MOBILE FIRST WEB DESIGN

Category: Tips and Tricks
June 20, 2018

Mobile first web design is exactly what it sounds like, it is the practice of designing first and foremost for the smallest screen compatibility possible and then working your way up from mobile to desktop etc..

The idea behind this practice is that by taking this approach you have designed your website to be a responsive and very adaptive design. This is because you would have taken the approach that is called ‘progressive enhancement’. Progressive enhancement is the strategy that since mobile design is generally the most difficult to do that you should actually do it first and then when you have to design for other devices you will find it a much easier process. The great thing about this approach is that since you have made mobile first web design a priority and since smaller designs will have only essential features you have at the core already the heart of the user experience you’re offering.

The opposite approach of progressive enhancement is called ‘graceful degradation’. This would be considered a more old-fashioned practice. Graceful degradation entails building a website that incorporates everything from the start and then starts to strip away parts at a later stage for compatibility on smaller devices. The bad thing about graceful degradation is that it treats mobile compatibility as an afterthought or almost a nuisance and you are cutting down on the quality for the mobile version so you nearly end up with two different websites. The one on desktop is a proper effective one whereas the mobile version ends up looking like a pale shadow of the former.

Google now actually indexes sites on a mobile first approach which means they are first ranking your site on how responsive and how well designed it is for mobile, so you can understand if you took the graceful degradation approach you have already shot yourself in the foot as your website will not rank as well as google will judge it poorly even though your desktop site might very well be perfect. We of course then like everyone else recommend that you always take the progressive enhancement mobile-first approach and make mobile a priority not an afterthought otherwise you will live to regret it.

When your site looks great on a mobile device, it will translate brilliantly to all other devices. Also when you design for mobile first it’s limitations are forcing you to cut to the heart of things and really prioritize your content. This is unintentionally helping you to make your website better and deliver the ultimate user experience as since you are designing under such tight parameters your site will be very content-focused which in turn means its user-focused. Google will look on you very favorably if you’re offering the user a great experience and you are because you have been forced to cut to the heart of things, and that’s what the user wants, not to be distracted with all the bells and whistles but access straight away to the content they were searching for!

What first seemed like a hindrance is actually an unlikely but extremely helpful ally, design your website with a mobile first approach and you have taken the first step to having a successful website, on all devices!

For more advice and information on having a successful website get in touch with 2Cubed today!

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Is your website struggling to convert? – Here’s 4 possible reasons why and what you can do about it!

Category: Tips and Tricks
June 19, 2018

The best way to measure how successful your site is to look at your conversion rate.

At the end of the day this is the most important statistic you have at your disposal when trying to decide if your site is a success..

Whilst it’s true that having as much traffic as possible is of course important, ultimately if you are not converting this traffic then what is the point?

The bottom-line is that the only traffic which truly matters are those who actually purchase your product or service, all other traffic is practically considered useless to helping your businesses profits and success as they have not been converted to spend money.

It’s vital that to judge success that you know and are aware of your traffic and conversion rates, the best way to measure this is to use a program like google analytics.

Generally a good conversion rate by industry standards would be considered between 2% – 3% . This rate can fluctuate depending on the value of the product or service being purchased. (e.g. you’d have more difficulty converting customers if you’re selling products or services that are very expensive compared to ones which are very cheap).

If you see that you have been getting a lot of traffic but the majority of it is not being converted then there may be a few particular reasons at play. Here are four common ones which could be causing this:

Your site speed is slow

If your site speed is slow people will get frustrated and leave, obviously since they have left they are lost and can no longer be converted. Also since they have had a bad user experience the chances of them coming back to visit are slim to none, this can be detrimental to your site as it’s very hard to ever recover these lost possible conversions. It’s vital that your site is fast and makes a positive first impression!

