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Coronavirus Update

Dear Clients and Partners,

We know that this is a stressful time living with the coronavirus outbreak and all of the ripple effects it has caused in our daily lives. Now, more than ever, is the time to ensure your online presence is meeting your business needs. Our virtual team will continue to leverage technology to operate remotely while communicating with clients effectively. We use online meetings, online project management tools, and other cloud-based platforms to work as efficiently as possible. Our goal during this time of uncertainty is to provide you with the comfort of knowing that we are here to support you in the following ways:

  • Help electronically disseminate messages to your network using your website (see the announcement bar at the top of our own site), social media, enewsletters, and other forms of digital communication.
  • Keep your website up and running, and monitor for service disruptions…The website hosting companies we work with have reassured us that they have executed contingency plans to have employees work from home and can continue to provide the same level of support and uptime they always have.
  • Continue working on projects already underway…We are optimized for remote work and will continue making progress on existing projects.
  • Address immediate support needs. Click here to complete a support request form.

We appreciate the relationships we have with each of you, and are here to support your online and overall success during this time.

Sincerely,
The HLJ Creative Team

Designing the New Fox Mountain Guides Website

The site that we designed and built most recently was for Fox Mountain Guides & Climbing School. After months of working closely with the client to create a website that fit the brand and the technology needs, it is now live at foxmountainguides.com.

What we love most about working with new clients is the opportunity to learn a lot about their practice to gauge what they want their viewers to know and learn once they land on their site. The steps we followed while working with the client to redesign her site are described in this article.

Wireframe Development

Mapping out content by developing wireframes is a key step in designing a site. It’s the step that allows you to go over the client’s content to make sure all the important details are included. The time to rewrite copy is a major step in redesigning a site. Websites are not purely colors and images, but content as well, because without the right words, websites can become bare or overwhelming and not eye-catching. We focus on decluttering content from previous sites and organizing the new content strategically to ensure that the audience’s needs are being met and that the site is user-friendly.

rockclimbing_landingpage

Designs

We had to come up with a design that was not overwhelming to FMG’s visitors, especially if they were new to rock climbing. We wanted visuals to showcase the beauty of the routes they take on their trips, and luckily, FMG took a lot of their own photos. Because Fox Mountain Guides is a climbing school, a lot of their content was informative (what to wear when rock climbing, what equipment is used, what each course entails, etc), we didn’t want their site to seem like one never-ending brochure of what they did. We carefully designed it so it was like an adventure, a journey, into learning more about FMG and what they have to offer. With the use of properly placed call-to-action buttons, different categories neatly organized, and the handy sidebar navigation to always guide the visitor on where they are at on the site, the visitor never gets lost on their route!

 designs-fmg

Custom Course Schedule Page

Since FMG relies heavily on their scheduled courses to generate visitors, we created their own custom course schedule page with the functionality of searching for the type of courses, location and category. This way visitors wouldn’t need to browse through the pages of scheduled courses if they’re fixated on a specific course such as Rock Climbing 101 for beginners or even AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor Courses. Each course gets a very detailed list of what it course entails and a “book now” button for immediate booking.

screencapture-foxmountainguides-course-schedule-1475069711682

Responsive Design

Nowadays, everyone is always on the go…So, at HLJ Creative, we make sure all our sites are all responsive. This allows those of you who are reading the site on your lunch break, at your desk during downtime, in a waiting room, etc. to get all the information right on your phone or tablet without having to magnify it with your fingers. Everything is legible and easy to read!

responsive

We Love Building Custom Websites

From our previously blogged-about site, Casino Promotions, to our latest site, Fox Mountain Guides, we demonstrate that we can work with a wide variety of clients. We dedicate our time, creativity, and ideas to each of our clients and help them every step of the way to build their dream site. In addition to working with clients to understand the goals of their business or organization, we create high quality designs and build them out using skilled custom programming. This combination of efforts helps ensure that clients get a strong return on their website investment.

Interested in a new design for your site that’s user-friendly on your end and your visitors? Let us know, and we can personalize and customize it just for you.

