Help! I Think My Website Has Malware

malware

Many people think only websites that collect personal information are vulnerable to malware.  In reality, any website can fall victim.  Malware – short for malicious software – can cause numerous issues.  Sometimes it generates links and advertisements on your website. However, in worst cases, cybercriminals use malware to take control of your website and install programs on the computers of your site visitors in an attempt to steal data, passwords, photos, credit card information and anything else that is of interest.

Knowing the signs of malware is the first line of defense.  If you suspect your website has been infected with malware, it is extremely important to address it sooner than later because:

  1. You don’t want the malware to put any of your customers or site visitors at risk.
  2. Browsers and search engines will begin to identify your site as containing malware, which is a red flag to both existing and future customers.
  3. Most importantly, once Google discovers your website has malware, you have a limited time to clean the malware and send a proper appeal to Google before they remove your website from their search engine.

If you suspect your website has malware, a professional can scan your site, identify the type of malware that has infected your website, clean and resolve the malware, and submit any necessary appeals to search engines to ensure your website is restored to good standing.  How do you know if your website might be infected with malware?  Here are a few signs:

  1. Your website becomes very slow for no apparent reason.
  2. Your website suddenly crashes or freezes.
  3. Your website is being re-directed somewhere else.
  4. You notice ads or pop-ups that you have not enabled on your website.
  5. There is a sudden or rapid drop or increase in traffic.
  6. Browsers (i.e. Google Chrome, Safari, Firefox, etc.) send warning messages about your site containing malware.
  7. Google Search Console sends you a message that your website has been hacked.

If you’ve experienced these or any other anomalies, your website may have been hacked and infected with malware.  Taking immediate action is key to successfully resolving malware on your website.  If you think you’ve been hacked, give us a call right away and we will conduct a complimentary evaluation and malware scan on your website.

Adobe Business Catalyst End of Life Announcement

migration service

If your company’s website is built in Adobe Business Catalyst, you are probably in the process of deciding what to do now that Adobe has officially issued an “End of Life” announcement.  First, don’t panic.  Second, know that you do have options!

Although none of our current clients are affected by this announcement, we understand the difficulties this has caused for thousands of companies.  If you are one of the companies now scrambling as a result of the Adobe Business Catalyst End of Life announcement, we are here to help.

  • The Site Crew will offer companies with a website built on Adobe Business Catalyst a discounted rate on migrating their website to a new platform.
  • We will also offer our special client rate for ongoing website support and search engine optimization services for companies we migrate to a new platform.

We advise acting sooner than later, as Adobe has indicated that no new features will be developed for Business Catalyst.  They have also noted that while technical support will still be available, priority will be given to platform migration inquiries. Additionally, if you are going to continue to invest in your online presence, it is advisable to do so on a platform that will not be discontinued.

As of now, Adobe Business Catalyst customers have until March 26, 2021 to export their data.  Adobe has indicated that data will not be available for download beyond the end of service date.  If you would like to get started on migrating your Adobe Business Catalyst website to a new platform, call or e-mail us today.

Mobile-First Indexing on Google

Mobile-First Indexing on Google

Mobile-first indexing is well underway at Google.  Since mobile has become a more widely used platform to perform searches, Google will now utilize the mobile version of the website when it indexes and ranks pages.  As a result, we expect to see search engine rankings drop for websites that are not well optimized for mobile.

What does this mean for your website?

  1. If we developed a responsive website for you within the last five years AND you have been subscribing to Ongoing Support (which includes version, theme and plug-in updates), then your website is already optimized for mobile.
  2. If your website is more than five years old OR you have not been subscribing to Ongoing Support, please contact us for a complimentary mobile review.
  3. If we did not build your website, please contact us for a complimentary mobile review.

Google evaluates all desktop and mobile content to determine mobile friendliness.  We have and will continue to place great importance on the mobile User Experience (UX) as it significantly affects the indexing and ranking of websites.

