The first process to having an online presence is obviously to construct a fully-functioning website! This includes design, followed by development. Do you have any design or functionality ideas? Do share!
Do you already have a website? That’s great! But does it look outdated? Is it unresponsive? Is it too flashy? Or, conversely, too utilitarian and boring? Or do you just want someone to maintain it for you? We at Nutshell handle that as well!
It is almost magical what an online presence can do for a company nowadays. It can help increase awareness about a company, educate people about a company’s purpose and direction or simply help increase sales numbers, all of which are good! So, what are you waiting for?
Although template-based websites are aplenty in the web, a custom website constructed from the ground up has a lot more flexibility. Although the development process for a custom website is longer than that of a template-based one, there are some key advantages to it. For starters, a custom website can be tailored to a company’s identity and specifications. Your website need not look like the websites of half a dozen other companies providing comparable products or services. Next, S.E.O. can be implemented in a superior way; we will cover that in a bit more detail later.
Companies always want to expand; it is a completely natural mindset. Whether it be greater volumes of production, larger variety of products and services or just having offices and manufacturing facilities in various countries, company growth will always occur. This will have an impact on its web presence, as the website will have to grow to accommodate all these changes and expansions. A web designer will always have these in mind when designing and developing a custom website.
So, do you want to stand out from the crowd? Of course you do! Do you want a website that is tailored to you? Obviously! Do you want your website to be easily discoverable? Absolutely! Flexible? Sure! Functional? Certainly! Do you have a design or concept in mind? Let us know!
Although desktop computers are awesome, they’re not the most practical computing devices for checking a Wiki article on the bus! With smartphones taking centre stage, and tablets being not too far behind, having a responsive website design is mandatory nowadays. Since full-fledged, desktop-optimised websites tend to be content- and design-heavy, opening those up on a tablet or a smartphone not only takes time, but also consumes a large amount of mobile internet data. Also, your beautiful website might be nightmarish to navigate through within the limited screen size of your smart devices. Not very practical, is it?
What is responsive website design? It is a method within the web design process which makes a website adapt itself to whatever device it is being displayed on. For example, there is a full-fledged version of Wikipedia which displays itself on your desktop or laptop computer, along with a mobile version of the same, which is a cut-down version displaying only the core information the user wants to see. Sure, it adds some steps to the whole development process, but the end result builds on the flexibility factor of having a custom website design in the first place!
With the wide availability of smart devices on the market, almost everyone has access to the internet nowadays. And that means most of these people will be viewing their content on those smart devices, which are predominantly smartphones and tablets. So, these strata of the market need to be reached. Why not make websites optimised purely for mobile devices then? The desktop and laptop crowd will have to add an extension to their browsers just to view these websites; an added step which might put off quite a large chunk of people. So, responsive is the way to go!
Website Design refers to the appearance of the website, while Website Development deals with all the internal coding required to instil functionality into it and bring the design to life. To sum it up, this is the most complex part of constructing a website.
This expertise comes into play not only when making a custom website from the ground up, but also when an existing website needs maintenance or a complete overhaul. While most larger companies have inhouse developers who deal with creating, maintaining and updating their own websites, other companies of varying size often seek out companies specialising in web development to construct, maintain, and update their own websites.
Obviously, we at Nutshell have our own inhouse developers who do this, else we wouldn’t even be offering this as a service! So, whether it be developing a brand-new website, maintaining and/or updating an existing one or completely revamping and breathing new life into an aging website, we can help you out! Let us know what you need!
Unless a website is purely of informational nature or acts as a payment portal for municipal services, it usually tends towards the e-commerce angle. To give a blunt example: Amazon. Meaning, if you’re planning to sell anything at all, whether it be a product or service, online, a website needs to be e-commerce ready.
The usual features of any e-commerce website are a full-fledged contact form, a cart for storing products/services to be purchased, a payment portal and integration with a shipping partner. Other features often include detailed product/service pages, implementation of a Wish List feature, a comparison tool to compare products of a similar nature and review sections dedicated to each individual product/service provided, among other things.
This ties up nicely with the flexibility aspect of custom website design; unless you’re planning to sell the same handful of products/services for the foreseeable future, you’re planning to add/remove a variety of products down the line. This means adding new product pages, with all their necessary design-work, coding work, content writing and photography! That is a LOT of work! But don’t worry! Nutshell has people to handle every stage of that process!