Some of the many issues that can cause your site to be slow are things such as:

  • Not being optimized for mobile
  • Broken links
  • Not optimizing your images
  • Poor or messy code
  • Not enabling the caching capability on the site

The biggest factor in many people’s opinion which causes slow speed is actually having poor hosting. To view our own excellent hosting packages please contact 2Cubed here.

Not using Call to Action effectively or at all

You have to make it as easy as possible for customers to purchase your product/service, they should never have to go searching to get to the stage where they can purchase which would make them a conversion for you.

Your calls to action need to be clear, easy to see and enticing to get the customer to click. Always make sure your users have at their disposal access to all the info they need before they make a decision to purchase, if they have to search for this content you will have users who drop out and you will miss out on possible conversions you otherwise could have had.

Where necessary you should make sure that there are relevant calls to action available on your most important pages on the site. Make sure to give these calls to action a prominent position on the page so that they stick out to the user.

Bottom-line is simple just make sure it is very easy for the user to convert when they are ready and willing to.

Poor Mobile Experience

As you should already be aware the use of mobiles to view sites is increasing each year. So it is absolutely imperative that your website is mobile friendly! If it’s not you have severely hampered your chances of success and in turn decreased your conversion rate and honestly you may not recover from it unless you rectify the issue, it’s simply that important and as our reliance on mobile technology increases this is only going to become more and more important in the future.

You must make sure your website has been designed specifically for mobile compatibility and not just that it is simply responsive.

A few key things that can be done to make sure your website is designed for mobile are things such as:

  • Using large and easily legible text
  • Using concise and short paragraphs
  • Making sure that every key feature is just a tap away
  • Having just a single call-to-action on pages

Make sure to regularly review your site’s mobile compatibility especially as you add new content to the site.

User experience is frustrating

Another vital issue that can be causing you not to capitalize on conversion opportunities is that you are offering the users who visit your site a poor of frustrating user experience. The best way to find out what is making your user experience frustrating is by asking the users themselves, note feedback and complaints! A few common annoyances that can contribute to a poor user experience are thing such as:

  • Navigation is a chore
  • Too many ads/pop-ups
  • Your site simply doesn’t look good (UX Design is poor)
  • Your site does not give the users the information they need

These issues can be fixed easily and it is important that they are.

When using analytics you should always pay close attention to your bounce rate. This is a key indicator of how good or bad your user experience is. If it is high, then you know there is something that is not appealing to users and needs to be fixed, if its low it means users are generally happy with your site as they are spending time on it.

There are many different possible reasons why your site may not be converting but those mentioned in this article are issues that would apply to all.

By making these changes if you haven’t already you should see a big difference and improvement in your conversion rates and your sites success.

For more advice and information on having a successful website get in touch with 2Cubed today!

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Web design Wexford

Our Design – Your Vision.

Category: Projects
June 6, 2018

At 2Cubed we specialize in delivering functional websites that exceed clients’ expectations and performance. We strive to use the very best industry practices provided by our in house web designers.

We believe that it’s ‘Your Web Strategy’ and we are here to deliver and guide you to achieving the very best website possible. Our creative web designers are always ready to design, code & market your project.

Whether you wish to improve or replace an existing site, or create one from scratch that will be everything you ever dreamed of, 2Cubed are here to make it a reality.

For further details and to ask any questions or queries you may have you can reach us through our contact page and we would be delighted to speak with you!

GDPR is Here – What Now?

Category: News
May 28, 2018


Unless you were living under a rock it was hard to ignore anything and everything
GDPR Compliance related last week. Whether it was the constant inflow of “privacy policy updates” to your inbox or panicking over trying to make your own website compliant by the 25th, chances are the majority of your time during the week was taken up with GDPR related issues.

As you may be aware the 25th of May was the introduction of the GDPR law and it is these rules that are laid out as part of the regulation that will be enforced in the future. To protect your business from fines for non-compliance it is vital that you make sure you are meeting the standards set out by GDPR.

