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-   -   Website - How To & Why (https://www.daycare.com/forum/showthread.php?t=35323)

sharlan 10-05-2011 05:38 PM

Website - How To & Why
 
Ok, I've decided to go with a website, but as I've said in other posts, I really don't know what to do.

Please post what you've found to be the best way to do it.

What do you find important to put in your website, what do you feel is best left out? Do you have a section for daily updates on what the kids are doing?

Do you put in lots of pics of your daycare area - inside and out?

Do you go to other websites and steal their ideas (JUST KIDDING)?

Do you buy the domain name (is that the right thing) from Google for $10 a year?

Details, details, details..............

Michael 10-05-2011 05:41 PM

Thanks for starting this thread. I will most likely make it a sticky since much of the information will be of value to all those looking to advertise and succeed in the virtual marketplace. Note: just found out Steve Jobs died. Sad day. He helped create much of the viruald world as we know it.

sharlan 10-05-2011 05:43 PM

Thank you.

daycare 10-05-2011 05:46 PM

I viewed lots and lots of childcare websites, both home and centers. I decided what I wanted from my program and ran with it. What do you offer, where, why, how, when. You know the basics.

I know I asked you to view my website and I have no issues of you using any of my text that you want, if you want....

I think once you get an idea of what your selling point is and who you want to target, you will become full of ideas...

godiva83 10-05-2011 06:12 PM

If ads running down the side of your page and you don't care if you Have to add a site name after - I would use a free website application like webs.com
It is so simple to use! I can PM you my address.
However, no that I am with google apps I really like having my own personal domain name, IMO it seems more professional...putting more in, to get more out type of idea--- when my site is done I will PM you that also.

I would put a blurb about YOU and what makes you different from other HDC
Maybe your history, how long you have been in business, education background, what you like best about HDC, what you will provide

I would put a rate/fee section
Hours of operation
A example of your programming (if you have)
Your daily routine
Pictures of your space ( remember no kids unless you have authorization)
FAQ section
The thing I like about Webs.com is they have a section for ppl to email you right from the site ( I got a lot of inquiries and clients that way)
Good luck

Michael 10-05-2011 11:56 PM

Sharlan PM's me with questions about websites and advertising. I asked to to start a thread and if it takes off I will make it sticky.

Just a little insight into what I do. I started creating websites in 1995 with such brands as Daycare.com, Nashville.com, PalmSprings.com, Manicure.com and many others. I have a lot of experience in making money in the virtual world and some sites have generated over a $1mil a year in profits. You can read about some of my work here: http://dnjournal.com/cover/2006/december.htm

sharlan: What do you find important to put in your website, what do you feel is best left out? Do you have a section for daily updates on what the kids are doing?

Other providers would have some good ideas. I would suggest you engage your potential clients in a way that gives them a virtual feel of your facility. It is important that you "lead" your visitors to the information that is most important be it "potential clients" or "current clients". Information is great but you must offer it is simple ways.

sharlan: Do you put in lots of pics of your daycare area - inside and out?

I would suggest you use pictures of in and out but not too many since large pictures or information slows down the viewing process. There are ways to reduce file size in pictures and I will cover that in future posts.

sharlan: Do you go to other websites and steal their ideas (JUST KIDDING)?

Always look at other sites for ideas. Here is on that signed up today on Daycare.com. www.OrganicKidcare.com

http://www.daycare.com/php/showlisting.php?ID=00179911&p=1

There is a lot they are doing correctly on this site. The fact that they have a great website and also advertise on Daycare.com is multifaceted. The fact Daycare.com is listed #1 on Google, Bing and Yahoo for the term "daycare" helps get their website into the higher rankings or searches. This is a secret many advertisers use to gain higher status in search results.

sharlan: Do you buy the domain name (is that the right thing) from Google for $10 a year?

There are many registrars that you can get your name from. It is not like the old days when Network Solutions was the only one you could get a domain from. They use to charge $50 a year! These days you can get them as low as $8. Choose from a registrar that offers others services you may need like getting your email address with your domain name michael@daycare.com or URL forwarding which allows you to "point" an address at your name.

Example: If I get a free website from weebly.com and buy my domain name from goDaddy.com for $8. I can point my Weebly site to my new domain name. That way you see my site at MyChildcare.com and not mychildcare.weebly.com
Remember Weebly.com owns mychildcare.weebly.com but you own MyChildcare.com. You can advertise MyChildcare.com knowing you will always own the name (as long as you pay the reg fee every year).

There is a lot more I can write about and if there are any questions feel free to ask them. I would like this thread to be referenced by anyone looking for website information for any business field.

Michael 10-06-2011 03:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by godiva83 (Post 151383)
If ads running down the side of your page and you don't care if you Have to add a site name after - I would use a free website application like webs.com
It is so simple to use! I can PM you my address.
However, no that I am with google apps I really like having my own personal domain name, IMO it seems more professional...putting more in, to get more out type of idea--- when my site is done I will PM you that also.

I would put a blurb about YOU and what makes you different from other HDC
Maybe your history, how long you have been in business, education background, what you like best about HDC, what you will provide

I would put a rate/fee section
Hours of operation
A example of your programming (if you have)
Your daily routine
Pictures of your space ( remember no kids unless you have authorization)
FAQ section
The thing I like about Webs.com is they have a section for ppl to email you right from the site ( I got a lot of inquiries and clients that way)
Good luck

Also www.wix.com and www.weebly.com offer free websites.

karen 10-07-2011 12:03 PM

Here is my website....
http://karensfamilychildcare.webs.com
Feel free to use any of these ideas that you want. Pictures of the children are kept private and so is my contract. It is just a standard contract.
I am really pleased with webs.com it was the easiest thing I ever did.

justgettingstarted 10-07-2011 05:14 PM

I'm having a pretty good experience using godaddy.com. I'm still setting up my website but their program is pretty easy to use and I got a .com url for less than $3 a year. The website is $5.99 a month but I think it's worth it (and it's less if you sign up for a longer period - I only did 3 months). I tried to use webs.com and I didn't care for their site templates. There's very few options to customize. I'll post my site once its done.

