Bryan Giese, Project Manager at Signalfire, will be a volunteer escort for a Korean War veteran on the September 17th Stars and Stripes Honor Flight to Washington DC. Volunteers who escort Stars and Stripes Honor Flight veterans, also called Guardians, go through a stringent process and are required to cover their own expenses—including air fare.

“I applied to be a Guardian three years ago,” says Signalfire’s Giese, “at the time, I doubted the chance would come.”

All of that changed over the summer when Giese received a voicemail from Stars and Stripes Honor Flight. (more…)

Madison-based LSM Chiropractic coordinated with Badger Group of Fort Atkinson and Signalfire of Delavan to launch an award-winning, mobile responsive website. Launched in Spring 2016, LSM Chiropractic’s new website is easier for visitors to navigate, provides more options for potential patients, and mobile-specific features helpful for users driving to or making an appointment.

“The user experience is critical,” says Sarah Lobdell, Project Manager at Signalfire, the Delavan-based digital agency who designed and constructed the website, “A great mobile experience was LSM’s priority.”

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10 Things Your Marketing Outfitters Want You to Know Before Developing a Great Website

1.) Websites Are Born

Successful websites are born. Websites need care, attention, and a steady diet of content to make it on the web. We strongly advise against building a website and just letting it sit.

2.) Build Your Website Right, The First Time

No half-baked plans or development shortcuts with Signalfire. It might take us a bit longer and our budget might be a bit higher, but we build websites for the long haul.

3.) The Cost to Develop A Website Is More Than Programming

Developing a website is more than programming costs. There are four main segments in planning your website budget. Domain name, hosting, development, and maintenance. Read about them here.

4.) Content is Everything

Great website content powers successful websites. Clients are responsible for writing the content. If you need help writing content, we can help. While you know your business best our writers can sit with you to create fantastic written content.

5.) The Power of Photography

Impactful websites also need stunning photography. If you don’t have photography, we can recommend some great photographers. Stock photos will work in a pinch. Don’t just pull images from Google Image Search. You will get a lovely cease and desist letter from the image owner or a bill from the photographer. Yes, they win in court.

6.) SEO Is Not a One-Time Thing

Being successful with search engines is a priority for every website owner. Good search performance takes time, a lot of content, and keeping your website up to date. Nothing happens overnight.

7.) Live and Die By Metrics

Learn to love data. Tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console will give you in-depth insight into the customers coming to your website. This is where the real search engine performance happens.

8.) Your Computer Versus My Computer

No two web browsers are alike which means your website will display slightly differently across different browsers and operating systems. From the wide variety of devices to the even wider variety of user options, understanding that few users will see the website exactly the same way is important.

9.) Murphy’s Law

When you have a website, stuff happens. Hosting will go down. Your website might get hacked. You will lose your password. Please stay calm. It will happen to everyone at some point. Signalfire can help address stuff when it happens.

10.) Even Websites Have a Shelf Life

A website will be ready for a redesign in about two (2) to three (3) years. In about that much time, enough will have changes for mobile devices, browsers, and user behavior that a redesign will make sense. Plan for it by making a list of websites you like and websites you don’t. Assemble a list of features and functions that might become crucial to your marketing efforts. Most importantly — never stop updating your website.

Looking for more help to get ready for your website development? We’ve created several worksheets to help. Otherwise, request a quote from Signalfire.

Small Business Website Development Worksheet

Small Business Website Development Worksheet

E-Commerce Project Worksheet

E-Commerce Website Planning Worksheet

Building a Website Involves More Than Just Development

When planning website development, don’t overlook the details that fall outside traditional website development costs.

There are a lot of considerations when building a website. Most small businesses and non-profits immediately look to the programming and design as the only elements that impact budget. There are additional considerations that can have a huge impact on the development process. Considering details such as choosing a domain name or selecting the right maintenance plan can give you a more realistic outlook for budgeting.

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Signalfire, a Delavan-based branding and digital agency, announced the new tourism website for Sturgeon Bay Visitor Center (www.sturgeonbay.net) in Door County and the website for Madison-based Chiropractic group LSM Chiropractic (www.lsmchiro.com) have both received Graphic Design USA’s 2016 American Web Design Award.

Graphic Design USA’s annual American Web Design Award received over 1,200 entries in 2016. Winners were selected based on design, user experience quality, and quality of web development.

