JM2 Webdesigners & Marketing

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Description: JM2 Webdesigners is a web design, digital marketing and software development company in Valparaiso (Valpo), IN 46383 serving Northwest Indiana.
Last Modified: 2/4/2016 11:30:34 AM

Premier web design and marketing company in Northwest Indiana

Description: Learn more about who JM2 Webdesigners is by reading the company history, learning about our great team, and learn about our core philosophy.
Last Modified: 6/12/2015 3:13:20 PM

Who is JM2 Webdesigners

Description: The story and making of a premiere Internet software development and web design company in Northwest Indiana
Last Modified: 12/22/2015 7:05:29 PM

Experts in Web Design, Marketing, and Social Media

Description: JM2 Webdesigners has all the expertise that small to mid-size businesses need to solve their business needs
Last Modified: 8/16/2013 7:09:05 PM

Web design & digital marketing jobs in Valparaiso Indiana

Description: Our team works out of our corporate headquarters in Valparaiso to service all customers throughout Northwest Indiana.
Last Modified: 1/25/2016 8:52:34 AM

Links & Partnerships

Description: Being a vital part in the community is supporting not-for-profit organizations, participating in the community, and helping students grow.
Last Modified: 1/26/2016 3:28:09 PM

JM2 Webdesigners Design Philosophy

Description: JM2 Webdesigners has a design philosophy to help you achieve your business goals in as little amount of time as possible
Last Modified: 8/16/2013 7:06:47 PM

Our Server Infrastructure

Description: All of our servers are as friendly as we can get for the economy to use so that we use little energy while providing fast service.
Last Modified: 8/16/2013 7:07:06 PM

Press Information

Description: JM2 Webdesigners is a company that supports the hobbyist, small and mid-size businesses in achieving their business goals
Last Modified: 8/16/2013 7:10:11 PM

Employee Profiles

Description: Our employees are the strength of our company. Here we outline some of our key employees you may interact with
Last Modified: 12/10/2015 6:37:29 PM

Page Analysis Information

Description: Analyzes a specific page and returns basic information about the page
Last Modified: 1/9/2015 10:08:12 AM

Password Strength Checker

Description: Our password strength checker will help you develop more secure passwords in a world of continued uncertainty and malicious hacker attacks
Last Modified: 8/6/2014 6:36:43 PM

QR Code Generator

Description: JM2 Webdesigners free QR Code generator will allow you to generate a QR Code for business cards, marketing materials and other ways to draw more business
Last Modified: 8/6/2014 6:37:23 PM

WhoIs Information

Description: When you need to know who is the owner of a domain and don't know where to look you can enter a domain and find out who the owner is according to the internet.
Last Modified: 8/6/2014 6:37:45 PM

Latest Blog Article Listings

Description: Latest blog article listings that relate to the internet
Last Modified: 1/13/2015 9:42:30 AM

Description: Detailed information about the blog article you are reading about.
Last Modified: 9/18/2015 6:36:39 AM


12+ Tips to Social Media Scheduling

Description: Social media is a necessity for every size business today. You need a plan and not a shotgun approach when using it to have a positive part and gain from the benefits of social media. You need to be consistent in your message, target your messages based on the social platform being used, know when to respond, how to respond, and how to engage with your target audience. Like all marketing and branding efforts for your company you need a plan of attack so that your business is shown always in the best possible light. Today we will cover twelve items that should be in your social media plan whether you are in a small town in Indiana or a larger city like Chicago Illinois.
Last Modified: 3/16/2017 8:36:00 AM

13 Search Engine Optimization Techniques

Description: One reason we write our blogs is to dig deeper into the core fundamentals and keep our roots fully optimized and tuned for our customers. By writing we are showing our clients that we are true experts in the field as anyone can share other articles. The other benefit is we have a drive to teach others so that they don't have to spend as much time researching information. For many this can seem counterproductive as we are teaching others, even competitors, to do everything that we offer. This is true and many people will do this no matter if we teach them or not. Helping others though is in our blood and a core principal of who JM2 Webdesigners of Valparaiso is. With our teaching we are making the whole Internet a better place for all of us. For those that go through what we have here and realize that to do a full SEO optimization takes more than a few minutes of time and for those that we help they have a better understanding of what we are offering to them.
Last Modified: 3/4/2016 8:00:05 AM

16 ways to handle bad news

Description: The best marketing plans whether written for digital or in the real-world can go bad. Those that maintain social media accounts always dread and even fear when news gets out and goes viral that is negative (we never complain when it is a positive interactions). What if that information goes beyond online and into the real-world? We are going to cover many of the high-level items that need to happen when something bad happens. It could be solely online, offline (print, television, radio, or even verbal), or a combination of the two. We are going to cover some of the higher level the dos and don'ts that you need to be cognizant of when dealing with these types of problems.
Last Modified: 1/26/2017 3:27:21 PM

17 Incredibly Useful Blog Article Title Tips

Description: Like the name of our blog article for this month we are going to give you some truly incredible tips to make people want to not only read from your article but use it in theirs as they move forward. And because this is about blog writing doesn't mean you have to stop there. These tips and tricks will work for email, web pages, and more.
Last Modified: 2/16/2016 12:40:00 PM

2015 Prediction Results

Description: In our 2015 Website and Social Media Predictions we made several predictions that would happen in 2015. As the year comes to a close we are going to dig into what we predicted and what actually happened in relation to those predictions. Every one that is an industry expert whether nationally or in their local area will make such predictions.
Last Modified: 12/9/2015 7:54:29 PM

2015 Website and Social Media Predictions

Description: In our December 22, 2014 newsletter we included some predictions that drew a lot of questions. The link below is our newsletter post with additional information added to go into more detail for those that asked for it. It covers core items you need to know for 2015 on the Internet. May your 2015 rock!
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:08:33 PM

Above and Beyond

Description: Many businesses will claim that they go above and beyond what is necessary to make their clients happy. Phrases like "the customer is always right" and "we're here for you" are often tossed around with little care to if they actually do stick to their word.
Last Modified: 10/5/2016 4:26:02 PM

Achieving All-Star Status


There are five levels of strength of a LinkedIn profile. These are (1) Beginner, (2) Intermediate, (3) Advanced, (4) Expert and the one we're working to achieve is the (5) "All-Star" profile strength. To achieving the All-Star level is what everyone strives to achieve and many will hit the expert level and miss the All-Star because they don't know what it takes to achieve this level. Below we will cover what it takes to become an All-Star so that you can become one yourself.

The first item to cover as an All-star is that the circle doesn't fill 100%. We feel that this isn't 100% full as, like a website, your profile should never be considered complete. You should be constantly improving yourself to be better.

To achieve the All-Star status you need to achieve the following items which we will also cover in complete detail below. We don't cover the other four as if you're at those levels we believe that your ultimate goal is to reach All-Star. By knowing what is required to be an All-Star you can set your goal to achieve that. As you progress through LinkedIn you will reach the other four stages. Some you may even skip as you fill out the information that we outline below.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:01:41 PM

Anniversary Special (February-March 2014)

Description: As our first year quickly approaches we are reflecting on some major accomplishments as well as offering a special for everyone for Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:27:29 PM

Are you showing a dated business?


As the Internet changes and evolves into ever more important part of your daily business and the methods of connecting to the Internet continues to evolve it should come as no surprise that at a minimum of every three years your website should be updated. If your website has not been updated and maintained you are probably in need of some improvements. With an outdated website your customers can feel as if you are not in touch with the times and don't care. To be found by the search engines, considered an authority in your field, and being there for your customers having an updated website is crucial.

Does your website look professionally done or does it appear thrown together, piecemeal and an afterthought of your business?

There are plenty of "free" website builders out there that can get anyone online in a short period of time. These sites won't help you setup and configure an optimal user experience. You will start with a stock template that will get you online, looking like everyone else that uses that template, and be fairly static in design without a lot of work on your part. Personally we feel every business is truly unique and that your website should show your culture. Even if you are part of a national chain you can differentiate yourself from those that are similar to you.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:12:06 PM

Back to the basics of SEO

Description: What exactly is SEO and how does it affect my business? Let's break things down and start from the top! SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and we already know what a search engine is, right? Google, Yahoo, Bing, and many other websites serve as search engines, where a visitor types a phrase or word into a search box and a list of results pops up instantly. These sites look through every page of every website on the world wide web and matches results to the phrase or words searched. Optimization means making the best and most effective use of this resource, or in our case, designing your website so that search engines list it near or at the top of their search results list.
Last Modified: 3/20/2017 4:26:06 PM

Bakers Dozen Common SEO Mistakes


Here at JM2 Webdesigners each and every day we work on search engine optimization from our Valparaiso office for clients. When we do we also help out prospective clients who want to truly rock the search engines. They want to do it low cost and with quick results. The first item we cover with any client is that SEO is a marathon and definitely not a short sprint. Like your business SEO is something that you need to train, mentor and continually work on. There are techniques (which we will not talk about as they are considered "black hat" (first topic we'll cover) that will hurt your business in the long run of this marathon and all too often we see people come to us wanting to "fix" this mistake that they've been doing for years.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:56:53 PM

Be Found on Local Search

Description: Being found locally for any small business is crucial. As of May 2015, Google acknowledged that search on mobile devices in ten counties, including the United States, surpassed that of desktop searches. With this revelation of how important mobile search is it is more important than ever that your business is truly prepared for local search. Searching on mobile uses geographic (location based) search to determine the most relevant information.
Last Modified: 12/21/2016 8:50:42 AM

A Beginners Guide to 301 Redirects


As we've been migrating one to two sites per week to new domains or under more logical structures (moved) you need to think about all of the old content that existed. Many that create new pages, remove old pages, or do a complete web site overhaul to be more logically structured often forget about the old structure until people start complaining. To the search engine those pages still exist until they learn otherwise. They learn by redirects or by failing several times when looking for your website. Imagine a user doing a search and the first result they choose is from the old site that no longer exists. You've just created a bad experience for your visitor. When this happens many click the back button and go to another site. Can you say lost opportunity? This is where 301 redirects come into play.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:59:07 PM

Being Spoiled in the Best Way

Description: Being spoiled is often looked at as not being a good thing. To receive anything you want, when you want without regards to the consequence of obtaining it is generally considered not a healthy way to go about life.
Last Modified: 10/19/2016 3:05:31 PM

Being Stronger Online

Description: You may have started your business solely on social media due to being quick to get online, you already knew social media, the price being free is a great price, you didn't think you needed branding, and it's where all your customers were and still are today. You've since learned that part of branding and building your relationship online requires more than just social media. Your business requires a positive message that you control and your customers can find you quickly and easily on mobile search. With a website you have control over all aspects to promote your business positively online in the way you want by your online employee that works for you. This doesn't mean that social media isn't important. It is and you should not neglect it; just like you shouldn't neglect your website.
Last Modified: 6/6/2016 10:18:57 AM

Being Yourself is Never a Gamble

Description: Yesterday we had the opportunity to be part of a Chamber Networking Night, a night put on by a city chamber that brings together local businesses to set up flashy booths, give away free goodies and interact with other visitors, clients, and businesses.
Last Modified: 10/17/2016 11:09:12 AM

Being an Entrepreneur


As our second year is closely approaching and just a month away we are reflecting on everything that has happened. From the initial planting of our seed to form JM2 Webdesigners to present day. Being an entrepreneur has been quite different than that of being a person at a small or large organization. There are different challenges and I feel that I have become a stronger and better person because of it. The success, or failure, is entirely in my hands. This alone has caused a lot of stress but overall in a positive way.

We started with a vision of being a differentiator in the web design/development. We know we’ve achieved this dream and focus as the companies we continue to work with have all seen improvements in their online experiences and improved business processes.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:07:15 PM

Being Bad is a Part of Life

Description: As we take on and do more social media sites a lot of what we hear is people are afraid of, even scared, of bad reviews and comments on their websites. We all wish the world was always a happy place and that nothing sad was said about our products and services. This isn't always the case though. We are human after all which means we are destined to make a few mistakes and upset people no matter how hard we try.
Last Modified: 2/13/2016 12:34:41 PM

The benefits of a standing desk

Description: A standing desk is just what it sounds like you "stand at it". But there are many forms to a standing desk. There are kinds that are statically up, those that require a crank or other manual method, and those that through the push of a button will go from a sitting position to a standing position. When we went on the search for a standing desk we wanted something that would meet the demand rigors of a small startup while being able to last the test of time as we grew to be a larger organization.
Last Modified: 12/5/2016 10:27:13 AM

Beyond the Overview: Facebook Likes

Description: Moving beyond the overview of Facebook analytics we are now starting to get into the meat and potatoes of what you will find in the Facebook Insights (Analytics). With the Likes section you will be able to clearly see how many likes your Page has gained or lost each day based on a specific date range you’ve given. With this information you will learn where and how people are joining your Facebook page.
Last Modified: 11/21/2015 10:28:30 AM

Beyond the Overview: Facebook Reach

Description: Being we are now passed Facebook Likes we can continue on to our Reach. Reach is the number of people that have seen our information as well as how many people are integrating with your Facebook Business Page.
Last Modified: 11/22/2015 8:01:42 AM

Beyond the Overview: Page Views

Description: Beyond our Facebook Reach we move beyond where we can see the what Facebook pages are being viewed as well as where the users are coming from. The Page Views tab is one of the most informative. This is where you can see the areas of your Facebook page that people visit most within your Facebook Business Page, including your timeline, info, and photos tabs.
Last Modified: 11/28/2015 6:46:52 PM

Beyond the Overview: People

Description: Our last section is covering "People". This is what social media is all about. Knowing genders, ages, proximity to your business is all about engagement with these valuable people. They have liked your page and are interested in learning about your products and services. Each of your fans has an interest in your business page or they wouldn't have liked it to become a fan of your page.
Last Modified: 12/3/2015 10:03:09 AM

Beyond the Overview: Posts

Description: As we continue our analytics journey past Facebook Business Page Views we move further into learning about our fans. For us this is one of the most exciting sections as we learn not only what posts work best with our fan base but also what times our engagement is most likely going to be the highest. This isn't just in the hour of the day but the day of the week as well.
Last Modified: 11/29/2015 8:13:41 AM

Beyond the Overview: Videos

Description: Videos are becoming importantly more valuable in gaining user engagement on Facebook. In today's analytics we look at the video aspects of our Facebook pages. If you have not posted any videos to Facebook this set of analytics will be some of the least valuable to you. For a video to count it must be watched for a minimum of 3 seconds.
Last Modified: 11/30/2015 6:42:04 AM

Big Ideas, Small Budgets


Whether your business is a large corporate group with millions in marketing dollars or a brand new business just getting off of the ground there are several items you can do to achieve big results without a large outlay of capital. If this sounds appealing to you, and we hope it does, then this article will shed some insights of how, and why, these techniques can help your business succeed without having a huge budget. You don't need to spend hundreds, even hundreds of thousands, of dollars for every marketing campaign. The big marketing companies live for the big marketing pitches and who can blame them? Those campaigns make them tons of money in help you define your brand, generating radio, print, and video ads. Small gains grow to those big gains that will help your business grow.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:03:55 PM

Black Hat SEO - Don't do this!

