the3rdact.com

New Web Design: The3rdAct.com

By | Portfolio Websites

We were happy to help these clients redesign their website. Not only because they have been wonderful clients for years, but because they offer some really awesome services that we were happy to help bring to the world. Introducing:

The 3rd Act

(the3rdact.com)

Before

the3rdact before

After

the3rdact after

Visit the new site

What did we do?

Visuals. The first thing people see when they hit a website should be powerful and send a strong message. You can see in the ‘Before’ image above, the previous third act website hit visitors with words. The new design includes a graphic that sends a powerful message of freedom in your later years — something we all hope to have.

Fresh-up. Other obvious upgrades were to the colors and additional white space (more on white space below). The lighter blue color made the site more inviting and a comfortable place for visitors to hang out. The additional white space made the site easier to read and navigate.

Responsive Design. The old and new sites were built on WordPress, but the previous theme was designed before the mobile revolution. The new theme is Responsive and mobile-friendly.

Visitor Pathways. The previous design had succumbed to what we call “cramming” — trying to fit as much information into as small a space as possible. This just makes a website cluttered and confusing. Honestly, when I see a site like that I click the Back button immediately. By implementing Visitor Pathways, we guide people to the services that matter to them most. This creates a better User Experience (“UX”) and increases the likelihood that visitors will connect with our client.

We also help The3rdAct.com with other services like website hosting, domain registration, digital marketing, business coaching and more. See how you can benefit from our range of services with our Dynamic Plan. They have been wonderful to work with over the years, and we hope to keep helping them grow and help many more people for a long time.

smart goals do it right now

Smart Goals: How to turn goal setting into goal DOING

By | Key to success | No Comments

Tired of setting goals only to watch them roll by — undone — week after week? A goal that doesn’t get done isn’t really a goal, it’s just a wish. Success doesn’t happen by wishes. Success is defined by goals that get done — Smart Goals. Why am I an expert at setting Smart Goals? Because I’m a professional procrastinator at heart. It got so bad I was basically self-abusing, using my goals as the ammo. As a solopreneur, I had to overcome that habit. I did it with Smart Goals.

You may not be abusing yourself with your goal setting process. But if you’re feeling defeated or anxious about your growing list of undone to-do’s, this article is for you!

What are Smart Goals?

Smart Goals are goals that get done because they’re backed up by a smart strategy. There is a quote I remember from my childhood. It came from a notepad, it said: “Do it…right…now.” Worded this way it had obvious multiple meanings. I’ll break it down to make setting Smart Goals fast and easy for you.

1) Do it.

Most importantly, Make up your mind. Don’t set a goal you know you’re not going to do. In fact, don’t set a goal unless you have made up your mind to do it. If you haven’t made up your mind, don’t set the goal. You’ll just end up beating yourself up for not doing it. Let it stay a wish.

Schedule the goal. Give it a date and a time.

  • Set a time you know you’ll be in the mood to do it. You know yourself. If you’re frumpy in the mornings and jazzed up in the afternoons, set important goals for the afternoon.
  • Schedule a time when the smart goals themselves will have a good chance of getting done. For instance, if your goal is to eat breakfast, don’t schedule it for dinner time.

2) Do it right.

The number one most important lesson I learned in college came from a quote by Vince Lombardi: “Practice does not make perfect. Only perfect practice makes perfect.” You see, I studied music in college. Before that I was mostly self-taught, by ear. In college I had to learn by sheet music. I struggled. Not only to read the music but to learn it right. I would figure a piece out by ear before I could actually play it.

Impatient as I was, I would play the piece too fast, and I would play it wrong. Again, and again, and again. It took me forever to learn a piece right — because I was practicing it wrong.

As soon as I started practicing perfectly (i.e. a step at a time), I started learning some of the most difficult pieces ever written — IN NO TIME. I mean it. In literally 2 or 3 weeks I would be playing pieces I thought were impossible. It floored me. Astounded. Astonished.

