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#TopTips: Setting up a Website for Your Creative Business

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On Tuesday 2nd April we hosted a workshop on ‘Setting up a Website for your Creative Business’ kindly facilitated by Lizi Daley head of web at Kaizen Brand Evolution.

It was a fantastic workshop with loads of really useful information, here are our top takeaways:

General tips

  • Your website is as or more important than social media – for having a professional image, a reliable service that won’t suffer uncontrolled network problems and for sharing basic info – opening hours etc
  • The look and feel of your website is as important as its function. Your website is an extension of your brand and it’s important to give the best first impression you can
  • It takes on average 5 seconds for people to make a decision on a brand from a website (test yours out with friends and ask them what the first they saw was)
  • Have a keyword focused headline on the Homepage
  • Keep it simple & consistent – don’t make your users think keep it easy to navigate with important info clear on the landing page
  • Keep your website up-to-date for consistency and for ranking high in Google
  • Your narrative should change and reflect consumer behaviours and evolve with the web.

 

Web content

  • Do your research and think about your content in advance
  • Map out your journey – ask yourself who your target customer is (location, age, gender, income & hobbies) and what they would want to see
  • For site planning use post it notes or online platforms such as Gloo Maps for planning your site and content
  • Establish your goals – what is the role of the website – to inform? To sell a product or service? To generate leads?
  • This will define how you communicate with the audience through your website
  • What are the functions you require? Both now and in the future e.g. online shop, contact details, blog
  • Use a maximum of 600 – 700 words per page
  • Make sure headers make sense to your customers
  • Write in plain English
  • Think about how your write your content and the language you use to appeal to your target customers and fit with your brand
  • Get your content double checked by someone else

Colours

  • Think about your brand colours and consistency of colours and what colours will appeal to your audience
  • Try and maintain this consistency across social media
  • Use colours for call to actions

Images

  • Images are more important than words – users read 20% of text
  • Homepage images are most important
  • People like to see the people behind a business so add pics to the meet the team page
  • Try and use professional or good quality pics
  • Make sure images are not too big as they can slow the page down and use up hosting space – use software such as tinypng to resize the images but keep the quality
  • Free stock photos can be sourced from unsplash and similar platforms but be careful about just using stock photos as they can be off-putting
  • Plan your images in advance so there is no hold-up in the site going live

Blogs

  • Blogs are excellent for seo, google prefers recently updated websites
  • Blogs are also useful for getting people on your website from social media
  • Blogs should be no more than 600 words and done preferably a minimum of once a month

 

Technical tips

Different Web Platforms

  • WordPress – is good for blogging, and for plugins, Woocommerce can be used for selling online online without the need to move to a different platform. Beware though hosting with WordPress can be expensive so its often better to host your site with an independent hosting provider
  • Squarespace – is simple and straightforward to use and a good entry level platform with hosting and support all in one place
  • Shopify – is ideal for selling online, there are only a small amount of free templates, but it is an easy platform for web developers to work with

Domains

  • For professional email address
  • Try and buy .com or .co.uk addresses if possible for a professional image and so competitors ca’t redirect to their site
  • If you are using 2 words together in a domain name ensure the 2 words together don’t make 1 word (either something dodgy sounding or just confusing for your customers)

Hosting

Think about using local company for customer service and trouble shooting

Google Analytics

Regularly use google analytics to see which pages are popular, where traffic comes from and the best times for social media/offers etc

Google Search Console

Use to get your site recognised with Google, establish problems on your pages and get it ranked well on Google

