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Advice on website required

(12 Posts)
Halle Tue 07-Aug-07 09:58:43

Hi there
I am hoping to run classes aimed at professional women who want to know more about to adjusting to life with a new baby. The focus is on preparing them for what they might experience in the period AFTER the birth. The idea is that they come to 4 classes before birth and one after - this is not about Labour or childcare - this is about becoming a Mother for the first time.

I have the local midwives on board and have had quite a few people coming through to my website - but no bites. If there is any one out there who is prepared to go and have a look at it and critique it for me I would be really grateful. Comments on the contents, style and the concept will be gratefully accepted as if this does not work I will have to be going out to find a job. I can't afford to pay for any help - if I could I wouldn't need to run the classes


The website is:
http://lifebeyondpregnancy.googlepages.com/
Thanks in advance
Helen

littlelapin Tue 07-Aug-07 10:12:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Halle Tue 07-Aug-07 14:41:00

littlelapin

Thanks so much - I agree will all suggestions!
I am most of the way there making the changes. Really glad for your comments to get me doing things - somehow doing a website at 12 at night and then adding to it as an when the baby is sleeping is not the way to go about it. I'll get working on the first paragraph when I have half an operating brain cell.

Now I just have to apply myself to figureing out how to track traffic to my website without the counter - again need to find a brain cell that my baby hasn't chewed.

Lovely to have some outside feedback - anymore anyone?

iwouldgoouttonight Tue 07-Aug-07 15:06:30

I've just had a look at your site - wish I'd found classes like that when I had my baby! I agree with a lot of what littlelapin has already said - it looks as though you've already done most of those changes anyway. I really like the colours and feel of it and its very easy to find all the information on the site.

One thing I would suggest is to have your contact information as text rather than an image - at the minute if you click on it, it links to the same image on a blank page - should it link to your email address? Also the email at the bottom of each page could link to open up an email?

Does your web host provide web statistics? Many of them do, so you can get an idea of how many people have looked at the site and where they're come from, etc - more accurate than a web counter too.

To help with search engines finding the site it might be good to put your CSS in a separate file and then reference it, rather than having all the styles in each page - at the minute the search engines have a lot to trawl through before they get to the content of the page. They also like up to date information so your Articles page is a really good idea - if you can add more articles (but without giving away everything you would have taught on the course!) it will keep the site current, which Google likes. It might also draw people in once they're on the site - the article you've written is interesting and gets people thinking.

Anyway, I've gone on a bit! Hope that helps and good luck!

Flibbertyjibbet Tue 07-Aug-07 15:24:08

I have got a new business - I've got a website, I've got flyers, business cards, networking like mad, cold calling potential clients.... people say 'oh what a fantastic idea for a business' but that doesn't get me customers, its hard work getting the first customers so that your reputation can spread. I completely underestimated how much marketing I would have to do but its starting to pay off now.
And work still slow coming in.
Just having a website isn't enough.
Can you get a mention in your local paper for example, even a free rag, a lady I know who runs baby signing classes did that.
perhaps you could get some leaflets printed and leave them all over at surgeries, antenatal clinics etc? Carry them around and accost any pregnant woman you see.
Contact your local business link 0845 600 9006, they give free advice to any one starting a business (I used to work for them).
Now I must get back to the dreaded cold calling...

Halle Tue 07-Aug-07 16:53:15

Have tried the local paper, flyer, giving talks, hung around after ante-natal yoga classes. Still meaning to do the business link thing... school holidays got in the way. Surgeries don't want to know me as they feel they are promoting something they can't vouch for (although happy to put up signs about ergonomic keyboards?).

Good to hear about having to keep going at it - sometimes I think I should just give it up. The comment I had from the local health visitor was that I would be lucky to get anyone could could see beyond their bumps. Her theory was that women didn't want to know - in my heart I can't believe her but at the same time I am just getting too few responses.

Have now spent a while 5 minutes checking my hosting site and found tons of reports and statistics so the counter is toast tomorrow once the code is active.

Thanks for taking the time out to look and comment - anyone else?

Flibbertyjibbet Tue 07-Aug-07 17:09:55

Get on the phone to Business Link, if you are a new start up they may give you the number of the local enterprise agency, all the assistance is free. Usually the adviser will come and see you, so arrange to meet him at a brewsters or somewhere that the kids will be occupied for the hour or so.

littlelapin Tue 07-Aug-07 17:31:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Halle Tue 07-Aug-07 21:19:31

Business link have been e-mailed and a call requested...I will look in to putting the CSS into a separate file but my current issue is not that there isn't traffic to the site - they are just not following up with coming on the courses.

Thanks all for you help - I am feeling inspired again! I'll keep you posted on how things turn out.

Flibbertyjibbet Wed 08-Aug-07 14:12:31

I can't rely on people to just look at my website then make the effort to make the phone call to me - it has to be the other way round.
I try to make contact with potential clients by telephone first so I can introduce myself, then send them one of my very eye-catching leaflets that has my basic business info on as well as website address, then I call them up a couple of days later to say 'did you get my leaflet' and try to discuss with them how they might need me, and if I can arrange a meeting with 1 in 20 and get work from 1 in 100 I am told I am doing well.
Can you tell I have been getting marketing advice as part of my start up???
The people who built my website always have to advise clients that just having a website doesn't bring you clients, you have to go out and get those clients yourself and use the website as just one of many marketing tools.
Sorry to sound negative but it sounds like I am just a bit ahead of you on the website/marketing learning curve...

Now then, have faffed about enough today, need to get the rest of my cold calling done from yesterday, as my marketing adviser has set me a target of companies to call each week.

Good luck and keep at it. Hopefully you will get some good marketing advice from Business link. Thats where I am getting mine from...

nappyneeds Sat 18-Aug-07 22:38:43

I have just had a look (before becoming a wahm I was a computer technician and self-taught website designer)

Website looks nice - like the natural colours. Only thing I noticed is that on some pages the links down the side are in a different order.

From my own experience I also believe its best to do some local advertising rather than relying solely on a website - have you thought about doing posters for gp surgeries etc or do you have that bit covered by the local midwives? just a suggestion...

littlelapin Sat 18-Aug-07 22:49:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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