Description: Everything outlined here you should never do ever! These are all techniques we have found that "SEO Experts" (they are NOT) have used in the past 6 months that do web design in Northwest Indiana. We will not mention names but as they read this they will know who they are and hopefully correct their ways. This is to be an educational article for those wanting to make certain they do not do this as it will ruin your online reputation with the search engines and cost you not only your rankings but also money to fix.
Last Modified: 6/29/2016 9:18:47 AM

Black Hat Versus White Hat SEO

Description: SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is becoming a big item lately and for good reason. Social media alone will only get you so far in the engagement process with your customers. Social media isn’t your “brand”, you have no control over the look-and-feel, colors, layout, etc. Companies are quickly learning that social media is important to engage their customers and their website and eCommerce sites are equally important to help close the sale. Companies want to get out the good word about their products and services and they want the search engines to work for them to get that good word out.
Last Modified: 12/22/2015 1:00:25 PM

Blogging for Confidence and to Inspire

Description: When you start to blog you have a sense of excitement that you are going to do something continuously to not only help others but also to help yourself grow. Having a blog helps refine and improve what you are already passionate about. This passion is what helps you grow from good to great. When you curate (aka share) others people's content you are helping them grow but not yourself. Having a blog allows you to grow yourself and at the same time your company. In today's article we'll discuss why it's not only important but imperative to blog to make your business stronger.
Last Modified: 9/9/2016 6:56:48 AM

Boost Your SEO with Quality Original Content

Description: It is pretty much impossible to create content that hasn't been talked about in the past. What can be done is put your heart, soul, and your personal expertise into the content and let it shine and resonate with your audience. When writing your content, you need to think about your audience rather than the search engines. When you write quality content that is targeted at your users your content will be seen by the search engines.
Last Modified: 8/1/2016 8:53:49 PM

Brand Development Process

Description: When building a brand, it is much more than just a logo, brochure, your products, and even your website. Your brand should focus on forging a relationship with your client with the intention of doing more than expected and creating a sustainable value. Your brand is about quality of the relationships that you build on a daily basis. Your brand is aspirational, it's your promise, your values, your relationships, your commitment, and most importantly it is about YOU! In this article we will uncover several of the core aspects that we look at when helping an organization build its brand. Come follow us along in this journey.
Last Modified: 4/27/2016 6:39:08 AM

Branding your small business is important

Description: Building a new or maintaining an existing small business is never an easy task. We don't have all the resources to do what the big businesses do but have the same aspirations of success and growth. We have to take that leap of faith that we will succeed, get over the fear of failure, and initially we start every day off knowing that failure could be around the corner with one simple and honest mistake. Each day we persevere and see that failure grows farther in the rear-view mirror as your business continues to grow.
Last Modified: 5/12/2016 2:26:30 PM

Branding vs Marketing

Description: As we talk to more people about taking advantage of generating leads from their website into opportunities we move to the talk of branding and marketing. We find that many people believe they are the same thing rather than two distinct items. Branding and marketing are not the same and each has a very important role that is used collaboratively together in your organization. Using marketing and branding together you can achieve a set of goals. In this article, we will define clearly what branding and marketing is and how each one used collaboratively can be used to grow your business.
Last Modified: 12/29/2016 12:27:08 PM

Building a new era marketing firm

Description: With great growth, a company needs to take a step back and look at everything it does to further provide value. We are focused not just on the local small and medium sized businesses but those across the entire country and around the world. We continually look at the paper purchased, the way our solutions work for our clients, and to the services that are offered. Each item has an impact to the bottom line of the company and if done incorrectly can truly cost the company and ultimately our customers. Keeping our budget tuned, living within our modest means, and checked constantly we can keep prices down while continually providing more value and grow each month. In just four years we've moved from a home office in Michigan City Indiana to a 2,000+ square foot office in downtown Valparaiso Indiana. We encourage everyone to read through this article on what makes JM2 Webdesigners unique and capable of meeting your businesses growing needs.
Last Modified: 3/17/2017 7:15:26 AM

The Building of a Business Finder

Description: Based on customer and our sales team requests we needed to find a solution for our restaurants to get them increased exposure without adding costs to our restaurant clients (currently the largest part of our business). To do this we needed a solution that could provide value to them without increasing their already tight operating costs. As we built our system it expanded from being specific to restaurants to being built for any type of business. Rather than just listing coupons businesses can now offer products, services, and coupons.
Last Modified: 1/8/2016 9:44:05 AM

Building Trust with SSL

Description: As the holiday season quickly approaches and if past trends continue shopping online this year will be greater than any of the previous years. When you are shopping you would never hand the cashier your card, tell them your pin, address, and other confidential information that they would need to steal your identity. If you purchase online without an SSL certificate you may be handing over a lot more than you realize.
Last Modified: 11/5/2015 8:49:00 PM

Build out your Digital Marketing Campaign

Description: Each year we go through and establish the core fundamentals for the coming year for not only ourselves but each of our social media maintenance plan clients. When a digital marketing campaign is built, you create directions for your business to build your brand and market to your current and future customers. These are plans and not written in stone as the further we look out the more we know things will change over the time. Whether you are a fortune 500 company in the Chicagoland area or are in a growing community like Merrillville Indiana your time spent on your digital marketing campaigns will benefit your business.
Last Modified: 12/24/2016 10:28:02 AM

Business email addresses matter


Today we are going to talk about an item that many small businesses know they need but when you're a startup you need to save costs wherever possible. Most already have an email address from Yahoo!, Gmail, AOL, (formally Hotmail), or use the one from our Internet providers (Comcast, Verizon, Time Warner, etc.). Many will utilize these consumer email addresses as they have gone out and gotten a free website and they just didn't come with everything you needed for a business. Spending thousands for a website just to get a real email address was out of your budget (and we don't blame you).

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:45:35 PM

Can color stop you from smoking?

Description: As a web design and becoming more everyday a marketing company we find that color theory is in our life more each and every day. When reading an article this morning we found the ugliest color in the world; Pantone 448 C. This color according to studies can actually persuade users to stop smoking and more. So what can the ugliest color in the world do? Read on and find out how color can play a part in your life whether you living in Indiana, United States, or even Australia.
Last Modified: 6/10/2016 9:03:14 AM

Can a blog help my business?


A blog is combination of two distinct words of web and blog and originally started as a weblog. The phrase came from Jorn Barger in 1997. Since the time the word weblog has been simplified to be just blog.

A blog is a collection of blog posts that are grouped or categorized to be easily found. Each blog post or article covers a single topic, is concise to the point of what is being talked about and will routinely relate to other articles that are of interest to the company hosting the blog.

Now that we have an understanding of what a blog is and a high level understanding of what the benefits can be let’s look at the benefits of how having a blog can benefit a your business.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:10:57 PM

Can your online brand be trusted?

Description: What an interesting question our title is for our article today. Our business reputation is on the line and we want, and need, to convey trust to our current and potential customer's. All our businesses try to show trust with our physical locations by showing our customers we care and are concerned for them. Online it is not any different. We show trust in our actions. These actions are not just the words we write to show who we are as a company but in how we act online. In today's world, we need to show trust with "The Green Lock".
Last Modified: 1/5/2017 8:26:43 AM

Ever Changing Screen Sizes


This week we've spent a lot of our time helping companies make their business websites more responsive and mobile friendly. As technology has grown from desktops to mobile smartphones, tablets, laptops and e-readers the need for more optimized sites is becoming more important not just for the screen sizes but for search as well. With our search engine optimization packages we are seeing more visitors to business websites from mobile and smaller screen sizes than ever before.

Businesses that understand the need for an effective website are taking ownership and working with their marketing and web design companies to achieve a more comprehensive experience for each device that connects to their website. Businesses that take advantage of this evolving shift are better prepared to engage with customers. Along with this change we are also seeing businesses utilizing and enhancing not only their websites but using search engine and social media services that we offer as a complete package to help drive more visitors to their site.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:21:52 PM

Clear and Concise Communication Makes for Happy Customers

Description: If you ask customers and clients what some of the most frustrating experiences are when it comes dealing with businesses, the topic of miscommunication often comes up.
Last Modified: 4/19/2017 10:48:30 AM

Color Theory Brings Emotion

Description: When working on designing and creating sites for our clients we often look at how color theory plays a factor in drawing people in, bringing out emotion, and telling a story without words. As we look at color we use it as a base of all our designs. Today we will look at and see how color theory influences your marketing efforts both on and offline.
Last Modified: 2/7/2017 7:21:03 AM

Common SEO Mistakes Small Businesses Make


The joy of having a small to mid-size business is you can typically turn things around very rapidly. This is both a blessing and a curse. All too often lately we have seen many businesses that are hurting themselves as they rush into the search engine optimization (SEO) business. Whether they jump in blind, read an article, watch a YouTube video or promote someone from within that is their “techy” expert. Businesses are truly starting to realize the importance of SEO. The part they’re missing is the coming up with a solid plan of attack that works for their business.

We are finding that many of the executives that we are talking with believe there is a single magical formula that will garner the best SEO results for everyone. This truly is not the case as each business is unique and different. This goes for national chains as well as a single person retail shop. The community a business is in will determine many aspects of a business. Whether you are downtown, uptown, home run or off the beaten path your community will determine your overall success. SEO is the same way. There may not be a downtown location on the internet but there is the search engines as a point of entry for all websites on the internet to be found on.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:19:59 PM

Common Social Media Mistakes

Description: Whether you perform your social media on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or any of the other popular sites the possibility you will make a mistake is truly great. Before you began you have most likely used the social media outlet you're going to be working on. You also most likely investigated your competitors that are both local and across the nation if not the world so that you can "do it better". By moving to social media, even with an expert, there will be uphill battles as well as mistakes that are made. In this article we will cover some of the common mistakes we see people make as well as how you can avoid them for each of the core areas.
Last Modified: 10/23/2015 10:11:04 PM

Content is Crucial to SEO Success

Description: When it comes to getting your website indexed on the search engines you need high-quality content that tells a story to your users. This story needs to be clear, concise, and most importantly covers what your users are looking for.
Last Modified: 9/23/2016 6:56:48 AM

Social Media Content Calendars


There's one sure-fire way to take your blog and Digital Marketing strategy from non-existent or amateur hour to full-blown pro status, and that's to make absolutely sure you've got a plan. We can guarantee that the writers of your favorite blogs and websites aren't sitting at their keyboards at 9pm the night before a post gets published, just finally deciding what to write about. Neither should you.

Going PRO means you always deliver on time and this editorial calendar is your ticket to getting there.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:08:06 PM

Crafting Page Titles and SEO

Description: When it comes to finding your business online the first stop for many is the search engines. The search engines contain billions of pages of content and you want to be found in the top free organic spots. To do this one of the items you need to focus on is your page title. As we take on more customers as part of their monthly SEO we've developed a checklist that we use to optimize the page titles of a website. We will cover a good portion of these items below.
Last Modified: 5/9/2016 7:32:34 AM

Creating a Culture that treats employees like CEO's


When do employees become more than just employees?

It's a question that businesses ask themselves but few often seek the solution. What are the key ingredients in creating a company culture like Google, Zappos and Pixar when employees don't just work, they love working?

Last Modified: 9/20/2016 3:53:31 PM

Creating Organic Content versus Sharing Content

Description: We have a lot of clients that we talk to about the true difference between creating unique quality content and sharing quality content. We have and will continue to state that high-quality content is the best way to get the search engines to start taking notice of your business. The problem with this process though is it takes time to get the search engines and users to notice this quality content. Sometimes taking years to achieve results. So what can be done to get your high-quality content out there as fast as possible?
Last Modified: 8/5/2016 9:12:12 PM

Creation of the Side Walk Shop

Description: On October 14, 2014, the idea came about for a low cost and efficient eCommerce site for people in and around Valparaiso Indiana. We didn't want to charge on a per item basis whether it be a percent or a flat-fee. The goal was provide businesses the opportunity to grow without a huge overhead. The eCommerce solution we chose was called "Purchase Local" initially as we were going to focus solely within the Northwest Indiana area. Flash forward 2 years, some company growth, and "Side Walk Shop" was born. Based on the same premise of the purchase local concepts this will be nationwide with a full marketing budget and team standing behind it.
Last Modified: 10/31/2016 5:58:57 PM

Credit Card Swiping Rules

Description: On October 1, 2015 many of the credit cards in our pocket have been enhanced and is the beginning of the end of the magnetic stripe credit card. Over the past year our credit cards have been updated with a new microchip in them. This chip is to replace the magnetic stripe on our credit cards and make our purchased transactions more secure.
Last Modified: 10/9/2015 7:43:25 PM

Customer Communication

Description: The more we talk with clients the more that they want results. To get results though you need to have outstanding communication. Communication comes in many ways and varies for each one of your customers. Businesses know they want a website to communicate their message and they need to be on social media to continue that reach and engage prospects and customers alike. Both platforms are working for you 24x7, should work together as a collaborative digital marketing tool for your business. To achieve this you need to have an effective communications strategy.
Last Modified: 3/22/2017 7:56:24 PM

Define Your Website Success

Description: One of the core problems people face with a website is that they plan for success. They make a list of items they want on a website. They make a list of items they do not want on a website. What people tend to miss is what "defines success" to be considered a success. In this article we will discuss items to make your website a success.
Last Modified: 6/28/2016 1:39:32 PM

Difference Between On-Page versus Off-Page SEO

Description: Depending upon who you talk to you will find that there is a true divide when it comes to on-page versus off-page search engine optimization (SEO). We are one's where we actually fall right squarely in the middle and we feel that both are equally important to your overall search engine strategy if you want to reach page one results on the search engines.
Last Modified: 8/4/2016 8:55:16 AM

Differences between SSL, TLS, and HTTPS

Description: We are routinely (multiple times per week) creating Digicert SSL certificates for our clients in Northwest Indiana and outside of Indiana. We are often asked what is the difference between SSL, TLS, and HTTPS. In this article we are going to do a very high-level explanation so that everyone can easily understand what this very important security is.
Last Modified: 9/29/2016 10:20:34 AM

Negativity is a part of a digital world


Saturday we sat down for several hours with a current client of ours discussing their plans for their business. This included their website, search engines and social media. Each topic was deep and insightful to say the least. One of the topics that came up that we felt could benefit everyone was how to properly handle negative comments or feedback from customers in social media. Although this will not cover everything we talked about it will be a great foundation for any company whether you are just starting in the realm of social media or have been at it for some time.