Whilst every website is unique and will require different changes to be implemented depending on their respective industry, there are a few things that every business must make sure they have done across the board to be in line with GDPR compliance. These are such things as:

Cookie Plugin
Your website must have a notification upon entering the site that alerts users that your site has cookies, the option to view and disable these cookies must be presented to the user to be GDPR compliant.

Privacy Policy
You must have a privacy policy and links to your policy enabled throughout site.

Cookie Policy
You must have a cookie policy and this must be linked to in the aforementioned cookie plugin notification.

Data Statements
Under any forms where user’s are inputting information to you such as contact forms you must have a visible statement below it which outlines what you will be using the data received for.

Terms and Conditions in checkout
If your site has an E-commerce element you must have an opt in box that user’s must tick that says “I have read and understand the terms and conditions” before they input their card details to complete a purchase. It must be mandatory for the box to be ticked to complete the purchase and a link to the terms and conditions should also be available.

These 5 are a few important elements that must be implemented in your quest towards GDPR compliance, it is not however the full exhaustive list. Depending on your website there may be many more changes which need to be made or a select few more may only required.

For a full comprehensive review of your Website by 2Cubed which will outline exactly in our opinion what is required to aid your website towards GDPR compliance please feel free to get in contact with us today!

GDPR Compliance – Whose Responsibility is it?

Category: News
May 15, 2018

Hello,

This newsletter special will deal with the burning issue that is GDPR compliance. We have done many posts recently in relation to GDPR and have kept you updated with all the latest news regarding it.

While most businesses are aware of the upcoming GDPR regulation there is still a lot of confusion over who is actually responsible. If you aren’t already familiar with the issue, GDPR is a regulation that requires businesses to protect the personal data and privacy of EU citizens for transactions that occur within EU member states and non-compliance can result in fines.

GDPR comes into effect on the 25th May 2018.

It is vital that every business makes sure their site is GDPR compliant by this date.To this end please be aware that it is up to each individual business to ensure that their website is meeting the GDPR requirements in lieu of the aforementioned date. This means that it is each businesses own personal responsibility to ensure their website is GDPR compliant.

If you would like us to review your website and provide you with observations and recommendations that may aid you towards achieving GDPR compliance please feel free to get in touch with us.

You can reach us through our contact page.

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Move your MODX site to WordPress

Category: Tips and Tricks
May 9, 2018


MODX (originally MODx) is a free, open source content management system and web application framework for publishing content on the world wide web and intranets. MODX is licensed under the GPL, is written in the PHP programming language, and supports MySQL and Microsoft SQL Server as the database.

Many people choose to move their site from MODX to WordPress because they come to realize that with MODX CMS that it can be very difficult to make the simplest of changes. By converting their site over to wordpress users find it much easier for common functions such as updating and customizing.

When a client wishes to keep the look and feel of their current site when moving across to wordpress we start by first doing the content migration and then follow it up with the theme migration. If there is a lot of functionality already built in the original site we can distribute it over to various types of wordpress plugins. The site will then be converted for cross device compatibility and when that’s completed be moved over to responsive framework.

WordPress conversion from MODX is an approach that tends to make sense as best practice for most businesses. However there is one caveat to this point that should be considered, you shouldn’t rush into converting from MODX to WordPress without first properly evaluating everything first. It’s vitally important that you consider first your existing assets such as (such as SEO, Content, Functionality) are not compromised in the transfer.

Finally the most important point when it comes to converting a MODX site to WordPress is to make sure you have an expert doing it! This isn’t something that is recommended to be a DIY job unless you are very confident of your abilities because there are a lot of things that can go wrong and issues that pop up during a migration, this is where it will pay to have someone who has a cool head and knows what they are doing to make sure your site converts to the otherside intact and unscathed.