#blickstudios on
Instagram post 2172574270159740965_295518986 We are so excited to be hosting The Belfast Design Closing Party tomorrow at ArtceteraStudio from 7PM- 9PM!
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We are celebrating everyone that has been part of organsing & taking part of Belfast Design week and we want to bring everyone together!
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We are super grateful for all the collaborations of events, people sharing their stories, learning about design & most importantly, how we have come together as a community to support each other!
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We wanted to gather everyone together that took part of the events to celebrate each other's hard work and end the week on an uplifting note!
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There will be an exhibition of some local designers & photographers happening in ArtceteraStudio, live band performing & some wine and pizza!
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It' BYOB, so feel free to bring your own and come celebrate with us!
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We are kicking everything off at 7:30 with giving thanks, then screening our 'The Power of Design' series by @creatingaspace and from there have a great time!
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See you all there!
Instagram post 2172220671491803965_295518986 Big Design Day Out : Matter Market
Date: 9th November
Time :12-6 PM
Location :Artcetera Studios
43 Rosemary Street Belfast, BT1 1QF
@matter.sustainablemarket
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Matter Sustainable Market is a space where we come together to exchange ideas, encourage each other & celebrate entrepreneurship in Belfast.
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This is @matter.sustainablemarket 2nd market in 2019 and are honoured to have such incredible vendors taking part.
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Each and everyone of these brands are unique, offer a sense of individuality and produce beautiful products.
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Whether you are looking for gifts coming up to Christmas, treating yourself or simply looking to find more creative in Belfast, this is the market for you!
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There will be a range of Jewellery, art, knitwear, Handmade vegan scrub, vintage clothing brands, light sculptures, textiles, weave, fashion, illustration & embroidery!
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We are celebrating the beginning & middle points of everyone’s journey and want to come together to uplift this community
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We kick off at 12 PM at Artcetera Studios and wrap up at 6PM.
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.#sustainabilty #entrepreneurs #business #creativebusinesses #sustainablefashion #sustainableliving #belfast #mattermarket #textiles #art #community
Instagram post 2172016145283388501_295518986 We had the pleasure of attending another great @belfastdesignwk event this afternoon! Getting Retail Ready with @wearemaven_ @hunterpaperco and @dollybirdsart. Such an insightful session!
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#BDW19 #belfastdesignweek #POWER #belfast #design #designer #shoplocal #supportlocal #homeware #illustration #greetingscards #letterpress #nature #inspiration #wildlife #art #artist #artwork #plants #plantstagram #botanicalillustration #creative #creativecommunity #girlpower #ireland #northernireland #NI #creativecity
Instagram post 2170481917080949390_295518986 Your Dream Business Fair
10:00 - 11:00 AM
108 North Street, BT1 1LE
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We are really excited for this event : Your Dream Business Design Fair happening on 7th November at our Belfast Design Week hub.
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It is an event for people that are starting out in their business journey, or in the thick of being self employed but looking for a change in their career.
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It is to inspire people to create the change they want, to get the clients they have always wanted & to get support from different organisations in Belfast.
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It's easy to be caught up in the process of running a business, so this fair offers time, space & and industry experts speaking on different challenges people may be facing & how to overcome them.
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It will be a great networking event to meet other creatives in the city too!
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Featuring : -Ignite NI
-Future Screens
-Queen's University
-Ulster University
-Illustrators Ireland
-Craft NI
-Belfast City Council
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Don't miss your opportunity to meet & connect!
Instagram post 2170432526886405334_295518986 We want to say a big thank you to Michael from @thebeardedcandlemakers who spoke last night at our @belfastdesignwk event on using Instagram as an important tool to grow your business.
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He started off sharing the different aspects on what has made his own following grow on Instagram and explaining his branding & how he tells stories with his photographs.
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It was super interesting to hear his process about what he has learnt over the last 5 years, what has worked, what has been hard and also coming through a time where he didn’t want to be on Instagram because of not feeling authentic.
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Authenticity was a theme that came up a lot and it is a very important thing to keep in mind when building your brand and trying to connect to your customer. He was saying that you want to be building a story around your brand & product, posting meaningful images, but not always focusing on your product, but telling stories of your life.
