Tag Archives: Web Design

LINK Creative Inc in Santa Rosa

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Graphic Designer

LINK Creative Inc. in Santa Rosa

205 5th St, Suite J
Santa Rosa, CA 95401
(707) 653-5465

Google Business View for a Graphic Designer. Look Inside!

Google Business View for a Graphic Designer. Look Inside!

Google Business View for a Graphic Designer. Look Inside!

Google Adds to Schema Data Menu

Schema data has become a central piece of the local SEO puzzle. On the morning of May 13, Google announced that they now have added additional schema support for business information. Specifically, they now handle several types of helpful business data that enhances user experience, explained in more detail below.

Schema Data

Pierre Far, one of the Googlers involved in this project, said on Google+ the specific schema data supported for the rich snippets include:

  • Customer service (and other) phone numbers
  • Business opening hours, locations
  • Restaurant menus

There is an ongoing forum discussion at Google+.

Bottom Line:  Google continues to strive to improve the search experience. SEO was previously a bag of tricks to make Google “think” your website was the most relevant search result to gain rankings. Now, the trick is to actually make your site the most relevant result to searches for the keywords that are being optimized. A lot more work, but a lot more fun, in my opinion.

Eric Van Cleave is a Partner in Zenergy Works, a Santa Rosa, California based SEO, SEM, Web Design and Website Development firm.

Zenergy Works Announces Acquisition Santa Rosa Web Design Company

For Immediate Release

Contact Info: Bryan Fikes




Santa Rosa Web Design Firm and Internet Marketing Company Confirm Acquisition

Santa Rosa, California – Zenergy Works, an internet marketing firm with offices in Santa Rosa & San Francisco, recently announced an acquisition of 707 Web Design. Tracy Vickrey, the owner of 707 Web Design, was offered an executive position with another tech company. Vickrey approached the leadership team at Zenergy Works shortly after receiving his job offer.

Neither firm has disclosed the value of the acquisition. However, Bryan Fikes, Managing Partner and Chief Strategist at Zenergy Works, stated that the acquisition includes all intellectual property rights, existing customers and intangible assets of 707 Web Design. Zenergy Works will also assume management of the company’s three websites: 707webdesign.com, 707wd.com and Webdesignersantarosa.com. Fikes is confident that the 707 Web Design will be a valuable addition to Zenergy Works.

“Tracy reached out to us via email and stated that he had heard great things about our organization and wanted to discuss an acquisition of his brand and company,” said Mr. Fikes. “We were able to secure a deal that worked for both parties.”

Vickrey founded 707 Web Design in 2011. Over the past three years, the company was voted the number one web design company for small businesses in Sonoma County. The company has been praised for its ability to provide high-quality websites in a timely manner. Vickrey and his team have served numerous companies throughout Santa Rosa, Rohnert Park, Vacaville, Fairfield and Vallejo.

Sonoma County businesses were slower to adapt online media as a tool to reach their customers. However, many businesses began to gradually recognize the role websites played in marketing. The demand for high-quality, scalable web design solutions has surged over the last few years. Michael Slater, the president of Webvanta, launched the North Bay Web Conference in 2011 to address the growing need for web development services. Which later was tranformed into WIMPcamp, an idea delivered by WIMP (Web & Interactive Media Professionals) a North Bay networking group that has grown to over 500 members in 2014.

The experts at 707 Web Design will continue to serve the rapidly expanding market. Zenergy Works will continue to offer web design services to local businesses in the coming months. Mr. Fikes and his team also plan to expand the company’s reach into other markets across the country.

Mr. Fikes stated that Zenergy Works is excited to have the opportunity to build off of 707 Web Design’s reputation for excellent web design solutions. “707 Web Design has worked with some great local Bay Area clients and we look forward to pursuing the wide range of services we provide, including the new Google Business View program we are delivering nationwide.”

Zenergy Works has experienced an unprecedented 100% annual growth curve since 2007 and generated 5500+ clients to date. Zenergy Works is a partnership between Bryan Fikes and Eric Van Cleave. They are a full-service Internet marketing company that provides search engine optimization, web design, social media strategy, paid advertising management, and more.  For more information please visit: http://www.zenergyworks.com

Happy Halloween from Zenergy Works!

A slightly early, but very Happy Halloween from the Zenergy Works team! We received some pumpkins in the mail from Google last week for being Google Partners, so naturally teammate Tim Wilson took matters into his own hands to create a Google-worthy pumpkin. It was quite the process.

Tim Pumpkin Zenergy

With all the creepiness and spooky stories circulating at this time of year, this seems like a good time to reflect on some of the scariest internet marketing stories we know.

The Cryptic Case of Keyword Stuffing!