There are many so called ‘experts’ and ‘wordpress gurus’ out there who just copy/paste the existing MODX site into wordpress without first centralizing the control to the wordpress dashboard, this practices goes completely against the whole purpose of migrating over to wordpress! Many people also rely on automated software to cover everything related in the A-to-Z migration of a MODX site to wordpress. While automated software and scripts are very helpful in the migration process they aren’t always enough to complete the job by themselves.

An experienced wordpress migration expert will know how to utilize the perfect combination of both automation and traditional hand coding to garner the best results.

To get in touch with 2Cubed about migrating your site or just to inquire with queries you may have be sure to get in touch and contact us today!

Website Maintenance Ireland

Category: Projects
April 26, 2018

2Cubed provides website maintenance and website management for 100s of companies across Ireland, from large businesses in Dublin to smaller, regional companies in rural areas. Whatever the size or scale of company, we can manage and maintain your website, keeping it updated and secure, leaving you to get on with the day-to-day running of your business. 2Cubed pride ourselves on the fact that “All of Our Web Designs Are Created Specifically For Each Customer in Mind”.  We are a team of web design professionals that are dedicated to giving the best web design service in Ireland.  In 2016 we were finalists as IIA Net Visionary Web Design Company of the Year.

To make things easier for people to outsource their website management to us, we launched our new sister site Website Maintenance which allows new customers to come on board and select the website maintenance package that is suitable for their needs. This site was created because we believe that you shouldn’t have to be worrying about the maintenance of your company website, we can give you the peace of mind that it is being looked after which will enable you to focus on your business completely.

Our Website Maintenance site offers many Website Maintenance Options including our own individual packages such as “Website Maintenance”, “Fix Website Hack” and “Website Maintenance Ecommerce” which you can choose from to ensure your website runs smoothly.

We also offer what we call Website Bolt-ons which will help your business to get the most from your online presence with our simple add-ons such as “Set up SSL Cert”, “Google Business Email” and “Transfer Email to Google Business Email”.

Our Website Essentials packages “Content Writing”, “Website Hosting” and “SEO & Digital Marketing” will help you to get found on google and reach more customers.

To view these packages and more in detail visit our new sister site by clicking here!

2Cubed can help fix your website after it has been hacked, update and secure it with latest patches, install security and SSL certificates, provide web hosting, and set up or migrate email.

For help with your website maintenance and website management needs, contact 2Cubed today!

2Cubed Dublin’s Office Moves Location

Category: News
April 23, 2018

2Cubed were delighted to replace our old office in Dublin by moving into a new location in the nation’s capital.

Our Wexford office moved from Enniscorthy to brand new quarters in New Ross in the recent years so we are delighted for our Dublin location to get the same treatment.

Our new location in Dublin is:
2CUBED – WEBSITE DESIGN DUBLIN
ANGLESEA HOUSE
63 CARYSFORT AVENUE 
BLACKROCK, CO. DUBLIN

2Cubed have been proud and look forward to continuing to provide award-winning web design and mobile app development services to the Dublin area. We have designed and developed many successful websites for Dublin-based businesses, from both Dublin City and County Dublin. These include Bombay Pantry Lucan  Fabrics, not to mention our work with renowned fashion blogger Suzanne Jackson

2Cubed has over 15 years’ experience in web design, and calls upon this experience when developing bespoke websites for your company, helping you expand your business online and maximise both sales and productivity.

We also provide App DevelopmentResponsive Design, eCommerce Development and Design in Dublin.

We use a number of eCommerce platforms like Magento, Shopify, WordPress and Woo Commerce to run these successful sites.

In addition to these services, we can also create unique content for your business – helping develop your company’s image as an industry authority in the eyes of customers and search engines alike, helping you rank higher in Google and thus increase your online exposure.

To view our full portfolio of work please click here.

