Website relaunch 2015

posted in: Business | 0

It’s finally live – my brand new website and blog. This year I decided to create a completely new website and rebrand my business, and after many months of hard work you can now finally enjoy shopping on here.
So why the change?
Well first of all my stats – they were bad, I mean really bad, and if people can’t find your products, you won’t sell much either. Second of all – the old website was on a clunky platform called CMS made Simple and there were simply a lot of things on the platform I wasn’t so happy about. After one massive update all thumbnails suddenly appeared much smaller and there were a few other things that were bothering me. Most businesses use WordPress for their website – and I have been using WP for my journalism website (which I revamped last year) and my blog. The blog incidentally got more views and visits than my website – they were not connected to each other because they were on these two different platforms. The only way around it was to redirect the blog to the website. WordPress is not that difficult to understand and use and the beauty of it is that there are a lot of talented developers out there who come up with useful tools called plugins to make building and maintaining a website easier.

My old website - Helenka White Design
My old website

 

My old blog - Helen's Paws for Thought
My old blog

 

First of all I had to think about how I wanted the new website to look, so I researched other websites and asked in a business group I belonged to. I also wanted a new logo, but didn’t want to spend a fortune on it and in the spirit that I do almost everything myself I ended up creating my own logo. I actually made several different versions of this of cats in different poses. I asked friends and members of the business group which they liked the most and the majority agreed on this one. So a cat is replacing my nautilus. The nautilus has served me well – it’s one of my most popular designs (you can find them here), but I never felt it represented the business well. Funnily enough my new logo would have gone well with the original name I had in mind. I wanted to call it Emerald Cat Design, but the name was unfortunately taken by an American web design company. So I ended up with the name I have now.

Once I was happy with my logo I had to choose a WordPress theme. I wanted a clean theme which had a slider and a few other bells and whistles. As I like the colour blue I ended up choosing the paid for premium version of Virtue by Kadence. The actual work on the website started in May, it’s now September. So you get an idea of how long it takes to create a brand new site. The hardest part for me was re-photographing, editing and re-listing all products! Which is why I want you to be kind – I am pretty sure my listings will have a few typos. Unavoidable when you list over 340 products. Also because I merged my blog with the website, you might find older posts are still in a different font.

Apart from a completely new look the new website is super user friendly. Now you should find all info you need very easily in the links at the top and at the bottom. You can now register when you buy, but still can use the quick checkout method (I know not everyone is keen on registering). The website has also a wishlist function, something I always wanted, but the old platform couldn’t provide. Here you can list things you have an eye on and want to keep for when you want to buy them – or you might want to compare items.

Also new is that in case of returning an item, you can now simply download the returns form.

You may have noticed the tagline underneath my logo which mentions sculptures and are wondering “where the heck are the sculptures”? Well, I simply didn’t have the time to make any yet.

I started teaching myself the principles of sculpting with polymer clay with the aim of creating my own creatures and in one of my next posts I will share with you the sculptures I made so far. Those were incredibly time consuming to make, which is why I want to develop a range I can recreate in a fraction of the time. However the website work simply has taken up all of my time. So now, that it’s finally online, I hope I can finally get back to creating again.

Anyway, I really hope you like the look of the new website and find it easier to navigate. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to comment below.
Thanks for reading. 🙂

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