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4 Reasons Why Responsive Web Design is Critical

 

Many business owners are tempted to cut costs by handling web design in-house. However, DIY web design is usually not the best option. Your company's website is an important marketing asset, and building it yourself creates opportunities to make mistakes that can hurt your bottom line. One common mistake of DIY websites is designing a site that is not responsive. Here's why responsive web design is important.

 

Faster Speeds and Improved Search Rankings

 

Users expect web pages to load right away, especially on mobile devices. Also, Google considers page loading speeds when ranking results. By ensuring that your website is responsive, you'll deliver a better experience to your customers, and your site will rank higher in search.

 

Lower Bounce Rates

 

Your site's bounce rate is the number of times users view only a single page and then click away. Users are more likely to engage and explore your website if it's mobile-friendly. If your site isn't responsive, users are more likely to become frustrated and bounce. In fact, if your mobile site loads in under five seconds, the average viewing session is 70% longer than for slower sites.  

 

Higher Conversions

 

Even if your visitors do stick around, they don't want to be redirected to a separate, mobile-friendly site to complete a purchase or subscribe to an e-mail list. A responsive design will lower bounce rates and lead to more conversions.

 

Avoid Duplicate Content

 

In the past, it was common for companies to have two versions of their websites: a desktop site and a mobile site. When you create two website versions, Google may view them as two sites that contain the same content, which can adversely affect SEO. A responsive design eliminates this possibility since the same website can be viewed on any device.

 

For assistance with your website design and development, contact us now.

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Top Website Design Mistakes and their Solutions

 

There are mistakes that could make your website look unprofessional and make your visitors more likely to click on that 'X' button. Here are the top website design mistakes and their solutions. 

 

Buttons that Blend

 

A button, especially at the very top of your home page, should be your most important call to action. It should lead visitors to read more or check out your product. A lot of people get caught up in making their whole website match that they forget that this button should stand out apart from everything else. This is the one thing that you want them to click on the most, so it's much better for this button to be a completely opposite color that stands out. You want your visitors' eyes to be immediately drawn to this button. If it's the same color as the rest of your website, they might just skip right over it because it doesn't look important enough.

 

Too Many Call to Actions

 

One or two call to actions is perfect, but three or more is just too many options and your visitors are less likely to click on any at all. If for some reason your website needs more clickable call to actions, just leave the most important one at the top and then create a bottom header below your main section with a lot more clickable buttons. That way, they're still in the top of the page, and people can find them easily. The reason you don't want all the call to actions right at the top is because you don't want to minimize the amount of time it takes for your viewer to find exactly what they need. So, giving them less options is actually a better thing.

 

Whenever designing your website, your ultimate objective is to minimize the amount of brainpower your visitor needs to use while on your website. The easier you make it for them, the more successful your website will be. Contact us for more tips. 

 

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3 Tips to Improve Your Website's Loading Speeds

 

Having a mobile-friendly website is more important than ever. The number of mobile users is expected to reach around 2.5 billion in 2019. Google now uses the mobile versions of webpages for indexing and ranking. Google's mobile-first approach considers page speed as a ranking factor in mobile search results. These tips will help you improve your page speeds.  

 

Reduce the File Size of Images

 

Loading images is one of the most demanding activities when it comes to page speed. The bigger your images are in file size, the more slowly your page will load. Don't upload a large image with a file size of several megabytes. In most cases, you can use a smaller file without a noticeable loss of quality.

 

Host Video on Third-Party Sites

 

Videos are a valuable way to educate visitors about your products and services. However, hosting videos on your own website uses a lot of space, and reduces load times. Instead of hosting videos yourself, post them on YouTube or Vimeo and embed them on your website. Not only will this improve your page speeds, it also helps your brand reach a wider audience.

 

Use "Lazy Loading"

 

Typically, when a visitor opens a webpage, the entire page will load. Depending on the site's design and elements, users may experience a long loading time. One way to overcome this issue is by using "lazy loading."

 

When lazy loading is used, the content within view is loaded first, while content below the fold loads after it comes into view. Lazy loading can significantly reduce loading time on posts that contain a lot of images. By using lazy loading and prioritizing your above-the-fold content, you can improve site speed and reduce bounce rates.