One night, a young entrepreneur hears about a little something called “search engine optimization.” After a ten-minute research session, he decides he has everything he needs. He starts writing, and popping in keywords, and underlining, and bolding, and hyperlinking like mad. In a feverish frenzy, mad with his newfound power, he begins typing, “My business is the best business to provide you with business in Business Town” over, and over, and over again. It’s only then that he realizes he can’t stop. He types, and types, and types until he collapses, stone dead. But his hands don’t stop, can’t stop.

The Web Design of Terror!

There’s a place that no one goes. It’s whispered in secret among the locals, traded like Tweets amongst schoolchildren. They call it The Worst Website In The World. It’s rumored that if you type it into your URL bar, you’ll be exposed to a clashing color scheme so horrific that GeoCities would run away screaming in agony. The navigation will trick you, luring you into a maze of dead links and missing pages. The calendar hasn’t been updated since 2006. If you gaze upon it, the image of low-resolution, vacant smiles will be burned into your mind’s eye forever. If you say its name three times in front of a computer monitor, the poorly-drawn mascot will crawl out and kick your dog. Beware!

Social Media Meltdown in Hades!

The rain came down hard, beating against the windows of a business owner who was feeling very irritated with a certain Yelp review. Moments before, the review had sunk its teeth into his thumb, infecting him with a rage that grew larger every second. “You’re wrong!” he screamed at the screen, banging at his keyboard with a ferocity never before seen in his store. Browsing customers shrank away, fleeing for the exits. Once it started, the fire burning inside consumed him. He took his fury to Facebook, then Twitter, then the blogs clamoring for interviews, telling the world that he wouldn’t stand for a smear campaign. His eyes glowed red as coals. “You’ll never ruin me! NEVER!” he cried as the floor opened up to swallow him into darkness.

Yikes. That got pretty scary. Have a pumpkin to make up for it. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

Google Pumpkin

It’s Okay to Ask for Help with Internet Marketing

You may be at the point where you need a little (or a lot of) help with internet marketing. Many people don’t like to admit they’ve reached this point because, for whatever reason, anything done on the internet is still regarded as some combination of easy, unnecessary, or unimportant. This could not possibly be further from the truth.

We could list you off all of the various statistics about modern consumer internet use, but it’s likely you’ve heard it all before, so we’ll spare you. Here’s an infographic illustrating internet usage if you’re interested. Suffice to say that you cannot avoid it any longer. You can’t pretend it doesn’t affect your business and you can’t pretend people aren’t really influenced by what they find online.



Let’s break down these misconceptions real quick-like.

Myth: Internet Marketing is Easy

There’s a prevalent attitude that help with internet marketing is an unneeded expense because it’s all a bunch of smoke and mirrors, or posting on Twitter, or bolding the words you want search engines to find. Any teenage kid can do it, right? No. Search engines and other methods of locating you online have become exceedingly advanced. There are a million rules to abide by; dozens of approaches and experiments to test. If you’re not working with someone who knows what they’re doing, it could actively harm your web ranking.

Besides… if this were easy, everyone would be an expert and no one would be struggling to be found online. Sadly, this is not the case.

Myth: Internet Marketing Isn’t Necessary

Yes, it is. If you don’t have a website or are difficult to find online, you are quite literally losing business. Depending on your line of work, it can be anywhere from a few customers to lots of potential new clients. A huge percentage of consumers are now going online first to research businesses, read reviews, and perform a local search for nearby services. This is how people are finding new things to try today. If you’re not paying attention to your online properties, your name won’t be coming up in those searches. Or worse… it’ll come up with a dozen bad reviews you didn’t know you had. The things people say about your business online matter.

Whenever you’re ready to ask for help with internet marketing, you have options available. It’s always best to work with a professional agency or an internal hire that has been vetted through references. If you don’t know much about online marketing, it’s easy to be snowed by fancy buzzwords and someone claiming to be an “expert.” Because internet marketing is still a relatively new field, nearly anyone can claim to be a self-taught guru. References  from clients or previous employers are vital.

Zenergy Works happens to be such a full-service agency, and we provide services ranging from web design to local SEO services. We’re good at what we do, but we hardly expect you to just take our word for it. Give us a call, stop by our offices, or check up on our track record.

Stephanie Wargin is the Social Media Strategist at Zenergy Works, a web design and SEO company located in Santa Rosa, California. Her friends like to brush her hair into her eyes whenever she talks about Facebook.

Keeping Up With the Joneses Yahoos

Eye on Web Trends

Are you keeping up with the latest web trends of 2013? You might want to consider it. The saying “first impressions matter” is true in more than just job interviews. When people find your website due to your amazing SEO marketing or email campaigns, they’re going to give it a few seconds’ glance before deciding whether you’re worth their time. A website that looks like it was plucked out of 1997 is going to leave them looking for a time machine, not your products and services.

