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Old 12-27-2007, 11:34 PM
mdvaden's Avatar
mdvaden mdvaden is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Westside Oregon
Posts: 1,825
Your Fort Knox of Information

The idea of a website being an informational Fort Knox came to mind yesterday when I was looking at the website Weather Underground, decided if, and where on my website I would put a piece of code to display my local weather.

But for myself...

Too many landscapers underestimate the usefulness of a website, as an informational storehouse. It's not neccessarily a Fort Knox from a security standpoint, but from a wealth of information standpoint. And the wealth is what's valuable to you.

Myself, I do what many of you might do, I list my services and a few images.

Documents can be uploaded to the server, of several types:

1. Resume
2. Design Questionnaire
3. Flyer download

How about that weather banner idea. Right now, I don't do lawns, but if I had crews in several suburbs, I can guarantee you I'd place the banner codes for about 5 weather stations in that area.

That way I could monitor if snow was falling, if it became too hot to apply herbicides, or if it was too cold for frost to have left the lawns, leaving the potential for black footprints.

If you don't want stuff like that to look clutered, all you have to do is make a special page for it. Then, you can place a hyperlink for it in a subtle place, like just a single period or comma of our home page text. Just click on the period that nobody else will notice, and you weather utility page pops up. You can see all your local weather on one page. 1 banner, 6 banners, even a dozen if you want.

This period just below, is a link to my photo albums page... see it below...

.

Discreet, isn't it - even more so when a smaller font and lumped in with paragraphs. Here it is even smaller...

.

Any brochure or information you think your customers will need for something you installed, can be placed on your website as a document or as an information page...

Winterizing tips
Watering tips
How to care for the water feature you installed for them

If most people in your area have internet, it also means you have access to all this stuff from their homes too, or from your laptop if you tap into wireless somewhere.

You can also use your website as a backup for your important photos and documents, in the same way your laptop is an important backup for your website.

Aside from you files, your website can become your Fort Knox of valuable information.
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  #2  
Old 12-28-2007, 01:29 AM
topsites topsites is offline
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Location: Richmond Virginia
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Yeah, I really wouldn't mind making something up that's informational, my problem is I foresee more competitors using that information than perhaps customers. As if LS wasn't bad enough, but at least here I gain as much in return, and it's not IN my area specifically nor is what I say necessarily the final authority... But the last thing I need is local competition using my tactics, that would just burn, for me it would.

I've been meaning to, but that's exactly what's held me back.

Maybe a members-only .php based thing, give each customer UID : Pass
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Old 12-28-2007, 10:45 AM
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mdvaden mdvaden is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Westside Oregon
Posts: 1,825
Quote:
Originally Posted by topsites View Post
Yeah, I really wouldn't mind making something up that's informational, my problem is I foresee more competitors using that information than perhaps customers. As if LS wasn't bad enough, but at least here I gain as much in return, and it's not IN my area specifically nor is what I say necessarily the final authority... But the last thing I need is local competition using my tactics, that would just burn, for me it would.

I've been meaning to, but that's exactly what's held me back.

Maybe a members-only .php based thing, give each customer UID : Pass
There are a couple of ways to look at it. One is that they could copy you on the advice pages. But if you copyright those, it could look bad to their customers, and they may realize it. I doubt they would link to your pages, because that would introduce competition for them.

Then if you made a page that popped up a half dozen weather banners, it's possible that they could use that page themselves, although its not too hard to make. But if you thought they might to speed up convenience, you could simply hide it altogether, so that you type your website name and add a single letter after the .com like .com/w

Something easy to remember, and not linked in site.

A weather page is my goal this week. Instead of looking up each town separately, the code on the page will draw all the needed banners of Weather Underground all at once on a single page.
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Old 12-28-2007, 11:23 AM
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mdvaden mdvaden is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Westside Oregon
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So a weather page need not look fancy - just the facts.

But here's what I mean...

http://www.mdvaden.com/w.shtml

Since these topics fly-by quick, I'm going to rename that file in a week. So this is a temporary. The link may not work in 8 days.

So... there I have a straight line across Portalnd with it's west side and east side, especially since Columbia River Gorge winds affect the east side significantly.

The next three are a triangular area of three southern Oregon cities near one another.

After I switch link names next week, I'll add Cannon Beach and Brookings, Oregon, the two coastal areas I travel to the most.

But the banners I chose also show wind speed, which can be helpful for spraying, or deciding how to dress.
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