My Opinion on Websites

Author: Kissa  :  Category: advice, Career, Web Design

A lot has changed since I started coding websites. From what started as a hobby doing Geocities and Angelfire sites turned into an area of study and now a career. I am by no means an expert in all things web (which makes me want to brush up on different branches of web design)but I know what I like and don’t like. Working with small business owners, a lot of people are looking for a good central website that is an online representation of their business. But not just that anymore. They want websites to do much more now. They want it to generate traffic, bring in new customers, sell items, be a resource…they want it to shoot through a hoop of flames! And the best part is websites CAN do it. It’s absolutely amazing!

A lot of clients ask me what my take is with all the options out there for web. And my advice is simple – we need to figure out what you want to accomplish with your website. Do you want to have a blog? Do you want it to be interactive? Do you want it to be informational? Do you want to be able to edit the site yourself? Do you have time to stay up to date? Do you want to sell items on your site?

As a web designer here are my takes on the most common types of websites:

Exhibit A: Flash. I needed to put this first and say that I. DON’T. LIKE. FLASH. Yes, I know, hate me now. But I just think that a site made only on flash is hindering to any business’s internet potential for 1 simple reason: it is HORRIBLE for SEO. I think flash is great to implement on a regular site but otherwise, it’s just not logical for business. Flash sites are image based, search engines can’t pick up key words from images. They can be beautiful for personal sites, but if you’re trying to promote something or you want to have unique visitors come to your site, I just don’t recommend it because it’ll be harder for them to find you.

Ok, enough with the rant. :) Let’s move on.

Exhibit B: HTML. Geez, it has grown so much since I started working with websites. From tables to CSS to DHTML to XHTML to Java to PHP to HTML5…. It’s actually growing much faster than many can keep up with, including me. But, needless to say, the possibilities are practically endless. The great thing, in my opinion, is that HTML is the most basic form of language on the web. Why is this great? Because whatever your preference from the options of coding from above, it all starts with this language and grows from there. It’s like a tree with branches. As technology soars and more and more innovation is created with web-based development there is so much to choose from. Ok, so the main question probably is, “So what does this have to do with my business?”

As I said at the top of the post, it all comes down to 1 thing: what do you want to accomplish with your online presence? Simple. As. That. Based on the wants and needs of your company, your web designer should know what best suits your budget, time constraint, and goals.

A huge trend that I am seeing now in small business is many people wanting to edit their own sites after someone makes the initial template for them and publish it. My suggestion for this: WordPress. WordPress sums it up into 3 letters for me, w-o-w. There is so much that can be done with this platform. But the best thing that clients find so appealing is that they can log in and edit content, pictures, etc. as they see fit. Many end users are now using WordPress for not only blogging but their main sites as well. They’re able to create pages, link to their social media, and share information in an easy way.

So, you might be asking, “What type of websites do you use?” I love the flexibility and ease that WordPress provides (PHP based). I use this for 2 of my sites, this blog and He Said She Wed. Though these are both blog based websites, I have used WordPress in integration of actual websites as well which worked out nicely. I also love to stick with what I know, CSS. These 2 platforms have proven well for me, while I throw in a little Java here and there. This can be seen implemented on both my Inked websites, www.inkedprint.com and invite.inkedprint.com. But I do know that being in this industry sticking with what I know is never good enough. So we’ll see where the industry takes me in the next few months and years. :)

Share

‘It’s Not Always Rainbows and Butterflies’ – My Struggle with Balance

Author: Kissa  :  Category: Personal

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths.Proverbs 3:5,6″

These past few weeks have been…what’s the word – EVERYWHERE. I hate when I have to admit this, but I feel like I’ve been off balance, not in my zone, going through the motions…just NOT where I want to be. On the outside I feel like I’m put together, or at least I try to look like I am. But internally I feel like I’m ripping my hair out.