The moral of the story?

Set DOABLE goals. If you can’t do your goal, break it down into smaller goals. If a goal is too big it’s more likely to be put off. Break goals down into baby steps, bite-sized chunks. If you can do the goal, great! Do it. But if you can only take a step, today — take it.

3) Do it right now.

Here’s how I overcame procrastinating and putting off goals day after day after day: I did them first. If a goal is really, truly a priority:

Do it first.

As a business owner it’s way too easy to get caught up being bizzy. ‘Bizziness’ jumps right on top of us and before we know it the day is over and goal setting suddenly becomes goal-wishing again. You want to know a little secret about bizzy work? It always manages to get done. The little bit of time you take to check off your important to-do’s will not put a crick in your busy work. Do a major goal a day, and do it first.

Since you can’t do ALL your goals “right now”, prioritize them. Keep an organized list. Hit the top of the list each day and do the most important goal first.

One last thing…

Smart Goals should feel good when accomplished. Goals will always be replaced by new goals, so remember to congratulate yourself on a job done and done well. I keep a list of all my accomplishments so I can see, YES, I am accomplishing things. It feels good — especially during times when I feel down — to know I’ve been productive, and to see how far I’ve come.

Do you have some secrets for how to set goals and accomplish them? Share in the comments below.

Ask about our Business Strategy Consulting services and how we can help you set Smart Goals and a solid plan of action for your business.

Photo credits: Cam Adams

how to stop unwanted emails

How to stop unwanted emails after domain registration

By | Website Tips | No Comments

We get this question a lot:

“I just registered my domain, now I’m getting tons of email spam and phone calls! How do I make it stop????????”

Many people who register a new domain want to know how to stop unwanted emails and phone calls. Even if they never had a problem with other domains, they might be getting targeted by email spam the very next day after registering a new domain. So here’s the skinny — why you might be getting new spam emails and how to stop unwanted emails.

The bad news

ICANN regulations require that your contact information be both correct AND displayed to the public. If you have business contact info you don’t mind being public, and a good spam filter, you might not mind this. However, if you have to use personal information or can’t handle the hassle of email spam, this is bad news. I disagree with the regulation of publicly displaying private information to the world, but that part is out of my hands.

The ugly news

Not only may you get bombarded by spam, it is also a major concern for identity theft. In this day and age, identity theft is a major problem. Just ask anyone who has ever had their identity stolen. It becomes a lifelong battle for many.

The good news

You are allowed to use ICANN-approved proxies or intermediaries who verify your contact information then display their own contact info for the domain rather than yours. If you want to know how to stop unwanted emails, this is the best way to go. I mean, you could go get a special email and phone number dedicated simply to registering your domains, but that is neither cost nor time effective.

How to stop unwanted emails

If you register your domain with web.ninja we protect your private information for only $5.95 per YEAR (ask for bulk rates). This is a small price to pay for peace of mind and protection from annoyance AND potentially harmful activity. For more information, view the ICANN website.

Contact us today to register or transfer your domain and to get the protection you deserve.

 

learn wordpress free!

Learn WordPress — Free!

By | Web Ninja Updates, Website Tips | No Comments

We are excited to announce the launch of our Weekly WordPress Training Webinars where you can learn WordPress — free! WordPress is an amazing web creation tool, but it comes with a learning curve. Rather than watch our clients and fans struggle, we have decided to help you overcome your worries and obstacles. Why?

We want you to succeed!

That may sound altruistic, but it’s also a little selfish. When you succeed, we succeed. So — let’s succeed together! Our business model is built on the Pay-it-forward philosophy, so this is one of the ways we’re paying it forward to you.

Many businesses get WordPress because it allows them to edit their own content. But it turns out to take more learning than they bargained for. They seek WordPress training but then that can be expensive or take even more time or not answer their basic questions. We wanted to provide a setting where solopreneurs, entrepreneurs and even small or large businesses can learn WordPress free — AND get their direct questions answered.

