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Services Detailed for Bargain John's Antiques

Bargain Johns Antiques
700 S Washington
Lexington, Nebraska 68850
Website Redesign
Search Engine Marketing
 Procedural Operations Improvements
Logo Creation


Website Redesign
The first thing I did when I started there is to give the entire website (some 1000 pages) a redesign. I tried to incorporate the stores chosen color scheme and make the pages all fall with in the same appearance. I also created a new logo design to be used for the website as well as with all of their letterheads and advertising in one incarnation or another. 

What was being used for this function was a photograph of their store sign.

Another reason for the redesign of the website was to ready the site to be optimized for better visibility in the search engines. After all if the site can't be found in the search engines it really cuts down on the reason for a site in the first place.

Search Engine Optimization

The next thing I did after being hired to work for Bargain John's Antiques is to increase the daily visitors to the website. This was accomplished through a combination of three things.

1. Cleaning up of the pages themselves
2. Optimizing the pages to better express what they are about.
3. Starting a link exchange strategy.

Within a couple months I was able to see my efforts come to fruition as is shown in the graph I have shown below

Red dot indicates approximate date of hire. 
The first and last months shown on this graph do not represent a full months data, resulting in lower requests. 

Generation of ideas to monetize the website.

monetize\Mon"e*tize\, v. t. To convert into money; to adopt as current money; as, to monetize gold.

No site can make a sale on every visitor. People end up on the page by mistake, the asking price is to high for them, or they were only using the site as a informational tool, whatever the reason, people do leave the site without making a purchase. This is something that cannot be changed. The wise web developer is the one that knows this and will use it to create income as well. By using tasteful, uncompetitive and relevant ads that the surfer can use  to leave, the site can generate an income even if it is not generating sales. 

Improvements in operation methods
(website, email handling, inventory)

Some of the changes I made while working for them was to cut down the time or resources needed to do some tasks. These changes fall pretty much into two categories. Changes made in the way resources were handled for the website and the way that outside business issues were handled.

One of the changes I implemented was to change the way the pictures for the website were handled. They were taking pictures of their inventory with a sense of urgency whether or not appropriate lighting was available thus ending up rephotographing at a later time. Also after the pictures were taken they were saved into one area on the computer, edited and saved again into another area  effectively doubling the amount of time needed for each picture to be added. I changed this by managing the time at which new inventory was unloaded to a time when good natural light was available ensuring that the best possible pictures were taken initially and saving the best pictures directly into the  place they needed to be.

(as a side benefit, this procedure also cut down on the space taken up on the hard drive by duplicate files)

Another of the improvements I made was to change the way the logo appeared on the website pages. The way it was being done was that there were distinct  pictures placed on each page. These pictures were of the same appearance but  they were named differently. This would cause problems if one wanted to make a broad sweeping change, as each picture would have to be changed individually. I changed this by making each page reference the same picture. Thus if they wanted to change the picture (i.e. add a "big sale" blurb) it would only have  to be done once, saved once, and each page would then show the new picture.

Another of the changes I made to the daily business operations was to change the way emails were handled. The way things were being done was when an email was received that should be directed to another of the crew it was printed out and handed off to the  person to reply to. I changed this by having separate email accounts set up and used as an interoffice messaging system. This not only cut down on the amount of paper wasted but also helped the sender of the original email since by forwarding the email to the intended recipient the original message was included.

Creation of letterhead and envelope

While at Bargain John's I also created a envelope and letterhead set that
fell within the same appearance of the site. 

Creation of ebay listing design

Bargain John's also sells some of their inventory at Ebay.com (an online auction house) The appearance of their listings was bland and didn't present the appearance of a brick and mortar upscale antiques store that had been in business for nearly forty years. I created a customized listing template that they are able to continue to use.

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