It’s been getting to me. I’ve been really hard on myself to get to work, but for some reason I just haven’t had the strength within me to get up off my butt and do it. At the end of the day, my dialogue goes something like this, “It’s 6 pm, and you haven’t done sh*t. What’s wrong with you? The more you put off the work, the more overwhelming it will be when you decide you need to catch up. You’re being lazy, you’re not being productive, you’re just digging yourself into a deep hole. Get up tomorrow and stop being so lazy!”

But today, I feel a slight turn of events. I went to visit the Making Things Happen Tumblr today and found a post by Gina that completely spoke to me. After reading her post, I know what I have to do. I have to re-write my inner voice. I have to let myself be me, in whatever way, so that I can in turn be productive. Me sitting at my desk and going through the motions while doing 1 task on my to-do list every 2-3 hours isn’t going to cut it. Especially if I’m going to be so hard on myself for “not doing enough.” So I decided, I need to change the way I think and work.

Yesterday I realized something very important about myself which is helping me push to be better today. My personality operates like a row of dominos. Each domino represents a facet of my life: family, friends, love life, work #1, work #2, etc. When all the dominoes are standing in a row and 1 is off balance even the slightest bit, all my dominoes crash. This is where my problem lies. When there’s one small slip up, my whole world comes crashing down.

Image Source

My work to change this starts today. Step 1, address the issue – CHECK. Step 2, evaluate each facet of my life and figure out where I stand with each one. Am I behind, am I actually doing pretty well, am I ready to push myself a little further in that area, etc. Step 3, create my action plan to find balance again. Step 4, pray for guidance and let God lead me where I am supposed to go.

Have you struggled with finding balance or putting too much pressure on yourself?

Share

For Japan With Love

Author: Kissa  :  Category: Personal

From the moment I was introduced to the wedding industry, I knew I’d be hooked. I knew in my heart of hearts, this is where I belong. And today, I write about yet another reason why I love what I do – the people I work with and meet.

The wonderful ladies at Ever Ours and Utterly Engaged came together and started a fundraiser for those victimized by the earthquake in Japan called For Japan with Love. At this moment they have surpassed their goal and are still raising money! The efforts these ladies have made to spread the word about their fundraising and the response they received from the wedding community is beyond moving. Definitely heart warming to see people come together to help for the better good of others and not themselves.

On Friday, they are offering a Blogger’s Day of Silence to acknowledge the devastation happening on the other side of the world. If you have a blog and would like to participate, please contact them and let them know you will be and join us!

To those that would also like to make a donation, you can do so at www.forjapanwithlove.com or simply click on the image below.

Share

February Weightloss Recap

Author: Kissa  :  Category: Personal

Here we go again. The nerves that come along with the weigh-in are never fun. But that fear of facing either good or bad news is something I’ve got to face. This month? Pretty good news :)

I say pretty good because i’m going to let out the bad first. I gained 1.5 lbs. this week. BUT! I’m not letting that get me down because I *drumroll please* lost 7″ all around this past month. I couldn’t believe it! Thank goodness for the fact that muscle weighs more than fat :D

So so far, my weight has been the same since I started in Jan. however I’ve lost a total of  12.25″ since I started this lifestyle change. Woot!

Share

Logo and Web Banner Design for A Full Heart

Author: Kissa  :  Category: Design

I have met so many wonderful people thanks to Making Things Happen. Not only did I get to meet the beautiful people that attended the LA workshop v.2 but I also gained the courage to step outside of my box and realize that people are just people. I should go talk to them, especially if they inspire me. The worst thing they can do is not answer back or say no. I remember thinking to myself that everyone in the room knew more than me, knew more people, know more about the industry… But after getting to know everyone (all in 1 day mind you), I saw we were all on the same boat, but leading different journeys.

Eve, the creator of A Full Heart, was one of those people. She’s an amazing woman and her new blog shows that. I was lucky enough to design her logo and banner for her site. Thanks for giving me the opportunity Eve! Thank you for being a wonderful friend, and I look forward to where our new-found friendship takes us!

 

 

Share