Sometimes when we develop a responsive website, a client will ask us to organize content and/or navigation in a way that adversely affects the responsiveness of their site.  When such a request is made, we do inform the client of the negative impact their suggestion(s) may have on the mobile optimization of their website. Please keep in mind that since Google has implemented mobile-first indexing, it will be now be crucial for websites to deliver an optimal mobile UX.

If you've received a notification from Google about your website's mobile-first indexing, forward the notice to us for a review.

Have questions or would like a complimentary mobile review of your website?  Send us an e-mail.  We’re here to help!

Should I Build My Website Myself or Hire a Professional?

Professional Website Developer
There is much more that goes into developing a website than most people realize.  If you have the knowledge required to build a website yourself then you may want to give it a shot.  However, time is money and it does take significant time to properly develop an effective website that ranks well on search engines and helps your business grow.

Website development involves a process of checks and balances.  A website that violates search engine best practices can actually hurt your business more than help.  Once Google and/or other search engines index a page of your site it counts either “for” or “against” your search engine rankings.  If search engines index pages that do not fall within best practices, you are compromising your overall rankings.

Let’s take a look at some reasons why you should consider hiring a professional website developer who is also knowledgeable in search engine optimization (SEO):

User Experience (UX)

We design your site with the UX in mind. The UX is important when it comes conversions on your website. It also plays a role in SEO.  Think of your website as your online storefront.  Would you patronize a brick and mortar store that is cluttered and disorganized or choose one that is neat, tidy and makes it easy to find what you need?  Most of us would choose the latter.  The same philosophy rings true with websites.  If your site is cluttered, difficult to navigate and not appealing to the eye, then people are likely to go elsewhere.  You have 3-5 seconds to capture the attention of the user.  If your UX is poor, then there is a greater likelihood they will navigate off of your site.  Search engines also consider the UX when it comes to rankings.  A poor UX does not bode well for search engine rankings.

Mobile First Indexing

Google recently announced the implementation of mobile first indexing.  This means that Google will now consider the mobile version of a website first when it comes to search engine rankings.  So, if your website does not function or display well on mobile, there is now an increased likelihood of it not ranking well on Google.  There is an art to designing a website to display well on both desktop and mobile.  We have been developing websites with both desktop and mobile users in mind for years.

Optimization of Pages

If you want your website to show up in searches, then your pages need to be optimized for search engines.  Our team of experts writes and optimizes each page of your website to ensure the content is both appealing to the user; and includes the proper elements, formatting and SEO metadata to rank on search engines.

Overall Quality and Function

Poor quality websites and websites that do not function properly not only adversely affect the UX, but they also tend to not rank well on search engines.    Users won’t come back and visit a site that is of poor quality and search engines will penalize sites that do not function properly. We take time to ensure each site is built to the highest industry standards!

These days, your online presence is everything.  Ensuring your website is developed properly from the beginning is important now more than ever.  We often have business owners who either built their websites themselves or hired an unqualified website company come to us in crisis because their website is not functioning or ranking well on search engines.  Investing in a professional and experienced website developer can save you a lot of time, money and headaches in the long run.

Need a new website or assistance with an existing site?   We’re here to help!

 

WalkerTax.com Launches

Walker Accounting

TheSiteCrew.com, a full service web design and search marketing company serving clients nationwide, is proud to announce the launch of a new website for Walker Accounting & Tax in Walterboro, SC.  The new website can be found at https://walkertax.com.

TheSiteCrew.com custom designed this website with a clean uncluttered design, global navigation including a site search, social media integration, and on-page search engine optimization to enhance the user experience.

This new website utilizes responsive web design. Responsive web design (RWD) is an approach to web design which makes web pages render well on a variety of devices and window or screen sizes including tablets and smartphones. When viewing the website on different devices a visitor will see the site content shift and change to fit the screen and settings of their device – no more zooming in and out or scrolling right and left.

