Extreme Makeover: Website Edition- A Study in Website Redesign

The State Bank of Texas (SBOT) is an Irving, Texas based, family run bank, with national influence.  Their influence and expertise in hospitality lending is unparalleled.  However, as their business and prominence grew, they found that their dated website was not consistent with their image and did not offer all of the features that they wanted to offer their customers.  They contacted Nourtek Solutions help them create a website that was consistent with their brand and position as national player in the hospitality lending industry. The Challenge The original State Bank of Texas website was made to serve as a place where potential client could come and learn a bit more about them as potential vendors.  Their website did just that and little more.  On top of that their original website was designed several years ago before and so the design its self was dated and their ability to make changes on their own was very limited.  In their new design they wanted the following abilities: -          A modernized look and feel for their design -          The ability to submit loan applications online -          Access to online banking systems for all customers -          Updated content that gave a fuller picture of their history and services -          Mobile accessibility -          The ability to modify most content easily and effectively. The Solution After meeting with the executive team at the State Bank of Texas, the team at Nourtek Solutions went to work creating modern website that would meet their customer’s need.  The first step was to create an updated user interface.  This entailed a cosmetic redesign that emphasized important content by using large buttons and small amounts of content on the home page.  Another way that key content was emphasized was by providing drop down menus on the home page that allowed users to get to exactly the content that they need, [...]

Is Your Ugly Website Costing You Money?

Curb appeal. It is the buzz word in the real estate industry, and it refers to what your property looks like when a potential buyer pulls up. Any articles you read about improving your home’s value almost always begin with improving your curb appeal. That’s because first impressions matter, and if that impression is bad, your buyer will drive away. So what does all of this have to do with your website? In the online world, your website is like the front yard of your house and the first impression it makes can make all of the difference in whether your customers stay, look around, and eventually buy or just navigate away. How can you tell if your website’s curb appeal is lacking? A very good indication is your bounce rate, or the percentage of people who come to your website and navigate immediately away, is high. Typically, if there is a 60% or higher bounce rate, it is time to take a look at the quality of your website. To track your bounce rate you should install analytics on your website. There are many analytics programs available, some require a fee, but the most commonly used analytics program is Google Analytics, available for free at www.google.com/analytics. Using analytics can tell you how people are using your website and exactly how long they are on your website. After you install analytics and confirm that there is a problem, it is time to take a look at exactly which elements of your website need some work. Below are some common issues that lead to high bounce rates on your website: 1. Images and Video that don’t load: The media on your website helps you showcase your merchandise and lends a positive visual element. Visit your website periodically and make sure that everything is loading [...]

From Vision to Reality: How a Tech Consultant Can Help Turn a Dream Into a Business

You’re sitting at Barnes and Noble with a vaguely familiar book in your hand wondering if you already have this one.  But, with such an extensive collection, you simply can’t remember.  You’ve used Good Reads, but it really doesn’t help you in all of the ways you need it to.  And you wonder, “what if there was an app that helped me manage my personal library and reading lists?” You do your research on the product, come up with a list of ideal features, and you’re eager to get started on this road, but suddenly you’re stuck.    Developing an application and marketing it are an expensive process, and you don’t even know what steps to take.  You don’t want to be just another failed entrepreneur with a good idea that died on the junk heap, because you didn’t have the experience and know how to bring your vision to fruition.  So where do you turn.  This is a good time to find an industry consultant to help you figure out your next steps and how to go about raising money to get to the next step of the process. At Nourtek Solutions, we specialize in taking a fledgling vision and developing into a product that people need and want.  Part of our mission is to help other budding entrepreneurs make that leap from a good idea, to a stellar invention that changes the world.  Working with an established technical consultant who has experience in the tech industry gives you an opportunity to learn the ropes with a professional who already knows what it takes to succeed.   Nourtek consultants can help you:

  1. Understand the practical implications and applications of your plan:  If you aren’t a programming expert, the amount of work and cost that goes into an app might surprise you.  A technical [...]

Three Ways to Maximize Your Holiday Sales

The holiday season means a dramatic increase in spending for the average consumer. The challenge for business during this season is to claim their share of that increased traffic and boost their sales figures.  This challenge seems especially daunting in the online space, as vendors have millions of competitors who are only a click away.  So how does an online business maximize their opportunities for a successful holiday season?  Below are 3 simple ways that you can use to help bolster sales for online stores:

  1. Upgrade your web hosting service:  Increased traffic is fantastic; it means that lots of people are on a site.  However, if there is inadequate server capacity, that can lead to slower loading times and an eventual crash.  However, brief periods of increased traffic likely do not justify a lot of extra server capacity.  That’s why many webhosts now have a flexible option where they can expand your server space automatically during higher traffic periods and reduce it again when your traffic returns to normal.  These plans are charged based on usage, so if you never use the additional space you don’t have to pay for it.  However, if you get a spot on the local news and suddenly everyone has to have your product you are covered!
  2. Frequent site testing:  It’s a harsh reality of the online space that consumers have little to no patience with technical difficulties.  If your website isn’t working properly, they are just a click away from one that is working.   As a result, you are unlikely to know there is a problem until you have lost enough customers for you to notice a pattern on your analytics. To avoid massive customer loss especially during the holiday season, periodically use your site the way a customer would.  This is a good way to [...]

What is Affiliate Marketing?

There are many ways for a company to advertise on the web, and there are many ways that enterprising webmasters can sell space on their websites.   One way that is getting a lot of attention lately is affiliate marketing.  With all of the different ways to advertise online, it can be hard to understand each type, so in this article we will discuss what affiliate marketing is and the best ways to participate. What is Affiliate Marketing? The simple definition of affiliate marketing is when a company pays an outside entity to market their programs.  Technically speaking anytime a website sells an ad to a company, this is a type of affiliate marketing.  However, affiliate marketing in internet marketing has come to mean a specific type of advertising.  This type of advertising is commission based, meaning the person who displays the add only gets paid if the customer who clicks completes the desired action.  For instance, if an affiliate marketer for Amazon (or in their company terms an associate) places a link for a book on their blog, and a customer clicks on it, the marketer only gets paid if the person ends up purchasing the item. Why Affiliate Marketing? In many other forms of internet marketing it is “easier” to get paid because all a customer has to do is click to get there.  However, the pay for clicks is significantly less.  Affiliate Marketing tends to have better return on investment both for the company doing the marketing and the affiliate placing the link.  For the company doing the marketing, they are only paying for qualifying actions, which means they pay less often and only in instances in which the ad yielded the desired results.  For the affiliate marketer pay offs are higher as well.  As opposed to getting paid a [...]

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