Oct 152015
 

Tips for building a successful website

Your website should be a unique extension of you and showcase your business or affiliate opportunities. While your website should look different than others to stand out, there are some universal design elements to keep in mind when building your site. Read on to learn our tips for building a successful website

Website Navigation

Getting around your site is very important for visitors. Have you ever visited a website and been unable to find what you need and just left? Don’t let that be your website. Consider putting your most important and relevant information on the main landing page–the page that people get to first when they type in your domain. This way people will be sure to see what they need to without clicking around. However, if people do need to visit several pages on your site, make it easy for them. Use a top navigation so that people can see their available options. Also make sure that people can easily get back to the home page by clicking your logo at the top of any page on your website.

Photos and Web Content

You already know that images are important to website design, so that’s not what we’re discussing here. What you need to think about is what happens when those images fail to load. Slow connections and occasional loading mistakes may make it so those carefully selected images you chose won’t show up for some of your visitors. What will you website look like without them? Will your visitors still be able to understand the story of your company? Use images to supplement your story on your main landing page, not tell the whole thing. Also be sure to name your images well so your visitors will understand what the image is supposed to be even if it doesn’t load.

Mobile Website

A large amount of everyone’s traffic to their website is coming from mobile devices–some estimates say close to 50%! This means people are visiting your site on their tablets, smartphones, and other small devices. You don’t need to be a site building expert to optimize your site for mobile, but you do need to take the time to check what your site looks like on mobile devices and adjust accordingly. WordPress and similar services offer a plugin that you can add to your site that creates a clean mobile version, allowing you to access a website in a simple standard way. If you’re not using any of these services, just be sure to keep content above the fold if possible, meaning your most important content appears on your page without having to scroll. In most cases this will ensure that this same important information will fit onto the screen when viewing your site on a mobile device. Also make sure all your navigation menu options show up on mobile. If not, consider changing the margins so your site is more narrow and apt to fit in a small mobile screen.

 

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Sep 032015
 

Your Website

Other Companies

You may have heard of quite a few companies out there that offer tools to build your website at a price like GDI’s. While these tools are effective, what the marketers of these companies don’t tell you is that’s all you get–the tools to build a website. So what’s missing? Your domain! Companies that offer these site building tools can only get you so far, to make your site accessible to anyone you need to purchase a domain in addition to your monthly service fee. Combining these two services from separate companies can also be difficult to do.

GDI

With your GDI membership, you are given site-building tools and a domain. This is included in both our basic and premium membership. There’s no need to figure out how to combine services, because you can access your domain and site building tools all from the Members Area for GDI. All you need to do is choose your domain when you become a member, then when log in to your Members Area, you can access a variety of tools to build your website. No extra steps.

How to Build Your Site

GDI offers two easy services to help you build your website: SiteBuilder and a WordPress plugin especially for GDI. Read on to decide which is right for your website.

SiteBuilder

SiteBuilder is a great option if this is your first ever website or blog. SiteBuilder works off of professionally designed templates to help you build a professional looking website. These templates allow you to choose the style of your website and easily build it using drag and drop tools and widgets. If you don’t like your site, you can change the template without losing text and photos that you’ve already added to your site.

WordPress

WordPress is the right option for you if you’ve used it or similar blogging platforms before or are comfortable being more creative and using tools like WYSIWYG (which stands for what you see is what you get). Also when considering if WordPress is right for you, know that it’s not just for blogs. You can build a full website using WordPress themes and widgets. Like SiteBuilder, WordPress does offer templates and drag and drop tools, but with more freedom. You can use the GDI Theme offered in WordPress or search thousands of themes available online to make your website just the way you like. If you have HTML knowledge, you can use it to personalize your site even more.

Drupal

For those very experienced website builders, GDI offers the option to use Drupal CMS to build your website. You can find this plugin in your Member’s Area under the navigation for WordPress and More.  

Other Important Services

In addition to offering tools to build your website. GDI also offers tools to supplement your website like email. With your basic GDI membership, you can create up to 10 email addresses that you can easily access. No forwarding or additional services needed. Want to know how much traffic you’re getting to your new site? GDI also offers hit logs to let you know who is viewing your site, at no extra cost.

 

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Jun 252015
 

wordpress plugin

When you sign up to be an affiliate with GDI, you get a unique domain and the tools to use it. One of those tools is WordPress, a ready-to-use plugin that allows you to build a blog or website with little experience or special skills. Chances are you’ve visited a blog, or many, powered by WordPress. But did you know WordPress offers many other features beyond just a platform to put up blog posts?

Read on to learn about some powerful WordPress features that are included in your WordPress plugin.

Themes

WordPress powered websites are endlessly customizable. GDI offers our own branded theme that you can find by navigating to Dashboard>Appearance>Themes and choosing the GDI Template theme and clicking Activate. If you’d like something different, consider browsing the themes that are offered for free through WordPress.

Still not finding what you’d like? You can find many more themes on websites all over the internet, just type what you’re looking for and “WordPress theme” into your favorite search engine. While many of these themes are free, uploading them and getting them to display can be a little bit more difficult than using themes that are available right through the WordPress platform. Lastly, if you’re still not finding what you’d like for free, some people offer themes for a variety of prices. Be sure you’re on a reputable website and you know how to use the theme before purchasing.

Pages

WordPress allows you to create many unique pages in addition to creating unique blog postings. Pages are different from individual posts and in most themes will appear at the top navigation of your blog or website. These pages are a great option if you would like to use the WordPress plugin to share blog posts, but also want to have easy-to-access information on your website that you don’t have to update frequently. Consider putting information about yourself, your business, or your affiliate opportunity on individual pages on your site. Also consider hosting tutorial videos or services on this pages, so visitors can easily access them without having to scroll through multiple posts.

Website Beyond Blogs

WordPress can be used to build much more than your standard blog. Browse through available themes and you can see easy to build website formats or blog style posting that better showcases photos and video.

Multimedia Support

Blogs don’t have to be all about text. WordPress offers great support tools if you want to include more media in your postings. WordPress’s media library stores all the photos and videos you’ve ever uploaded to your site and gives you easy access and direct links to your media. These direct links are great if you ever want to host and link to an image. There’s no need to use services like Imgur to link directly to uploaded media when you use the media library. WordPress also allows for additional plugins that support media like podcasts and better video. To find these and any other WordPress plugin, head to your WordPress dashboard and navigate to Plugins>Add New.

Subscription, Contact, Search, and More

WordPress also offers some simple services that are great for building a business. These services are subscription, search, and contact forms. The built in subscription widget allows people to sign up to receive emails whenever you post something new on your blog. The contact form gives you a chance to connect with website visitors that want to connect directly with you. Search allows all visitors to find the just the content they’re looking for on your site. These simple services all come already included with WordPress, no updates or plugins needed.

 

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