We help companies in Northern Ireland to establish their products and services on the Internet, to sell to the local or international market.
Scribble Designs specialise in standards-based web design and the creation of attractive websites that are easy to use. We believe that a well-designed site will provide the best return on investment by making it easier for your customers to buy your product or get in touch with you.
We have proven expertise in marketing websites through strong search engine optimisation and link-building techniques that will increase the number of visitors that come to your site.
In addition, we are one of the first web design firms in Northern Ireland to offer consulting on blogging based on solid, practical experience!
From The Blog...
The only drawback? I couldn’t get Writer working with Ultimate Tag Warrior. Until this evening…
Although direct blog posts have been thin on the ground recently here at Scribble Designs, I have been squeezing in a little bit of technical writing over at Performancing.
Interesting posts I’ve read between 3rd July and 24th July: Read the rest of this entry »
I’ve been working a lot with Drupal recently as a content management system for a variety of websites. I must admit, I love the flexibility of the system. However, one thing the default install is missing is the ability to automatically generate sitemaps for search engines to crawl.
Providing a sitemap to the search engines basically gives them an inventory of the pages in your site. It’s useful in helping them to find and index older and possibly orphaned content in your website that they wouldn’t otherwise be able to find. Read the rest of this entry »
Being a web-oriented kind of guy, I spend a lot of time on social networks and that type of site. I’ve probably got an account on most of them.
The social network I’m enjoying most at the moment is Facebook. And for a very simple reason: it isn’t centred around accumulating a list of strangers and calling them friends. When I initially signed up for Facebook, I allowed it to rifle through my contacts and see who else I knew was already a member. Interestingly, it showed up a list of people I’ve spoken to in the past – Darren Rowse from ProBlogger, Mick Fealty from Slugger O’Toole, a number of publicists I’ve worked with for Unreality TV and many more.
I’ve enjoyed the way Facebook allows you to keep up to date with friends and colleagues. OK, the new applications are getting a little bit annoying, but I reckon that’ll settle down once the novelty wears off!
I really like the fact that you don’t have to accept everyone as a friend. Using a social network this way keeps it relevant and that’s where the most value comes out of a social network like Facebook. I wonder if someday people will print their preferred social networking addresses on business cards. You can bet that’s probably happening already.
Connecting With Me On Facebook
If we know each other and you want to hook up on Facebook, here’s my Facebook profile page.
Other Social Networking Sites
What other social networking sites have you used, and which do you prefer? I’m on LinkedIn, but I have to say it’s not nearly as interesting as Facebook. Plus any site with a premium subscription model turns me off right away. *cough* I’m looking at you Friends Reunited…..
Interesting posts I’ve read between 26th June and 30th June:
- Elliot Jay Stocks – I stumbled across this site today, and it’s one of the most unique, beautiful designs I’ve seen on the web in a long time. Inspirational stuff..
- Weird Advertising Characters on Flickr – In a break from web design/search engine links, here’s a set of offbeat advertising characters hosted on Flickr
- Web Design: 7 Surefire Styles that Work – Very nice article and screenshots of different visual styles that can be used in websites. Worth a look if you’re trying to break out of the Web 2.0 mould!
- Top 25 Blog Directories – Useful list of top 25 blog directories. I don’t agree with all of them – the Yahoo! directory is very exclusive and I don’t know what real chance you have of getting listed in there. The DMOZ directory – last I heard – hasn’t accepted new submissions for a couple of years now. Nevertheless, a good starting point for anyone wanting to promote a blog.
- SEO & Importance of Valid Source Code – Does W3C compliance impact a site’s search rankings? Always an interesting topic – I’ve always considered valid code to be ultimately easier to crawl and index. This article takes a different stance.
Have you ever wondered what would happen if Google dropped your website from its index? This scenario is the stuff of webmaster nightmares, yet the stalwart SEO, Jennifer Laycock is about to embark on an experiment to create a popular business website without any assistance from the big four search engines.
And to put her money where her mouth is, she’s barring the big engines from indexing her site so that it won’t appear in their results pages. The minx.
Jennifer previously wrote a series of posts about building a successful online business in 30 days, and she cracked that task. Her breastfeeding blog now brings in over $1,000 per month in revenue. She cites two main reasons for embarking on this anti-Google experiment:
First, those four engines are not the only sources of search traffic. Blog engines like Technorati, smaller search engines and directories and the search features within social media sites like Flickr and YouTube all serve up traffic and leads to web sites. Things like good old fashioned link building also come into play. I’ll also be exploring more areas of social media marketing including creative ways to market within communities without crossing the line from helpful member to annoying advertiser.
