We are proud to announce the successful launch of the new Plantagenet Wines website. This was done in collaboration with Vin65, a Canadian company that has developed a wine-centric commerce system and here is the result:
Big Sky Entertainment WA, a leading Western Australian entertainment booking agency, required a rejuvenated website. When I look back at this project I am reminded of the Million Dollar Makeover car that I’ve seen driving around town lately. Just look at the website’s before and after shots.
The website was originally designed by Clever Starfish in 2010 and required a fresh new look after 3 years. We focused on simplifying the content to clearly communicate Big Sky’s core business, events, and encourage more enquiries by restructuring the entertainment pages. Rachel improved the general appearance of the website and went to town on the home page with a classy looking banner manager and feature areas.
Uli also transformed the original Tentacle catalogue by creating some great filters, which make it so easy for clients to find the perfect act for any event.
We celebrated this launch with a delicious and suitably Orange cake from the Pearl of Highgate. OMG, this was so moist!
There are three new starfish in the office this year, and two of us are from the same country and the same city – ‘Wanganui’. It’s a small city in the North Island of New Zealand, it’s well known for it’s heritage buildings and rich art culture.
Haley comes from a design background who recently moved to Perth and has joined the team as a Producer. She is super-talented and has already launched a handful of new sites.
I come from from an IT background who was born in Australia and brought up in New Zealand and returned a few years ago. I have been on a number of big projects, which means less launches and blogs but still lots of work!
PS. Hi Dad! I know you read my blogs :) We can see you on Google Analytics! x
We are excited to announce the launch of the fresh-look Barclays Building Services (BBS) WordPress website, which has been brightened up with fresh new content and now supports mobile devices. BBS has been a client for four years and whilst their old site was still in working order, it needed to be matched to the latest marketing materials that were created by the talented bunch at Milkable.
The family-owned business was established more than 25 years ago and provides high quality building services to insurance and loss adjusters around Western Australia covering the following regions:
Busselton – Southwest Region
Kalgoolie – Goldfields-Esperance Region
Geraldton – Midwest Region
Karratha – Pilbara Region
They have experienced substantial growth in the last few years (in team and coverage) and wanted to be able to source new suppliers to work with and therefore needed the site to be able to streamline this process. Suppliers can now submit their expressions of interest online. The site also features a gallery so that new and existing clients can see examples of work Barclays Building Services has completed.
To celebrate the launch of the new site, we munched on a delightful selection of treats from the David Jones’ food court.
Outta Space is a self storage company located in Murray Bridge, South Australia. They have been operating for over 3 years and decided that it was time to have a online presence. Although we are based in a different state they were happy to work with us over email, Skype, DropBox and the phone to create a website that was “out of this world” (pun intended!).
Together we decided that a WordPress site was the perfect solution for their needs and we set our sights on creating a design to match their professional and approachable team.
Whilst they decided a fully responsive site was not necessary for them at this time, they still wanted their site to work on a phone, so we created them a site that re-sizes nicely to fit a portrait mobile layout.
The alien spaceship was a cute way for our starfishes to have a bit of fun with the design and programming on the home page and the 404 error page ! We love brands with character…
After we completed the design, they decided to also outsource their content entry to us too. This is a useful option for clients who would like a little help to reach a specific launch deadline. The test site was then delivered with all the text and image content ready to be tweaked, rather than it being initially entered by the client. This fast-tracked the Outta Space beta testing and launch process.
Check out the site (on your mobile or desktop) and if you are looking for storage in South Australia give them a call or zip them an email.
We decided that this site called for Pandan LaunchCake to align with the green themed site. Pandan chiffon cake is made with the pandan leaf essence in a sponge cake. If you are in Perth and want to taste this bright green sponge cake (no food colouring added!) call Eve on 0400603340 or email email@example.com… it’s worth a try and the team here loved it.
Here in Starfishland, food and tea is just as important as making great websites. If we can combine both of these things, that’s an epic win. So far, we’ve made an online tea store for The Seventh Duchess, the Tutti Frutti Australia site, and have plenty more digital deliciousness currently in the works.
It all started with Nico Moretti from Urban Provider, who runs very popular “dinner party cooking classes” in Perth and small group cooking tours to exotic international destinations. We designed and built Nico’s original website many years ago, and it’s still going strong!
Nico was kind enough to squeeze Jane and I into his ‘Tapas Passion’ cooking class at his studio in Leederville, which is less like a workshop and more like watching a live action cooking show—and you get to eat the food. It’s pretty easy to see why the classes are booked out well in advance…
Nico has just finished off his new cookbook Delicious Journeys, which also includes Thermomix methods—you can order it here. (Warning: images on this page may induce hunger.)
Ok, on to the food!
First up was Spanish Potato Fritatta, Paprika & Garlic Chicken with White Wine, Garlic Prawns with Meredith Dairy goats cheese and olives. This was followed by a Chicken & Chorizo Paella, Pear & Rocket Salad, and ended with a wonderfully sticky Caramel Banana Tart. The surprise ingredient here was fresh rosemary, which actually works amazingly well combined with the sweetness of the other ingredients.
Nico also supplies the recipes for all the dishes he demonstrates, so you can go home and make them straight away. We had a great time, and would definitely recommend Nico’s classes to any fellow foodies!
Fresh Backup is the latest offering on Fresh Look IT’s Fresh Cloud service, and it’s so special that it gets its own landing page. If we’re going to get technical (which we love to do, of course) this is really a landing site—it’s powered by WordPress, with custom content sections so that the headings, text, product images and features can all be edited super easily. This is another collaboration with our stylish friends at The Globe, who created the awesome brand identity and design you see here.