Michael 10-07-2011 05:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by thinkinboutstarting (Post 152228)
I'm having a pretty good experience using godaddy.com. I'm still setting up my website but their program is pretty easy to use and I got a .com url for less than $3 a year. The website is $5.99 a month but I think it's worth it (and it's less if you sign up for a longer period - I only did 3 months). I tried to use webs.com and I didn't care for their site templates. There's very few options to customize. I'll post my site once its done.

From what I've seen it looks like www.weebly.com has the best templates. If anyone has any other free websites offers, let me know.

Also, WordPress is a great program that is free but some computer knowledge is needed to set it up. They also have wonderful widgets allows you to use for free like a translator (you can see it on the Nashville music blog). We use wordpress for these blogs/sections and there are thousands of themes to choose from. This is the more advanced avenue of websites that I can speak more of in the future if interested.

www.Adopt.com/blog
www.Daycare.com/nannyde/
www.Nashville.com
www.PalmSprings.com

Unregistered 10-10-2011 12:40 PM

Website security questions
 
I am currently working on building my own daycare website, and so far it's going really well, and I'm having fun with it! BUt, now I have a few questions regarding personal security and how much information I should include on the website. It is a delicate balance between effectively marketing your business and keeping personal information private. For example, I am not going to give my address, but is it okay to list your town (I live in a very small one)? And, is it safe to include a photo of the outside of your daycare home? What about your last name? I would like to have one page, password protected, where I can post mainly photos for the families currently enrolled to see their children participating in activities or fieldtrips we have taken. I am thinking of using the free service "PoppyDog" to password protect that page of my site...is anyone familiar with this...if so, your thoughts? Thanks so much for any help! :) This forum has already been VERY helpful to me in creating my own website!

Michael 10-12-2011 03:06 PM

Your state childcare licensing agency most likely already has your information public since it is public record. I suggest you post your general location or cross street and not your address.

I understand you wanting to keep your children as safe as possible while also acquiring potential clients. In reality if someone wanted to find a victim child they would not go through the trouble of searching out daycare facilities IMHO. It is the vulnerable child that is walking home alone that is most at risk.

When I was four years old, I was across the street from my home when a man drove up and opening the side door of his car asking if I wanted candy. The fact that my mother had just told me to never talk to strangers is what saved me. Prevention and a secure environment is what are most effective. Being aware of your environment and making your children aware of potential hazards is what is needed. I know we want our kids to live a blissful life but the world can be a dangerous place at times.

sharlan 10-12-2011 03:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Michael (Post 153618)
Your state childcare licensing agency most likely already has your information public since it is public record. I suggest you post your general location or cross street and not your address.

I understand you wanting to keep your children as safe as possible while also acquiring potential clients. In reality if someone wanted to find a victim child they would not go through the trouble of searching out daycare facilities IMHO. It is the vulnerable child that is walking home alone that is most at risk.

When I was four years old, I was across the street from my home when a man drove up and opening the side door of his car asking if I wanted candy. The fact that my mother had just told me to never talk to strangers is what saved me. Prevention and a secure environment is what are most effective. Being aware of your environment and making your children aware of potential hazards is what is needed. I know we want our kids to live a blissful life but the world can be a dangerous place at times.

OT - I had a friend,as a child, who was taken out of her stroller at her Mom's side while Christmas shopping.

KathiMora 10-13-2011 01:44 AM

These are great tips and really helpful. However, following are a few more tips to build a website -

1. Buy a domain and a hosting plan. Prefer to buy both from a single vendor and try and get a deal.
2. If you have low budget and are not comfortable with developing website on own then either -
  • go for some free CMS platforms like wordpress, joomla or
  • hire a web develop
    er
3.Write content for the website till the website is ready (website template to be specific)
4. Add content and review the website carefully to ensure that it meets your expectations
5. Get feedback from your friends on the website and let them try it to see if its useful. Take their feedback seriously
6. Promote your website on facebook, twitter etc to get more and more people visit you

awestbrook713 10-13-2011 04:59 PM

I don't have a website but I do have a page on facebook. I include pictures of crafts the children have done, list books I have read to the children, share recipes I have used in program. I also share learning websites I find helpful, daycare issues going on that I find important. It is still a small page and only a handful of people have liked it but its a start.

Unregistered 10-16-2011 12:45 PM

kids pics
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by karen (Post 152089)
Here is my website....
http://karensfamilychildcare.webs.com
Feel free to use any of these ideas that you want. Pictures of the children are kept private and so is my contract. It is just a standard contract.
I am really pleased with webs.com it was the easiest thing I ever did.


I am so happy to see that you keep the kids pictures private.

Michael 10-16-2011 02:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by karen (Post 152089)
Here is my website....
http://karensfamilychildcare.webs.com
Feel free to use any of these ideas that you want. Pictures of the children are kept private and so is my contract. It is just a standard contract.
I am really pleased with webs.com it was the easiest thing I ever did.

Karen,

Now is the time to register KarensFamilyChildcare.com

Go to godaddy.com and purchase it. You should be able to also URL forward your website to your new domain name. That way you can advertise KarensFamilyChildcare.com on your stationary. KarensFamilyChildcare.com will be owned by you. karensfamilychildcare.webs.com is owned by webs.com

If webs.com ever goes out of business you will lose karensfamilychildcare.webs.com but you will never lose karensfamilychildcare.com since it is your property. Suggest you buy and promote that from now on.

Gigi 10-17-2011 07:54 AM

Hi there,

Sorry been quite busy lately, so here are my two cents on starting and maintaining a website for your daycare:

1. Get the domain name - Michael is right on in getting the domain name even if you do use a free website like weebly or wordpress... It establishes your identity, and from a parent's point of view - would be more professional too.

