Perfect Landing Page for Utah Airport FBO

Perfect Landing Page for Utah Airport FBO

webdesign

I first met the Gardiner family more than 25 years ago. One thing I knew from the beginning is that flying and airplanes was a big part of the family. In fact, the family business was running a FBO (fixed based operator) at the Vernal, Utah airport. What they didn’t have for a long time was a Web site.

When the patriarch, John, passed away; Dinaland Aviation was taken over by his kids. Each of them assumed a specific role and Russ wanted to get a Web site in place. Our goal as a start was a single landing page that covered the most important information pilots needed. We’ll add new pages over time as new content is created.

Dinaland Aviation FAQ

When a pilot is planning to visit Vernal, there is a specific set of information that could be important to them. Most of that information is included in an FAQ accordion. When they click on a specific section, it will expand with details on that item. In the example above, it shows the local weather followed by the other section titles.

Dinaland Aviation Fuel Prices

From our discussions, the most important piece of information was the current price of fuel. Not only did it need to be displayed prominently, it has to be easy for the folks at Dinaland to update the prices without my assistance. A row was created above the site footer (see example above) that displays the prices and it can be embedded on other pages as desired. It was set up using the Divi theme so that Dinaland could change the prices with only a very minimal amount of training.

Of course the site was launched during the COVID-19 shutdown when the airport is receiving a minimal number of flights. When the planes are ready for takeoff, the site will be ready for them!

New Look For Neighborhood Wine Bar

New Look For Neighborhood Wine Bar

makeover

I was enjoying dinner at the neighborhood wine bar last December when the owner approached and asked me a few questions about their Web site. It was originally built using GoDaddy’s Website Builder and now they were having trouble making changes to it. Some ideas were bounced back and forth to come up with a plan for a makeover. Let’s first look at the old home page.

Wine Cellar Nopolo Home Before

While it didn’t look horrible, there were definitely ways we could freshen up the look. Unfortunately the information was outdated and the site didn’t work well on mobile devices. Given that it is also a popular spot for dinner, it was also important to show off some of their most popular dishes. Below is a portion of the new home page with updated info and photos that make you hungry. For those outside of Mexico, note that the prices are in pesos!

Wine Cellar Nopolo Home After

Not only does the new design look better, it was designed so that it works every bit as well on mobile devices. This is important for good Google rankings, but also important to the many people who browse on their phones.

Previously only a portion of the menu was available on the site and the prices had changed since their were posted. Below you’ll see a portion of the old menu page.

Wine Cellar Nopolo Menu Before

There are actually multiple menus that need to be presented. Food menus are available in both English and Spanish. Wines have two menus, one by the bottle and the other by the glass. What we didn’t know when the makeover plan was implemented was that COVID-19 would require all food to be carry-out or delivery.

Thankfully everything was designed in a way that made the transition easy. We simply needed to add a little information about changes in the law and more contact links. Below is the top part of the new menu page and each page of the menus are displayed below this on the site.

Wine Cellar Nopolo Menu After

For those of us living in the neighborhood, we know exactly where to find Wine Cellar. But that isn’t always the case for someone coming from outside of the area. Their previous design had a couple of versions of the map. One zooomed way out the show the location of Loreto and another showing how to get to the restaurant.

Wine Cellar Nopolo Visit Before

Yes, the map was very important and we decided to embed a live Google map into the new site so visitors were able to zoom in and out as needed. A side benefit is that it links to the Wine Cellar’s Google My Business page. A contact form was also included so questions could be asked or orders could be placed for carry-out and delivery.

Wine Cellar Nopolo Contact After

Once a site is released, some clients prefer to make minor changes themselves. Ofter designers will cringe as those attempts at changes can change the look of the site or even break it. Even though this client had zero WordPress experience, I was pleasantly surprised that they were able to change some of the text when local laws changed. This was at least in part because the site was designed so that even a novice could find what they needed to change.

This site was a very small project, but the timing of the makeover couldn’t have come at a better time. It allowed the restaurant to keep food coming as the locals were practicing social distancing. Give the new site a look and stop in the next time you are in the neighborhood.

If your site is in need of a makeover, reach out with the details and maybe we can help you!

Just a WordPress Website Makeover

Just a WordPress Website Makeover

makeover

Before we talk about the makeover, I need to tell the story of how this project happened. Roll the clock back to 2015 and I saw a post on Facebook about a free book written by Jinx Schwartz. That was around the time I started to read books on Kindle so a free book was very appealing. Even better that the story sounded fun to me. I read the book, Just Deserts if you’re curious, and really enjoyed it. At the end of the book was a link to the author’s Web site and let’s just say it needed some help.

Divi WordPress ThemeSoon after I’d read the book, I started using the Divi theme to build WordPress Websites. I wanted to build a site where I could learn Divi and try out new things. For me, building a site for Jinx Schwartz was an obvious choice. Once I had the first draft of the site finished, I sent her a link. While she was interested in using the site I’d build, nothing happened. Every now and then I’d try out something new on the site. If there was a problem, it really wan’t a problem since nobody knew about the site.