New Website and Logo Redesign for Casino Promotions

We’ve been working hard on a new website and logo redesign for Casino Promotions here in Columbia, South Carolina. This mobile responsive site is now live at http://kdcasinopromotion.com. With the logo redesign, we tried to modernize it without losing it’s original unique look. When we started working on the new website, we collaborated with the client to design a layout that was modern, user-friendly and organized, and that also maintained the company’s mission and brand.

Wireframes

The first step in revamping the website was to create the wireframes. We gathered all of the necessary information from the old site and ensured that it was transferred to the new site, then we worked in all of the new pertinent information. After that, we worked with the client to define the key elements of the new site and laid them out accordingly in wireframes. After the initial approval of all the content and copy edits, we started on the design process.

wireframes

Website Designs

During the design process, it is crucial to implement the right photos to showcase on each landing page. The client took the time to find very eye-catching background photos. In addition to finding great photography, we tinkered with different font styles, font weights, and font colors, and font sizes to make sure that the words on the page effectively conveyed the right messages in the right places. We made sure that hover effects, the layout, the navigation, and all of the other page elements worked together to make the site visitors feel eager to dig deeper into the site, and ultimately give Casino Promotions business.

Designs - New Website and Logo Redesign for Casino Promotions

Event/Calendar Plugin

Since Casino Promotions’ business operates heavily around trips and events, they needed a simplified, efficient event/calendar plugin to help manage them and display them nicely by month. We chose a user friendly calendar interface to allow each group trip and bus trip to be read easily.

Calendar Plugin - New Website and Logo Redesign for Casino Promotions

To give site visitors two ways to view upcoming events and trips, we included the option to display them in a calendar view or in a list view (as shown below).

Event Plugin - New Website and Logo Redesign for Casino Promotions

Interactive Map

We integrated an interactive map to show the casinos that Casino Promotions represents in each state. The site’s visually appealing and user-friendly map works such that when the user clicks on a state, it jumps to the casino(s) they represent in that state. You can click on the casino name and learn more about each one and decide if it is the casino you want to travel to for gambling and/or for a concert or performance.

Interactive Map - HLJ Creative

Logo Redesign

For the logo, we wanted to keep it exactly the same, but modernize it. The logo is responsive-friendly and clean-cut for print media such as business cards, fliers, etc.

Casino Promotions - logo update by HLJ Creative

Organic Search Engine Optimization

Each page is organically optimized around certain key phrases to ensure the visibility of the site when users are searching for companies that provide the types of services that Casino Promotions offers. Over time, we can continue to search engine optimize the site based on how we see it performing in the search engines for Casino Promotions’ target key-phrases.

Mobile Responsive Site

Casino Promotions’ website is fully mobile responsive, so it can be viewed on any device – smart phone, tablet, or desktop – and can be viewed without having to squint or pinch and expand.

HLJ Creative Responsive Website Design

We Love Building Custom Websites and Designing Unique Logos

Casino Promotions had very specific ideas about how they wanted their logo to look and website to function. This level of graphic customization and website functionality customization is right up HLJ Creative’s alley. We want to cater to every client’s needs and ensure that the final product is one that positions clients to get the return on their investment sooner rather than later.

Is there a specific website you like? Let us know, and we can personalize and customize it just for you.

WordPress Plugin Updates

If you have a WordPress website, you need to know that it’s becoming more important than ever to make sure all the plugins on your WordPress website are up to date. Contact us if you want HLJ Creative help do this work for you…

Before you build a website…

Before you set out to create a new website or hire someone to build a website for you, it’s important to be sure that you’ve invested the time to think strategically about your business or organization. Oftentimes people are busy and uninterested, and don’t realize how much their website and marketing efforts will benefit from –

  • Careful analysis of the company or organization’s brand
  • Defining the goals of online efforts
  • Determining the needs of the target audience
  • Providing solutions to the target audience’s needs

Websites don’t need to be a laundry list of your accomplishments. Keep in mind that people are coming to your site not to hear about how great you are, but rather to find out about how you can help them.

Upon visiting your site, a person should be able to “get” what it is that you do after scanning the home page. If visitors have to dig to figure out what you are offering,chances are that you will lose them.

These are just a few thoughts that might help you before you get to work on your new website. After you develop an overall strategy, then you can get into the deciding the design elements. As one of my clients said to me, how do you know where you’re going if you don’t have a plan?