2. Highly recommend having a blog instead of just a website. You can include some daily tips on childcare on a weekly or bi-weekly basis and make sure you include your target keywords in the body of your post and your title post whenever you can. If you have a daycare in Atlanta, Georgia for example: having keywords show up twice or thrice per post "daycare in Atlanta" will help your website/ blog go up in Google search if someone types in those keywords.

3. In relation to no. 2 - two good blogging platforms to use is Blogger and Wordpress.com - with wordpress you can buy your chosen domain theme if available... But, I think you can get it cheaper at GoDaddy.com if it's available. In wordpress.com - I think it's about $10.00 and above a year.

4. Cover the basic pages or Navigation Tab:
- Brief overview/ history of your daycare
- WHO YOU ARE, your credentials
- Some photos of the play area
- Contact us info with Google map (listing your business in Google local directories is also a great way of getting your site up in the search pages)
- Rates, Sample Day Sked and Downloadable contract in PDF (to sample)
- A link to your facebook page and twitter too if possible.

Hope this helps anyone starting here!

sharlan 10-17-2011 03:54 PM

Ok, I've decided to do it. It's going to take me some time as I have so much other stuff going on.

I'm going to go with the godaddy.com for the domain name and website.

karen 10-20-2011 12:27 PM

Thanks Michael I am going to register. I did not even think of that!

karen 10-20-2011 12:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Unregistered (Post 154947)
I am so happy to see that you keep the kids pictures private.

Thanks! I also asked and had my parents sign a permission slip so I can post pics of the kids on my site.

misspollywog 10-25-2011 10:30 PM

I am still working on my own website: http://pumpkinpatchacres.com and I agree, if you can, BUY YOUR DOMAIN NAME!!! Hosting is dirt cheap and so is domain name registration.

I've got quite a bit of experience building Joomla and Wordpress websites so if anyone needs help building a custom site for their daycare, PM me and I'll be happy to help! :)

Michael 10-26-2011 12:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by misspollywog (Post 158681)
I am still working on my own website: http://pumpkinpatchacres.com and I agree, if you can, BUY YOUR DOMAIN NAME!!! Hosting is dirt cheap and so is domain name registration.

I've got quite a bit of experience building Joomla and Wordpress websites so if anyone needs help building a custom site for their daycare, PM me and I'll be happy to help! :)

Good for you! You have learned the tools it will take to make it in the new virtual world. A domain name is property on the internet, and you can make it profitable and valuable.

DaisyMamma 10-28-2011 10:40 PM

I use to design web sites and still do when time permits. I'm willing to help out anyone who would like a site designed. PM me!
My web site; WWW.lymefamilydaycare.com.

Michael 10-28-2011 11:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lymemomma (Post 160133)
I use to design web sites and still do when time permits. I'm willing to help out anyone who would like a site designed. PM me!
My web site; WWW.lymefamilydaycare.com.

Very nicely done.

DaisyMamma 10-30-2011 06:11 AM

Yes, buy your domain name. and hostbig.com charges $1 per month for hosting.

laundrymom 01-10-2012 11:48 AM

ok, how do I point my weebly site to my godaddy domain name?

(for the record, this is the only thing Ive needed help with, lol. I havenet even asked the teenagers for help. !!!! Go Me!
Quote:

Originally Posted by Michael (Post 151440)
Sharlan PM's me with questinos about websites and advertising. I asked to to start a thread and if it takes off I will make it sticky.

Just a little insight into what I do. I started creating websites in 1995 with such brands as Daycare.com, Nashville.com, PalmSprings.com, Manicure.com and many others. I have a lot of experience in making money in the virtual world and some sites have generated over a $1mil a year in profits. You can read about some of my work here: http://dnjournal.com/cover/2006/december.htm

sharlan: What do you find important to put in your website, what do you feel is best left out? Do you have a section for daily updates on what the kids are doing?

Other providers would have some good ideas. I would suggest you engage your potential clients in a way that gives them a virtual feel of your facility. It is important that you "lead" your visitors to the information that is most important be it "potential clients" or "current clients". Information is great but you must offer it is simple ways.

sharlan: Do you put in lots of pics of your daycare area - inside and out?

I would suggest you use pictures of in and out but not too many since large pictures or information slows down the viewing process. There are ways to reduce file size in pictures and I will cover that in future posts.

sharlan: Do you go to other websites and steal their ideas (JUST KIDDING)?

Always look at other sites for ideas. Here is on that signed up today on Daycare.com. www.OrganicKidcare.com

http://www.daycare.com/php/showlisting.php?ID=00179911&p=1

There is a lot they are doing correctly on this site. The fact that they have a great website and also advertise on Daycare.com is multifaceted. The fact Dacyare.com is listed #1 on Google, Bing and Yahoo for the term "daycare" helps get their website into the higher rankings or searches. This is a secret many advertisers use to gain higher status in search results.

sharlan: Do you buy the domain name (is that the right thing) from Google for $10 a year?

There are many registrars that you can get your name from. It is not like the old days when Network Solutions was the only one you could get a domain from. They use to charge $50 a year! These days you can get them as low as $8. Choose from a registrar that offers others services you may need like getting your email address with your domain name michael@daycare.com or URL forwarding which allows you to "point" an address at your name.

Example: If I get a free website from weebly.com and buy my domain name from goDaddy.com for $8. I can point my Weebly site to my new domain name. That way you see my site at MyChildcare.com and not mychildcare.weebly.com
Remember Weebly.com owns mychildcare.weebly.com but you own MyChildcare.com. You can advertise MyChildcare.com knowing you will always own the name (as long as you pay the reg fee every year).

There is a lot more I can write about and if there are any questions feel free to ask them. I would like this thread to be referenced by anyone looking for website information for any business field.


Michael 01-10-2012 01:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by laundrymom (Post 184603)
ok, how do I point my weebly site to my godaddy domain name?

(for the record, this is the only thing Ive needed help with, lol. I havenet even asked the teenagers for help. !!!! Go Me!

I don't know the godaddy backend very well but look for URL Forwarding. You put the weebly address in the URL field and select the FRAME option. I can always walk you through it over the phone or you can give me access and I can do it for you.

