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Latest Project: Telling the Story of a Business at American-Marble.com

Latest Project: Telling the Story of a Business at American-Marble.com

Telling the Story of a Business

Telling the story of a businessUnless you are a stone fabrication connoisseur, you may not realize the level of precision and craftsmanship that our client, American Marble and Granite or AMG, bring to their installations. I knew they did nice work because Evolutn Homes + Remodeling (Workshed Partner Brian is an owner) uses their services, but how they achieve their results is impressive. Our mission was simple: to create a website that reflects the quality and care you’d receive by working with American Marble and Granite.

Reflecting Quality

American Marble and Granite has been in business for over two decades. During that time, they’ve built a reputation based on precision installations using innovative technologies backed by outstanding customer service. Like many businesses, their focus was (is) on producing great work and their digital personality (website and social media) started to fall behind what  you’d  expect to see from a company of their caliber.

Telling the story of a business

This is a common story for many businesses, and it’s exactly why Workshed exists. Just having a website isn’t enough, especially if the business you are in has any competition. Most of your customers are going to check you out online before making a decision. When they do, what are they going to see? What story does your website tell?

In the case of AMG, they have an incredibly sophisticated process and set of tools that they utilize on every project. For example, a routine granite kitchen would start by being laser measured and templated. To minimize the visibility of seams, the slabs then get laid out and photographically arranged before finally getting cut by a water jet machine that has tolerances into the thousandths of an inch.
Their old website didn’t effectively convey the their expertise or capacity for innovation.

Projects We Love

This is exactly the type of project we love. Client’s that are exceptional at what they do, and busy enough to need help executing an effective marketing plan for their business. In reality, a great website is just a start; it forms the basic infrastructure that is needed to support the important stuff…content.
In addition to their website, Workshed also created or “remodeled” the AMG social media presence and customized a video intro and ending to use with a series of videos they have planned (we also found a smartphone app for editing the video and combining it with the intro and ending). One of our mantras is to make it easy for the customer to do business with you, on the web that means publishing your content anywhere your customers are so they can find it. American Marble and Granite saw the value in this, and we helped deliver their vision to the virtual world.

If you are considering having granite, marble, or quartz installed in your home you’d be crazy not to give Paul and Ellen (the owners) a call. Their staff and innovative tools allow them to do countertops that other companies simply can’t, and we haven’t even mentioned they have the largest inventory of stone in Southwest Washington.

Give them a call.

Custom WordPress Themes Are a Bad Idea

Custom WordPress Themes Are a Bad Idea

Custom WordPress Themes Are a Bad Idea…

WordPress Websites For Business by Workshed

Just because you can do something, that doesn’t necessarily mean you should. There are many things in life we can make from scratch, but don’t simply because it’s not necessary or practical. For example, if I wanted to bake a loaf of bread, I could plant wheat, harvest it a few months later, thresh it, mill it, and mix it with the other ingredients I had to grow.  Or, I could just buy freshly milled flour and other quality ingredients from a reputable company and get 99% of the benefit for a fraction of the cost.  The same is true of building websites.  Sure, we could code every line of HTML, JavaScript, CSS, and php from scratch, but do we really need to?  At Workshed, we think not.

It’s been our experience that custom themes for WordPress are expensive…at best.  Most of the time they end up being problematic maintenance nightmares,  wasting time and money for the duration of their existence.  This is not to say that websites should be templates or even that customization isn’t worthwhile, just that it’s what and where you spend your time customizing that matters most.

We prefer to start with a premium framework like Genesis or Thesis and customize from there.  Doing this allows us to focus our customization time on things like SEO, content, images and graphics (we are not fans of stock photos), as well as layout and functionality.  All of the security, maintenance, and updating is expertly handled by the teams of developers at the theme framework companies; software engineers that focus exclusively on writing excellent code.  This delegation of the core functionality means we can focus on the stuff that leads to more sales; things like creating content that makes your phone ring with new orders.

A full custom, built from scratch website is fine too, just know it’ll come with a few idiosyncrasies…kind of like owning a vintage British sportscar.

Contact us if you want to discuss how we use websites, social media, and our business perspective to grow your business.

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Marketing and Business Goals: A Love Story

Marketing and Business Goals: A Love Story

I heart WorkshedIs your marketing working?  Is it bringing in the right customers and helping you achieve your business goals?

If not, why?

From what we’ve seen, many small business people are too busy running their businesses to spend time defining their goals.  They come to us and ask for a new a website and help with social media.  Then hope this new website and some facebook posts will magically bring in more customers and all will be well.

We think there’s more to it than that.

Yes, we can build a great looking website.  We can optimize it for search engines and help get your social media infrastructure in place.  But none of it will matter much if it isn’t helping you achieve your real business goals.

This is where Workshed is a little different.  We don’t just build websites for the sake of it.  A website and social media strategy is an outcome of knowing where you want to go.  Before we work with you, we get to know your business on a deep level.  Marketing is about communication and we can’t effectively communicate your message to the customer you want without knowing who you are, who they are and where you want to go.

How do we define the goals?

First we ask lots of questions.  We try not to take anything for granted.  We help our clients develop tangible, quantifiable goals.  Then we put it all down in writing along with a plan for achieving them.  Once we’re in agreement on the plan and the goals, we’re ready to start creating.

Measure, report, adjust.  Rinse and repeat.

With the infrastructure created  it’s time to execute.  Then we measure, report  and adjust.   We love data.  Digital marketing is awesome because you get incredible real time information.  This allows us to quickly assess the effectiveness of each component of our marketing and make necessary adjustments promptly.

By continually measuring, reporting and acting on the data you can hit your business goals.

Ready for your marketing to get together with your business goals?

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Update WordPress for the Last Time

Update WordPress for the Last Time

Workshed WordPress 3.7 LogoWordPress recently released version 3.7 affectionately dubbed “Basie” in honor of “Count Basie,” and with it come automatic updating!  Of course, this might be a nightmare for older sites with “custom” themes, but for most people it’s a helpful way to improve website security. (more…)