“We’re honored to receive recognition,” says Signalfire’s owner Matthew Olson, “our team of designers and developers worked hard to make both websites a real success. This award recognizes their creativity, expertise, and passion.”

Sturgeon Bay Door County Website DevelopmentSturgeon Bay Visitor Center Website Sets Standard for Tourism Promotion

“The Sturgeon Bay Visitor Center website needed to deliver an incredible user experience,” says Lisa Oren, Signalfire’s project manager for tourism-related clients. “From our initial creative designs to the details of the customized business membership experience—the website has been an incredible example of what Signalfire can do.”

“Signalfire has been our marketing partner since 2007,” says Sturgeon Bay Visitor Center’s Executive Director, Pam Sieler. “When the time came to develop a fresh, new website, we knew Signalfire was the best choice.”

The Sturgeon Bay Visitor Center is a fully mobile responsive website and features a sortable, searchable business directory; a printable community calendar; a member support system that allows every business member to login to make edits, renew subscriptions, and place calendar events; and a host of other features to make it a premier tourism website.

Madison Website DesignLSM Chiropractic Website Meant for Mobile

“Mobile users were the priority,” says Sarah Lobdell, project manager at Signalfire. “From brainstorming the first sketches to rolling out the finished website, keeping a great mobile experience was our primary goal.”

LSM Chiropractic needed a website that helped patients make appointments, find a chiropractor that accepted their insurance, get directions to the nearest location, and provide a library of useful information ranging from exercise videos to product suggestions. Each feature had to function and look beautiful on mobile devices.

“It’s a compliment to our creative team and our development team,” says Olson. “LSMChiro.com has become the website we showcase for mobile user experience.”

Signalfire continues to develop a reputation for creative marketing, website design, and brand strategy.

“We’re known for our website design, but we’ve also won awards in logo design, graphic design, and video production,” says Olson. “We’re a full service design agency serving clients in numerous industries across North America.”

Signalfire provides award-winning design and creative services that include logo design, graphic design, web design, social media management, email marketing, content management, and video production. To contact Signalfire, click here or call (262) 725-4500.

Signalfire’s Matthew Olson will be presenting a special breakout website marketing session at the Walworth County Business EXPO and Career Fair on Tuesday, April 19th at 10:15 am. The presentation, “NOW WHAT? What to do with your business website AFTER launch” will offer small businesses and non-profit organizations insight into website maintenance and marketing strategies to make the most of their web presence. Discussions will include search engine strategies, email marketing, social media, and blogging.

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Website Design For Industrial Vacuuming and Environmental Services Company Focuses On Great User Experience

Great Lakes Power Vac’s new easy-to-use website focuses on delivering content to its visitors. Through educational materials like blog posts and white papers, visitors can familiarize themselves with the many services the company provides.

Great Lakes Power Vac (GLPV) contracted with Signalfire, an award-winning digital marketing agency in Delavan to develop the website. Signalfire began with an extensive needs analysis of GLPV.

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Newest edition showcases over 250 members and countless activities in Door County’s largest city.

Signalfire is proud to announce the publication of the 2016 Activity Guide for Sturgeon Bay, Door County. Working in conjunction with the Sturgeon Bay Visitor Center in the heart of one of Wisconsin’s busiest tourism regions, the 2016 Activity Guide contains useful travel and destination information for Door County’s largest and busiest city.

“This represents the tenth year Signalfire has coordinated with Sturgeon Bay Visitor Center in developing this activity guide,” says Signalfire owner Matthew Olson. “We’re thrilled to be part of SBVC’s team in promoting such a dynamic city.”

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Many small businesses have been using social media wrong. Very wrong.

Small businesses and many non-profit organizations have been trying to build audiences on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, and likely several others. Growing the number of fans, followers, and subscribers is a mission because it is an easy metric to measure. Small businesses see audience building as a way to increase customers or leads. Increasing engagement on social media brings about more leads, so naturally a business will want to engage as large of an audience as possible.

And it’s here where you’ve been getting it all wrong.

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Whether your small business is manufacturing tight tolerance sanitary pumps or offering bookkeeping services to fellow small businesses, improved search engine performance requires getting good content on your website. Regularly.

For years, most businesses labored under the misconception when it came to search performance that great content didn’t matter as much as some secret lines of programming. Search engine optimization (SEO) was this secret wizardry that was only shared with a select few at an astronomical price. Nothing is further from the truth.

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