Many companies not yet on social media may be avoiding it to avoid such negative criticism. The problem with this approach is that you have no voice to counter the negative criticism. With many social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Yelp, Urban Spoon, Google+ to name just a few you will find that people are already talking about your brand. These online conversations can be positive or negative and if you avoid being online the only person you are hurting is yourself (aka your brand). With so many places to cover for feedback the question is where to dedicate your efforts.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:10:23 PM

Distinguishing your entrepreneurial business


As an entrepreneurial company, we know that we have to know our stuff and be experts in our field. Your competition obviously knows there stuff, as that is why they are your competition. Being “as good” as them is not a distinguishing factor that you want to be known as. You need to strive to be better than they are as if you are the same then there is a good chance one of you will not be growing, as you want. With business there are always distinguishing marks for companies. Key areas that you need to know are:

  • Your product
  • Your market
  • Your positioning
  • Your competition
  • Your message

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:19:30 PM

Do NOT RUIN your Social Presence

Description: On my way from the office this afternoon I received an email from a client wanting to BUY fans in hopes of making more money. The email they received during the middle of the night promised to do just that. It will NOT. It will hurt you long term, hurt your running contests and marketing campaigns down the road.
Last Modified: 5/13/2016 3:23:04 PM

Do you NAP?

Description: No, we are not talking about taking a nap. Those are great in certain situations. We are referring of NAP when it comes to your search engine optimization efforts or SEO. NAP stands for Name, Address, and Phone number. This information is critical for SEO to be effective and accurate. With a proper NAP setup, every search engine and wherever your customer goes will have a consistent experience on finding your business online. In this article, we will cover the core steps of NAP and why it is critical for your business to rank well on the search engines.
Last Modified: 2/2/2017 7:32:11 AM

Do your forms convert?

Description: When you build a website one item that is rarely thought about is the conversion rate of your online forms. You can see in your Google Analytics or other analytics program that people go to a specific page. But how do they use that page once they are there? Standard analytics products will not give you that valuable information. You are up to guessing and "assuming" what your visitors are doing. With form analytics you can see clearly how long a user is using each individual field of a given field on a form, where they abandon, and how long they are on each individual field.
Last Modified: 4/4/2016 7:54:39 AM

Doing Business Differently

Description: We are often asked how we can provide the services that we do for the prices that we do them for. We could go on for quite some time on this subject as it is dear to our hearts. Instead we are going to list the first ten items that come to us within five minutes as we feel that give you a good indication of who we are.
Last Modified: 7/24/2016 11:50:23 AM

Do you know how your website is being used?

Description: A website is only as valuable as the information that you put into it. Wrong! You also need to get information out of your website that allows you to provide even greater value to your customers. This is what customer service is all about. If what you are using is Google Analytics for everything you are on the right path as that will get you "in the door". There are other steps you can take to further improve your online experience for your customers.
Last Modified: 4/10/2016 9:59:39 AM

Earn your way to SEO success with Blogging

Description: When it comes to being found online you need an SEO strategy to reach the maximum audience possible using solely white hat SEO techniques. We are not going to delve into white hat or black hat SEO here. We will strictly be talking tactics that we use in every blog post to achieve SEO success with content through blogging on your website. Before we even get into the article I want to be very clear that when you write do not write for the search engines to get your SEO. You want your content human readable and in a way, that is engaging and provides value to your intended audience.
Last Modified: 11/4/2016 10:38:45 AM

eCommerce - Starting off right

Description: Working with one company that came on board with us to help them go from Northwest Indiana to a system that could better expand nationwide. One would think any eCommerce platform would work. In fact, they are presently using an eCommerce platform that is promoted as being for nationwide use. They found it to be slow and unfriendly as they've grown over the past year. The search engine aspects are less than desirable, and customers have been complaining about the difficulty the system is to use.
Last Modified: 8/12/2016 6:50:05 AM

eCommerce: Getting People into Physical Stores

Description: Promoting and growing your business is crucial to the success of any business. There truly is no business not in the business of making money. Even not-for-profit need to generate money to stay in operation. When you have a website and want that website to generate sales businesses often turn to eCommerce sites to bring in money into their business. Today we will discuss how to get people off your eCommerce sites (yes really) and into physical locations and get your products offline (in the real-world).
Last Modified: 8/18/2016 6:13:14 AM

eCommerce Killers

Description: We are starting the year off about how to prevent abandonment issues with your eCommerce site. Abandonment issues are the true killer of any eCommerce site. We are going to cover the major issues that we’ve seen in regard to visitors coming to an eCommerce site and abandon their shopping cart.
Last Modified: 1/1/2016 9:40:52 PM

Employee (Website) Investment


Yesterday at the Michigan City Chamber Biz Expo we ran into many great people wanting to know information. Most of them had websites (only two didn't), some good and some that they wish they could do more but didn't see the benefit of having a website.

We found only one business (out of over forty) actually considers their website as a benefit to the company rather than a required expense. We run into this all the time where a business has designed a website years ago and think eventually it will bring in tangible results. Would you hire an employee, set them at a desk and hope that someday they will bring in tangible results? I am betting the answer is no. You want, and need, that employee to work for your business objectives and not just take home a paycheck. Having a website that you build (hire) either yourself or pay someone else to design, pay monthly fees (paycheck) for hosting and the domain registrar fee and do not work toward making it the best employee (website) that it can be that is exactly what you're doing. Your website needs to be kept up to date about your business goals, objectives, and working toward the success of your business.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:18:52 PM

Engaging Your Target Audience with Quality Content

Description: The rewards of content marketing are really too rich to ignore. With high-quality content you can build your brand, establish trust, create a positive reputation, and gain authority with current and future clients. People look for this content to help them make decisions and solve problems they are current facing. Once you've achieved this you will gain a loyal follower that not only comes back for information but will routinely share and promote your content to further inform others that they know.
Last Modified: 3/30/2016 7:45:29 AM

Evolution of a Dream

Description: Five years ago, a dream was planted to change the world in the digital marketing space. This covers not only social media but websites and any electronic media of the modern business. We also decided to do this in Northwest Indiana rather than Silicon Valley or another major tech sector area of the country. The reason was simple and that is there was an untapped pool of truly awesome people that had desires to do good in the community and the world. Many who have been held back but knew they had the potential to do good in the world. Experts exist everywhere around the world and not in these tech sector centric locations. Our city of Valparaiso Indiana has proven and helped us grow with its entrepreneur spirit.
Last Modified: 4/30/2017 2:45:29 PM

Exceptional Website Customer Service

Description: We know our customers are the life blood of our organizations. Without them we could not achieve the greatness that we have. The problem we've seen is not every customer gives us feedback. With a website though and the right tools you can actually find out about what your customers are doing. For the past three years we've used products like SumoMe, CrazyEgg, and Heatmap. Each product has had its benefits. A year and a half ago we came across a product that does everything these companies do and steps up the customer service notch. This will be the product we talk about today. This product is called Lucky Orange.
Last Modified: 3/17/2016 11:14:13 AM

Facebook Image Options


When working with Facebook images the images may upload in a way that you don’t like and need to be rotated, they may need to be removed as after uploading you don’t realize the image is the image you want, etc. Below we will outline the steps for handling the most common image options that we see users needing to do.

  1. For all of the options below you will go to either your personal page or a page you are an administrator on.
  2. Once you are on the page click on Photos
  3. Navigate to the photo if it is not in an album, click on photo album and then click on the photo you wish to edit
  4. As you hover (no clicking) over the image you will see options at the bottom of the image appear. We are going to focus on the Options part for this post. Click on Options and then choose one of the options beneath the image for complete details on what each item does.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:12:42 PM

Facebook Insights - Overview

Description: Our next supplement into digging into the analytics provided by Facebook is the Facebook Insights Overview. Within the overview you'll get more information than you received on the main page of your Facebook business page which we covered here. Within the overview you'll see a lot more details along with visual graphs on how you're doing in the last seven days compared to the previous seven days worth of information.
Last Modified: 11/9/2015 9:41:37 PM

Fair Pricing

Description: Today I personally worked on over 40 changes for over 30 clients. That may seem like a lot but it really wasn't. This is a typical day for our Valparaiso web design firm. What was interesting is not one of these were any of our maintenance contract customers that receive unlimited web site updates. This means I should have be billing out 10 hours of time for today. The fact is I only billed 2 hours of time. Let's look at this and see what makes our web design customer service in Valparaiso Indiana different from that of everyone else.
Last Modified: 10/24/2016 2:49:56 PM

Getting help to grow your core business

Description: In November, a long-lost friend (not really lost) started talking over email. We had been emailing back and forth for a week about his frustrations in getting his website to convert from visitors to customers. I will start out this person is not a customer as he is happy with his current provider and is also a close friend of his. He wanted to be heard about his struggles, what he is currently doing, and think of ways to improve his situation in the upcoming months.
Last Modified: 12/31/2016 9:56:36 AM

Giving Away Valuable Business Advice

Description: Often when we are out and about working at Valparaiso Uptown Café we are often asked by one of our loyal blog readers why we continue to give away knowledge that we can easily charge for. In fact, we do charge for the knowledge we share and give away. The reason we do so is to show our expertise to others. Those that pay for us to do work for them like to know we are industry experts while others have the time available to handle the tasks themselves but often don't have the time to do it themselves.
Last Modified: 9/11/2016 10:37:57 AM

Growing your business online should not be expensive

Description: We have had a project named "Project Sugar" because it is such a sweet deal. Today we are offering it to everyone. All too often we hear about clients be charged a virtual arm and a leg to get an eCommerce site up and running. Today we are going to change that. Our clients now can receive a basic eCommerce system that comes with the proverbial kitchen sink. Our clients will receive a full-featured eCommerce system starting at just $495.
Last Modified: 8/12/2016 11:51:10 AM

Growing your business with a Call-to-Action

Description: You have one or more social media pages to have a social online experience. This social information reaches dozens, hundreds, and maybe even thousands of people. This reach on social media can be organically (free) or through paid advertising/boosting your posts to achieve a specific marketing goal. If you are lucky your Facebook page will even show on the search engine result pages (SERPs). You keep your social media sites updated weekly, you monitor and respond to questions and inquiries daily, hourly, and more. Is that enough for your digital online experience? If you want to control your name and brand on the internet it regretfully is not. Whether you are on Mark Zuckerberg's Facebook or another site you do not control the look-and-feel, information, or how many times the information shows. You often have to pay for the placement you want on the platform. What you can do is establish yourself as an expert in your field by having a professional website with quality content, a blog that allows you to showcase your expertise, and make certain all your good information gets out. Additionally, with a website you can further market your business beyond just listing your products and services by showcasing your company colors, your logo, and none of your competitors information will show. To achieve this you need a website and not just any website. You need one that is designed to "Convert" your visitors into customers. To achieve this you need a Call to Action or CTA. Let's take a look and see what an effective call of action is and how it can beneift your business online.
Last Modified: 5/12/2017 1:44:34 PM

Guaranteed SEO Success


Do we have your attention now? There is no guarantee with search engine optimization (SEO) success. We all wish we could guarantee results for our clients but we can't and those that do don’t walk, run from. We do promise that we will use the best current techniques that the search engines state should be done for success. That we will not use any "black hat" SEO techniques as they may work for a week or two but they will hurt your site long term. This still doesn't guarantee success as much as we wish we could. When it comes to the push and shove of an SEO success strategy the only way it can be guaranteed is with the client themselves! That’s right for SEO success with the search engines and a SEO company is determined by you; our customers. You are the experts in your field and can provide us with the information that you want your business to be known for. We are the experts in regard to the latest search engine technologies, techniques, recommendations and optimizations as this is what we focus on daily for you.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:17:01 PM

Handling SEO for your company

Description: As we work on content writing, graphic design, social media and search engine optimization (SEO) we often look at what a typical day looks like. Below is a list of what we do for our clients on a weekly and daily basis.
Last Modified: 9/19/2016 6:20:21 AM

Handling Negativity


Digital Marketing often creates a deer in headlight look from clients. Whether it is with basic terminology, that you need to be monitoring your account(s) continuously or the amount of time and effort you need to devote to do it properly. It doesn’t have to be complex and we work with you on making it simple and will do the heavy lifting for you. If you’re too busy or you do not want to handle your companies’ social media that is perfectly fine. Knowing some of the basics is critical as even if you are not being active with your account there will be situations where we need your guidance. This will include postings, content creation as well as how you wish to deal with certain situations. At times we all have to deal with situations that are not positive. No one likes them and we all wish they could just all “go away”. Ignoring a problem though doesn’t fix it. Not addressing negative problems will only have a chance to grow into something worse.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:09:59 PM

The Hardest Part of Web Design


Each project that we work on has its own unique challenges. As we break our 100th project we look back and reflect on the one item that rings true for all of them. This item is essentially the most important aspect of any website. Every project begins with a blank slate. Whether we use a flow charting program or a pencil and paper we always start with nothing.

Fonts, Color Schemes and Logo

Most of the companies that we work with are well established, have worked with creative designers and marketing firms to outline the businesses fonts and colors the business uses. Along with that information we are given a set of parameters of how the fonts, sizes of the fonts, logo, location of the logo, and colors should be used.