For optimal security, this website utilizes the secure HTTPS protocol. Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is the secure version of HTTP, the protocol over which data is sent between the visitor’s web browser and the website that the visitor is connected to. The ‘S' at the end of HTTPS stands for ‘Secure'. Communication between the visitor’s web browser and the website is encrypted.

TheSiteCrew.com specializes in producing beautiful, user-friendly, search engine optimized websites that effectively promote a client’s business. If you are considering a new website or redesign, contact email@thesitecrew.com for a free website analysis and quote.

 

Evolution of a Brandmark: Fairfield County Library

Fairfield County Library

We were proud to have had the opportunity to work with the Fairfield County, South Carolina library system to create their new logo/brandmark and website.  They came to us with a unique idea that we were excited to bring to life!

The first rule of design is that all design must have a purpose.  The second rule is to listen to your client.  During our initial discussion with the client, the most important concepts in this case were history and legacy.  The main branch of the Fairfield County library is located in a building which exemplified both history and legacy.  Developing a concept which encompassed the history of the building and the colonial legacy of the region – along with an element of modern design – was key to creating a memorable brandmark for such an important landmark.

We utilized the building cupola as the key element to tie the brandmark to the rich history and legacy of the library while maintaining a bond with the colonial heritage of the region.  A modern upward moving swoosh carries the eye to the name and finishes the concept with a forward look and feel.  The deep red color coupled with the black and white cupola reinforces the historic to modern feeling necessary to appeal to a wide age demographic.

Special thank you to the good folks at the Fairfield County Library System for choosing us to work with them on this challenging and enjoyable project!

library websites

TheSiteCrew.com Launches New Website for Advantage Healthcare of Charleston

TheSiteCrew.com, a full service web design and search marketing company serving clients nationwide, is proud to announce the launch of a new website for Advantage Healthcare of Charleston in Goose Creek, South Carolina. The new website can be found at https://ahcwellnesscenter.com.

TheSiteCrew.com custom designed this website with a clean uncluttered design, global navigation including a site search, social media integration, and on-page search engine optimization to enhance the user experience.

This new website utilizes responsive web design. Responsive web design (RWD) is an approach to web design which makes web pages render well on a variety of devices and window or screen sizes including tablets and smartphones. When viewing the website on different devices a visitor will see the site content shift and change to fit the screen and settings of their device – no more zooming in and out or scrolling right and left.

For optimal security, this website utilizes the secure HTTPS protocol. Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is the secure version of HTTP, the protocol over which data is sent between the visitor’s web browser and the website that the visitor is connected to. The ‘S' at the end of HTTPS stands for ‘Secure'. Communication between the visitor’s web browser and the website is encrypted.

TheSiteCrew.com specializes in producing beautiful, user-friendly, search engine optimized websites that effectively promote a client’s business. If you are considering a new website or redesign, contact email@thesitecrew.com for a free website analysis and quote.

Berkeley Chamber Launches New Website

Moncks Corner, SC:  The Berkeley Chamber of Commerce new website went live today!   This newly redesigned website offers quick and easy access to information and features that offers a more comprehensive understanding of the Chamber programs, essential information for growing their business, along with statistics for potential members and businesses relocating to the Greater Berkeley County region.  It marks a complete overhaul of the former website that was launched several years ago.  The website’s address remains unchanged:  https://berkeleysc.org

The new website has a clean uncluttered design, improved functionality and enhanced rich content focused on the Berkeley Chamber. “We are excited about our new website launch and the robust information it provides for members and visitors to our site.   We believe that this new site will allow our members to have a very informative experience as we continue to grow our Chamber and address their needs” stated Elaine Morgan, CEO of the Berkeley Chamber.

In keeping up with the latest in internet technology, the website is responsive for viewing on all of today’s devices, including popular tablets and smartphones.  The new site has been moved from its HTTP protocol to the far more secure HTTPS protocol; which encrypts data being exchanged between a website and the website visitor, ensuring critical data is not intercepted while in transit.

