Planning, Designing, and Optimizing a Website

Best Website Builder Now has released a handy resource that discusses the stages of building a website well. Building a great website isn’t the easiest or cheapest endeavor in the world and doing it right the first time minimizes the cost and delays to launch.

In Stage one, effective planning is paramount. You really have no value unless your visitors can take action. YOu need to plan the structure, or how you want the information to be organized. Knowing your business and the market will help you figure that out.

First you need to plan the purpose. All other plans will hinge on your planned purpose. This should be the focus of all your designs.

You also need to plan the pages. How many of them do you need, what types are they, what are their goals? Constructing your pages effectively enhances usability and drives visitors to the information you want them to see.

Planning the navigation is also super important. People are very impatient online and the average user spends 30 seconds before ditching. This is why it’s very important to have a clear navigation bar that allows visitors to know where they are and how to get where they want to go.

Read on in the infographic below to find out about the next stages.

infographic

DIY urban gardening with recycled items

Urban gardening is all the rage these days. Many in an effort to do their part, eat well, recycle old items and save money are growing their own gardens in their backyard. There’s a lot of cool ways you integrate your urban garden in to the design of your backyard. Fortunately, Purely Shutters has provided a handy resource to give us a bit more insight in to how you can make it happen.

Stylish gardens are a lot easier to create than you might think. Shutters make the perfect tool to hang pots and create an attractive display of herbs and flowers. Give it a little stain to tie the finished piece in with your existing decor.

Making statement garden pieces out of junk has become so popular that you can buy pre-made pieces on Etsy. Try stapling landscaping fabric to a plantation shutter to create a visually appealing garden piece that accomodates herbs, strawberries, lettuces and creeping perennials.

Just remember, if you set one up inside, place an absorbent mat underneath it to catch the drips.

Another great junk item to recycle in to stylish backyard decor, is an old ladder. Give it a fresh coat of paint and stack it full of potted plants to create a tiered garden.

See the images in the infographic below.

urban-gardening-IG10001

Design Tips for Outdoor Kitchens in Portland

A rather specific infographic from Landscape East & West today tells us about how to design an outdoor kitchen in the Portland and surrounding areas. The Pacific Northwest has a different climate than other areas and your outdoor living arrangements should reflect that.

Outdoor kitchens are the new “must have” for increasing home comfort and value. The fresh air is good for everyone, and the outdoor/indoor living trend will only rise.

In Portland, you can see an average of 40.5 inches of rain per year which calls for a patio cover. There are 118 days below 40 degrees, which also calls for outdoor heaters. While it doesn’t often get below freezing, you still want to be warm and dry in your outdoor living space.

Outdoor lighting and music systems are also a must in your new outdoor kitchen. Some background music while you cook is essential just as it is essential to hosting a party. Prep areas that are weather resistant are also crucial for your outdoor kitchen. Why prep inside, when you can do it outdoors? Build a grill island in to your weather resistant countertops for optimal look.

You should also think about your outdoor garden. Place some pots with herbs or vegetables close by for fresh fare!

There’s more! Read it in the infographic below.

LandscapeEast_Portland-Outdoor-Kitchen-Design_Infographic

Clear Out the Clutter!

The top low-cost DIY home improvement project is clearing your home with an estimated ROI of 403%. Is your home cluttered? Do you like to collect items or do you just hate to clean things up? According to Sparefoot, clutter falls in to two categories: lazy clutter (everything you should throw away but just haven’t) and memory clutter (your kids old toys, sentimental photos or trinkets).

Not only can you sell your home for money by clearing out clutter, but it can lift your mood as well. Homeowners are 42% more likely to experience anxiety when their home is unorganized or messy. Chaos also restricts your ability to focus and process information. Need to use your brain? Grab a trashcan and start tossing!

The average American also spends a year of their life looking for lost items. By clearing out clutter and organizing your home, it makes it easier to find things! Read on in the infographic below for more information.

clutter-infographic

The Best Free Infographic Tools To Create Your Own Infographics

Infographics, the graphical representation of data is able to make any complex information visually attractive and exciting and compel the readers to get your message. Since a picture speaks better than a thousand words, and given a choice between a long article and an infographic, readers tend to prefer to have information from an infographic and it has been proven that colorful infographics make the readers stay on the site for a longer time.

To get your point across to your readers you can use a number of free infographic tools and create the Infographics of your own.  Continue reading

How to Make a Good Infographic

Infographics are all the rage these days, and with good reason. Through combining entertainment and information, a successful infographic can grab the attention of web users and become an excellent way to share information, improving brand awareness and helping to build links back to your website naturally.

However, not all infographics generate the level of interest that their creators hoped for, and now that so many companies are creating their own infographics it is becoming increasingly important to ensure that your infographic stands out from the crowd.

So how can you improve the chances that your infographic will be a success? Here are a few recommendations. Continue reading

Creating a Successful Infographic: How I got My Infographic on CNET

How My Infographic Got Featured on CNET.com

As a blogger and marketer one of my main objectives is to get visitors and attention to my website. Many techniques are put into play just to get some exposure to various articles and content. Something that seems to always pull peoples attention are infographics and they do love to share them. There is no doubt that infographics can showcase various facts and information in a visually impressive way. Now and again you may see different types of infographics making their way to major websites and being socially shared on Facebook and Twitter. These are most likely the ones that have gone viral on the net.

I put forth some effort and time to create an infographic that I felt would definitely be interesting and share-worthy. After coming up with an idea, finding a designer, getting it created and then submitting it to various infographic directories and blogs I had to sit back and wait for the results. On the same day I released it I had received over 3000 new visitors to my website which is fairly common whenever a creative infographic is made. Continue reading

Best Free Tools & Resources to Create Infographics

The best resources are free ones. This may not be true, but in the case of creating an Infographic, a free resource can be far better than paying for one. This article covers a few free tools and resources you can use to create your Infographic. Nobody said that your Infographic has to be the most comprehensive or visually pleasing, but at least if you have these tools, you have option of making yours visually pleasing and comprehensive.

Many Eyes

This resource will allow you to choose from various visualization methods and choose various data sets. They have a large variety of visualization methods. The program will probably have to be paid for once it is more developed, but is currently free.

Easelly

This allows you to share your visual creations online in a simple and easy manner. It was created by the people at WordPress, and has a similar Infographic building mechanism. They use the WordPress drag and drop system to help create an Infographic in the simplest manner possible. Continue reading

Using Infographics to Promote Offers & Competitions

Infographics are becoming an increasingly common way for companies to promote their offers and competitions online. But why the sudden boom in infographics? There are many reasons why these are becoming one of the most popular online marketing techniques for businesses in a wide variety of niches.

Using Infographics To Promote Offers and Competitions

Visual Graphics Appeal to Internet Users

Internet users love visually stimulating content. Although written content certainly has its place, people are always looking for other ways to get access to information. Infographics provide exactly that. An infographic is a simple, clear and interesting way to present information that is easy to scan. Continue reading

Branding and Infographics: How Much is Too Much?

Text and graphics have long been useful means of presenting information. Infographics combine the power of text and graphics for highly effective communication in an easy-to-absorb visual format. They are useful for drawing comparisons and can reveal patterns, trends and underlying themes. When done correctly, infographics create an opportunity to establish brand identity.

To channel this power in the most effective way, follow these four simple tips. Continue reading