When we have a project with a brand new startup it is a truly exciting experience as we not only work directly with the business entity but the designer helping build the brand. This also allows us to ask direct questions to both the designer and the business owner to make not only meet the businesses needs but help make the experience blend in more closely with the vision of the designer.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:18:17 PM

The Anatomy of a #Hashtag


Hashtags started on Twitter in August 2007. Hashtags though are no longer just part of twitter but almost every social media outlet. A hashtag is a single word or a combination of words (with no space) that is preceded by a pound (#) symbol and used by the micro-blogging community to create a thread of conversations around a specific theme or topic.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:54:26 PM

Heart of an entrepreneur

Description: Over the past several months there has been a lot of thought and especially growth in many ways. JM2 started as two friends and their wife/fiancé wanting to just “have fun” and “make a difference”. Over the years that has not changed but yet in many ways it has changed. In this article we’re going to cover five things you must have if you want to have a growing business, not a hobby, and make a difference in the world that we live in.
Last Modified: 10/8/2016 8:29:45 AM

Hidden pieces of website building

Description: There are many components that are visual to your site visitors when you build a website. These are the graphics, look-and-feel, search, forms, and the content the site is written for the site. There are actually more items on a website than just these visual aspects. In this article we will be covering some, not all, of the hidden aspects of a website that you should consider. Whether you get a dozen visitors to your website per month or hundreds of thousands of visitors these items are all important aspects that we consider for each client project that we take on.
Last Modified: 10/11/2015 4:02:26 PM

How to SEO in 2016

Description: Search Engine Optimization or SEO for short is a key component to getting your website to rank well. In today's article we are going to cover the bare minimum to rank well on Google, Yahoo, and Bing. These are predominantly the three most used search engines and feed many of the smaller search engines on the Internet. This will not be a complete guide to what we do for our clients under our monthly maintenance contracts but for those not wanting a maintenance contract, with another company, or would like additional knowledge regarding your SEO this guide is for you.
Last Modified: 6/22/2016 8:54:08 AM

How blogging can help your business

Description: As we get closer to the end of 2015 we are often asked why we blog, why should I blog, what is in it for us, and why should I use it for my business in 2016? For us there is no better way to answer this than to answer why we blog as a company, what we gain from blogging, and what are some of the reasons we see that blogging is important. By explaining why and how we blog you can take that information and compare it against your business model and see if it is something that works well for you.
Last Modified: 12/15/2015 9:53:11 PM

Humanizing Content

Description: Only a few short years ago people were stuffing keywords into their websites to try and rank better on the search engines. With faster computers comes new capabilities. Natural text is now the most popular way of interacting with their content on the internet. This change requires a shift in the way information is written on the internet to be found.
Last Modified: 7/11/2016 6:52:24 AM

I Don't Know vs Let Me Find the Answer

Description: When it comes to working with clients, the last answer they want to hear are the three words of doom: "I don't know", a phrase so adverse to client relations that mentioning them often is equated to losing their trust and reliance.
Last Modified: 4/7/2017 9:54:19 PM

I have Facebook I don’t need a website!


We all know that social media is now an important part of our personal lives. We also continue to learn how social media interaction can help in communicating with current and prospective customers. One area that is being forgotten is your website. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are great social media sites to tackle aspects of your business. The problem with these sites is you have no creative control over the look and feel beyond a few strategic graphics that they allow. Your website is the embodiment of your brand. You have control over your website from the pictures and content to the design and layout. This is 100% your area of the internet that you have complete control over. Your destiny of your brand online begins with your website. Your social media presence is still very important and should work hand-in-hand with your website.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:09:29 PM

Improving your SEO on eCommerce pages

Description: When it comes to search engine optimization or SEO it should never be considered one and done or something you can learn in a blog post or a few short hours. SEO is truly a craft that can take a good website and make it great. The opposite is also true that a good website with poorly thought out design and content can create a bad website to the search engines. In this article, we'll go over the core areas for SEO on an eCommerce website.
Last Modified: 10/28/2016 8:29:10 AM

Improving your SEO and your User Experience

Description: The internet is a fast moving machine where performance is key to being successful. There are design trends that look cool but can negatively affect your visitor performance. Many of these trends are good as they improve the overall user experience (UX); others though make the experience worse after the "wow" factor has been seen one or two times. A positive user experience is one that enhances, doesn't slow a site visitor down, doesn't distract, aligns with the core objective of the site, and doesn't have to get them to think of "what do I need to do here". Many design trends over the past year have some great "wow" factor but can actually hurt your search engine optimization, slow down your website, and detract from what you are promoting.
Last Modified: 7/21/2016 7:52:33 AM

Increase Your Website Traffic

Description: No business wants to have low website traffic. In this article we will discuss how we help businesses increase their website traffic from our Northwest Indiana Valparaiso office. We will cover many areas people might forget about or don't put enough emphasis on when building and maintaining their website.
Last Modified: 12/5/2015 2:23:27 PM

Internet Predictions for 2016

Description: In 2016 we see a continued growth from what started out in 2015 with a true emphasis on the customer experience. Whether this is the interface of your website or the personalization to provide content rich information for consumers. We do see some shifts in the way the Internet works with the improvements in computer algorithms (had to say we are programmers after all). These are due to the major players (Google, Microsoft, Apple, Twitter, and Facebook) taking on more personas to make the Internet a more personable experience for users.
Last Modified: 12/30/2015 9:15:15 AM

Is it possible for your small business to keep up with the big dogs?

Description: You have either started or have had your small business running in towns like Valparaiso, Chesterton, Merrillville, Hobart, Portage, or (insert your small town here). You compete with great customer service, quality products, and that local small town flare. But how are you able to compete against big corporations that seem to have endless marketing budgets at their disposal? Today we are going to dig into some of the "tricks of the SEO trade" that we have used time-and-time again to help small businesses grow. Are you ready and willing to get more business and grow? If so, continue to read on and learn some of our proven techniques on growing your small business.
Last Modified: 4/22/2017 7:23:54 PM

Is your marketing working for or against you?


Aggregate: verb (without object), 1. To combine and form a collection or mass

Aggregation of services has become a significant business. is an aggregator. Another prevalent aggregator is the aggregation of marketing services via geographic or demographic based community sites. These communities generally have three elements: the aggregator, the reader, and the contributor. Let's look briefly at the business model.

Last Modified: 4/14/2017 4:06:02 PM

Know Your Facebook Analytics - This Week

Description: Facebook provides you with some really great analytics when you visit your page. At the top of your page is Insights which gives you some really great in-depth information. We're going to keep this article short and sweet and cover six core items you'll see on your Page. This information will help give you a quick gauge on how you're doing. We'll later go into details on the Insights and how they can benefit you.
Last Modified: 11/9/2015 4:19:50 PM

Let's Talk Maintenance Plans

Description: Coming off of Labor Day weekend we thought we would talk and discuss maintenance plans. Maintenance plans are specific tools for getting the job done in a timely and efficient manner. A form of labor that JM2 Webdesigners from Valparaiso Indiana does to help your business grow. Your employees are dedicated to helping your business grow in the real-world. We become employees for you in the virtual world and help them come to the real-world to learn about your products and services for a lot less than you think. In this article we go over everything in our "Web and Social Media Package". If you only want search engine optimization (SEO) take the social media away and that's that package. These are designed to be simple and complete to meet every need your business has when doing digital marketing.
Last Modified: 9/7/2016 10:52:59 AM

Life After a Widow Maker

Description: In this article I am going to take a step back from the standard learn about how to take advantage of the Internet for your business and cover how a widow maker heart attack can change your life and help you help others around you. A life altering even can easily change those around you to make your life more fulfilling than it was before.
Last Modified: 2/7/2016 8:58:02 AM

LinkedIn and Passwords in General

Description: Everyone with a computer lives with passwords one way or another each and every day to protect our businesses and our personal lives. On June 6, 2012 LinkedIn was hacked. Yes, that was nearly four years ago. On that date it was announced that 6.5 million accounts were reported as compromised and stolen by a group of unknown hackers. Now in May of 2016 that list has been officially "leaked" and we are finding out that the initial believed list of 6.5 million was off (just slightly though – insert sarcasm here). The list contained 117 million account passwords from what was initially thought of. That is 110.5 million additional accounts that were stolen than previously expected.
Last Modified: 5/18/2016 8:45:19 PM

LinkedIn: Getting the word out


When you have a new product or service a common issue is getting the word out about your new great solution to solve a specific problem. Using the posting (blogging) capability of LinkedIn you can make a huge impact in getting your information "out there". You will be talking to your peers about something that you are passionate about.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:42:45 PM

Living Your Dream

Description: Five years ago, in 2012, a dream, even a fantasy if you will, was started. With a year of challenging work in the city of Michigan City Indiana a business plan was developed, modified, tweaked, vetted, and tweaked some more. Change was wanted, and needed, in the web design and marketing space. Having worked for several years at a printing company that did marketing I saw a lot of great old school things that still worked well today but could be enhanced with software and an eye on the future. After a year of work, saving money, the dream started to become a reality. This is the story of the four-year journey that JM2 Webdesigners & Marketing has made.
Last Modified: 3/20/2017 12:55:30 PM

Local SEO and Page One Guarantee

Description: We are often asked by clients to match a competitor "guarantee" of a page one position one organic spot within the search engines. No one can do this and those that do you truly need to run from. No matter how much money is thrown at Local SEO you cannot guarantee a page one position. When it comes to your search engine optimization (SEO) results you need to do the right thing (white hat SEO techniques), having truly awesome content (content is king), and staying in it for the long haul (sounds like the stock market doesn't it?). Whether you are in a smaller and growing community like Kouts Indiana or in a big city like Chicago Illinois the techniques we will discuss pertain to all.
Last Modified: 7/27/2016 8:31:11 AM

Local Listings using SEO Techniques

Description: There are many free local online listing services, like our very own Find Business Directory. Using these services, you can increase the visibility of your website and further build your company brand. In this article we are going to cover many of the listings that you can list your business for free with minimal time and effort.
Last Modified: 1/21/2016 11:16:48 AM

Local Search Basics


The internet has people believing in removing the need for having a physical address. This may be true for some types of businesses that can survive solely online. Most businesses though still require a physical address as they are in your local community. Local search engine optimization (SEO) for these businesses are critical as it helps their business on the search engines. Many small businesses will benefit from doing local SEO and is something businesses need to work on.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:20:50 PM

Local Search Links


Part of our search engine optimization (SEO) for our customers is helping them take ownership of local search pages on the Internet. Some pages may already belong to to them while others can belong to no one, don't yet exist or have been claimed by the wrong person. Claiming your local search listings will not only help people find their business but provide valuable inbound links to their professional website.

Below you will find the main local search pages in the United States that are used and are a great place for every business to start. Some of the pages can be completed very quickly while others may take some time to verify your business as they may send a post card to verify the address of the location. Some of these local search pages you may have heard of while others you may not have but all of them are important for your business. By providing the information to you we hope that it will not only help those that wish to do their own search engine optimization. This will also help our customers that we do their search engine optimization for which local search engines we will be starting off with.

As part of every website we do we will promote you to the major search engines once your site goes live. By using our SEO platforms for your business we will not only continually be promoting you to the major search engines but on local search and social media as well. If you would like to have JM2 Webdesigners assist you, or you would like to learn more, you may contact us at

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:22:27 PM

Local Search Tips


Search engine optimization (SEO) can be both a black box and an art at the same time. It seems many companies will submit you to the search engines and believe their work is done. This isn't the case for small to mid-size businesses as they don't always sell nationally or globally. Many sell locally which is where SEO for Local comes into play. Marketing the old fashioned way is still important, especially for a local business. As more of your customers continue to rely on the internet it's important that your page sits near the top of a given search in order to provide maximum visibility. Fortunately, there are a few things that you can do to make sure that your local business gets put at the top of the search engine results.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:26:38 PM

Longer Tweets are Here!


The days of having to make the choice between your message and your media are about to become a thing of the past thanks to Twitter's latest character length update.

Pictures, GIFS, videos, links to quoted tweets and polls will no longer count towards your overall 140 character word count. This means that your posts will now allow you to tweet as you normally would without having to worry about other media taking away from your character count.

Last Modified: 9/21/2016 8:32:37 AM

Makes Come from Misses: It’s Not Unlimited Updates. It’s Cost Effective Shot Taking.

Description: Saturday, I sat under the eaves of a friend’s garage roof and watched it rain. His daughter was running across the freshly mowed lawn in the rain. Once she got too much grass on her legs and feet she would leap into her turquoise and white inflatable pool. My friend’s dad, Eddie, sat to my right wearing his paint marked work boots. Eddie is an interior and exterior painter with over 30 years of experience.
Last Modified: 6/20/2017 8:30:26 AM

Making a Difference the JM2 Way

Description: This past weekend we met with two great clients on Saturday about how together we will work collaboratively together with their website, branding, and marketing of their organizations. The first lasted several hours about our services and digging deep into the realm of what our social media offered. The next inquired why we would want to work with their specific industry as they said they were slow pay and were by design hard to work with. In this article, we're going to look back at these two meetings and see how two different approaches align well with our Valparaiso Indiana company and why it shows why our three-year building process has put us in a place for rapid growth.
Last Modified: 10/30/2016 9:23:15 PM

The making of a $695 website

Description: We recently built a website for one of our Valparaiso Indiana clients. They heard about us because of our membership in the Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce but also because of our new Business Finder Directory where every JM2 Webdesigners customer receives a Platinum membership free of charge ($180/year value). During the process we thought about what goes into building a professional website solution for our clients. The entire process took around 20 hours to complete and as we dug into what was involved we thought we would share so that others can see what we feel was a great effort by our entire team.
Last Modified: 1/16/2016 10:14:58 AM

Marketing a boring brand

Description: We all can't have the most exciting of company brands or huge budgets to make it exciting. You may provide one of the services that truly isn't super exciting to talk about but necessary to everyone in one way or another. You provide products and services that are used either daily or occasionally. Big business is known for their exciting and ever engaging social media marketing campaigns due to the huge budgets that they can get overly creative and take boring into exciting. This doesn't mean if you are a bank, credit union, funeral home, pawn shop, dry cleaner, lawyer, restaurant, etc. without a big budget that you can't have an engaging social media strategy that people will enjoy. In fact, there are ways you can start to engage your audience to make your brand more fun. Let's look at some ways you can go from boring to engaging using social media.
Last Modified: 2/5/2017 10:00:28 AM

Maximizing Mobile Marketing

Description: When it comes to marketing today mobile is becoming more of a key player. Mobile text marketing or SMS marketing has a standard open rate of 98% compared to 30% with email marketing. On top of that only 1% of SMS marketing messages are considered spam due to the fact the loyal customer has to opt-in to receive the messages. By adding just one person coming back per week that might not otherwise come to your location you will not only pay for text messaging but start to make more money. In this article we're going to cover the core benefits of what SMS marketing is and how your business can benefit from having it to drive more revenue to your door.
Last Modified: 9/22/2016 7:38:20 AM

Mobile Website Needs

Description: Every time the latest search engine report comes out about how people are utilizing search on mobile devices you why are many websites not mobile friendly. The other question is why treat mobile as a second class citizen when more people are using search on mobile devices than desktop devices. We build every site in a mobile first thought process using responsive web design (RWD).
Last Modified: 11/7/2015 10:14:27 AM

Mobility is still important

Description: In November of 2014 Google came out with a mobile site check and validation tool. Many businesses scrambled to get their business website mobile aware. Many still two years later fail at mobility in many ways. This week Google released an updated Mobile Friendly Testing tool. This updated tool allows for greater growth, shows blocked files, and better explains where faults might lie.
Last Modified: 5/17/2016 9:05:26 PM

More on Local Search

Description: Every business has a story and they want to be heard. Whether you are in a small town like Chesterton Indiana, a college town like Valparaiso Indiana, or a big city like Chicago Illinois. You want your story told and to be heard by others. To get your story heard you need to market to those looking around you. In this post, we delve into more on being found locally.
Last Modified: 12/21/2016 9:17:32 PM

The Morning SHOTGUN Mistake


I just had a nice unexpected phone call this morning from someone asking advice (yes at 6:30 in the morning we are at work -- actually we start between 5-6am). They currently have 9 social media sites (I was glad I was sitting). They are spending over five hours per day on social media for all 9 social media sites seven days a week (yes 7 days!). They have one person dedicated to social media alone and also have a social media manager helping them.