Free WordPress Training

So, we created a Weekly WordPress Webinar. It’s a coffee-klatch type setting. Relaxed atmosphere. We are going to cover Beginner to Intermediate topics. These will be enough for you to manage your website, update your content, protect your site from spam, hacking or malware, track visitor behavior, and more!

So — Join our WordPress Webinars. It’s free! Click the button to sign up.

Learn WordPress Free

You’ll learn:

  • How to create Posts and Pages
  • Add images and downloads to your content
  • Use SEO on your site
  • Create contact forms
  • Protect from spam comments, hacking, malware
  • And much more!

Learn WordPress: Free WordPress Training.

Your business will thank you 🙂

Learn WordPress Free
key to success: never give up never surrender

The Most Important Key to Success

By | Key to success | No Comments

If you’re starting a business you’re probably searching for the the key to success. You have this bright shiny vision, you’re excited about making your dreams come true, and you’re looking for some magical secret to success that will get you from here to there with lightning speed. Sound familiar at all?

I’ve been working for myself for about a decade now and there is just one key to success that I’ve found. Okay, I’ve found many important success factors, and the point of this Category of posts is to share what I’ve learned. There is one key to success that rules them all, so it seemed fitting to share it first. Without further ado, it is:

“Never give up… Never surrender!”

This quote is from one of my all-time favorite movies, Galaxy Quest. It is Commander Taggart’s catchphrase, tagged (pun intended) onto every motivational speech he gives the crew. Now, you might be rolling your eyes that this is some motivational, pump-you-up cliché. Well, it’s not. That is not my style. It’s more like a

Hold on to your bum, Bright Eyes, and brace for the roller-coaster ride of your life!

…kinda speech. You see, starting, owning and running a business is exactly what you think it is. And more. It’s the MORE part that catches people by surprise, and stops many dead in their tracks. It’s the MORE part we never see coming. We don’t know how to deal with it and so many people give up on their dream. “Never give up” is not a cliché, it is the most important message you’ll need to hear throughout your career.

Why is it the most important key to success?

Because for 99.99% of people, starting a business is not going to go the way you imagine. Situations arise. Obstacles show up. Unforeseen hurdles pop out of nowhere to trip us up. People don’t act how we want. New clients don’t show up out of oblivion waving cash in our face. We may face times where we don’t think we can handle any more. In fact, the obstacles may even overwhelm us. Motivation may fail. Our dreams may not seem worth it anymore.

So, despite all the other success factors out there, this is why this key to success is the most important. Whatever struggles we face, “Never give up! Never surrender!” is the message that will kindle and inspire us. It will keep us going. My hope in building the Web Ninja Community is that we will be a group of intrepid spirits who can encourage each other through difficult times.

How do you define “failure”?

Thomas Edison said about inventing the light bulb: “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” On the same subject, he said: “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”

You see, Edison had a vision. A dream. It was bigger than just a light bulb. It was about lighting the world — literally. You have a dream. Your purpose in life and business is to light the world with your dream, your vision. You’ve got to give it all you’ve got. That means:

  • Learn what you need to learn
  • Adapt to new circumstances
  • Let go of the small stuff
  • Keep taking steps…

…and many more success factors. And we’re going to talk about those soon. For now, whatever stage you are at with your business, remember this all-important key to success.

I define failure as “giving up”. Your business idea might fail. Your whole business might go under. But it’s never failure until you’ve given up on your dream. Because until you do that — until you give up on your dream — you still have a chance. Once you give up, all your chances for success are gone. You see, it’s going for your dreams and giving it all you’ve got that I define as success. Even if you died never fully realizing your dream you are still a success! Because you gave it all you had.

Going for your dreams takes courage, heart. It takes faith in yourself and your purpose in life. And what is the point of being human, really, if we don’t take the giant leaps our heart desires. So, here is to your success. Here is to every lesson you learn. Here is to hanging in there when the odds are against you or when you feel like giving up.