Why’s it so important to keep up with the times? Because an easy-to-navigate, visually appealing site that falls in line with what users are already used to is going to increase your conversion rates. People who spend a lot of time online (which is most people these days) are going to be accustomed to a certain aesthetic. If they’re not getting it, they’re going elsewhere to find it.

So how can you get up to speed with today’s biggest trends?

Pay Attention to Your Visuals

The most innovative sites on the web are adapting hugely visual designs using high-quality photography or illustration. The designs are literally huge – think big, bold, HD images. As more people are moving to mobile devices to browse the web (more on that in a minute), Retina Display-ready graphics are becoming a very big deal. Gone are the days when you can throw up a blurry 600px image of you with your arm around your dog and hope it’s good enough.

Visuals need to tell a story and give a sleek look to your design. There’s a theory that attention spans are becoming so short that we need to rely on images to hold attention now. No idea if there’s truth to that, but it doesn’t hurt to make things look nice. Clean lines, simple fonts, and bold imagery is the way to go. Even if you don’t have the professional photography, a good web designer can still create a spectacular design with fonts and layout.

Content Still Matters

Although many of the most innovative designs are moving in a visual direction, that doesn’t mean you should skimp on content. You just have to be a little more creative. Tell a story. Learn the art of brevity (or find someone who does). Make sure your copy is professionally edited. Aim for a genuine human connection rather than catchy buzz words. If you can tell a story in 100 perfectly edited words that punches someone right in the heart-guts, you’ve got it made.

It’s an art, and if you’re not sure you can pull it off, you have options available to you.

Eye-Catching Details

Have you heard of parallax scrolling? If not, you should look it up. This isn’t a technique for everyone (or everyone’s budget), but it’s exactly the kind of eye-catching design that’s turning heads right now. These sorts of details will give your site, and your product by proxy, the sort of sophistication and style that consumers expect from their most trusted brands (think of Apple). You don’t have to go this bold. Sliders, design flourishes, creative use of color, or other elements can give you a stylistic edge over your competition.

Watch the Big Guys

If you really want to stay ahead of the curve, you should watch what the big sites are doing, particularly when it comes to social sharing sites. These are the places where millions of the Internet’s denizens gather, which means the user interfaces and designs are very intentionally done to keep users on the site. It also means that these are the layouts users are accustomed to using. Follow the innovators’ lead and you’ll find that users have a much easier time figuring out where to go on your website.

Plus, there’s the added bonus of reflecting a site that users spend hours of their time on already, which will make it feel very familiar. That means they’ll be less likely to leave immediately. We’re not recommending that you mimic Google+ on your homepage, just that you take a few leaves out of its book.

How Mobile Are You?

And then there’s mobile. The number of people browsing the Internet via smartphone or tablet is growing by leaps and bounds. It’s only upward from here. That means you desperately need to pay attention to the “mobility” of your website, not to mention the responsiveness of your layout. Do you have a mobile version? Is it easy to navigate? Is the pertinent information easily accessible?

At bare minimum, users should be able to easily access your phone number so they can call directly from their phone. It’s also recommended that they be able to use a map to locate you, and that you have conveniently sized product or service menus for them to browse.

These are just a few of the biggest web trends to keep an eye on in 2013. You don’t have to go to big brand level heights to have a functional design your customers will love. If you need some professional guidance for your new web design, our web team is here to consult with you.

Website Design Santa Rosa

website design santa rosa companySeeking Website Design Santa Rosa?

Among the elements that will help you stand out best amid your competition is an intuitive, easy-to-use, visually appealing website design. Santa Rosa businesses are incredibly savvy on this front. As a well-populated Sonoma County city with hundreds of local businesses vying for customer attention, S.R. is a difficult mountain to climb (digitally speaking). When you’re competing against the big chains that have a lot of money to throw at their website, you need to find a way to stand up to the challenge and show the best side of your business to the locals who are looking for it.

When you live in a city as rich in history and color as ours, you almost can’t help but let that color bleed into your business. Even so, it’s amazing how many local businesses give very little thought to their website design. Their website is outdated, missing important information, poorly designed, or even nonexistent (horrors!). This just isn’t acceptable in today’s rapidly evolving online marketplace. It’s no longer optional – you need an alluring web design. Santa Rosa consumers demand it.

Small and local businesses may think they can depend on people stumbling onto or talking up their business to other locals, but they can’t. Not when the vast majority of consumers are going online first to check out their options. If you’re not listed among those options, you could be losing serious business to big-shot national chains or other competitors. You need to have an online presence, and that online presence needs to make people want to get their products and services from you! It’s true what they say: first impressions matter. And one of the best ways to make that first impression a good one? Make sure your website design is attractive, informational, and showcases you in a bright, golden light.