After getting the initial details I found that they wanted to know if they were doing the right thing as they are not getting the results they want and are about ready to "quit". They wanted a second opinion. They have no digital marketing plan, no goals and no content calendar. All major mistakes; especially since they have a manager helping them which also makes gauging "success" virtually impossible.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:06:24 PM

SEO is not a means to an end!

Description: Engaging in a search engine optimization (SEO) campaign DOES NOT guarantee more leads and sales. This may seem counterproductive to what many think of what SEO is. SEO is not a magical formula to automatically add to your businesses bottom line. Just as adding an employee doesn't guarantee a lead or sale. A successful SEO strategy helps a business gain more website traffic. Increased traffic does not equate to leads or sales. To make your website bring in more, and qualified, leads you need to make certain your website has the information the people are looking for. It is not uncommon to establish a relationship with a customer that it takes weeks, months or even years before the first sale is made. Your website is unique in that it can portray a very professional opinion of your business 24x7. An SEO campaign will help make certain the portrayal is as good as possible in conveying your message.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:24:51 PM

On This Day Preferences

Description: Over the weekend I was talking with a friend and the conversation turned to the feature on Facebook referred to as "On This Day". This features is where Facebook reminds you of events that happened on a particular day. There are some negative thoughts people have about this feature that tend to happen. Either that day had tragedy in it, a life event that you prefer not to remember, or is in relation to a person that you no longer want to be reminded about. Today we will delve into this and explain how to filter based on either a specific date or a person.
Last Modified: 2/6/2017 8:30:43 AM

Online Marketing Tips for Small Businesses

Description: Marketing your business is never an easy task. With small businesses even more so as small businesses have smaller budgets than larger companies but want to achieve the same results as their larger brethren. Smaller budgets can be effective, efficient and profitable. The key is to not count the internet out when it comes to marketing your business, even if your product isn't sold online. There are many online marketing mistakes businesses make and we've come up with ways to do a good job at online marketing.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:23:18 PM

On-Page SEO for Search Engine Success

Description: We routinely will work with clients and look at what they’ve built and many have come close to hitting all the major point for on-page SEO success. They are normally just missing a few items to take their page from good to great. With this article we are going to share some of our core SEO optimization techniques to help you take your pages from good to great.
Last Modified: 6/11/2016 9:59:03 PM

On-Page SEO Success

Description: When it comes to getting the word out about your great website you need to be found. Sure your marketing materials, even your social media, will link to your website. What about the search engines? They still play the biggest factor in getting your website found. This is where on-page SEO can increase the success of your website. In this article we'll cover the factors that influence the search engines to further improve your SEO success.
Last Modified: 8/25/2016 10:01:17 AM

Facebook Open Graph Protocol Basics

Description: In a continued effort to help our business customers succeed in search engine optimization (SEO) and social media we continue to help you learn about how to make your website better. As part of a recent client website update and part of our customized SEO monthly plan we took their existing business BLOG and implemented Facebook's Open Graph protocol. This protocol allows you to have control over how images and descriptive text can appear on Facebook. Using this protocol you can control a certain level of customization over how information is carried over to Facebook from non-Facebook websites.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:21:29 PM

Our Clients Are Family

Description: I want to tell you a story. This story is a short one and one that shows what makes JM2 different than most companies. We are small (8 of us currently), we are new (3 years old), but we have a passion (our clients or customers if you will) become part of our family.
Last Modified: 10/7/2016 11:37:36 AM

Are you Overwhelmed with website, social media, or SEO?

Description: Today we had the water turned on for our new office. This sounds like a simple ordeal to have done. The week before as we had it scheduled we found out that it had been seven years since water was on. This raised a flag so we looked over all the pipe by feeling every inch we could see and it was relatively all new with shut offs, etc. We set all the shutoffs to closed so that we could test each section one at a time. When the city turned on we had leak number one and it was in a wall. Five hours later and that was fixed. Water back on and good. Turned on the next shutoff valve and another leak (again in a wall). Repeat this four more times. Have you ever felt overwhelmed with your website, social media, or SEO as we did with our water today? We will go over some ways to ease that feeling so that you can grow your business with today’s article.
Last Modified: 8/30/2016 10:01:03 PM

Pay-per-Introduction vs. Search Engine Optimization: Which Is Better for Your Business?

Description: Today I was approached by a fourth pay-per-introduction service. After evaluating the pros and cons of these services I conclude great SEO has a better return on investment than pay-per-transaction services.
Last Modified: 5/25/2017 5:37:36 AM

Perfect LinkedIn Headlines


When you start creating your professional LinkedIn profile a key area that is seen by everyone is your professional headline. Some will put owner, sales representative, or technical support as their professional headline. These do define your job but do not tell anyone who you are. Many contend, and we strongly agree, that the professional headline property within LinkedIn is the most important part of your professional LinkedIn profile. Your headline will determine whether someone will take the effort to continue to learn more about you.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:02:58 PM

Picking the Right Social Media Sites

Description: During the past several weeks we've talked to a half dozen companies wanting to be part of our maintenance programs for the unlimited website updates, social media monitoring, and handling their social media for a lot less than a part-time employee. One question that always comes up is which social media outlet(s) should you be on. For some it is just one while others it is more than one. We've created this article to help define which social media outlet is best to choose based on the social media outlets we typically use with our customer's.
Last Modified: 6/8/2016 11:04:27 AM

Pogo-sticking Search Engine Optimization

Description: Pogo-sticking is not like the pogo sticks many of us grew up as a kid. When we talk about pogo-sticking this is when a person types a search term in the search engines, click on a link and then immediately after reaching a page clicks the back button as the page they landed on was not what they were looking for. In the terms of a business when pogo-sticking happens on their page a lost sale has most likely just happened.
Last Modified: 9/12/2016 6:51:32 AM

Are you presenting a polished image?


This month we have helped over a half dozen companies polish their website appearances. We evaluated their website and found the content to be exactly what they wanted to convey. The design of their company pages were dated and unappealing to their customers. The engagement on the sites were not bringing the results that they wanted.

We always talk about how your website should be treated as employee of your business. Businesses want their employees to present the company in a clean, positive, polished and professional manner whenever they are working for the company as well as when they are off duty. A person trying to sell a professional service and shows up in t-shirt and shorts may be appropriate if you are selling surf boards but not when you want to sell your products and services to another professional. They always say dress to impress. Your website should always be dressed for the success of your business.

A site that was first rate and top notch five or ten years ago is definitely no longer wearing or showing the best appearance. A site built a year or two ago may also be showing signs of wear as technology changes on a monthly basis. A website that may be showing its best foot forward to the people visiting the site may not be showing a good view for the search engines. A site filled with spammy words, black hat techniques or other malicious techniques to show on the search engines can not only tarnish your reputation to the search engines but make you fall off the first page of the results.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:17:55 PM

Political Website Maintenance

Description: With elections quickly coming to an end for a short period there are a few things you need to think about whether you win or lose your political office. There are certain things you need to do to be a responsible politician no matter your election outcome. Although we are talking about your website your social media needs to be thought of as well.
Last Modified: 11/7/2016 6:02:54 PM

Power of Inbound Marketing

Description: With an effective inbound marketing strategy one of the items businesses will use is email newsletters to reach their audience. Your audience may be in a nearby town like Merrillville Indiana for us in Valparaiso or could be across the country in Amarillo Texas. When your product reaches across the country email is an effective means of communication. No matter your target audience email marketing has a lot of potential to drive people to you and inform them about your company even with the standard 15-30% open ratio. Today we will look at effective ways to utilize email marketing effectively for part of your inbound marketing strategy. We say "part of" as your inbound marketing strategy needs to cover multiple marketing methods.
Last Modified: 2/26/2017 7:56:42 PM

Prepare your website for the holidays

Description: With Halloween being our favorite holiday it's sometimes hard for us to think of the coming holidays. Our clients though may not have the same love for our love of chocolate and want to work on gaining conversions on their website for the holiday season. Whether you are a restaurant, industrial, or a retail shop the holidays are unique for each one. The holiday's present each company with some unique opportunities to build on their existing and new customer relationships.
Last Modified: 10/21/2015 8:55:35 PM

Preparing Social Media for 2017

Description: We are always looking months out for preparing. We are typically scheduled out 4, 6, even 8 weeks out for our clients. The reason for this is that we want to make certain we are thinking of holidays, promotion ideas, blog ideas, social media ideas, and the individual items that are happening in the weeks ahead (e.g. New Year's Day, Trivia Day, etc.). Since content creation is a core part of what we provide to our clients with not only unique and high-quality content but aggregated content that showcases a client's unique traits we need to be thinking ahead rather than after the fact. Therefore, we are already planning for 2017. To give you an idea of what we look at we're going to look at the major items we wrote down for January 2017.
Last Modified: 11/3/2016 8:48:52 PM

Press Release Information

Description: Press releases can produce major benefits to a business for marketing even when they do not reach major media outlets. You will find both free and paid press release outlets that can help promote your press release. Utilizing both is a key that we always use to gain the largest buzz for our clients. With paid advertising you can feel more confident your PR will reach more people and appear in leading publications. Getting your good word out to news organizations is never an easy business and getting a journalist to write about you is never easy. Without a press release they certainly will not know and with one you stand a better chance of being heard.
Last Modified: 7/17/2016 10:01:48 AM

Quick tips to kickoff your SEO efforts

Description: Search Engine Optimization or SEO can't be done in a single day. You can in one day though make a lot of small changes and improvements that will help you get a great jump start on improving your SEO. The improvements we outline today are all foundational items that are needed for any SEO and items we've been fixing left and right for many clients we've taken on updating their websites over the past several months.
Last Modified: 1/26/2017 4:32:23 PM

Responsive Design - What it is and why you want it

Description: Your website visitors want to view on their mobile, tablet, laptop, desktop and/or television/projection system all of varying sizes and resolutions. With a design that is responsive your website will constantly take into account the properties and capabilities of the device and the browser which is consuming the content so that it displays how you want it to on the size of screen they are using.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:29:49 PM

Let's Rock Your Facebook Profile


We all know having a great website or eCommerce website is about providing your visitors with the information that they want at the time they are looking for that information. Your social media profile is the same. People follow you as they are interested in your products and services. You need to motivate, engage and interest your audience with what matters to them. If you want to engage and keep your fans happy on Facebook you need to have your information up-to-date, informative, and engaged.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:44:58 PM

Responsive Web Design and the way of the web

Description: As desktop computer sales slowdown we are seeing a shift to not only tablets but to smartphones. As more people use a multitude of devices to access the internet we have to find ways of handling these devices in the most efficient manner possible. One can build a website specifically for each type of device or you can build a site that is responsive in nature that will resize to fit the device that it is being viewed on; including landscape and portrait views on the device. This is where responsive web design comes into play.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:24:08 PM

Purdue Scholarship


This Fall, two lucky Purdue University North Central students in the Computer & Information Technology program can earn $1,000 scholarships. The JM2 Webdesigners JumpStart scholarship is open to all incoming and existing full-time PNC students in the C&IT program with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Interested students must write an essay that will be due September 30, 2014.

This scholarship was created in 2013 by JM2 Webdesigners, a technology company located in Michigan City, IN that was founded in 2012. JM2 Webdesigners specializes in custom application and website development for small to mid-size businesses in the Northwest Indiana area. Owners Jon Meyers and John Marx are both incredibly proud of the service they provide to businesses in the Northwest Indiana area. Their passion of providing excellent service goes beyond their business. Marx and Meyers annually give a scholarship for Purdue North Central Computer & Information Technology students to assist the recipients in pursuing their passion in computer systems. There are many reasons why the JM2 Webdesigners scholarship was developed, but one of the catalysts creating this generous gift was because of both men’s diverse educational backgrounds.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:14:07 PM

Scholarship Essay Lessons Learned


This year marks the third year that the JM2 Webdesigners Jump Start Scholarship exists. The scholarship started as a $1,000 scholarship in the fall of 2013 at just Purdue North Central (PNC) in Westville, Indiana. The second year we added another $1,000 scholarship for a total of two. The scholarship stayed solely at PNC as we didn't have enough time to do two schools. Starting with this third year we now having the scholarship available at PNC at $1,000 to a single student and Ivy Tech will give $500 to two students Ivy Tech students. That isn't all that's changing this year. Being that our Valparaiso office has hired a graphic designer we're extending the scholarship from being solely for Information Technology (IT) students to also those students in marketing and graphical design. With two years now behind us we thought it would be good to have a "Lessons Learned" to help students from previous year mistakes.

Last Modified: 10/11/2015 9:47:07 AM

Search Engine Submissions

Description: As we continue to help our customers promote their websites through the search engine optimization (SEO) process we are constantly adding more search engines to our services on a monthly basis. As we add more search engines to our offerings for our customers who are already using one of our SEO plans they receive them for no additional costs. We feel that having this list will also benefit others that wish to do the submissions and SEO process themselves. The list below covers both the standard search engine submissions that JM2 Webdesigners offers as well as the local search options that we work on for our customers.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:25:35 PM

Sell Your Passion Before Anything Else

Description: For smaller businesses, having passion is one of the key components of selling your business to others. For many, the passion for the small business, the drive to their dream to the next level and find success in the business world is part of the appeal for so many to support local and support small to mid-range.
Last Modified: 5/17/2017 11:53:27 AM

SEO: 5 Keys to Writing Quality Content

Description: The quality of your website content is essential not only for search engine rankings but for business credibility as well. Your content should include the keywords and phrases that you want to rank higher for, but it should also make sense and not be repetitive to your readers. Writing good content that also helps your SEO can be tricky, which is why we've compiled a list of easy ways to help improve your content.
Last Modified: 5/8/2017 11:59:08 AM

SEO: How Crucial is Mobile Optimization?