Time passed. I’ve now read more of the books (I’ve now read 12 of them). Occasionally Jinx and I would trade an email about making the site live. She was the writer, her husband Mad Dog was the tech person so I’d need to work with him. He fell ill in 2017 and passed away that March. Jinx kept writing books, but the Website was on the back burner for a bit. Then as I’m walking the streets of Loreto in December of 2018, I ran into Jinx. It was the first time we’d actually met in person!

Jinx Schwartz and Foster Coburn

The project got back on track, but we still had a major issue. Like with many clients, she wasn’t sure hot to login the the registrar for her domain name. Until we solved that, nothing could be done. More time passed and we finally got it done in 2020. Within hours, the new site finally went live.

The Old Site

The screenshot below was taken just a few hours before the new site went live. Four of her books weren’t on the site at all and one book had a broken graphic. The design also left a lot to be desired.

Jinx Schwartz Old Home Page

The New Site

First and foremost, the new design had to put her books front and center. I wanted to make sure the new books would automatically appear on the home page from newest to oldest. The new site had to work well on all devices, specifically phones and tablets. I also thought it would be good to have a dedicated page for each of the books showing the cover, the description and a link to get the book from Amazon. Divi’s project feature was perfect for this!

Jinx Schwartz New Home Page

Mission accomplished! Check out the new site and get yourselves copies of Jinx’s books. They are a fun read!

Notification About Cookies for Privacy Laws

Notification About Cookies for Privacy Laws

webdesign

Two big laws have been passed covering privacy online and more are sure to come in the future. While most Web site owners are happy to comply with the laws, they struggle with how to do it easily. Let’s see if we can at least cover the basics with minimal effort.

The two existing laws are General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which took effect on May 25, 2018 and California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) which takes effect on January 1, 2020. We are not lawyers and do not take this post as legal advice. We are simply providing one possible tool for complying with these new laws.

One part of GDPR is notifying site users that you are using cookies. A tool to assist with compliance of that part of the law is Cookie Notice for GDPR. While it does not explicitly mention CCPA, our feeling is that it will also cover the upcoming law in future updates.

Cookie Notice for GDPR

To start, add the Cookie Notice for GDPR plugin to your site. It is free! Once you have it installed, go to the Settings and configure how you want it to work on your site. This includes the message it displays, color schemes, type of button and whether or not it links to your privacy policy. In total, it should take less than five minutes to have it up and running.

No, this does not magically bring your site into compliance. But it does handle one step of the process very quickly and at a price we all like—FREE!

Resolving Divi Theme Builder Conflicts With Related Posts & Social Sharing

Resolving Divi Theme Builder Conflicts With Related Posts & Social Sharing

webdesign

We are big fans of the Divi Theme from Elegant Themes and use it almost exclusively on our projects. As they released the much anticipated v4.x of Divi, we made plans to evaluate and then slowly and safely update the sites we designed with Divi.

Most of the issues were minor and there were easy workarounds. But we ran into a big problem when we took advantage of one of the new features. Their Theme Builder feature enables the ability to do amazing things with the header, footer and other parts of a site. It was tested on a couple of sites with no issues and then we created a new header for our Graphics Unleashed site and had some big problems.

Almost every type of content in WordPress is a post since the platform was originally built for blogging. Things built with Theme Builder are a custom post type. Unfortunately this caused issues with a couple of tools we were using on the site as they were set to display below posts.

The first conflict was with Easy Social Share Buttons for WordPress. It has a variety of functions, but we used one of them to display social sharing buttons below each blog post. Unfortunately they were now displaying below the header instead. The only immediate solution was to turn off the social sharing buttons.

As Elegant Themes, makers of Divi, also make the Monarch plug-in. Monarch also has social sharing buttons and we felt that Elegant Themes would have made sure their products worked well together. Unfortunately the same problem existed when Monarch was activted. So the best solution for now was to go without social sharing buttons. Yes, we could have probably found a workaround, but it was time to move on.

We also had a problem with related posts. On this site we were using the related posts functionality provided by the Jetpack plugin. Just like the social sharing buttons, the related posts were displaying under the header. After exploring alternatives, we discovered the Contextual Related Posts plugin was a solution though we needed to tweak the settings.

First, we turned them on in the General tab of the settings. This did not solve the problem as related posts were still displaying below the header.

Contextual Related Posts Automatically Add

To solve the problem, we went to the List Tuning tab and checked Limit to same post type as shown below.

Limit to same post type

Now the Related Posts were only displaying below the blog posts as desired. While we were unable to solve both issues, solving one was better than nothing.

Of course these issues were reported to the support team at Elegant Themes. They acknowledged it was a bug and that it would be addressed in an update in the near future.

Eight Tutorials For Improving Your SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Eight Tutorials For Improving Your SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

seo

Today we have the last part of the series started four weeks ago. First we covered Six Essential Guides to Mastering SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Next we went over Six Tools for Improving Your SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Now we have eight tutorials helping you improve the SEO on your own site or that of a client.

Photo by unsplash-logoFancycrave