More coming soon. And if you haven’t seen Galaxy Quest — do. It’s awesome 🙂

Here’s to your success!
~PJ

one page website

Why a one page website is all you need!

By | Website Tips | No Comments

You may have been seeing more one page websites out there as you browse the web. As web designers go, there are schools of thought that hate single page websites. Some schools of thoughts love them. One page websites were sort of thrust upon the world before technology was really ready to support them, so we here at Web Ninja can see both sides of the argument.

So, now that web and mobile technology has kind of finished its “Responsive puberty”, we kind of love one page websites. In fact, a single page website is all you really need to launch your business or brand. At least to start.

WHY ONE PAGE WEBSITES ARE GREAT

NAVIGATION. User-friendly navigation is one of the most important aspects of a website. If visitors can’t find the information they need — instantly — you are likely to lose valuable visitor traffic. A one page layout keeps navigation simple. A visitor need only scroll up or down to find the information they need.

LASER-FOCUSED CONTENT. If you’re going the route of a one-paged website, you don’t have infinite room to work with. Yes, your page could scroll on and on forever, but no one in their right mind would do that. Having space-constraints makes you laser-focus and power-pack your content. Get to the good stuff, then move on. Visitors love it because they’re scanning your content anyway, rather than stop to read every word. Higher-quality content is more likely to convert.

RESPONSIVE DESIGN. It’s official — most web surfers are surfing on mobile devices. Responsive design is essential for you to succeed online. One page website templates do a fantastic job of making your site look great on whatever device it’s being viewed on, AND make it easy. Bear in mind, most of our clients’ purchasers buy on laptop and desktop computers so again — responsive design is essential for you to succeed online.

CALL-TO-ACTION MAGIC. A strong Call-To-Action (CTA) is where the magic happens on your site. Ideal prospects have one question on their mind, “What do I do next?” A strong CTA tells them and invites them to connect with you. Now, remember, your visitors are scrolling. This gives you opportunity after opportunity to post multiple Calls-To-Action or your clients. As they scroll they are prompted again and again to take the action you want them to.

EASY ON THE BUDGET. No explanation needed here. Save some of that shoestring budget for other important parts of your business. Your website can adapt and grow with your business. Grow and develop your website as you have the budget for it. Invest your money wisely.

QUICK TURNAROUND. A one page website can literally be created in a day. Of course, it normally takes a little longer than that but most of that is decision work on your end: What content to write? Colors? Basic layout? Imagery? You have some decisions to make and some homework to do. But isn’t it nice that once you have your ducks in a row you can get a beautiful website fast and budget-friendly?

WHAT’S NEXT?

These are just a few of the major benefits of single page websites. If you need to get your business online fast and have a modest budget, start with a one page website. We have a great services package you and your customers will love. Chat with us, ask us your questions. Let’s get your site launched so you can go kick butt!

Photo credit: Carl Heyerdahl. Thanks, Carl!

We just launched our Dynamic Web Services Plan!

By | Web Ninja Updates | No Comments

We’re proud to announce we just launched our Dynamic Plan! This web services plan was developed to make your life easier. Once you launch a website there are a million different things that need done:

  • Site updates
  • Technology upgrades
  • Security monitoring
  • Social networking
  • Marketing ads
  • Email list development
  • SEO
  • Graphics
  • Analytics…

The list goes on, and on … and on. We have watched our clients struggle to keep up with the ongoing demands of owning a website, so

We found a solution!

Our Dynamic Web Services Plan allows you to SET YOUR OWN BUDGET. From there, we work with you to determine your priorities and a path to success. Continual updates and progress means you stay ahead of the competition.

That’s all for now. Just thought you should know. Visit our Dynamic Plan page to learn more and to get started. Get the peace of mind you deserve knowing all our web services expertise is at your fingertips.