Checkinkids.com 02-13-2012 02:24 PM

Google Maps
 
With our daycare - http://helpinghannah.com - I found that it really helped to make sure to list in google maps business and make sure it was 90% complete or above complete. We went from nowhere on the results to the top of 2nd page sometimes bottom of first for "daycare bloomington indiana". I think it's also important to google to put your location in bold as well.

Msiferllc 03-01-2012 02:33 PM

Trust
 
Trust is the most important aspect of a website. If you can post pictures, reviews, testimonials, etc. This will help your online conversions immensely!

bzmommy 04-11-2012 10:54 PM

Great thread! I am excited to read these responses. There are some great sites listed above! I have been thinking about my marketing strategy and although it has worked well so far, I need to stay on top of it. IMO it is so important to have web presence, like your daycare is all over page 1 of google when some searches daycare and "your town". Besides referrals, google is my #1 source of calls for daycare. I have a free website through webs.com I created a few years ago. I also recently bought a domain name from namecheap.com and started building my site using wordpress and have it hosted by godaddy.com. When I created my first site, I got listed in google local (local bus map), I put my x-street, phone and website. I also got listed in local yahoo and bing as a business (all free). I registered with over 20 daycare listing services, online yellowpages, merchant circle, yelp, etc. If you google daycare in my town I come up in several different listings but the first page of google and the first 2 slots are mine. I have been lazy though and and have not updated or relisted some of them.
I don't put my rates or my contract on the web. I don't need my competitors seeing my rates or stealing my forms. Also, I hate it when the first question people have is 'how much do you charge'. That's another topic though :)

Spring is when the phone starts ringing and although I am full now, I get all the contact info, hours needed, email address of anyone that calls. Then I give them the numbers of a few daycare providers in the area and Resource and Referral's number. If I have an opening, I send out an email (for the ones I seemed to click with on the phone) saying I am scheduling interviews.
I have had call backs from friends of those people that need care - just another way to get the word out.

Michael 04-12-2012 05:12 PM

frugalmama4 PM'd me some good questions regarding the creation of a website. I asked if I could post it here and she agreed:

Quote:

Originally Posted by frugalmama4
Ok Michael

Here are things I’m looking for in a website; I will start looking into the freebies you recommend this weekend. Thanks for all the help!


1. I want to be able to have printable documents (word and/or pdf form)

You can always link to them in your website. Most computers will just open them in their respective programs. The link will look something like this: www.YourDaycareExample.com/document.pdf

As long as you upload the file to your website, everyone will be able to access it through the link.

2. Be able to upload pictures (and delete when out dated)

Most turn-key websites you can do this.

3. Want to have a contact me section...that forward emails to my business email.

Most turn-key websites you can do this.

4. Tabs for different sections.

Most turn-key websites you can do this.

5. Maybe a small blog and/or FAQ section

Not sure about the blog. But you can start a free blog at www.blogspot.com and link to it from your tabs links. FAQ section is like any other page. You can create whatever content you want and make them different pages.

6. Parent only section with password access.

Wordpress would allow for password only pages. That is an advanced website though.

These are some sites I found…that if I could I would just add my name. :lol:

http://www.childcarebytori.com/ (My favorite, she’s a mbr here too)

This name is registered at GoDaddy. This may be a simple template that GoDaddy supplies but you most likely will be paying GoDaddy to host the website.

http://www.buildingblockshomedaycare.com/handbook.html

I love that you can click on the sub-title for the section in the handbook; and it automatically moves.

This is a Wordpress website that was created years ago. I use wordpress on a lot of sites like www.daycare.com/nannyde

This is a more advanced site/server which you can eventually get into at some point. Lets keep it simple for your first go around. :rolleyes:

http://www.greengateearlylearning.com/ (member also)

Just beautiful!

I looked into the site and this is where they have it created and hosted:

Designed using Intuit website templates. Create a website today

As you can see…I am not a computer person at all.:lol::lol:

But you will need to be internet savvy in the future. Consider this your 1st grade internet class.
:ouch:


Kiki Unleased 06-22-2012 02:26 PM

Getting My New Website At the Top of Google Search
 
Michael, I need some help here, I consider myself partially saavy with web sites, but I know you are more than saavy!

I just got done with my site, but it's not showing up in Google. I'm assuming my keywords, or something is not set right in it. I'm not really sure actually. It's set up through Weebly, but I have it pointing to the domain I own.

Anyway, the site is, http://www.crayonsandjuiceboxes.com/ but I'd really like it to pop up when people Google my day cares name. What am I doing wrong here?!

Michael 06-22-2012 02:31 PM

Are you selling crayons and juice boxes? :p Your domain name has relevance to the search word. A great but boring name would be MiamiDaycare.com. KWIM?

I will take a look at your site later and let you know what I see. Where are you located?

Michael 06-22-2012 02:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kiki Unleased (Post 239429)
Michael, I need some help here, I consider myself partially saavy with web sites, but I know your are more than saavy!

I just got done with my site, but it's not showing up in Google. I'm assuming my keywords, or something is not set right in it. I'm not really sure actually. It's set up through Weebly, but I have it pointing to the domain I own.

Anyway, the site is, http://www.crayonsandjuiceboxes.com/ but I'd really like it to pop up when people Google my day cares name. What am I doing wrong here?!

Ok, at first glance of your website you are lacking a couple things. First, you need a paragraph about your facility and your location on the home page. Google likes content.

Place in the things that people would search for when looking for daycare like childcare, daycare, drop in, policy, playground, backyard; you know the things people search for.

Second; your Title says nothing about you being a daycare or childcare in what city? Looks like you are selling crayons and juice boxes. Google does not see that you are a daycare in your town. If someone searches for" daycare Kaysville", your title and domain name fail at those two main search algorithms. While you have your city name in your META KEYWORDS, Google no longer uses them for search terms.

Your domain name and title should be "Crayons and Juice Boxes Daycare - Kaysville, Utah" CrayonsAndJuiceBoxesDaycare.com

Start with these. It will take weeks to months to start getting your listing further up the listings.