 

About Berkeley Chamber of Commerce

The Berkeley Chamber of Commerce is the voice of business in the greater Berkeley County area.   The Chamber seeks to accomplish this vision by advocating for initiatives that enable businesses to grow, thrive and remain relevant and forward-thinking in an ever-changing world. The chamber exists to create a positive impact on our community. The Berkeley Chamber strives to be the unifying force that brings together and leads those who work to improve the quality of life in the Berkeley County region through business growth.

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.RED Domain Names

The new .red domain name is optimized for any creative endeavor associated with the color red.

The .red domain name offers endless opportunites for use in such industries as fashion, photography, art or interior design, just to name a few. Add a hint of flair to your personal or business project with the .red domain name today!

Anyone can register .red domain names on a first-come, first-served basis.

These domain names can have up to 63 characters, with a minimum of one character, and can contain letters (a to z), numbers (0 to 9), and hyphens (except as the first or last characters of the domain name). You cannot register domain names with special characters such as & and #. IDNs (Internationalized Domain Names) will not be supported at this time.

iphone call blocked – continued

…….it's a security feature of your iPhone – not a problem with your website. You're just running too many tests. For any phone number you click, you get the option of call or cancel. If you hit cancel 3 times then Safari assumes that the website is creating unwanted call requests, and starts creating the message “this website has been blocked from automatically starting a call”. If you hit the Allow button it will reset the block flag and give you the “Call | Cancel” option again.
Go back to Question

Message: This website has been blocked from automatically starting a call

If you're testing out the tap to call function of your new website – or any other website – and you get the error message, “this website has been blocked from automatically starting a call”, don't worry, it's…..
read solution

PayPal Custom Payment Pages No Longer Working

I'm embarrassed to admit that I spent about an hour on this problem today so I thought I'd share the solution just in case someone else finds themselves in a similar situation.

THE PAYPAL CUSTOM PAYMENT PAGES FUNCTION NO LONGER WORKS!    STOP TRYING TO FIGURE OUT WHAT IS WRONG!  The big question is why does Paypal still have this function described in their developers guide with full instructions????

As a work-around you can use image_url parameter to set your image logo (size 150×50) in the checkout page.  It's actually easier than the deprecated page_style and page_style_name.

Just use image_url=https://xxxxx.com.  Of course, the xxxxx is going to be replaced with your real image url.  And, of course, always use https.

There, hope that helps someone.

How Responsive Website Design Can Increase Sales

Responsive Website Design Can Increase Sales

In today's competitive marketplace, a crucial element of success is the use of leading-edge website technology and design. One of the key trends in websites right now is responsive website design (RWD.) Stated simply, if your website doesn't have responsive web design, your business is likely underperforming.

What is a Responsive Website Design?

You've likely already encountered responsive websites while surfing online. These are the sites that quickly and automatically adapt to the screen size of your device. Responsive web design ensures that your website content displays correctly and uniformly on a variety of devices, platforms and screen sizes, without the need to create multiple websites. Special coding techniques are utilised that make a web page automatically adjust to the device or screen size for the best user experience possible.

The ability of your website to look appealing and remain user-friendly on any size screen is crucial, since so many consumers are now using mobile devices. Sites with responsive website design look great on laptops and desktops, but they also adapt seamlessly to the small screens of mobile devices, with no more frustrating zooming and scrolling needed.

The Trend Toward Mobile

Your website is a tool for both branding and generating sales. If your site doesn't look good on a user's device, their opinion of your brand can suffer. If browsing your site on a smartphone or tablet results in a frustrating experience, users are likely to click away altogether and find one of your competitors' responsively-designed sites instead.

According to the Pew Research Center, 56% of American adults now own a smartphone, and 34% of them own a tablet device. A full 34% of smartphone internet users say their primary method of going online is using their cell phone (instead of a desktop or laptop computer.) Cisco systems reports that smartphone usage grew a staggering 81% in 2012, and IDC reports that tablet shipments surpassed PC shipments in the 4th quarter of 2013.

