51.2 million iPhones just in Q2 2016, it's safe to assume that mobile-friendly technology is only going to become more important in the future. Not to mention that approximately 62% of companies with a mobile-optimized site saw increased sales. Also, many people now access the internet exclusively through their cell phones. Without a mobile-friendly website, you'll never be able to reach these potential customers.

More Credibility 
The internet moves fast, which means you only have a finite amount of time to make a good first impression. Whether you're selling t-shirts or IT consulting services, having a professional website formatted for mobile and desktop access is going to make you look more credible right off the bat. 

If Google recommends that you do something with your website, it's probably in your best interest to do it. Google is the ruler of search engine marketing, and the company has explained multiple times just how important mobile optimization is. When more people use Google to search for things on their phones, there should be more mobile-friendly websites for them to find. Is yours going to be one of them? 

Mobile optimization is simply a standard part of professional website development now. The vast majority of website security solutions services and American software companies will tell you as much. Without a mobile- and desktop-friendly website, your company might look obsolete online. And that's not something you want for your business. If your website was designed more than three or four years ago, you likely don't have a modern, mobile site.

Whether you're looking for mobile website security solutions or simply looking for a mobile website makeover, don't wait to get your foot in the door. Mobile optimization is more important now than ever before for small businesses, so don't sleep on it!

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