Countrygal 07-04-2012 09:15 AM

OK, my website is up, and I'm at the point of purchasing a domain name (Michael recommends GoDaddy- but I'm computer UNsavvy and have no idea how to connect it. I have found a place on wix where I can connect it for over 4 dollars a month, but I really don't want to do that. Do I connect it through GoDaddy some way? Is that what you are saying about "pointing it to"??? Anyone know exactly how to do this, because I DID do this once, but it was like 15 years ago..... :p I don't think my experience is any longer applicable. :rolleyes:

If anyone wants to check out my website, here it is.... http://cpltskeeter.wix.com/kids-place-daycare

AND MICHAEL.... how do I get picked up on search engines? How often do they update their info? And how do I add tags to my webpage?

Also, thanks for the info on what to put in my domain name, Michael! That REALLY helps!

Countrygal 07-04-2012 02:40 PM

Update - I did find some info on wix - things like using a "title" on your homepage and matching the words to what you think people will search for = for ex, your town and the word "daycare". Also, repeating it on your homepage 3X and having at least 500 words on your homepage. I didn't do that. I went for eye appeal, which I guess is wrong. I set it up the way I like web pages.

Anyway, they talked about titling your picture on your homepage with the same catch phrases. I changed all of this, and they said it still may take months to be picked up by the search engines. They also said search engines don't use tags any more very much. Never did find how to do those anyway. But they probably aren't going to tell me how to link it to my domain name without paying them for the priviledge.

Michael 07-04-2012 02:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Countrygal (Post 242215)
OK, my website is up, and I'm at the point of purchasing a domain name (Michael recommends GoDaddy- but I'm computer UNsavvy and have no idea how to connect it. I have found a place on wix where I can connect it for over 4 dollars a month, but I really don't want to do that. Do I connect it through GoDaddy some way? Is that what you are saying about "pointing it to"??? Anyone know exactly how to do this, because I DID do this once, but it was like 15 years ago..... :p I don't think my experience is any longer applicable. :rolleyes:

If anyone wants to check out my website, here it is.... http://cpltskeeter.wix.com/kids-place-daycare

AND MICHAEL.... how do I get picked up on search engines? How often do they update their info? And how do I add tags to my webpage?

Also, thanks for the info on what to put in my domain name, Michael! That REALLY helps!

If wix allows you to add META TAGS you can add them but what really matters in SEO (search engine optimization) is your domain name words (MiamiDaycare.com) and the searchable words in your website TITLE and content. They should all coalesce in their logic. Having a name like LiliesAndLollipopsFuntime.com will NOT help you find parents looking for daycare.

Also, I notice many of you using FLASH websites. While these may look flashy they will NOT WORK IN iPAD, iPHONES and anything Apple!! That's a big deal.

You can save the $4 a month by using your domain name tools in your Godaddy account.

To FORWARD your website URL to your DOMAIN NAME at GoDaddy:

Once logged into your account, hover your mouse over the DOMAINS green button at the top left bar. You wil see MANAGEMENT >DOMAIN MANAGEMENT, click on that.

Click on your DOMAIN NAME listed in your registered domains area. At the top area you will see icons and one that looks like an arrow pointing right that reads FORWARD. Hover your mouse over it and click on that FORWARD DOMAIN.

In the next pop-up window click on EDIT and past your wix.com URL. Also click on the UPDATE MY DNS SETTINGS.

Click OK and your done. Give it several hours to propagate (network resolve).

Countrygal 07-04-2012 07:31 PM

Thank you, Michael. What exactly IS a flash website? I'm pretty sure my entire front page would be considered flash, and probably the revolving pictures? Do I have to start over using a different template or can I just take those elements out and redo the front page and put in a single picture? Is the "glow" feature that I used considered flash? Oooooh, I think the way the website switches pages is flash as well, isn't it? I need a whole new template?

Michael 07-04-2012 09:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Countrygal (Post 242288)
Thank you, Michael. What exactly IS a flash website? I'm pretty sure my entire front page would be considered flash, and probably the revolving pictures? Do I have to start over using a different template or can I just take those elements out and redo the front page and put in a single picture? Is the "glow" feature that I used considered flash? Oooooh, I think the way the website switches pages is flash as well, isn't it? I need a whole new template?

See if they have non-flash templates.

Adobe Flash (formerly Macromedia Flash) is a multimedia platform used to add animation, video, and interactivity to web pages.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adobe_Flash

coolconfidentme 11-06-2012 04:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sharlan (Post 151373)
Ok, I've decided to go with a website, but as I've said in other posts, I really don't know what to do.

Please post what you've found to be the best way to do it.

What do you find important to put in your website, what do you feel is best left out? Do you have a section for daily updates on what the kids are doing?

Do you put in lots of pics of your daycare area - inside and out?

Do you go to other websites and steal their ideas (JUST KIDDING)?

Do you buy the domain name (is that the right thing) from Google for $10 a year?

Details, details, details..............

I just have a FaceBook page. It's free, user friendly & I don't have time to maintain a webpage too. Here's mine:

https://www.facebook.com/AToZzzsChildcare

Holiday Park 11-11-2012 12:48 PM

Coolconfident,
I love the idea of a facebook page !
So do you get enough exposure with doing that? I am tinking if I do s FB page, I can link it in my craigslist ads. I used to use a freewebs site for a website. And I lived in a home that was 800 sw ft less, with only our 3rms , the hall, TINY living room , kitchen. And for some reason I had no trouble getting cliets compared to know. It was very small but cozy.
We moved into this MUCH bigger house with a living room, den, dining room. And its still 3 bedrooms but they are twice as big. And a garage we didnt have. It looks massive in size viewing from the street, compared to the house. It looks much nicer on the inside, like we have a lot more $, ( but we don't) . Im using the huge den (20x 12/14ft) as the play room, and dining room as nap room . So I have been wondering if people were being turned off or intimidated by how much nicer it looks, or if its just we live in a different location ( A existing client actually kept using me after the move, we r closer to her now) , or Im not advettising on craigslist every week and not using the website anymore . If the website was really the only reason I want to get into that, or doing FB . One thing different I had been not been doing since we moved was use forms&contracts. At our other house, I was even able to get last week care deposits. (I am now planning a new handbook&contracts)

CozyHome 12-28-2012 11:04 PM

I live in Ontario, Canada, but my website is on freewebs.com and I love it. I have lots of info on there and lots of pictures. A good friend gave me the best advise possible after I wrote my website. She said that I had all the facts on there but my warm peronality wasn't showing so I rewrote it so that it was very different.

