Why You Should Use Local Web Designers for Your Local Business Website

The business climate has been great for locally owned and operated businesses for the last several years. Many people feel a renewed sense of community. Supporting local small businesses is the perfect way to start loving where you live!

From restaurants and breweries to manufacturers and industrial facilities, local businesses are booming and they all have one thing in common: they need a well-designed website to stand out, search engine optimization to be found, and a social media strategy that will help them engage with the local market. That’s where your friendly neighborhood local web design and marketing firms like ITD Interactive come in!

Local Web Designers Understand Your Market and Customers

We understand your market because we are your market! We spend a lot of time examining and researching the local market for the same reason any local business does: to look for ways to expand our reach and find new customers. A local design firm will have a better understanding of how to reach local customers than a group from hundreds of miles away who may have never even stepped foot in your market before.

Here at ITD Interactive we always try to support our local businesses in the Tri-Cities. There’s no better way to understand how to reach customers of a business than to be a customer of that business yourself.

Local Web Designers Are a Part of Your Local Network

Since we all work in the same business community, there’s a good chance that we’ll know more than a few of the same people. This is a perfect opportunity to get real-world reviews. Just ask someone you know who’s worked with us! Every local business owner knows there’s no advertising better than good word-of-mouth. Take a look at our portfolio and testimonials to get an idea of who we’ve worked with.

Local Web Designers Are a Phone Call or Quick Trip Across Town Away

A quick Google search is all it takes to know there are a lot of options out there when it comes to building a website. There are definitely a lot of talented designers in the field. But there’s always a catch! If you’re a small business owner in Johnson City, TN and decide to go with a web design firm in Chicago or even somewhere a little closer like Asheville to build your site, you’ll always be working around their schedule. Designers in other cities often have a lot of local clients. They may even be in another time zone or work a totally different schedule. It may be difficult to get them on the phone if you have questions about your website or if your site is down and need to get it back up as soon as possible so you don’t lose any business.

ITD Interactive is a Proud Local Johnson City, TN Web Design Agency!

ITD Interactive is a local web site design firm. That means we’re within miles of any business in Johnson City and a short trip from Bristol, Kingsport, and the rest of the Tri-Cities area. We’re in the office normal hours every weekday and will respond to you within a business day if we happen to miss your call. When you need to see how something works you can drop by our office any time for a hands-on tutorial. If you’re lucky you’ll be here on a day that JC brings in her famous chocolate-chip cookies – we’re happy to share if there are any left!

If you’re in the Tri-Cities and are ready to see the difference in working with local, personable web designers drop us a line and let’s get to work!

 

ITD Interactive - Inbound Marketing, SEO, eCommerce and Web Design

Why Does My Website Say ‘Not Secure’?

If you’re a Google Chrome user, you might have noticed your updated browser is now telling you that some sites are “Not Secure” in big red letters. If you’re a business owner with your own website that’s being flagged this might be even more concerning to you. If you’re wondering what this means and how you can fix it, read on for the full story about SSL and You!

Dealing with Not Secure Website Warnings?Google announced in early 2018 that starting in July their Chrome browser, the most-used desktop browser by a wide margin, would start flagging unsecure sites that aren’t using HTTPS encryption. HTTPS in plain English is the secure version of HTTP, which is one of the basic ways websites are accessed on the internet. HTTPS normally uses SSL for encryption, one type of security certificate that keeps private information transmitted on your site safe from snooping middlemen.

Think about it this way: imagine HTTP is the front door of your business and it has a standard doorknob with a regular old lock on it that you keep locked after hours just in case. HTTPS is that same door but with extra deadbolts added on to beef up your security and keep criminals out.

That’s not to say that any site without HTTPS encryption is automatically in danger of door-kicking hackers! If your site isn’t using outdated contact forms to send private information such as Social Security Numbers, financial information, etc., your site and its users probably aren’t in any real immediate danger without an SSL certificate protecting your site. The reason Google is enforcing this new rule is to encourage site owners to make the switch to HTTPS to create a more secure web with secure and encrypted sites being the default, not the other way around. It’s a great idea in theory, but the only problem with that is many security certificates can be expensive and difficult to install and maintain, many requiring yearly renewals.

If you’re a small business owner who needs a website and you’re scratching your head about all of this, that’s where ITD Interactive comes in! Our standard hosting package for WordPress sites includes a 100% free SSL certificate that we install and maintain for you. You’ll be automatically upgraded to an HTTPS site without any hassle or yearly renewal fees. Your site will be more secure and your users who visit your site in Google Chrome won’t get that annoying message that implies that your site is not safe to visit.  We can also offer more heavyweight worry-free SSL certificates for eCommerce and medical websites that need added protection for an added cost.

If you’ve already got a website you’re happy with, you can still take advantage of this offer. Switch to ITD Interactive hosting and we’ll move an exact copy of your WordPress site to our ultra-secure servers and get your free SSL certificate up and running in minutes. Click here for pricing and more information.

9 Traits Of The Best Website Design Companies

Awesome website designersIf you are looking for the best website design companies in the business, how will you know when you have found one?  What are the common traits?

We’ve been in the web design industry a long time and we’ve identified 9 traits that we want to see in our own business.  These are our own internal goals and these are things you should look for when shopping for web designers.

9 Traits Of The Best Website Design Companies

  1. Thick Glasses & Awesome Sweaters.  Now on to #2 . . .
  2. Set Deadlines – One question you should ask and most web designers will not want to give you a firm answer on is “When will my website be finished?”  We pointed out in How Long Does It Take To Make A Website that the answers, if they are even given, are all over the board and very few are specific enough to be meaningful.  What the average web designer will give you is a very rough estimate.  The project can turn into a nightmare-ishly long process in which everybody involved becomes frustrated.  That’s one of the reasons we developed One Week Website.  Both sides need real deadlines to get the job done efficiently and well.
  3. Meet Deadlines – It’s great to set deadlines, but what happens if they are not met?  Did you know that contractors in the construction business actually have monetary incentives to meet deadlines?  We approach web design in the same way.  If we don’t meet a deadline in our One Week Website process, you don’t pay as much.  Yes, we’re serious.  Make sure your web design company sets deadlines and ask them what happens if they don’t meet them.

(more…)

Looking for Website Maintenance Services?

Website Maintenance ServicesITD Interactive offers a wide range of website maintenance services for companies of all sizes and budgets.  Our web maintenance services are arranged in a series of straight-forward packages that allow us to discount our hourly rates based on the number of hours in the block.  This provides great value to those who need a higher level of updates per month – and the flexibility of using a smaller block of hours allows companies with smaller website maintenance needs to save money as well. (more…)

Website Maintenance: How often should I update my website?

UPDATED:  This post gets a LOT of traffic lately and we wanted to update a few things to provide the most relevant and helpful information possible.

website maintenance servicesThe short answer is “as often as there is anything worth updating!”  The problem we run into, however, is deciding what is worth updating.  Website maintenance is about more than just your “news and events” page.  Let’s face it – when you run a business, you have news.  You have: new products, staff changes, announcements, policy changes, new services, warnings, tips – the list goes on.  You have things to talk about!  You really should make a point to update something on your website at least once a week.  Let’s review a few reasons why, and some suggestions of WHAT to update. (more…)

Consumer Trends, General, Local SEO, SEO, SEO for Small Business, Social Networking, Web Marketing, Website Design, Website Maintenance, Website Maintenance Services