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Sharing your process is super important and he said that you must develop boundaries around using social media. To not fall into the comparison game & also to not be letting it take over your life.
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There was a lot of amazing things he spoke about and we are grateful that he gave us his time to share his process and getting an insight to what it can look like to be running your own business.
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Be sure to follow him on all socials and support your local entrepreneurs!
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Be sure to check out the rest of @belfastdesignwk events this week! So much magic happening in this city!
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#bdw19 #instagram #creative #creativestartups #candlemakers #community #entrepreneur #creativecommunity
Instagram post 2169064467663795159_295518986 The Time is Now // Womenfolk
5.11.19
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We are excited to introduce our first panellist @dot_projects from Dot Projects who will be speaking at our event on Tuesday.
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We are super grateful for the opportunity to have such amazing people take part of our events and allow us to get an insight to their life!
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In this panel discussion, we have chosen four amazing women in Design and we asked them various questions around being self employed, what the realities are like running your own business and getting a different perspective from them all!
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We are excited for this event and wanting to continue to celebrate the creative community in Belfast and hold space & uplift everyone!
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Join us on the 5th November from 8-9:30 PM🎥 by @creatingaspace
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Project brought to you by @blickstudios & @creatingaspace collaborating with @womenfolk.co & @belfastdesignwk
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#design #belfast #bdw19 #entrepreneur #womenempowerment #community
Instagram post 2166971342279552948_295518986 Mono-type exploring abstract form, colour & creativity.
9.11.19
Location :Blick Studios
Price: £45
12:30 - 4:30 PM
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This workshop is primarily for those who wish to explore their creative side in addition to having a 'mindful' couple of hours in a guided, non-judgmental environment.
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Outcome: to create pieces of artwork in the form of a Mono-typeWhat you will learn : - Mark making - Basic colour mixing and texture building - The joy of creative play - Mono-type printing - Remember how to enjoy your art without judgement - To relax, quieten the mind and be present
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To book your space today visit : https://getinvited.to/bronagh/mono-type-exploring-abstract-form-colour-and-creativity/
Instagram post 2166966137894765367_295518986 Would you benefit from 1 hour a week of mindfulness?
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@nineteenthirtyatelier may have something for you...
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They’re curating a workshop with the aim of creating piece of artwork each week exploring different methods.
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You’ll learn a host of new things including:
• Mark making
• Colour mixing & texture building
• Mono type printing.
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This 6 week course will begin on Wednesday 6th November, through to Wednesday 11th December. 7PM - 8PM.
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Blick Studios, 51 Malone Road.
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To book your space today visit .https://getinvited.to/bronagh/creative-mindful-art-journalling/
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#BDW19 #belfastdesignweek #art
Instagram post 2166820734511829468_295518986 Are you looking for a private office in a building filled with creative business?
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Blick Shared Studios Malone Road currently have a private office suitable for 2 people starting from the 1st December!
It is £300 a month and it includes furniture, broadband, 24 hour access, rates & utilities and use of meeting rooms & communal spaces.
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Our Malone Road studios is a beautiful building with lots of natural light, high ceilings & original period features.
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Most of all, taking a space at Blick Studios is more than just a physical space. It's about meeting and working  alongside like minded people, collaborating, learning and sharing experiences.
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If you are interested in the private room, please email info@blickstudios.com
Check out our Instagram highlights to see more of our Malone Road studios!
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#blickstudios #creativeworkspace #creatives #creativebusiness #belfast
Instagram post 2165632565523036226_295518986 Matter is not only a retail space, but a social space. They create conversations, and they listen. They seek to create a hub to educate, promote and sustain creatives in the fashion industry in hope for a brighter, more ethical and sustainable future.