So when anybody asks me to critique their website that's my advice too thanks to my friend. Make sure your personality shines through and leave the details and the contract policies to the interview and contract signing phase.

Auntie'sHouse 01-08-2013 01:33 PM

website and facebook
 
After reading all of the info about websites I decided to create one on my own....1st time. I must have republished it 22 times in 2 weeks. I asked family and friends to check it out and clearly they didnt even bother to read any of it because I myself found errors in it. I guess only parents actually looking for daycare will actually read it...smh! I was so excited about it I pressed the publish button right away. I keep finding new things to add to it. The response I kept getting was that it was too long. I did shorten it but then remembered parents who are looking for daycare WILL read it. I went with godaddy for the domain name which i was also told was way long. I figured parents can remember 4 words. So my site is godaddy. It cost $40, domain included for the year. It doesnt give you fun things to put on your site like animated objects or anything. So my site is bright....and thats it I guess. Please check it out and tell me what you think. Im still tweaking it though. Thanks
www.auntieshousehomedaycare.com
www.facebook.com/auntieshousehomedaycare

Michael 01-08-2013 01:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Auntie'sHouse (Post 306219)
After reading all of the info about websites I decided to create one on my own....1st time. I must have republished it 22 times in 2 weeks. I asked family and friends to check it out and clearly they didnt even bother to read any of it because I myself found errors in it. I guess only parents actually looking for daycare will actually read it...smh! I was so excited about it I pressed the publish button right away. I keep finding new things to add to it. The response I kept getting was that it was too long. I did shorten it but then remembered parents who are looking for daycare WILL read it. I went with godaddy for the domain name which i was also told was way long. I figured parents can remember 4 words. So my site is godaddy. It cost $40, domain included for the year. It doesnt give you fun things to put on your site like animated objects or anything. So my site is bright....and thats it I guess. Please check it out and tell me what you think. Im still tweaking it though. Thanks
www.auntieshousehomedaycare.com
www.facebook.com/auntieshousehomedaycare

Welcome to the virtual world. You've bought and created your first privately owned virtual property with an address! That's a big step, and you will advance in your knowledge and understanding of how to make it better and more marketable over time.

I like what I've seen so far but I am looking at it from my iPhone and the template will look different then from a desktop. I will check it out later and have more feedback.

I was excited back when I started my first website back in 1995 and have been ever since.

Just today a friend that I have known my whole life just put up her website. Years ago I registered her last name knowing that someday she would need it. She asked for it last year and created her new business on it and is branding the name. Check it out. www.Lividini.com

Auntie'sHouse 01-08-2013 01:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Michael (Post 306230)
Welcome to the virtual world. You've bought and created your first privately owned virtual property with an address! That's a big step, and you will advance in your knowledge and understanding of how to make it better and more marketable over time.

I like what I've seen so far but I am looking at it from my iPhone and the template will look different then from a desktop. I will check it out later and have more feedback.

I was excited back when I started my first website back in 1995 and have been ever since.

Just today a friend that I have known my whole life just put up her website. Years ago I registered her last name knowing that someday she would need it. She asked for it last year and created her new business on it and is branding the name. Check it out. www.Lividini.com

You can't hear the music from a cell phone....Love your friends page! Thanks for the response.

Michael 01-08-2013 05:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Auntie'sHouse (Post 306237)
You can't hear the music from a cell phone....Love your friends page! Thanks for the response.

I had a chance to look at your address at my desk. I like it and have several suggestion or observations.

It looks very patriotic with the red, white and blue. Was that on purpose?
I would not have your text in blue since that color is identified as a link to me. Links do not have to have to be underlined anymore.

Are you the artist in the music? If not, I would not use it. People usually don't sit and wait for the music to finish. They are usually looking though your content for something specific about you and your daycare. I know you may be trying to create ambiance but it actually distracts when switching through your pages as the ambiance from one page stops and a new song begins with a new page. Almost makes me not want to disrupt the song. :p

ON your frontpage, I would remove "Auntie's House Home Daycare" that sits on top of the picture and put it where "Welcome to Auntie's House" currently is. The two titles seems redundant to me.

Lastly, in the About Us page. I would like to read more about you and your methods and experience.

Hope that helps. :)

Auntie'sHouse 01-09-2013 06:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Michael (Post 306347)
I had a chance to look at your address at my desk. I like it and have several suggestion or observations.

It looks very patriotic with the red, white and blue. Was that on purpose?
I would not have your text in blue since that color is identified as a link to me. Links do not have to have to be underlined anymore.

Are you the artist in the music? If not, I would not use it. People usually don't sit and wait for the music to finish. They are usually looking though your content for something specific about you and your daycare. I know you may be trying to create ambiance but it actually distracts when switching through your pages as the ambiance from one page stops and a new song begins with a new page. Almost makes me not want to disrupt the song. :p

ON your frontpage, I would remove "Auntie's House Home Daycare" that sits on top of the picture and put it where "Welcome to Auntie's House" currently is. The two titles seems redundant to me.

Lastly, in the About Us page. I would like to read more about you and your methods and experience.

Hope that helps. :)

Yes it does...thanks. I keep getting info about the appearance needs to be bright etc. I'll go fix it now...thanks a bunch.

mamac 01-22-2013 08:16 PM

Ok. So I went ahead and bought my domain name with godaddy.com. happyface

Now I am COMPLETELY lost as to what to do next. As I have mentioned before I am very "technologically challenged". Can someone point me to the most user friendly website builder. (Website-for-dummies style) Free would be ideal, although I wouldn't mind spending a reasonable amount. I didn't sign up through godaddy because I had no idea what options to choose. :confused:

Any help would be appreciated!