Description: In 2016, mobile overtook desktop as the primary device used to access websites. People use all sorts of devices today to browse the internet, including cell phones, tablets, laptops, and even smart watches. "Responsive design" is the term used to describe how a website responds to the screen size, orientation, and resolution of each platform. Even though responsive design has been around for a while now, the majority of sites still fail to meet usability standards. Most websites are built for desktop and then dialed down for mobile. Having a mobile optimized website will not only make your website more user-friendly and universal, it will help your search engine optimization and get you ranked higher in search results.
Last Modified: 4/24/2017 10:30:15 AM

SEO: How Important is Social Media?

Description: Social media sites like Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, and Twitter are a popular way to share content and get involved with the online community. They are free to use and they give the public a place to create a profile and keep in touch with their local and global community. For businesses, not only does this give the public a way to connect with your business more personally and stay up to date with your products and sales, it also helps your search engine optimization (SEO).
Last Modified: 4/8/2017 12:00:55 PM

SEO: How to Optimize Your Web Pages

Description: Web page optimization is the first step to increasing your website's search engine optimization (SEO). Optimizing your web pages means designing them to get the best use out of them. Whether it's search engine optimization, which increases your website's ranking on search engines, or performance optimization, which ensures that your website runs quickly and smoothly, it is extremely beneficial for you and your visitors to have your web pages be the best they can be.
Last Modified: 3/27/2017 1:21:22 PM

SEO Journey Primer

Description: With all the talk about our new “Rock the Social” training courses there are some subjects we are not covering. The reason we are not going to cover some courses as they take too much time for a 4, 8, or even 40-hour course. One of those courses is search engine optimization (SEO). We will continue to cover search engine optimization in these articles to continue that education process for those that wish to do everything on their own.
Last Modified: 10/16/2016 8:44:35 PM

SEO: The 5 Crucial Places for Keywords

Description: In order to optimize your pages for keywords, you'll need to include those keywords on your site. However, you can't just put them anywhere and you most definitely don't want to fill up your pages with them. There are certain places on your website that are more optimal than others for good SEO. Here are the most crucial places your keywords should go...
Last Modified: 6/7/2017 1:29:28 PM

SEO Tips to Increase Traffic

Description: No matter what your content management system (CMS) is you will find that they all have several things in common that can help you achieve a great search engine optimization (SEO) for your website. Google has very clearly stated that content is king, links rank right next to the king, and that they utilize machine learning artificial intelligence (RankBrain) as the third most important ranking factor. With all of this public knowledge of how Google works can we take advantage of this information to better promote our website? Today, we are going to look at some core ways to improve your SEO to increase your website traffic.
Last Modified: 7/13/2016 8:17:23 AM

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Common Mistakes

Description: We just completed a huge SEO (Search Engine Optimization) mess on a site. The client was not getting the results they wanted to see on their search results. The problem came down to several common mistakes that were done by a national graphics company. The graphics on their site were stunning and the site was beyond a beautiful site to the site visitor. Below we will cover what we discovered and explain the major, not all, of the problems that we found were wrong with the site so that you can work on making these changes to your site as well.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:30:49 PM

Ways to Improve Your Search Results

Description: When it comes to search content is definitely the most important thing you can do for your website. With good, and quality, content your location on the search engine stands a better chance to be at the top of the organic search results. Along with the quality content you need to worry about keywords, your competition, page description, readability, non-spam, and semantic mark up.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:26:00 PM

Setting the stage as the industry leader

Description: When a business doesn't have a strategic plan, what tends to happen is what we call the "copy" syndrome. This is where you look at one, or more, businesses and emulate aspects of their business. This often leads to changing directions midstream without focus and forethought. You essentially become a follower rather than a leader in your field. Rarely do these followers ever get out of that rut and become leaders in their field. When JM2 brings clients into our Valparaiso office we talk with them; it's our way. We don't ask directed questions to learn about them. Those questions all come out in regular conversation and we start to learn about their culture, who they are, their values, and more. This valuable information allows us to better serve them without having to "interrogate" them.
Last Modified: 12/17/2016 5:36:07 PM

Setting up a LinkedIn Company Page


We have been doing a lot of talking about creating great personal LinkedIn profile pages. This is all well and good but what if you have a business you want to have on LinkedIn as well? If you want a LinkedIn company page then this article is written for you. A company page helps others learn more about your business, brand, products and services, and job opportunities.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:00:23 PM

Sharing Files with SharePoint Online


Sharing files within the SharePoint Online is an easy process once it is setup and configured properly. Thankfully though this is disabled from the get go. Why thankfully you might ask as I just wish to share a file. Well, security is paramount to everyone now or it should be. By making people take the initial effort to “release the reins” it puts them in charge of the security of their company’s data. Here we will explain how to enable the functionality (you need specific security rights to do this) as well as how to share a file. Sharing a folder is similar to that of sharing a file. We conclude with how to un-share a file as you may no longer wish to share a file.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:01:16 PM

Comprehensive Site Reviews

Description: When we perform a site review for clients, we look at all aspects of the site. When tasked to look at a website for a customer, we will look at it from multiple angles. We look at the end user or customer on how the website works for them when not logged into the site. We then look at how the website acts and performs to customize to the users experience when logged into the website. We will look at the administrative interface as well. Although having your customers being able to gain access to your site, navigate efficiently and purchase your products and services having an administrative side that is not efficient for your employees can also cost your organization. We look at each role administrators can play so that we can provide as comprehensive review as possible.

A small subset of the areas that we look at are below and with the list, growing based on type of audit the client desires. As we go through each item for each page of a website, we list all deficiencies found. Along with the deficiencies we will also presented some recommended solutions along with the anticipated effort to remediate the item.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:16:35 PM

Social media management and why you need it

Description: A top question about managing a social media account with current and potential clients social media companies here is what is a social media management, what do you do, why do I need one, and what doesn't it do. The conversations then always turn to how can having another company help my business grow and how much control do I still have in my own company's destiny if someone else is running my online social media campaigns? Today we are going to delve into these common social media questions and answer them for you. Whether you are in Northwest Indiana, Tucson Arizona, or in Dallas Texas the management of a social media accounts at the high-level is the same.
Last Modified: 1/16/2017 1:47:59 PM

Social media, Why you need it & Staying involved in the process

Description: Today has been truly a great day of talking with potential clients about search engine optimization (SEO), social media and how both together can benefit them. We routinely are asked about SEO as that is prevalent on everyone’s minds to drive business to their website. Every business knows they need a website in today’s business world as this is where you have complete control over what information about your brand is out on the Internet, will match all of your marketing materials and present a professional image of your business. Additionally, by having your own website you will have an email address that is branded to you and not to a @yahoo, @gmail, @comcast, etc. Your email address will be which presents a more professional appeal.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:25:14 PM

Which Social Media Platform Should My Business Use?

Description: Choosing your social media platform is not something you want to just jump in and join the first available bandwagon type of business decision. You need to think out who you want to target, what you want to achieve, make your information relevant to your core business and the frequency of your social media strategy.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:29:25 PM

Social Media and Small Business


Startups and small businesses don't have the kind of marketing power of major brand names not because they don't have great products and services but because they are new or just have not yet grown to be the big brands. This is where social media can come help. As a company in Valparaiso, Indiana you wouldn't think we would have a large presence but over the past three years we have grown from having no clients to having several hundred in 30+ states. How we have grown is a lot due to persistence but also because of our website, newsletter, and social media strategy. In this article we'll explain some of the items we have done to grow our social media presence.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:46:03 PM

Social Media Image Size Cheat Sheet


Most blog posts are frozen in time after being written. This one we will be updating on an as-needed basis so that you know you will always have the latest information available to you.

A major part of social media is communicating with images. When it comes to the cover photos, profile photos and images within social media everyone seems to have their own sizes and recommended specifications. We have always kept a list of the current sizes but what good is that if we don't share it? As such, below you will find the most recent sizes. As items change we will be updating the "Last Modified Date" so that you know if the size you have is the most recent size.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:04:48 PM

Social Media Myths

Description: We talk with several businesses every week about increasing their business either through search engines or through social media channels. Many of these businesses do not need social media as it is not a good fit for them. Social media used correctly, and for the right type of business, can increase your brand awareness, increase customer loyalty, and build a trust through an active community of loyal followers. When used correctly social media is a powerful tool for those businesses that can benefit from it and a complete waste of time, resources, and money for those that use it incorrectly. We are going to delve into the most common social media myths that we have brought up to us.
Last Modified: 12/16/2016 9:32:34 AM

Social Media Plan

Description: We just went through a social media workshop with the Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce. We discussed the basics and a deeper dive into what Facebook can do for your business. During this session there were many questions and we covered a lot of content in the six hours of the workshop. Below we are going to cover many of the items we talked about along with going a bit deeper in the overall process. Whether your site is already setup on Facebook or not this information will help you verify your settings or improve upon them.
Last Modified: 2/26/2016 9:23:15 AM

Social Media Step – The Planning Stage

Description: Planning and preparation may seem like a boring task to do at first. After all you can create a social media page and the typical “Hello World” post letting the world know that you are now a social media juggernaut to be reckoned with. We see this happen every week where a social media site is created and they wonder why they are not being successful.
Last Modified: 4/13/2016 7:45:12 AM

Social Media Strategy


How do I and how should I market on social media?

Social media is unlike other advertising that is designed to provide information about a product or service. Social media is designed to establish a conversational dialog with your customers. We find that companies that have been in business a few years or longer already have marketing plans for their print, radio or television already and are clearly defined. Your social media plan should be similar for consistency but take into account the bidirectional communication you will have with your customers.

Your social media plan should take many aspects of your current marketing plan. Your current marketing plan will have logos, images and how content is to be presented clearly defined and standardized. Consistency in your branding and message is key to any successful campaign. Please do remember though that social media has the word social in it and communicating with your customers should be a key part of your strategy.

Business leadership acknowledging, accepting and setting a budget based on how you wish to market your company socially needs to be thought of, discussed, and be expected to be revised as you continue to grow and learn more about social media.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:13:30 PM

Somber Day in Co-working for JM2

Description: In September 2014 we moved into Zoseco Co-working in the heart of downtown Valparaiso Indiana. We did this even though in Northwest Indiana co-working was a new business model. In fact, we had never heard of co-working or what the true benefit would be to proving out our business. We had been running with no issues (other than no real meeting space) from our house for a half of year and were growing every month. We heard about Zoseco at a Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce meeting which is held the first Wednesday of every month at 7am (yes people get up at that crazy hour to talk business). We would love to have you join us at one of these great morning networking events.
Last Modified: 8/26/2016 8:01:48 AM

Starting each month off on the right foot

Description: Would you hire someone, assign them a desk, hand them your company brochures & flyers, tell them to sell, leave them be, and pay them? We think you probably wouldn't. This is why the first of the month is an important time for any website. Your website or as we call it your online employee is your cheapest employee that can help drive revenue, customer adoption, increase engagement, and more. In this article we will go over what we see as the first of the month checks every business online should do.
Last Modified: 7/1/2016 8:51:24 AM

Staying Focused


As an entrepreneur it can become easy to get "off task". Staying focused is sometimes one of the hardest things for myself to do and can only imagine how it is for others. In this article I am going to talk about some of my major trials and tribulations of keeping on task between employees, clients, emails, and phone calls that need my attention on a daily basis. Learning what does, and doesn't, work for me has been a true blessing and something I continue to evaluate each and every day.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:53:54 PM

Stop Going in Circles

Description: Each time we talk about our social media maintenance plans we get more excited than the last time (even if it was only a few minutes earlier). The reason for this is that the plans offer more than anyone could ever hope to get at a price that is not only fair but designed to help every business grow and be successful. We become a core part of your business and one of the most important pieces we do is we don't advertise on YOUR website or social media outlet. We are your expert silent partner in helping you grow your business.
Last Modified: 10/5/2016 3:10:39 PM

Story Telling

Description: We have always known about the importance of storytelling when it comes to getting your message across in a fun way to your target audience. As we dig deeper into video we are reevaluating everything we know when it comes to content writing and getting the message across. Today we will cover some of the key aspects of doing a positive story telling article. This applies to not just content writing but within video as well.
Last Modified: 10/21/2016 8:52:37 AM

Structuring URL's for SEO Success

Description: When it comes to search engine optimization (SEO) one of the core items when developing your overall site plan is to design the site architecture. Having your sub-pages more than three layers deep is not good from a search engine perspective as no normal human can remember items that deep. We always shoot for a maximum of two layers deep when possible; three at most. URL structure doesn't stop there. There are many areas that should be looked at when developing your site architecture.
Last Modified: 8/10/2016 12:40:56 PM

Steps to a Successful Website Redesign


Your website is the way that you sell your products and services through your brand on the Internet. Many companies have chosen a Facebook only approach which makes your brand Facebook and not your own. Having a Facebook, or other social media outlet is definitely beneficial but that is not what defines your brand. A successful website will also meet the objectives that you have set forth. This could be for increased visibility of your company, generating sales, handling customer service, generate leads, or a combination of these items.

When it comes to updating your existing website the first thought is to focus on a new and stunning graphic design. This will definitely get you noticed when people come to your site as being a truly beautiful work of art. What needs to happen more than a beautiful visual aspect is making certain it works the way your site visitors want it to work. This will cover working on desktop, tablet and mobile devices, increasing the content effectiveness and having an effective "call to action" for what you're currently promoting through your brand. When doing any website redesign we work on covering the following core elements so that your site is a true success.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:04:23 PM

Why text marketing works better than email marketing

Description: We send out monthly emails like most businesses that have a marketing strategy to stay in constant contact with their customers. Email is extremely effective in getting your information in a person’s inbox. Text marketing will take your email marketing to a new level that is read more often, more quickly, and is great for time sensitive information.
Last Modified: 12/30/2015 6:11:18 AM

The 24/7 Employee and How to Have One

Description: Business owners are the ones who truly understand the time-tested concepts of time and money. Businesses cannot afford any wasted time, as this misused time leads to a loss of revenue, something that all businesses, no matter their size, will suffer from.
Last Modified: 1/20/2017 3:57:31 PM

The First Question We Ask

Description: Whenever we bring on a new client or whenever a new client finds their way to JM2, there is one question we always lead with once they choose our services. How are we going to be able to help them?
Last Modified: 9/29/2016 3:39:27 PM

The secret keys to Local SEO Success

Description: We all want to draw business from either the entire country or around the world. The key is you need to cultivate and grow in your local "neighborhood" first. The way you do that on the Internet is to cultivate and grow your Local SEO. When it comes to search engine optimization you have local SEO that is focused on locally rather the broader terms through regular SEO.
Last Modified: 7/26/2016 2:44:36 PM

The Secret of Success Through Text Marketing: Part 1

Description: Text messaging is more than sending messages to friends and family. It has quietly become an incredibly effective marketing tool for businesses to send promotions, information, and sales pitches to their clients. While it's easy to assume that text messages wouldn't be an effective way to reach clients and customers due to the unfortunate tendency for people to become annoyed with an overabundance of texts, research and experience have produced surprisingly contrary results and shown to be an incredibly effective form of reaching out and making sales.
Last Modified: 1/31/2017 8:48:11 AM

The Secret of Success Through Text Marketing: Part 2

Description: We previously talked about how text marketing is an effective tool when it comes to marketing your business and how business owners have a form of promotion that comes with a high open and utilization rate. It's this unexpected versatility and reach that turns text marketing into an effective machine. Now that we know just how useful it is, the two questions that remain are who can use it and how can they use it?
Last Modified: 2/13/2017 4:45:44 PM

The 2017 Adventure Begins at JM2!