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We LOVE collaborating with people that are in the beginning & middle part of their business journey. Whether you are just starting out, testing an idea or wanting to connect with local creative people, @matter.sustainablemarket are creating a pop up sustainable market on the 9th November from 12-6 at @artceterastudio43 over @belfastdesignwk
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They are currently still looking for vendors that are makers/designers ( jewellery, textiles, fashion, weave, knit)/artist & vintage clothes sellers to take part of the pop up market happening on the 9th November from 12-6.
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If you are interested or know anyone that would love to take part, please email : mattermarketbelfast2019@gmail.com
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Have a great week!
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#sustainablefashion #vintage #sustainableliving #maker #textiledesign #design #belfastdesignweek
Instagram post 2165276220659730045_295518986 Good morning Belfast 💛
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#walktowork #belfast #city #lovebelfast #cathedralquarter #CQBelfast #ireland #travel #northernireland #explore #discoverni #niexplorer #cityscape #citylife #urban #architecture #VisitBelfast #autumn
Instagram post 2163139615819923653_295518986 Belfast Design Week Urban Design Challenge Week 2 with @urbanscaleinterventions and Coffeenosugar #BDW19 #belfastdesignweek
Instagram post 2162469211958733586_295518986 - - B I G - D E S I G N - D A Y - O U T - -We are delighted to be helping organise this event as part of @belfastdesignwk  A whole day of design activities for the whole family on Saturday 9th November.Free children's and adults digital and making workshops including: - - Poster Design
- Games Design
- Character Design
- Screen-printing & Typography
- Weaving
- Pencil Making
- Coding
- Video storytellingAlso a design treasure hunt, interactive illustration installation, pop-up market, fashion installation, film screening, pop-up museum and much, much moreFind event details and sign up for workshops here:http://belfastdesignweek.com/events
Instagram post 2161292962796330599_295518986 Are you a maker, designer, artist looking for an opportunity to sell your work/products in a space in Belfast?
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Do you struggle to find retail spaces to sell your products at a low cost?
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@matter.sustainablemarket
are creating a pop sustainable market on the 9th November in Artceteria Studios  in Belfast. They will be facilitating a pop up shop with local designers, markers and artists selling their work alongside vintage clothing being sold!
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They are currently looking for designers ( fashion, vintage ) , makers ( textiles, jewellery, weave, card makers etc) to take part and sell their work!
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They are here for the people that are in the very beginning of their process in starting out a business venture, people that are testing out their products or people that simple are looking for different retail spaces that won't be expensive or people looking to further their brand and connect with local vendors in Belfast.
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If you feel like you would be interested or know anyone that would be interested register an interest via their social @matter.sustainablemarket
Or email  mattermarketbelfast2019@gmail.com
Applications close on 31st October!
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Date : 9th November
Time : 12-6PM
Space : Artceteria Studio Rosemary Street Belfast
Price : £25 per stall
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#sustainability #retail #fashion #textiles #designers #makers #belfast
Instagram post 2156659911805980569_295518986 Belfast is looking so lovely in the autumn sun this week! We can’t stop taking photographs!  Definitely worthy of a few detours en route to our studios 🍂☀️
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#walktowork #belfast #city #lovebelfast #cathedralquarter #CQBelfast #ireland #travel #northernireland #explore #discoverni #niexplorer #cityscape #citylife #urban #loveireland #architecture #VisitBelfast #BelfastCC #autumn
Instagram post 2155912028798432281_295518986 Spooky vibes on the way to our Cathedral Quarter studios earlier this morning!🕷
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#belfast #lovebelfast #autumn #halloween #walktowork #autumnsun #autumnlight #city #cityscape
Instagram post 2152379881164874480_295518986 Have you ever struggled to find clarity on your creative journey?
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Do you struggle to find the time to create space for yourself to think about what you want to create?
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If so, we've got something that might help...
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Our Time is Now 4  Week course that's just been announced will enable you to :
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•CREATE SPACE to work out what you want
•ESTABLISH your values, vision & goals
•TAP IN to what is holding you back
•BUILD CONFIDENCE to move towards a place of achieving your creative dreams, big or small
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If you think this is for you, sign up today! Take that first step in to making a commitment to yourself!THE TIME IS NOW!
Instagram post 2151592073558808379_295518986 Lunch break in the Cathedral Quarter. Love working in this part of our city!
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#belfast #lovebelfast #cathedralquarter #cqbelfast #northernireland #explore #discoverni #trekkingni #niexplorer #travel #architecture #graffiti #wallart #art #artist #artwork #painting #design #creative #city #nidesign #cityscape #belfastcreatives #citylife #urban #colour