Often we’ll try and get a themed LaunchCake to celebrate the site we’ve just launched, and as of last month we’ve expanded our tradition to incorporate ‘LiquidLaunchCake’. In this case, freshness was most definitely taken care of by these colour coordinated fruit smoothies from Java Juice. (Except for that white one…how did that get in there??)
We get asked about holding pages all the time and whether they are worth the investment and often it depends on your business, competition, product and strategy. We launched a flurry of landing pages just before the Christmas break and were asked to quote an unprecedented amount last year. Here are the top three questions, answered.
Is it enough to simply put my logo and address up there?
If you are a physical business like a doctor, coffee shop or dentist this might be enough. If you have a Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn (etc) you would be crazy not to add these to the page and encourage people to interact.
What else should I think about adding to my holding page?
We recommend that the very base you start with is;
Social links – This enables you to lead people to a place where they can interact with you now.
Google Analytics – There is nothing more powerful than seeing how people are finding your business and what sites are sending people your way. As you build your site you might want to consider adding pages and content to rectify challenges or benefit from opportunities presented by Google and referrers.
Newsletter signup – If you have the opportunity to build a crowd before you launch your site (especially if you are in e-commerce), why would you pass up on it? We can setup HelloStarfish or link with most other newsletter systems to streamline the storage of your mailing lists for you. Building a crowd before launch means you start business with a bang!
Top notch content – It doesn’t have to be a novel (it’s best if it isn’t actually!), but a well-written paragraph synopsis of your business and/or a fabulous photo of your product/s is worth it’s weight in gold.
Should I have a content-management system, like WordPress?
If you plan on having your landing page up for longer than 10 weeks and you want to change your content at least monthly – we suggest you do. However you need to be really strict with yourself about what you really need to edit otherwise you may as well be building your website. Probably the best example of a well-suited landing page with a WordPress content management system is The Globe. They designed a page that was going to be an image banner and synopsis and we suggested that we build in a banner manager so that they can add their projects to showcase as they launch them.
Is it better to keep my old website up there for now?
If you have a huge site and the content is still, for the most-part, relevant then keeping your old site up there whilst you make the new one is probably a good thing – especially if you have lots of content and pages. The reasoning behind this is Google. If you go from 70 pages to 1 page then you are considerably reducing your ‘Google juice’ or footprint. You can make a huge number of dead links too unless you redirect all your old pages to the home page and your relevancy on searches can drop very quickly. We will address redirects in a future blog.
So how much is it going to cost me?
There is no magic number but you should be expect it to be over $300 and under $3000 unless you are being super simplistic or building a mini site. The best way to find out is to call and have a chat with the digital people in your life. If you don’t have any – feel free to call us and we would love to have a cup of tea and a chat.
To make up for way too many words, here are some pretty holding pages designed buy our team and some of our clients.
In another collaboration with Marketforce, we are proud to launch the Decmil Australia website.
Decmil Australia has delivered specialist building and civil construction services to the oil, gas and resources industries for more than 30 years. As part of the wider Decmil Group Limited, their long held reputation is built on sound, professional and trusted relationships with their clients.
They commissioned Marketforce to freshen up their well-established brand a year ago. At the same time they noted that the website needed to be brought up to the same level. Our team met with the Marketforce designers, planners and account managers and went through the already completed print resources as well as the print style guides.
The final decision was made that they wanted to go with a fully responsive site that showcased the new colour palette and fonts.
This website has some fabulous features in WordPress including;
Responsive banner managers: The home and landing pages all feature banner managers where photos, text and links can be added by the client in a heartbeat. As long as the heart of the image is centralised – the whole banner will shrink and display appropriately on a tablet or smartphone. Check it out by grabbing the corner of the browser and shrinking the window.
Landing page templates: The website features dedicated landing page templates that allow the addition of feature boxes to promote pages within. This makes the site far easier to navigate, particularly when coupled with drop down navigation.
Blog: Although on the outset, a blog doesn’t seem to be a fabulous feature but in our experience it is one of the most vital parts of any website. After all, here you are reading ours.
Flexible content modules: In cases where you are dealing with designing and building a site with less than 30% of the content, flexible content modules are a saving grace. We had the responsibility of adding in the content for the first level pages and the rest was completed by Marketforce and the team at Decmil. Without allowing some flexibility, it is pretty easy for bumps in the road to lead to delays – particularly as content is the key to this website.
We celebrated this launch with a delighfully simple chocolate cake. Jayde, the lead on this project was in Melbourne and skyped in for LaunchCake but was unable to cut the cake long distance so our very talented designer, Trevor – cut the cake!
The launch of the BezDex website marks the first milestone in a journey that started with the founder asking himself a single question: “How can I simplify the process of understanding whether or not property investments are performing for those that aren’t so fabulous with numbers?” The answer to this question is undoubtedly, BezDex.
The product is the brainchild of the founder, who had worked in financial planning for years and faced the daily challenge of explaining property investments and returns to clients who found the concepts hard to grasp. Also, he had witnessed many cases where planners also found it terribly hard to communicate, even if their clients had a good understanding of their portfolio.
The solution was to plan and build a way that planners can enter and store their client data easily and then enable that same solution to produce simple, visual reports.
The product is set to hit the market next month and registrations of interest for financial planners and accountants as well as people who want to be referred to businesses using BezDex can now be done through the website.