Please feel free to contact us on 01 905 8114 or 051-440425, email hello@2cubed.ie

Trading Online Voucher Scheme Helps Irish Businesses to Create and Enhance Their Online Presence

Category: News
April 16, 2018

To support small Irish businesses to enhance their online trading presence, Online Trading Vouchers to the value of € 2,500 (up to a maximum of 50% of the total cost) are now available to Businesses through a programme under the Government’s National Digital Strategy and delivered through the Local Enterprise Offices.The objective of the scheme is to help small businesses grow their sales, exports and ultimately jobs. Small businesses throughout Ireland can now apply for digital vouchers to assist in helping their businesses trade online. Up to 1000 vouchers will be available for qualifying businesses through the network of 31 Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs).

Last year this proved to be a huge success for our clients. Not many customers seem to be aware of this excellent scheme, especially Dublin clients with existing websites that need work, don’t seem to be aware of the fantastic support from the Local Enterprise Office to support businesses that want to trade online.

Download the Trading Online Voucher Application Form Click here

With the trend ever increasing towards online spending it is estimated that only 23% of small Irish businesses are engaged in any meaningful way in eCommerce sales. For businesses employing less than ten people this percentage could be even lower.  It is now believed that of online purchases made in Ireland that 70% of these are done in overseas markets. There is now an urgency to ensure that businesses recognise that this is happening and that they are encouraged and supported to correctly respond to this digital reality. Vouchers will be available to a maximum value of €2,500 or 50% of eligible expenditure, whichever is the lesser.

Who is eligible?

  • The vouchers are targeted at businesses that have a limited online trading presence
  • less than 10 employees
  • turnover less than €2 million
  • applicants must be registered and trading for minimum of 12 months

The Online Trading Vouchers can be used for the development or upgrade of an e-commerce website such as implementing online payments or booking systems.  Other usage includes; purchase of Internet related software, online advertising, development of an app, implementation of a digital marketing strategy, consultation with ICT experts for early stage adopters of online strategy, training/skills development specifically to establish and manage an online trading activity.

What the Vouchers can be used for:

  • IT consultation;
  • Development or upgrade of an e-commerce website;
  • Implementing Online payments or booking systems;
  • Purchase of Internet related software;
  • Purchase of online advertising (this purchase cannot make up any more than 30% of approved Voucher costs and can only be drawn down in one payment phase);
  • Developing an app (or multi-platform webpages)
  • Implementing a digital marketing strategy i.e. Social media marketing;
  • Consultation with ICT experts for early stage adopters of online strategy;
  • Training/skills development specifically to establish and manage an online trading activity.

If you would like your company to benefit from this fantastic grant, which covers for funding up to 50% of your expenditure, please contact 2Cubed for more details. You can call us on 01-9058114 or 051-440425, email hello@2cubed.ie or else get in touch using the live chat on our website!

2Cubed April update Newsletter- SEO Link Building, Importance of Web Maintenance and IMPORTANT UPDATE on GDPR Compliance

Category: News
April 11, 2018

Welcome to this week’s edition of the 2Cubed Newsletter. Here you’ll find the latest news about the Website Maintenance we have have been carrying out, insight into how to maximize your Website User Experience and some top SEO Tips to aid you in your efforts. Make sure to read to the end to see our message in regards to the upcoming GDPR regulation and what you need to do to ensure you stay in the loop and keep receiving our weekly newsletter!

SEO – Building Links Are The Key to Success

One of the primary ways search engines decide on which pages should rank highest is by looking at the links on those pages. When it’s clear that the content has high-quality links pointing at it, it gets a boost. Some people make the mistake of thinking that all they need to do is get as many links as possible rather than just important ones. This is not the case as the view taken by the search engines is very much “Quality over Quantity”. Some people ignore this and try many methods such as buying links or even building a sheer number of links themselves by dropping them in comments on other sites blogs, forum posts etc… This behavior will not be rewarded and will actually have a negative impact on your site. Search engines want to reward sites that are able to gain “hard links“. Hard links are effectively links that aren’t easily come by, effort has been taken to gain the link. A guest post in a publication with a high standard, one that doesn’t let just anyone write, might be an example of a hard link or getting a high-quality site to link to you from a relevant article or page on its site would be another example.