Michael 01-22-2013 08:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mamac (Post 310521)
Ok. So I went ahead and bought my domain name with godaddy.com. happyface

Now I am COMPLETELY lost as to what to do next. As I have mentioned before I am very "technologically challenged". Can someone point me to the most user friendly website builder. (Website-for-dummies style) Free would be ideal, although I wouldn't mind spending a reasonable amount. I didn't sign up through godaddy because I had no idea what options to choose. :confused:

Any help would be appreciated!

You can try all of the free ones. The great thing about buying your domain name is you can point it to whatever free website you like most. Start with weebly.com and lets go from there. I can always walk you through some of it if it becomes complicated.

Creating on the web is like driving. It seems complicated at the beginning but becomes second nature after doing it over time. Then you wonder how you ever did without it. ;)

mamac 01-22-2013 08:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Michael (Post 310522)
You can try all of the free ones. The great thing about buying your domain name is you can point it to whatever free website you like most. Start with weebly.com and lets go from there. I can always walk you through some of it if it becomes complicated.

Creating on the web is like driving. It seems complicated at the beginning but becomes second nature after doing it over time. Then you wonder how you ever did without it. ;)

I'm on my way there now. :) Be prepared for LOTS of questions! And you've never seen me drive...... just kidding. I'm a good driver. Really. ;) :lol:

mamac 01-22-2013 08:37 PM

And one other question before I begin- My name is ***X Family Daycare and Preschool but the domain I bought is ***X Family Daycare.com. I thought it was a bit long for someone to type the whole thing. Is it worth getting my full name or should I stick with the shortened version and post my full name on the website?

Michael 01-22-2013 08:59 PM

Well, I'm a little different them most on that one. I even buy typos like www.Dacyare.com

I just point the one to the other. Domains are so cheap I would buy it. Names are as long as people need to remember them. Late last year I sold MyrtleBeachSouthCarolina.com for the price of a small home in Wisconsin. So $10 a year is a no brainer.

mamac 01-23-2013 07:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Michael (Post 310534)
Well, I'm a little different them most on that one. I even buy typos like Daycare.com and www.Dacyare.com

I just point the one to the other. Domains are so cheap I would buy it. Names are as long as people need to remember them. Late last year I sold MyrtleBeachSouthCarolina.com for the price of a small home in Wisconsin. So $10 a year is a no brainer.

Shoot. I think I might be getting into the wrong business doing daycare!:D lol!:lol:

Michael 01-23-2013 11:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mamac (Post 310968)
Shoot. I think I might be getting into the wrong business doing daycare!:D lol!:lol:

Funny, I actually registered a couple names today related to our threads here. I registered www.PottyIssues.com and pointed it to our TAGs relating to it. May be a waste of time but the ideas struck me and it only cost a few dollars to try it.

DaisyMamma 01-24-2013 04:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Michael (Post 310534)
Well, I'm a little different them most on that one. I even buy typos like Daycare.com and www.Dacyare.com

I just point the one to the other. Domains are so cheap I would buy it. Names are as long as people need to remember them. Late last year I sold MyrtleBeachSouthCarolina.com for the price of a small home in Wisconsin. So $10 a year is a no brainer.

Holy Crap Michael!

Quote:

Originally Posted by mamac (Post 310529)
And one other question before I begin- My name is ***X Family Daycare and Preschool but the domain I bought is ***X Family Daycare.com. I thought it was a bit long for someone to type the whole thing. Is it worth getting my full name or should I stick with the shortened version and post my full name on the website?

Buy the short version and use that one in your advertisements so people can remember it.

Unregistered 01-28-2014 10:50 AM

Have you heard?
 
I am in the process of trying to create a website can you tell me if you have heard anything about the website called: "websites for daycares"

Checkinkids.com 10-30-2014 08:48 PM

Website, Google Maps Business listings, Yellowpages
 
My experience was that I developed a small daycare website for my wife (I'm a web developer). It was ok. We were about on the 3rd page for our town when someone searched for "daycare bloomington, in" .

However you make your website, just make sure you put plenty of phrases in the content, headings and keywords that match how people might type a search in google. Eg. 'daycare south orlando florida' or 'bloomington, IN preschools' or 'hillsdale VPK' etc...

Then we set up our business in google maps https://support.google.com/business/.../2911778?hl=en - That really helped us start getting calls and get our website higher (to the first page) in search results.

And we also signed up with yellow pages - that was a big kick start as well.

cassiesue 11-06-2016 07:26 AM

recent efforts?
 
I know this thread is old, but has anyone recently set up their daycare's website or Facebook page?

I bought my domain name (I think that is what it is called) back in July although I have yet to do anything with it. Actually I guess I rented it because it seems I have to renew it again next July. I have never set up a webpage and can not afford a designer. I am going to try to do what Mike suggested and point my page to my webpage. If I ever find the time that is.

In the meantime, I did just start to set up my daycare's Facebook page, but I am nowhere near finished with that - again the issue of time.

What annoys me is I wanted to enable the review feature, especially as I get drop-ins. However, I recently had to terminate a family during the trial period. It was my second time with this family and I allowed them to come back against my better judgment. I had 4 reviews all 5 stars. Then she came in and rated me 2 out of 5 stars.

I actually would have most likely left it on there as it only reduced my overall rating to 4.4 stars, but her review remained at the top of the list and I was unable to rotate it down to the bottom. I had created a response to her review, but ended up not posting it. Instead I screenshot the reviews and created a FB album and uploaded the reviews into it. Apparently if you have a FB business page you are unable to delete individual reviews, even if they are a gross misrepresentation of the facts.

Any tips or ideas from people that have recently set up their daycare's website or FB page? I do not have a lot of time to devote to this and I am not very tech savvy. For those that already have their webpages set up do you mind sharing the links to them? A lot of the links in this thread no longer are working.