So, a custom website takes a long time to set up and get running. But once it does start running, it looks, feels and functions amazingly, doesn’t it? And then you find out that your website shows up on the 22nd page of a search engine. That is enough to put a damper in anyone’s plan! The solution? There are two: paid advertisements or S.E.O.
Search Engine Optimisation is a method implemented into the development process by the addition of specific keywords or tags into the website content or the internal code to make a website appear earlier in search engine results, when searches are made with those same keywords or words similar to them. Sounds easy? Technically, all you have to do is flood your website code or content with all the different keywords and tags you can think up! Right? Not really!
Search engines have become smarter over the years. Specialised algorithms have been fed into them to allow them to separate the chaff from the wheat, to put it simply. Intentionally spamming your website with hundreds of these tags can actually ruin your website’s chances from showing up early in the search results, due to these modern measures.
In such a situation, the only way forward is to implement S.E.O. in a similarly smart way. Also, this is one of the many places where a custom website scores over a template-based one; the former can be optimised better than the latter. Although it isn’t an exact science or art form, we at Nutshell have the measure of it. So, try us!
So, you’ve got a great website going and have even received responses from visitors about how awesome it is! That’s great! But, what if you could actually find out how many people have visited your website? And how much time they spent there? And which specific section they spent the most time in? Information is power and having that kind of information is quite a boon. Well, Google has got your back on that end, with Google Analytics.
How do we, at Nutshell, come into the picture, you ask? Well, as part of the website package, we can help integrate Google Analytics into your website, thus allowing you to keep track of website visits, durations of visits overall and durations of visits to specific sections of the site, among other nifty bits of information, like which time of day brings in the most number of visits. With this latter bit of information, website maintenances can be scheduled so as to not affect the peak visit hours.
Now we come to the domain name, which is basically the identity of any website. This is the name someone will type in a browser address bar, followed by a “.com”, “.org”, “.gov” or any other domain, to be able to visit your website. The domains vary according to the services provided. So, a “.org” refers to the website of any non-profit organisation, while “.gov” refers to a Government website; “.com” refers to a commercial website, while “.co.uk” or “.co.ca” refers to commercial websites based in UK or Canada respectively.
If you, for example, wish to name your commercial website Cheesecake, you can’t just type “www.cheesecake.com” and be directed there. You will first have to approach a domain name registrar, from whom you will register the domain name “cheesecake.com” in exchange for a fee. Once that is done, you can have your web developer integrate the domain name into your website as its identity.
But, once again, YOU won’t have to do any of this. We, at Nutshell, have got your back on this, as always! All you’ll have to do is tell us what name you would like your custom website to have; we’ll handle the rest. But, with millions upon millions of websites in existence right now, you might not always end up getting your choice of domain name on the first go. So, it’s always handy to have a selection of favourite names and variations of the same.
No matter how hard you work on setting up your website, no matter how amazing it is, no matter if it can solve the world hunger issue or bring forth world peace, if your website doesn’t end up in the World Wide Web, it will have all been for nothing!
Although that sounds horrible, the solution is surprisingly simple and widely available: web hosting. There are companies that specialise in providing web hosting services for a nominal fee to be paid annually. What these companies do is provide server space to be able to store your website in their data centres, while simultaneously making the website visible in the World Wide Web.
Although we don’t provide web hosting services ourselves, we have partner companies who specialise in providing these services. But that is something you, as a client, need not worry about. Since we provide web hosting services within the web development packages, we at Nutshell make sure that you don’t have to do anything apart from operating the website once we’re done making it!
Imagine that you have a wonderful looking, feeling, and functioning website ready for your company. You open it on your office computer, which is connected to your office’s blazing fast internet connection, and it opens and works like a charm! As a very proud and happy owner, you launch this website to the public and await the inevitable traffic it will attract. But, instead of the overwhelming amount of traffic you were expecting, your Customer Care department is flooded with calls and e-mails the next day! There are complaints of the website opening very slowly and functioning rather inconsistently across a variety of devices ranging from smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktops.
Internet speed is a very inconsistent thing. While your office may have access to blazing fast, broadband internet, not everyone has access to those kinds of speed or consistency. This is where website performance optimisation comes in. During the development phase of any website, it is the developer’s mantra to make certain that the website in question provides a balanced user experience across a variety of devices and across a variety of internet speeds. These can involve simple changes like lowering image and icon resolutions to an optimal size or complex changes like making changes to the website code structure to streamline the operations. At the end of the day, anyone who visits your website, or any website for that matter, expects to have a smooth, pleasant and lag-free browsing experience.