Second, the work that I do on this site in the early months will lay the foundation for solid search engine rankings down the road. Nearly every business finds their way into the major engines eventually. The goal here is to build the type of content and link foundations that will help the site quickly rise to the top when we do allow the spiders to come in and play.
I’m intrigued to see how this experiment will pan out and what techniques Jennifer will use in building up her business using predominantly social means. And, of course, I’ll be watching to see if she uses entirely above board techniques, or if she’ll dip her toes in ethically shady territory.
However, the glaringly obvious criticism of Jennifer’s approach is that she has the exposure of Search Engine Journal to help her market the site initially. For the rest of us, we’d be starting a little bit behind Jennifer, as this latest project will receive a fair bit of attention from the SEO world.
Oh, the site? It’s called Bento Yum. There’s a backlink for you Jennifer!
The rise of social media has hit the mainstream. Unfortunately, the press have tunnel vision when it comes to the Internet and every story that is written focusses on the massive profit potential of a great social networking site.
Digg, as you know is one of the leading social media sites. It attracts reams of visitors each day and a popular story can cause a surge of visitors to a website that can sometimes crash the web server. This is known as the ‘Digg Effect’.
Somewhere along the line, an open source clone of Digg appeared called Pligg. Pligg allows you to set up your own Digg-like website. Ohhh, instant riches! Fame and glory in your little web community. Not to mention the babes you’ll attract…
Community Building Takes Work. Hard Work.
Building an online community is not an easy task. If you’ve got the dollar signs in your eyes and you want to make fast money, a Digg clone is not for you. You’ve got to:
- Choose a niche. There are already a ton of dominant social media sites. You’ll never overtake Digg using clone software. Logic dictates that you’re better off choosing a niche and focussing on that. Add value to your site by linking to valuable resources.
- Design and brand the site – look too much like Digg, and you’ll look like a cheap imitation. If they wanted Digg, they’ve gone there.
- You’ll need to promote the site. That means advertising dollars and other types of promotion around the niche you’ve chosen.
- You need to build a user base. Or were you planning to be the sole contributor to the site? You can only find and link to so much content on your own. It’s the community element that makes these sites work.
All this is leading to an excellent post over on Upstart Blogger about the myths surrounding setting up and running a Pligg site. If your thirst to be the next Kevin Rose is close to insatiable, you might want to read this first. It won’t happen overnight.
Interesting posts I’ve read between 1st June and 22nd June:
- How Drupal Will Save The World – Not so much a thesis on how Drupal could end global poverty, but an assessment of what needs to be done to make Drupal more attractive to non-techie users.
- Drupal’s Designer Future – Interesting discussion about Drupal and the need for better design within the community and better theme support. It’s a recurring topic with Drupal and one that needs attention. I might just lend a hand….
- Drupal and FeedBurner – Handy tutorial for integrating FeedBuurner with Drupal, and link to a Drupal module for FeedBurner which should make it even easier. I’m working quite a bit with Drupal at the moment, so this stuff is always useful!
- DIY PR – "So what I am recommending is not howto manage an agency, but something more radical: not hiring an agency at all. Here are ten reasons why."
- Should you switch off adverts for members of your site? – Should you consider switching off advertising for registered users to improve their experience? Seems like a good idea, as it’ll encourage signups and regular visitors don’t generally click adverts. Worth a read.
Interesting posts I’ve read between 26th May and 31st May:
- Web Strategy: How to evolve your irrelevant corporate website – Jeremiah takes a look at how corporates can no longer control what’s being said about them by a website alone – there’s a shift in web usage now that leads to people searching for information on social networks. How can businesses embrace that shift?
- Supercharge your image borders – Nice, consise tutorial showing how to improve the appearance of images by giving them custom borders
- Plugins To Make WordPress Stickier – Aaron lists a number of WordPress plugins that help make your blog ‘stickier’ for visitors.
- Styling the Button Element with Sliding Doors – Very nice, simple tutorial on how to get custom, graphical buttons for your site using the sliding doors CSS technique.
- Data Tables and Cascading Style Sheets Gallery – Zen Garden-like gallery of CSS Table styles