The type of site where it would be very beneficial for you to earn a link from would be one where you and  potential customers regularly read. Build a relationship with another site where you can both mutually help each other.

There is one way in particular to legitimately earn hard links that’s consider quite easy to do, by being social! Get your site all over social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and Google+. You can use these sites to share your content and in turn your followers on this site may share it with others. All that sharing is a “social signal” to the search engines that what is being shared is considered to be good content.

To Learn More About Effective SEO Methods For Your Website Click Here

Why is Website Maintenance so Important?

Website Maintenance is important to any and all businesses, big or small. Your website is like a display window into your business and it can have a huge impact on your site and business is perceived. A well-maintained website that runs efficiently is essential to be in today’s environment. Regular website maintenance helps aid in attracting and retaining customers, maintaining search engine rankings and effectively creating new content, products and services for the public. Your website no matter what it is, should always be centered first and foremost on delivering a great user experience. This can be achieved by routinely adding new content on your website keeping it fresh and by ensuring that all the contact points on your site are in working order constantly.

Another reason why website maintenance is so important is the fact that website maintenance is critical to the search-engine rankings. Websites with old content rank lower in search engine listings and failing to make frequent modifications can cause your site site to be pushed below your competitors in the listings and this will cause your business to suffer.

For risk management, you should always to have a business-continuity plan in place for your website incise you have severe maintenance issues such as site crashing etc.. You should also ensure that your hosting service provider has a backup and maintenance plan that is in line with your own business service levels, especially if you have a real-time or mission-critical website as this will be vital in helping to minimize negative outcomes when it comes to damage control of the situation.

Of course the best preventive is proactive action by making sure your website maintenance is up to scratch, to say website maintenance is important would be an understatement!

To Learn More About Website Maintenance CLICK HERE

GDPR: COMPLIANCE

In last weeks newsletter we touched on the upcoming EU law on data privacy known as “The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)”. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), is the European Union’s new law on data privacy. To now be active in the EU, websites, including social media, will have to comply with the new regulations that will take effect on May 25. This will affect all businesses, big and small. Many businesses are worried as they are unsure what they need to do to be compliant with this new upcoming law. While it may sound overwhelming, there are ways to make compliance more manageable such as the following:

  • Access
The first step toward GDPR compliance is to access all your data sources. You must investigate and audit what personal data is being stored and used across your data landscape. To address GDPR compliance, you can’t rely on common knowledge of where you think personal data might be. The regulation requires organizations to prove that they know where personal data is – and where it isn’t. You need to know where it is and be able to show where it is.
 
  • Identify
 Once you’ve gotten access to all your data sources, the next step is to inspect them to identify what personal data can be found in each. Considering the volumes of data at hand, this cataloging process can’t be manual. Having the right tools for the job will make a big difference in your ability to meet the May 2018 deadline for GDPR compliance.
 
  • Govern
 For GDPR compliance, privacy rules must be documented and shared across all lines of business. This is the way to make sure personal data can only be accessed by those with proper rights, based on the nature of the personal data, the rights associated with users groups and the usage context. 
 
  • Protect
For GDPR compliance, you can use three techniques to protect data: encryption, pseudonymization and anonymization. The easiest way to protect data privacy is actually to press the delete button, keeping only the data you need to run critical business processes and added-value analysis. 
 
  • Audit
The fifth step in your journey to GDPR compliance involves auditing. At this stage, you’ll need to be able to produce reports to clearly show regulators that you know what personal data you have access to and where its located.You will also have to demonstrate that you can properly manage the process for getting consent from individuals who are involved. You will also need to be able to prove how the personal data is being used, who uses this data and for what purpose is it used. Finally as per the GDPR regualtions you will have to have the appropriate processes in place to manage things like the right to be forgotten or data breach notifications etc..
 
 
 
 
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