Description: For many people and businesses, 2017 is a year to start fresh and work on new possibilities and functions designed to help your company grow. At JM2. we're also excited to start 2017 on the right foot as we are always looking at new ways to bring more to our clients and work on new ways to help them and their business grow. For me, 2017 presents an opportunity to engage with our clients even more as we help them achieve their goals for the year. As someone who's job is to speak with clients both old and new, this direction is something that fills me with endless possibilities of what we can do together. Out of all the things we are doing in 2017, here is what I'm most excited about.
Last Modified: 1/5/2017 3:58:04 PM

The Elusive Sales Funnel

Description: For anyone involved in business or sales, you have most likely heard the term "The Sales Funnel". While the name may seem self-explanatory, there is a considerable amount of thought and planning that goes into a successful sales funnel. While each business's sales funnel will vary with the nuances of their business, there is a fundamental structure that all sales funnels follow. What are these fundamentals? I'm so glad you asked.
Last Modified: 1/13/2017 11:40:58 AM

The Power of a Mobile Workforce

Description: We state we're a mobile company but when events force you to work mobile you start to realize the true nature of being a mobile workforce is. Our office is in downtown Valparaiso Indiana which means we have some amazing opportunities. We are close to great restaurants, local shops, and of course are the first back on when we lose power. Well, that last statement we've learned is not always the case. We have lost power a few times and five or six hours later and the power is still off at times. This doesn't affect us though as we have built our system from the ground up for handling these types of situations.
Last Modified: 11/23/2016 9:33:34 AM

Think Security

Description: The internet has been insecure for far too long. Google with the largest browser share is doing something about it. The question is how many people will listen. Based on the size of Google I would say that the Google Chrome Security team will achieve this much-needed additional security.
Last Modified: 12/19/2016 8:12:10 PM

Three types of Search Engine Optimization

Description: Believe it or not there is more than one type of search engine optimization (SEO) out there. Most people that are trying to sell your business on SEO mention that they handle SEO. We find that interesting as part of our conversations with SEO we ask "what type of SEO are you referring too". More often than not we here "SEO". There actually are three core pieces to optimizing for SEO. In this article we'll go over those three pieces.
Last Modified: 8/29/2016 11:27:50 AM

Throw it away and start over

Description: Many of our new clients will already have an existing website that isn't converting and the results that they are receiving are not what they want. When we inquire to what types of results they want they cannot answer right away. The reason is that there is no plan, no definition of what success is, and equally no definition of what failure is. The information is subjective and not defined which breeds the "throw it away and start over" syndrome. This thought process is not the right solution for any business.
Last Modified: 11/14/2016 7:25:25 AM

Time for Business Models to Change

Description: On Friday, January 8, 2016 we launched a Business Finding Directory from our Valparaiso Indiana office. We felt and know that the only way to grow was to make a difference by changing what businesses have done in the past. We knew there were dozen, possibly hundreds, of companies that were doing the same thing. We saw they all were focused on either charging the business or the consumer. We felt both should be allowed to get their good and positive words out there without having to spend a fortune. For those that wanted greater exposure they could advertise to get that exposure but at a cost that even the smallest company could be part of.
Last Modified: 1/9/2016 8:19:08 PM

To Force or Not to Force

Description: No we are not talking the force from one of our favorite movies; Star Wars. What we are referring to is forcing users to provide you with their name/email address on your terms to read articles and information on the internet rather than their terms. There are two beliefs and we will cover both of these along with what we do and how we have increased our business. Let's go on this debatable journey.
Last Modified: 6/25/2016 12:09:50 PM

Traditional vs Agile marketing

Description: We find that companies that are customer focused, wanting to change their brand image, and are looking for results faster (can you say typically lower costs???) will utilize agile marketing as part of their marketing efforts.

Agile marketing is focused on the customer, uses validated learning, works in short and adaptive iterations, and encourages cross-functional collaboration between departments. Whereas Traditional marketing will focus on spin, controlling the message, and owning the brand. In this article, we are going to cover some of the core basis points to start showing how being agile can produce more results and better engage your customer.

Last Modified: 3/30/2017 8:08:01 AM

Trump your competition with a maintenance plan

Description: When it comes to getting your business online having a strategic plan that is optimized to grow your business is crucial. With a maintenance plan, you can take care of not only your website, search engine optimization (SEO), and social media needs but take it to a level never thought of. There are many companies that have solutions that do one and not the other. We're going to outline our "Web + Social" plan. This is our most popular plan as it takes your business to the next level.
Last Modified: 11/18/2016 12:20:01 PM

Twitter for Beginners


When we get that urge to start using Twitter it can seem overwhelming. With it's limitation of 140 characters per post (tweet), the unique vocabulary, searching, etiquette, or the difference in posting frequency Twitter is something that can be confusing to even the most technically savvy online user. It's not that Twitter is overtly complicated as there is a lot less options than on Facebook when you look at the entire picture. The problem is that it looks and works completely differently than the Facebook we've all learned. From our Valparaiso office we have created this article designed to help you better understand Twitter and hit the ground running with it.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:47:03 PM

Two Weeks of Predictions

Description: This week and next week will be two weeks of predictions from industry leaders and those in the digital marketing field. For some these will be guesses while others are more educated guesses with some hard research behind them. For the past three years, we have predicted trends in the digital marketing space. This year is more exciting than the past as we have a large variety of sources we tapped into, cancelled many of our old marketing methods that produced no results, as well as tests we did internally to make this year's set of predictions. We are going to only write about what we see as the top 5 items.
Last Modified: 12/27/2016 12:55:52 PM

Tying everything together

Description: In the past year, we focused on growth from purchasing our own building in downtown Valparaiso Indiana, adding to our core team to now have not only graphic designers, content writers, and programmers but to also have an entire department for customer service, sales, social media, photography and videography. Many of these changes happened not because we were looking for them but the culture of our company made it happen.
Last Modified: 1/1/2017 8:31:32 AM

UTM Guide to Track URLs

Description: A crucial aspect to any search engine optimization (SEO) strategy is to know where your users are coming from. This article will help you streamline your marketing efforts and know where they are coming from. We will be talking about UTM codes and how you can use them to to quantify your marketing efforts and show the business owner where money has been spent and that it is being spent for the right reason.
Last Modified: 7/14/2016 3:01:29 PM

Valparaiso Move in Review

Description: This weekend marks the one-month anniversary that JM2 Webdesigners moved from their Zoseco Co-working space to their new home at 403 East Lincolnway. The new web design and social media location is still in Valparaiso Indiana and just five blocks East of the old Zoseco Co-working location. What though has a move done for JM2 Webdesigners, its employees, and most important the clients that it services? We are going to look back at what this move has done.
Last Modified: 9/25/2016 3:11:43 PM

Value of a 24x7 Employee

Description: What is the value to a business to have an employee that works for you 24x7 and constantly promotes your business in a way your business wants in a consistent way to every customer? This is what we are going to cover today as your website is actually not a website at all. It is an employee, that works for you. Not only is this an employee it has the potential to being your most diverse employee. A website is typically seen as a sales tool and it is. A website is much more than that. It is a public relations tool. It is a customer service tool. It is a way to connect with current and future customers.
Last Modified: 7/7/2016 8:43:35 AM

Walking the Path

Description: One of the core aspects of being a growing company in Valparaiso Indiana is each week we reflect on the past week’s activities, business decisions, products deployed and new projects we’ve received in the past week. We do this not only to stay focused for our clients but that we do not waiver from our core business objectives. This doesn’t mean we don’t waiver during the week. We do and have. Decisions take longer than a week to create and implement which is why we have our weekly reflections. In this article we'll cover some of the biggest waivers and how we overcame them.
Last Modified: 10/2/2016 9:52:13 AM

Website functionality is only the beginning

Description: OK, so you’ve got your great website! It has that perfect design and graphics that will set you apart and spark the interest of your viewers. Your website says it all. It represents your business, your image, and everything you symbolize. But once you have those great visuals to draw your visitors IN, you need to keep them engaged with compelling content.
Last Modified: 5/24/2016 3:23:08 PM

Website Redesign Basics

Description: We deal with a lot of website redesigns on a monthly basis. We see just as many that do it themselves or hire someone only to see their rankings on the search engines drop because of basic items that are forgotten. In this article we'll cover some of the basic items to look for in a website redesign. Many will apply to new sites as well but for this article we are going to focus solely on website redesigns.
Last Modified: 6/7/2016 9:38:16 PM

Website Clock Reset

Description: Many of us just went through a daylight savings time "reset". I know here in Northwest Indiana we did and for many this was not an easy change. While this reset is easy for some for others it is often difficult as it takes time for their bodies to adjust to this schedule change. Your website, social media, and marketing plans are no difference. Some of the changes may be quick and easy while others might take some time. These time adjustments are the perfect time to reset your initiatives and start fresh with other ideas in your life. In this article we will cover some of the core aspects that you can do that are both easy and some that take more time.
Last Modified: 11/2/2015 6:18:35 AM

Are you a good boss to your employee (website)?

Description: We take the launch of your new website to be the same as hiring a new employee. As with all new hires you start evaluating an employee from day one. The first 90-120 days are crucial to the success, or failure, of an employee and seeing how they will benefit your organization. You start to measure their performance against a set of pre-established goals on a regular basis and making adjustments, remediation and further investment to make them the best that they can be.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:28:10 PM

Your Website is Your Lifeblood


The core revenue of our business is on helping company's better use Digital Marketing to get people interested in their company's unique brand. There are huge benefits to doing digital marketing for any size business. Digital marketing ranges from social media, web logs (blogs), search engine optimization (SEO), email marketing and mobile applications to name just a few. The core of all of these items though is they all should not only interact with your target audience but drive traffic to your website.

Every business initially sees Facebook as a must have which is certainly true for many companies starting off as they are currently the biggest of the social networks. The problem with Facebook, or any social media outlet, is that they dictate what your brand is. They mandate the colors, placement, and what is shown about your brand. You company brand should be an extension of your company and not based off of another's brand. This is where a very blurry line can come into play. We all want as many followers as possible on social media but we want to market as ourselves. We want more for those followers to be engaged and working on helping promote our brand.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:05:41 PM

Website and the proverbial paycheck


Our philosophy is that your website is your 24x7 sales person and is an employee of your organization. Only by treating your website as an employee will you be able to benefit from the expertise that they bring to the table. Your website should obviously explain what your services are. Your website should not just “sit there” and collect what proverbial paycheck. Would you hire an employee, explain to them everything your business does and then let them sit there and do nothing to better your business? If the answer is yes, then stop now, as this post is not for you! If on the other hand you feel that to earn a paycheck that, your employee must provide a level of effort to promote your business than this article is for you.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:14:52 PM

Website Redesign Steps


We have been working with a lot of new clients recently that have wanted to improve their search results and update their marketing of their business. One recent client went from page 3 to page 1 in only 5 months (your results may vary) by proper planning and working to make a site that showcases what she wanted her business to show.

Below is what we provided to her for her existing site to achieve the search engine results she is getting today as well as getting qualified referrals from her website. With the proper graphic designer, web designer and the proper team at your company (which may be just you!) you can achieve some great results that help improve your overall brand image.

You have to think about your users as they are the most important aspect of your website. The second piece is that of the computer; search engines to be specific. You need to make certain your site is friendly and that a computer can understand it clearly without sacrificing the readability of your users. The speed and capacity planning of your site is critical in providing a great end user experience (think the government's health care site that didn't get good planning on the perception users had).

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:15:30 PM

Automated Website Language Translation

Description: We were talking about how best to handle the translation of our website JM2 Webdesigners during the past week. We have two choices (1) human translation of all current and future pages for every language manually or (2) have the computer do it for us. We opted for the computer translation which is quite good. What we decided we will post beneath each of the available options which we feel will help those of you that may need to have a translated solution on your website.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:30:09 PM

Four reasons why you need to keep your website updated

Description: One of the key items we notice about existing websites is that they are built, put into place, and just sit there in the hopes that they do something for them. We continually find text content with old dates and mentioning things that are surely in the past. For example, old news pages, mentioning items from years past, copyright notices that are from a year or more ago, and even no new dates being shown are a sign that your information is outdated, not kept up-to-date, and that it is an afterthought to your business.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:27:50 PM

What can you achieve with organic over paid advertising?

Description: Initial thoughts are that paying to be seen and move up will garner you the best engagement and increase in sales. That is not always the case. We have several friends that pay for advertising to grow their business. They are reasonably happy talking with them. At random we listed out our social media maintenance plan contracts and asked them for a number between one and XX. They chose a number and we pulled up the results of that client. We will not be sharing the name of the clients but luckily for our comparison they are in the exact same field. They are located 15 miles away from each other in different towns. Both towns have less than 20,000 people in each town and average within a few hundred dollars the median income according to the last census data.
Last Modified: 8/30/2016 6:15:46 AM

What Do Social Media Managers Do?

Description: As we add more social media maintenance plans it is always good to look and see what you will receive from having a social media account manager. When it comes to working with any business it is good to set rules and expectations for the entire social media process.
Last Modified: 8/21/2016 9:13:52 PM

What do you stand for?

Description: We are in the midst of the most heated and highly contested political season in recent history. We all see the yard signs, billboards, television & radio promotions, and printed promotional material coming into our lives more each day as we get closer to the primary election season. The one question that continues to cross our minds is this age of being able to know everything about everyone is what do these candidates truly stand for? Have they waivered over the years? Why are they doing what they are doing? In this article we will delve into this very question and see ways candidates can keep us voters informed.
Last Modified: 4/26/2016 7:02:32 AM

What is online marketing?