Google estimates that 90% of users alternate between their various devices in order to accomplish an online goal such as making a purchase. Clearly, the businesses that provide the most seamless online experience across all platforms will be able to generate more engagement, more positive brand sentiment and ultimately more sales.
Investing in Success

Responsive web design takes the same basic design elements across all platforms, intuitively adapting them to the viewing environment. Fluid, proportion-based grids and flexible images ensure that your website will be optimized to deliver what your customers are looking for on any device.

(Article Source)

10 Benefits of Using WordPress to Power Your Company’s Website

WordPress has been around since 2003 and is the most popular blogging software on the market. Over the last few years, WordPress has also become the content management software of choice for non-blogging websites. Here are the top 10 reasons why WordPress is so popular and why you might want to consider switching to a WordPress platform for your company's website.

1. Ease of Use

WordPress is very easy to use and has an intuitive interface. Adding new pages, blog posts, images, etc. on a regular basis is a breeze and can be done quickly. Because the technology is so simple, time spent on formatting is greatly reduced.

2. Manage Your Website from Any Computer

WordPress is browser-based. You can login from any Internet connected computer and manage your site.

3. No HTML Editing or FTP Software Required

WordPress is a self-contained system and does not require HTML editing software (such as Adobe Contribute or Dreamweaver). You can create a new page or blog post, format text, upload images (and edit them), upload documents, video files, image galleries, etc. all without the need for additional HTML or FTP software.

4. Search Engines Love WordPress Sites

The code behind WordPress is very clean and simple, making it easy for search engines to read and index a site's content. In addition, each page, post, and image can have its own meta tag keywords, description, and title, and be optimized for specific keywords, allowing for very precise search engine optimization. You can also use tags to further enhance your search engine optimization efforts.

5. You Have Control of Your Site

No more waiting for your web designer to make simple updates to your site. With WordPress, you have control of nearly every aspect of your site and can easily make those simple updates yourself.

6. The Design of Your Website is 100% Customizable

WordPress acts as the engine for your website. The look and feel of the site can be 100% customized so your brand can shine through on your site and provide a unique experience to your visitors.

7. A Blog is Built-in and Ready to Go

Since WordPress was originally created as a blogging platform, blogging capabilities are built-in and are easy to integrate, if desired. Setting up RSS / email subscriptions to your blog, commenting capabilities, and automatically adding the most recent blog posts to other pages of the site (your home page, for example) are also very simple to set-up, and help to extend your company's reach and make your site more dynamic and interactive.

8. Extend the Functionality of Your Site with Plugins

Want to add an event calendar, video gallery, Twitter Feed, Facebook Fan Box, and more to your site? WP makes this possible with plugins, most of which are free or very reasonably priced.

9. Your Site Can Grow as Your Business Grows

WordPress sites are very scalable. You can have hundreds of thousands of pages or blog posts on your site and the performance of the site will not be compromised in the least.

10. Have Multiple Users

As an administrator of a WP site, you can set-up multiple users for the website and assign access levels and capabilities to each user.

Thermography Imaging, Inc in Fairfax, VA Launches New Website

We are very happy to announce the launch of a new website for Thermography Imaging, Inc in Fairfax, Virginia at www.thermographyimaging.com

This new website, with its clean modern look and mobile responsive design, meets the needs of the rapidly growing number of consumers using smartphones, tablets, iPads, and other devices when searching online for a healthcare services.

Website features:

  • Simple, clear navigation located at the left side of every web page
  • Animation on the home page highlighting the primary services offered
  • Quick overview of the firm and its legal services on the home page
  • Email contact form and contact information located on every web page
  • Responsive design to provide an optimal viewing experience—easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices (from mobile phones to desktop computer monitors)
  • Social media links and sharing interface within each page of website

Digital Thermographic Imaging Company in Fairfax, Virginia