 

Hiring a custom web design firm will help you improve your page speeds and ensure that your site is truly mobile-friendly. Contact us to learn more about our web design and development services.

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The Impact of SEO on Web Design and Web Content

 

There are several ways you can invest in your business if you want to achieve success. Sometimes, the return on investment in your enterprise is traceable after a short duration, but other times what you put in may not yield immediate returns. SEO is one of the concepts you should consider including in your web design because it has a significant impact.

Here are a few details to help you understand the importance of SEO in web design and web content.

 

It Increases Traffic

 

One of the ways you can target specific visitors on your website is by optimizing the content available. SEO encourages more online shoppers who are searching for the products or services you offer to visit your site frequently, which will increase conversions. An increase in traffic to your website will also enhance the potential of capturing prospective clients, which will result in the expansion of your customer base.

 

Promotes Competitiveness

 

The internet is awash with websites for various businesses, and that includes web pages of your competitors. If you want to gain a competitive edge over other vendors in the industry you operate in, over and above making SEO part of your website design strategy, maintaining your rankings on search engines is the additional requirement you should not overlook.

 

The effectiveness of your website SEO strategy depends on continuous improvement to promote higher ranking on search engines, which will set your business apart from the competition.

 

Enhanced Visibility

 

The relevance of the keywords you use on your website content is part of the requirements of any SEO strategy because it enhances the frequency of the appearance of your site on most web searches. SEO improves visibility, which implies that users will locate your website quickly and that will increase the probability of making conversions. If your business requires a custom website or SEO services, contact us today!

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3 Email Directives to Help You Avoid the Ingenuity of Virtual Crooks

 

When you're running a business, security is really important. There are many things that are sent via email that are of a confidential nature. These might include financial spreadsheets, formulas, blueprints etc. You obviously don't want these things to fall into the hands of hackers or competitors.

 

There are many people out there who could use all this information against you in some way. If people come to know that your business is doing well, you could become a target for thieves and scammers of different sorts. In fact, the ingenuity of virtual crooks is constantly on the increase. So what should you do in order to maintain email security?

 

How Complex Should You Make Your Email Password?

 

Try to make your email passwords as complex as possible. Include letters, numbers and special characters such as !@#$%. You can also throw in some capital letters, if possible. However, don't make your password so complex that you can't remember it. You should have your password memorized rather than written down somewhere that others can access it.

 

Meaningful Passwords That No One Can Guess

 

Don't use an email password that others can guess, like your date of birth or your wedding anniversary. The best thing is to go with something that's personally meaningful to you that not that many people know about, such as the name of your favorite first grade teacher along with the year that you were in her class. Obviously this technique doesn't work if you go around telling everyone about this teacher. But if it's something that you will definitely remember and that no one else knows about, then you should be safe.

 

Using Memory Sticks and External Drives Instead of Email

 

Another thing you can do is curtail the type of information that gets sent on email or that gets saved in the cloud. Of course, this is a difficult thing to do. Everyone communicates using email these days and you might need an important piece of information from your accountant, which necessitates the use of email. However, it's better to get this information on a memory stick or an external drive. This way, it doesn't get sent over email and there's no possibility of it being hacked.

 

Contact us for more great tips on email security and choosing strong passwords.

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Proud of Our Team - 2018 Accomplishments

We often don't take the time to tell people how proud we are of them so I wanted to take the chance to tell everyone what an amazing team we have at REM.  We have been working really hard this year to deliver exceptional design work, great new tools to manage your website and superior customer support for our customers.  I am so proud of our team in all of their accomplishments but I wanted to highlight a few.

 

Everyone at REM works hard each day for our clients to come up with custom designed websites that not only look great but are designed to engage their target audience.  Our team has been chosen for the 2019 Consumer Choice Award in Web Design for Waterloo Region.

 

Award winners are the result of a in-depth, consumer evaluation process.

 

It involves the gathering of unbiased consumer opinions, calculated and vetted by some of North America’s leading market research firms.