Description: When the public started using the Internet back in 1995 online marketing was truly born. As each person came onto the Internet online marketing became more important. Today you will hear of many ways and solutions for what online marketing is. Who is right and what is the right way to do online marketing? We will cover what the top six items are and what the "real answer" truly is.
Last Modified: 5/20/2016 4:41:43 PM

What to Include in Your Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Website to Increase Tours and Proactively Build Goodwill with Medicare A Patient Prospects

Description: Who should read this? SNF administrators and marketing staff who believe the pre-need site visit will deliver more commitments and is an important part of the patient acquisition process with high focus on short-term Medicare A patients.
Last Modified: 6/20/2017 4:27:34 PM

What are the benefits of shopping local?

Description: We all here about the benefits of shopping local but really what are the benefits and why would you want to shop local over a national brand? Being Small Business Saturday is going on now it’s an appropriate time to cover why small business is important and why your supporting a local business is beneficial to the economy.
Last Modified: 11/26/2016 10:22:13 AM

What Does SEO Cost?

Description: Hiring someone to handle your companies search engine optimization (SEO) is like that of hiring a quality mechanic. Having a mechanic you can trust is to live with your mind at piece. Finding a good mechanic though can be a nightmare. One mechanic will look at your car and give you one price, and another will give you a price that is twice as much for the same amount of work. It would be easy to choose the cheaper one, but then you start wondering whether that guy knows what he's doing, if he is using cheaper parts that will break down the road and land you back in the repair shop in a few weeks.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:28:32 PM

What is Search Engine Optimization?


There are easy and hard ways to answer questions. Today we are going to answer "What is Search Engine Optimization?" It seems to always be attached directly or indirectly to "Why do I need it?" or "Why does it cost so much?"

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:20:26 PM

What is SEO anyway?

Description: SEO is search engine optimization. This is the practice of being found organically (non-paid) on the search engine result pages. Now saying non-paid can be a questionable topic. It can be free if you do it yourself. If you pay a company, like JM2 Webdesigners in Valparaiso Indiana, then you are paying for SEO. When you here that SEO is for being found organically and not paid it means that you are not paying the individual search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.) to be shown in their paid listings. You are striving to be found because of your great content. Content after all is king when it comes to a great SEO strategy.
Last Modified: 3/29/2016 8:29:14 AM

What is Text Marketing?

Description: The belief on any new marketing venture for a business is that it's new, their competitors may not be using it, and that what they have done in the past is considered "good enough". When you market with newspapers, magazines, billboards, etc. you are marketing to both existing and current customers. With text marketing you are marketing to your current customers who are already loyal to your individual brand. There is a trust established in what you offer to them. They may stop in at your place frequently or infrequently for your products and services. Text marketing keeps that contact with people already interested in what you offer on a consistent basis so that you can continue to earn their business.
Last Modified: 4/8/2016 7:25:05 AM

What's your digital marketing strategy?


If when reading the title your first thought is "I don't have one?" or "Why would I need one?" then you are ripe for an improvement. A digital marketing strategy today is more critical than ever. Between your website and the social media outlets that you have decided to go with (and most of us should not go with every social media channel). The first thing that many people do is create their website, create their social media page(s) and then do an ad hoc method of updating them. Going this route will not only hurt your business in the long run but make you look unprofessional to potential clients. If you already have started don't fear this can be improved upon as you do need this step but need a strategy to achieve success.

We believe in an initial four-step process when it comes to digital marketing and your business. These being to decide what your business objectives are, research your competition and implement a strategy to achieve your objectives.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:11:29 PM

What makes quality content?


Today we tweeted about how content is king. Why is content king when it comes to a website? Is this related to an ego thing to make kings feel grand? Not really. It's truly because without quality content on your site if all you have is a pretty site then you don't have a site that Google or the other search engines will feel is quality.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:58:44 PM

What Makes Quality Content?


We all want our website to be the best, to have content that people want to read and use on a daily basis. We want our content to go viral and overtake the world and make us billions of dollars overnight. This is hard to achieve but with some work and listening to what Google and Bing have offered over the years we can make some strides to achieving these goals by updating and improving our websites overall content.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:46:29 PM

When Clients are More than Clients


Every once in awhile, we have one of our clients stop by our office. While most clients stop in businesses to discuss problems or issues, we do something a little different with this particular client.

We just talk

That's right, we talk. Not about business and not about selling him another new product. We just talk about whatever comes to our mind. Sometimes it's about family. Sometimes it's about current events, but not matter what the topic, we take the time so sit back, relax and talk.

Last Modified: 9/8/2016 6:52:51 AM

When Security is NOT Important

Description: In this article we will cover a story about a potentially new client coming to us about their website not performing to their expectations. As you will find in the article during the conversation we found some pretty scary items that we hope will help educate those to be more aware of their surroundings and get everyone to do a little more due diligence in keeping up with their content.
Last Modified: 5/5/2016 8:00:54 AM

Why businesses need blog articles

Description: A blog is a way to give valuable knowledge and information that shows that you are the expert in the industry you are serving. You are showing your company as the industry leader and expert that others will want to follow and emulate. The information you provide should help current customers and potential customers while also letting your competitors know that you are the leader that they should emulate.
Last Modified: 2/8/2017 9:19:07 PM

Why You Need Evergreen Content

Description: Evergreen content can drive visitors to your website weeks, months, even years after it’s been created. Evergreen content is content that can and does stand the test of time. When your content is able to last you will gain more visitors to your website. Many of the blogs we have written a year or more ago are still to this day some of our most viewed articles. When we see this in our site statistics we know we have some great evergreen content. In today’s article we will cover what evergreen content is, what we have found out over the years makes ever green content, and how you too can have this type of content.
Last Modified: 7/2/2016 7:17:06 AM

Why your website needs a staging server

Description: As more content management systems (CMS) having automated updates built-in the need for a staging server is critical. In our environment we have a development environment which is our development machines, a testing or UAT server, a staging server which is verification of a move right after everything having been tested, and finally a production (prod) server. With a UAT and staging server you will be as close to the production environments as possible. The reason is for this is so that you can closely test performance and usability before moving items into the production environment.
Last Modified: 9/14/2016 6:42:51 AM

Why a Free Business Directory is an Equalizer for Small Businesses

Description: The phrase that we hear over and over of "the best things in life are free" has seemingly lost it's impact and meaning through decades of ad nauseam use and the almost obligatory use on every marketing and business avenue known to humankind. Free has become free with an asterisk, making it all but free and losing any impact of the original's implications.
Last Modified: 2/17/2017 3:10:19 PM

Why your business needs a blog!

Description: A question we are often asked is "why we blog", "what is the business benefit", and "will it increase my business". These are all great and valid questions. We love hearing them as it shows a business owner is truly thinking about how they can improve their business and the future of their company. The question is not just blogging to blog; but to decide why you want to blog. Are you going to be adding a value for people? Will you be using your blog as an information center about your business or something completely different? Other reasons a person may blog is for a financial return where you will see advertising on a blog. By looking at yourself, your business, and determining if it's the right thing you will know if a blog is for you.
Last Modified: 9/25/2015 7:03:33 PM

Why LinkedIn?


With all the push and media pointing at Facebook with around 900 million active monthly users why would anyone consider being on any other network? The quick answer is when it comes to a professional business network LinkedIn is king even with its 255 million active monthly users. You won't find any games on LinkedIn but individuals that are focused on growing their business network. Whether this information is for personal growth, searching for a job, looking to hire or get answers from peers to a current business problem. LinkedIn is the place to get answers related to your personal persona.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:02:14 PM

Why User Experience (UX) Matters


User experience (UX) is how a person feels when interacting with your website or your employees feel when they interact with your business applications. UX encompasses a lot of factors, some that are controllable by designers and developers and some that are environmental or just user preference. These factors include usability, accessibility, performance, design/aesthetics, utility, ergonomics, overall human interaction and marketing.

But UX is not exactly the same thing as usability, although they are closely related. UX is the experience, emotion, intuition and connection a user feels when using a site or product. Usability is more about the effectiveness of a site design and how user-friendly it is. Usability is a key component of the overall user experience. When working with and designing your user experience the usability aspects should be equally thought of during the process.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:05:15 PM

Why Your Small-to-Midsize Business Needs a Website

Description: As a web design, eCommerce, and software development company we are obviously biased that a company needs a website to be successful. We will do our best in this article to step back and explain why your business truly needs one and why just having a Facebook page (or no page at all) is not a good business decision.
Last Modified: 12/29/2015 12:30:30 PM

How can a business use a wiki page?


Wikipedia was officially launched on Monday, January 15, 2001 by Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger. There is controversy over using Wikipedia though. Most schools from grade school through college inform their students to not use Wikipedia. The reason for this is due to the fact that there is truly no central authority governing Wikipedia. This can also be seen as a pro to many individuals as well. Rather than one person, or company, controlling the content the entire Internet of billions of people are allowed to contribute, enhance and validate each and every article.

Last Modified: 9/20/2015 8:59:50 PM

2013 Year End Review

Description: Even though our first "true" year isn't officially done as we opened our doors in March of 2013 the first fiscal year is now coming to a close. 2013 was a great year for us and the light in the tunnel is getting brighter each day. As such, we want to thank all of our current customers and those that are already coming on board in early 2014 as it is because of you that we are able to do what we love to do. We would also like to give a warm welcome to those that will be joining us in 2014 and beyond as well because you are the reason we continue to grow.
Last Modified: 9/20/2015 9:29:00 PM


Blog Tags

Description: Tags related to blog articles as defined by the blog authors.
Last Modified: 7/31/2015 8:57:34 PM

Contact Us

Description: As part of our bringing in new business and helping other customers we are always an email, contact form or phone call away to assist you
Last Modified: 8/16/2013 7:10:55 PM

Customer Bulk File Uploader

Description: Bulk upload files to the support team for assistance.
Last Modified: 8/6/2014 6:31:28 PM

Contact Us

Description: Contacting JM2 Webdesigners will get you access to industry digital marketing experts
Last Modified: 6/29/2016 6:51:26 PM

Northwest Indiana Web Design Portfolio Samples

Description: We can talk all day about how great the work we've done is but without showing you what we've done with live real-world examples it would be nothing but talk.
Last Modified: 5/3/2014 5:39:34 PM

Basic Pricing Information

Description: At JM2 Webdesigners we believe in showing our pricing so that you can properly budget and know that we don't charge you extra "just because".
Last Modified: 11/6/2015 11:35:12 PM

Privacy Statement

Description: Privacy is very important and we treat your privacy with the highest degree possible.
Last Modified: 6/5/2016 1:58:42 PM

Business Brand Marketing

Description: We are your Valpo go to source for business cards, flyers, brochures, and other marketing materials
Last Modified: 4/11/2016 8:45:35 PM

Content Strategy & Copywriting

Description: When it comes to promoting your business content marketing is a key aspect. With our team of trained writers we can help promote your business online.
Last Modified: 6/27/2016 3:05:43 AM

Custom Programming

Description: JM2 creates enterprise class software for medium-to-small business using Internet technology with Agile software development practices.
Last Modified: 8/17/2013 7:00:56 AM

Digital Marketing Services

Description: Getting your business online is one of our core objectives. If you can't be found then you probably won't like the overall results.
Last Modified: 8/7/2014 8:47:21 AM

Online Business eCommerce Solutions

Description: eCommerce is an important part of any online business. Let JM2 Webdesigners help your business get online in a secure PCI compliant way today!
Last Modified: 1/6/2015 10:04:10 AM

Full Service Website Customer Support

Description: Online chat, heat maps, dash boards, visitor recordings, conversion funnels, visitor polls, and more
Last Modified: 5/30/2016 8:18:19 PM

Graphic Design & Marketing Services

Description: Getting your business online is one of our core objectives. If you can't be found then you probably won't like the overall results.
Last Modified: 11/26/2016 3:32:49 AM

Lead Generation Marketing

Description: Lead generation is a core part of the sales process. We utilize best practices for sales funnels to turn browsers of your website into leads.
Last Modified: 6/27/2016 3:04:07 AM

Small and Medium Sized Business Maintenance Plans

Description: Receive unlimited website, search engine optimization, a new website every 2 years, and much more
Last Modified: 8/3/2016 9:52:11 AM

Plastic Business Cards

Description: Plastic business cards give a great first impression with lasting value and are great conversation starters.
Last Modified: 12/14/2014 6:10:58 PM

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Description: Search engine optimization services optimized for small businesses that are part of the local community
Last Modified: 6/27/2016 3:08:13 AM

Microsoft SharePoint

Description: Microsoft SharePoint Online and On-Premise Setup, Configuration and Development solutions
Last Modified: 6/5/2015 7:13:36 AM

Sidewalk Shop eCommerce Solution

Description: A complete eCommerce solution without the hassle. Easy to use and online in 1 business day.
Last Modified: 11/7/2016 2:16:29 AM

Text Messaging Marketing Loyalty Program

Description: Part of digital marketing involves contacting your customers through all methods digital like text messaging.
Last Modified: 2/5/2016 1:50:08 PM

Rock the Social Training Courses

Last Modified: 11/26/2016 3:33:03 AM

Web Design & eCommerce Solutions

Description: We build custom applications to meet your growing business needs. The software will be expandable, a solid user interface with an easy to use user experience.
Last Modified: 5/3/2014 5:40:08 PM

Your One Page is now Side Walk Shop

Description: YourOnePage has been upgraded to the Side Walk Shop offering a webpage within one business day
Last Modified: 11/3/2015 5:08:31 PM

JM2 Webdesigners SiteMap

Description: All of the available links that are available within our site
Last Modified: 7/29/2015 1:01:38 PM

Northwest Indiana Information Technology Companies

Description: Information Technology companies in Northwest Indiana ready to service your business
Last Modified: 8/12/2016 9:28:34 PM

Knowledge Base Articles

Description: Our support articles are here to assist you in being efficient and getting to the information you need to solve your real-world problems in a timely manner.
Last Modified: 12/15/2014 8:28:39 AM

Knowledge Base Article Details

Description: Knowledge Base articles of common user issues with solutions
Last Modified: 1/13/2015 9:52:13 AM

Privacy Policy

Description: Learn about our privacy policies when it comes to our site visitors.
Last Modified: 8/16/2013 7:39:56 PM

Software for Windows Computers

Description: JM2 Webdesigners can assist you in writing customized solutions that will help you make your business more efficient
Last Modified: 8/16/2013 7:07:56 PM

Terms and Conditions

Description: Our terms and conditions cover the services that we offer. Whether it be for a web site or a custom software application we've built.
Last Modified: 8/16/2013 7:38:21 PM

Valparaiso Indiana Veteran Owned Business

Description: A Northwest Indiana company that supports all United States military service members.
Last Modified: 6/21/2016 7:02:41 PM