You don’t need to outspend your competition – you just need to find the right partner. If you’re looking for an experienced and innovative Santa Rosa web design company to give your business to, you should definitely consider Zenergy Works. We’ve been working with website design and Internet marketing for wonderful local businesses like yours since before the turn of the century (we never get tired of saying that). Our dedicated team of designers has created websites for everything from chain stores to small start-ups. If you’d like to see some examples of our work, you should check out Friedman’s Home Improvement.

The Most Common Website Design Mistakes

Websites are becoming much more complex to design and build effectively.  Search Engine criteria, social sharing, call to action, compelling and original content-all have become more important than ever.   The more complex a website becomes, the more likely that it will miss basic website rules that can hinder the user experience and conversion.  The overriding basic goal of every website should be to is to address, and solve, the problem that motivated the website visitor to come to the website in the first place.   If this can be accomplished in an entertaining and unique fashion, that is the best case scenario.  The following mistakes need to be avoided in any website design, and are addressed in the form of questions you may wish to ask yourself when you evaluate your website through the eyes of a new visitor.

Web Design

Why Are You Here?

Be right up front with the problems that your organization can solve, and how you can solve them better than the competition.   If you have an Unique Selling Proposition (USP) or a service or business model that is superior to your competition, by all means, be right up front.  Do not be shy about the features that make your business unique.

What Do I Do Next?

Whatever the action you wish a website visitor to take, whether it is to make an appointment,  sign-up for a newsletter or webinar, buy product or receive additional information, you will need to have a clear call to action. Buttons that clearly state the next process for the viewer such as make an appointment, buy now, search our catalog, etc. are the preferred method.  However, a call to action can also be a link built into the text in the interior of the site.   Each page should have at least one call to action in a prominent position to encourage conversion.

Where is the Important Stuff?

Current website design strategy calls for a liberal use of white space and to avoid “clutter”.  Don’t let the avoidance of clutter lead to important information like how to make an appointment, reasons that the website visitor should do business with your firm as opposed to your competitors, and the special features or pricing that you offer be buried on a page that is only linked from the sub navigation.   Make the basics easy to find.

Are All of These Bells and Whistles Distracting?

The website that uses the newest and most visually appealing technology might be a great showpiece for the Website Designer, but often does not deliver the best user experience.  Flash graphics or gigantic JPEGs may look great, but can often cause problems in load time and mobile access.  I am a major proponent of websites that are visually appealing and reflect the uniqueness of the business, but it is important to find a balance between form and function. Your website visitors will be impressed with an easy to navigate site with simple, but functional graphics.

Is This Site for Me?

Your website should be designed for the market that you need to reach.  If most of your website visitors are under 40, digital compliancy such as a responsive design or an app, if justified, should be explored.  Also be careful to create content that is written in the jargon of the age group or market that you wish to reach.   It is ok to have complex words in a site designed to reach Physicians, but not necessarily for an Auto Repair Shop.  Current slang is ok for a Skateboard shop, but not a Pharmacy.

Why Are These Guys Trying So Hard to Impress Me?

Certifications, awards, and links to information that help the potential customer to understand the accomplishments of your business are important conversion tools.  Too many of these on the home page may create a logjam of information, and give the impression that you are trying just a bit too hard to be impressive.   All of your accomplishments should definitely be on your website, but spreading them throughout the site in the About Us page or even creating a separate page for Awards and Professional Certifications is a better option than creating too much clutter on the home page.  Social Sharing buttons should appear on each page of the site.

Bottom Line:  Something about a New Year always makes me want to get back to basics.  The basic issues listed above are important to remember.   Please remember that these are the basic website design practices that lead to websites that convert website visitors into customers.

Eric Van Cleave is a Partner in Zenergy Works, A Santa Rosa, California Website Design and Development Firm.


Happy Holidays From Zenergy Works!

Happy Holidays from the team at Zenergy Works!   We appreciate that you trust us with your important Web Development, SEO and Online Marketing Projects.

Zenergy Works will not be at full staffing from December 21st-January 3rd as we all take turns enjoying the Holiday Season with Family and Friends.  Please give us a little extra time to respond to your needs.  We promise we will honor your patience with a response!

We look forward to having you join us in a very Happy, and Successful 2013!

Bottom Line:  Happy Holidays to all and Wishes for a Happy, Healthy and Productive New Year!

Eric and The Zenergy Works Team

Happy Holidays from Zenergy Works

Our Team will be taking a break from Designing, Developing and Optimizing for the Thanksgiving Holiday on Thanksgiving Day, November 22, and the Day after Thanksgiving, Friday, November 23rd. We will also be closed for the Christmas Holiday on Monday, December 24th for Christmas Eve and Tuesday the 25th for Christmas Day. We will also be closed on New Year’s Day, January 1st, 2013.

Please allow me to wish you all a Joyful Holiday Season from all of us at Zenergy Works. We have enjoyed a happy and prosperous 2012 and we will be striving to have 2013 bring more of the same. We also wish all of you happiness and good fortune in the coming New Year.

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