 

 

 

 

I am also extremely proud that we have exceeded 50, Five Star Reviews on Google this year.  This is also a proud accomplishment for everyone at REM.  We all work hard for our customers to live up to our #1 Guiding Principle which is Customer Success Comes First..  

Have a look at the most recent reviews from our customers.

 

"It was a pleasure working with REM Solutions to redevelop my business website! They were patient, comprehensive and genuine about understanding my business needs and how to best represent that on my new site. I continue to appreciate the great customer service they have to answer all my questions as new web design ideas pop into my head! I would definitely recommend them for any non-techies out there looking for a new or refreshed website."

 


 

"Excellent group to work with, friendly, very responsive, and full of helpful advice. The design of our new site came out looking great and we are very pleased with the added features and the ability to manage our content through their WebWiz@rd CMS. Would recommend."

 


 

"REM helped us to design a website that worked for us! They were great to deal with throughout the whole process. The team we worked with was extremely professional, supportive and always quick to respond. We had a fantastic experience!"

 


 

What I love the most about these comments is the common theme about how great our team is at what they do and how supportive they are of our customers.  When I meet with people, I tell them all the time that we are not the only ones who can offer them a great website.  What I do know is we offer the best support for our customers not just during a project but throughout the relationship.

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3 Types of Email Scams: How to Spot and Avoid Them

 

Virtually everyone uses email nowadays—for personal reasons and for work. People have almost started wondering how they used to get by without email before. In order to give instructions to someone at work, you actually had to pick up the phone and call them or go over to their desk and speak to them in person. Now, all of this is done over email.

Sometimes, emailing can result in a lot of back and forth and many clarifications might be needed, but overall people do agree that using email has made our lives easier. But along with this convenience, you'll find that there are many threats as well. There are email scams in which people try to get money out of you or sell you things that don't exist. How do you spot these and avoid them?

 

Emails with Just a link

 

You may have come across this type of scam. It comes in a form of an email with just a link. And it might even be an email from someone you know or used to know. But if they don't say anything in the subject line or in the body of the email to indicate they are a real person, then don't click on the link. It will probably take you to a website which imparts a virus or malware. Just click on the link to indicate that this is spam.

 

Emails Which Ask for Financial Information

 

You may come across emails which are trying to sell you an amazing product. Or maybe they're offering you some amazing service. Do not send your account number, your credit card number, your debit card number or any other financial information to anyone you don't know over email. In fact, don't ever send this information over email. Any email which asks you for this information is part of a scam.

 

Emails Telling You You've Won Something

 

Everyone wants to win the lottery and we dream about this happening from time to time. However, if you haven't actually bought a lottery ticket and you get an email from an unknown address telling you that you've won something, don't believe it. Most likely, you'll be told that in order to get the money you've won, you have to give them your bank account number. And once they have this, they're going to take your money or steal your identity.

Contact us to learn more about the different types of email scams.

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Email Scammers are Getting Smarter

 

There was a time when almost all email scams were easy to spot. They were full of errors in spelling and grammar. They made absurd claims about wanting to hand you millions of dollars. Unfortunately, they're no longer so obvious. The ordinary ones aren't totally ridiculous, and some can fool experts.

 

This is an age when people voluntarily give the public vast amounts of information about themselves. Criminals only have to look on LinkedIn or Facebook to pick it up. In many cases, they can gather enough information to convincingly impersonate or target an individual. Instead of putting "Dear Friend" at the top of their email, they can put your name and the position you hold. They can pick up the name and title of a manager at your company and claim to be that person. Sometimes they'll set up a domain that looks almost exactly like your company's (e.g., Micr0soft instead of Microsoft) so they can put their own email addresses on it and get your reply.

 

The message can look very convincing. Maybe it will ask you to authorize a bank transfer. Maybe it will claim the sender has forgotten a password and needs it in a hurry. The people who concoct these messages are patient and hope for one big payoff. That's the opposite approach from the old-fashioned email scam, which hits thousands of people in the hope of fooling a few.

 

How not to be fooled

 

To avoid being taken in, be very cautious about every unusual request in your mail. If it seems out of character or asks for something that could have serious consequences, double-check it. Make a phone call or send a text message.