♡ Web Ninja

Celebrate Freedom: Freedom for All

By | Website Tips | No Comments

By now you’re probably thinking we like to celebrate, here at Web.Ninja. Well, you’re right. We work hard and we play hard. Life is short so we are making the most of it. Life is also precious, that is why today and tomorrow we celebrate freedom — freedom for all.

I was curious about the symbology and history of the Statue of Liberty so did some research (always good to keep learning new things). We all know the French gifted the Statue of Liberty as a symbol of the French-U.S. alliance during the American Revolution. What I didn’t know was how deep the meaning went for the French.

France, at the time, was going through their own revolution, the rise of the Enlightenment — a movement that sought life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. However, at the time, “liberty” suggested violent revolution. The architects of Lady Liberty believed that peace and freedom could be attained without the use of violence. The Statue of Liberty was named Liberty Enlightening the World and was designed to “be above conservatism and liberalism and above radical revolutions and political turmoil.”

Now THIS was a revolutionary idea. It STILL is. Now, war only happens because people pick up guns or bombs or other means of violence. But, that doesn’t create peace, or freedom for all. Freedom and peace happen when we all choose NOT to use violence. It is a stretch, and it is a dream, but that is why we celebrate freedom. If we all celebrate freedom each and every day, we will count our blessings. We will see the good in others. We will see others’ suffering and lend a helping hand. We will listen more than we speak, and when we speak we will use words of kindness, compassion, and goodwill.

So, today, let us all celebrate freedom by creating peace and freedom for all. The power is in our hands.

Peace to you. Peace to all.
~Web.Ninja

Photo credit: Daryan Shamkhali
Quote credit: National Park Service

celebrate diversity, celebrate pride, celebrate life

Celebrate Diversity, Celebrate Pride, Celebrate Life

By | Website Tips | No Comments

In May of 2016, President Obama declared June 2016 as “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month.” Along with that he stated, “I call upon the people of the United States to eliminate prejudice everywhere it exists, and to celebrate the great diversity of the American people.”

So, we’re picking up that flag again this June and declaring, as President Obama stated, that “love is love and that no person should be judged by anything but the content of their character.”

Here at Web Ninja, we celebrate life. Life provides an endless rainbow of diversity. And while some see differences as threatening, we view differences as enriching, inspiring, enlightening, and a wonderful way to experience all the wonderfulness this life has to offer.

Celebrating Pride is about celebrating life and celebrating diversity. It’s about seeing the good in everyone. Pride isn’t just for the LGBT community. It is for everyone. So find a local Pride festival and hold those rainbow flags high. The bright colors of the rainbow represent you. And me. And all of us, and all our bright, beautiful differences.

Celebrate Diversity. Celebrate Life. Make the most of the time you have. Give love, love, love.

See you at the festivities!
~PJ

kick butt

“Houston, we have lift off.”

By | Website Tips | No Comments

We’re really excited here at Web Ninja to launch our new brand and site. We are a cadre of web, marketing and business experts who help individuals, entrepreneurs and businesses like yours succeed on the web. And not just succeed, we want to help you kick butt!

You see, we’re not just interested in building websites and running ads. We want to change the world. That means empowering you and your clients, your fans, your community to live better lives and achieve their goals. So excited are we, we’re shouting,

“Houston, we have liftoff.”

There’s no turning back. Just upward and onward. To the stars. We have high hopes and and ambitious goals for helping lots of people, and lots of businesses. So, join us.

Join us in helping your fans-clients-customers-prospects-community. Help us in changing the world.

What are your goals?

What do you hope to accomplish? How are you going to accomplish it? You will need to use the web to reach your audience both near and far. With us as your Web Team we can accomplish great things.

Let’s get your message out to the world and build your business. Build your community. Let’s get your own website launch together so you’ll shout your own “We have liftoff.”

Well, we’re gonna sign out for now. Lots to do. For now — welcome. Check out our services. And then, get in touch with us. Let’s see how we can help you kick butt.