Thanks in advance for any assistance. I love this forum and it has been a great resource for me!!! happyface

Mike 11-06-2016 12:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cassiesue (Post 614109)
I bought my domain name (I think that is what it is called) back in July although I have yet to do anything with it. Actually I guess I rented it because it seems I have to renew it again next July.

Domain names are actually rented or leased with the agreement that it's yours for as long as you pay for it. You can pay yearly, or for most domains, you can prepay for up to 10 years. When it comes time to renew it, if you don't renew it before its expiration date, it will stop working, then you have a period of time when you can still renew it at regular price, usually about a month. After that, it becomes more expensive to renew, then too late to renew.

For anyone else who reads this, don't let a domain name expire and not renew it, and think you can just register it again later. I've had clients do that, and sometimes if you let one go, it ends up getting taken by another person later.

Another mistake some people make is deciding they want a domain name, but they aren't going to use it yet, so they are going to wait until later on to register it. They go to register it later and oops, someone else got it. Once you decide you want a domain name, get it.

Michael 11-06-2016 03:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cassiesue (Post 614109)
I know this thread is old, but has anyone recently set up their daycare's website or Facebook page?

It may be older but this thread will be relevant for many years. Having a website will be even more in the future for many people.

Quote:

Originally Posted by cassiesue (Post 614109)
I bought my domain name (I think that is what it is called) back in July although I have yet to do anything with it. Actually I guess I rented it because it seems I have to renew it again next July. I have never set up a webpage and can not afford a designer. I am going to try to do what Mike suggested and point my page to my webpage. If I ever find the time that is.

When you set up a page on someone else's website like Facebook.com, you must follow their rules and they get to use your data for whatever they want. It's their "walled garden". When you set up your own website on a domain name you "own*", you get to do whatever you want with your content and data.

There are differing levels of maintaining a website.

Hillary had her own server (computer) which allowed her to host anything she wanted including a website and/or email. Her server was at home but most people or businesses use a co-location. Something like an AT&T NOC which has huge facility that someone can put their computer/server and ATT monitors and keeps the light on, so to speak.

The next level would be a linode or cloud services, whereas your virtual server is, one of many, hosted on one or many servers. Some of those are what's called turn-key systems, whereas the hosting company sets up the virtual server for your needs and will administrate your system’s needs. You can likewise administrate your server but that would be like doing engine work on your car. You better know what you’re doing.

Next level would be along what you need, which is a website that is on a platform like www.WIX.com or www.weebly.com. They have templates that are ready-made that you can insert content, photos and contact forms that are ready to use. They are initially free but will come with advertising from the company that serves you. You can get rid of the ads by paying a monthly fee. Your web address will be something like BettysDaycare.Weebly.com, which is not a good looking or memorable address to market. It that case a domain name comes in handy. You can point your domain name BettysDaycare.com to BettysDaycare.Weebly.com. That way you can market BettysDaycare.com and it will direct clients to your content that you created at Weebly. The service is called "domain forwarding" and it's an option at your registrar (where you registered your domain name like GoDaddy.com)

Speaking of GoDaddy, they also offer you website services for your domain name that is located there. I would first try WIX or Weebly for free just to try it out. Remember, your domain name gives you all the power. Whether you use it as FaceBook does or a simplified YourDaycare.com, it all comes down to the domain name first.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mike (Post 614119)
Domain names are actually rented or leased with the agreement that it's yours for as long as you pay for it. You can pay yearly, or for most domains, you can prepay for up to 10 years.

* While we don't necessarily own a domain name we have rights that as long as we pay our registration fee, it is ours to use a long as we like. Very similar to our property. We pay property taxes but if we don't, we lose our home. Domain names have been referred to as being both property and not being property by differing courts. I am a longtime member at ICANN on the Business Constituency and there are those of us that would like domain names to be property that has rights. After all, it is about the only virtual thing that we can own. We are putting our businesses, personal lives and many of us, our future. We should have more control over that.

cassiesue 11-06-2016 06:01 PM

Thanks for the advice thus far.

Mike I am going to try your advice and attempt to use one of those free template sites. Do you have a preference over WIX or Weebly? Is one better suited for a beginner? I think my domain name (if that is what it is called) is easy to remember. It is: cassiesueschildcare.com As I get about 75% of my clients from Facebook I set my FB business page up first. I understand that limits me as I have to follow their rules.

I created a temporary work around for the FB review issue. What I did to eliminate the unfair review from the family that I terminated was to just screenshot all of the reviews. Then I disabled the review option. So now no one can leave a review. I created an album titled reviews and uploaded the screenshots of the valid reviews in to it. If someone asks to leave a review in the future I will just temporarily enable this feature. I'd like to leave it enabled, but I can't if it will not allow us to remove a clearly slanderous review. It even will let someone leave a review if they have never even used your center.

Time for me is such an issue. I love this forum, but in a way wish I had not found it. I love reading the threads and getting ideas etc. from others. Plus it is nice to find a community that gets what I go through on a daily basis. But when I get a bit of free time I find myself here rather than being productive elsewhere. :ouch: I do legal petitions on the side and have a debriefing scheduled for 7 p.m. tomorrow and I haven't even started her divorce. I justify this by claiming I work best under pressure. :rolleyes:

One day I'll get organized and then I'll be dangerous! I haven't even finished setting up my kids with the Brightwheel app. I am the Queen of procrastination. :eek:

Thanks again Mike for all you do here and I appreciate getting to read everyone's posts that take the time to contribute to this great site!!! happyface

ellen211 07-08-2018 09:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by awestbrook713 (Post 154209)
I don't have a website but I do have a page on facebook. I include pictures of crafts the children have done, list books I have read to the children, share recipes I have used in program. I also share learning websites I find helpful, daycare issues going on that I find important. It is still a small page and only a handful of people have liked it but its a start.

Hi! would you mind sharing the link of your page here? I would like to visit it.


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