 

There are some things you should never send by email. If you're asked for a password, don't email it, even if you're sure the request is legitimate. Email isn't a secure medium, and it's best to get out of the habit of using it for confidential data.

 

Even the most skilled impersonators won't find it easy to match the style and tone of someone you know. If the message feels wrong, take an extra step to make sure it's what it claims to be. It takes only a little time and could save your company from serious trouble.

Making a good impression is always important. Talk to us about how you can have a website that will make the best possible impression on your audience.

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Why It Is Important to Make Use of a Modern and up to Date Browser

 

In the modern world of the internet and web browsing, there is little that is more important than your web browser. The web browser is the key to accessing everything and is your gateway into the world of the internet. In order to keep yourself and your data safe and secure while browsing the internet, it is important to be using a modern and up to date web browser at all times.

 

Features & Technology

 

Web browsers are constantly being updated and changed to incorporate new technologies into them as time passes and these browsers are updated to incorporate new and varied advances in technology. In order to make use of the latest innovations in technology, it is necessary to use a web browser that is as modern and up to date as possible.

 

Navigation

 

Another reason to use a modern browser is that some older browsers may not be capable of navigating modern websites properly. If new technologies and features that have been incorporated into modern browsers and web design are not properly supported by an older browser, it has the potential to cause these pages to be poorly displayed, cause page navigation to break or elements of the page to go missing.

 

Security updates & flaws

 

Older browsers may also be less secure as they may lack any security updates introduced in the meantime and will still suffer from any security vulnerabilities that have been discovered and patched out in subsequent versions or fixed in a more modern web browser.

 

There are still many older web browsers present on the internet that can be easily used for browsing the web but not all of them should be used. Some lack compatibility with the latest technologies, some have critical security flaws that may cause you to essentially give away your data to a hacker when simply visiting a normally secure web page and some have other, as of yet unknown, issues with security and compatibility. Regardless of how safe an old web browser seems to be, their use is not recommended and it is suggested to use a new and fully updated browser whenever possible.

 

If you have any questions, Contact Us today and we would be more than happy to help you.

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10 Ways to Secure Your Email to Prevent Hacking

 

Email security is an area that needs constant fortification because of the shrewdness of today's hackers. Email hacking happens to billions of people, and sometimes it's difficult for them to get help because of the lack of human customer service. You can't afford to allow your email to get hijacked if you own a business, so you have to take preventive measures. Here are 10 quick tips that can aid you in minimizing hacking vulnerability.

 

1. Use a Complex Password

 

Create a password that has letters, numbers, and at least one strange character such as a money sign or asterisk if the email provider allows it. That makes it difficult for hackers to guess it.

 

2. Use Two-Step Authentication

 

Many email programs offer two-step authorization that requires a second security measure. If your email program allows it, sign up for it.

 

3. Change Your Password Every 30 Days

 

Most providers will urge you to change your password every 90 days. You can keep your account a little bit safer by changing every 30 days instead.

 

4. Do Not Choose a "Keep Me Logged in" Option

 

Do not ever opt to keep yourself logged into an email program. Completely log in and out of the program every time to avoid vulnerability.

 

5. Close Your Browser

 

Close your browser when you are done using the internet. Clear your temporary files and your cache, as well.

 

6. Use Incognito Mode or Guest Browsing

 

Incognito mode, guest browsing, or something similar will erase all of the items mentioned in the last tip. It will delete those things the moment you close the browser.

 

7. Do Not Click on Strange Email Links

 

Never open a link that comes in an email from someone that you don't know. Many people fall into that trap and download viruses and trojan horses.

 

8. Do Not Open Strange Attachments

 

Never download attachments that come in emails from strangers either. If you don't know who is sending it to you, don't bother with it.

 

9. Do Not Answer Personal Questions

 

Steer clear of emails that offer you the world and then ask you for a slew of personal information. That's called phishing, and it's a ploy to take your identity.

 

10. Report Phishing to the Proper Entities

 

Report any phishing attempts that you notice to the proper entity. You will be doing other email account holders some justice by doing so.

 

Contact us if you need assistance with secure web page creation, content strategies, or technical advice. Our specialists can help you heal any security breaches that you may have. We're waiting to hear from you.

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