Shimshock Group Named Top Web Design & Development Company

Clutch, a Washington, DC-based research firm, has published new research on leading web designers, web developers, and leading digital agencies. The Shimshock Group has been named by Clutch as a top web design and development company, and was placed in their "Leaders Matrix."

10 Great Ways to Increase Your Online Sales

Our clients are always seeking new and unique opportunities to grow their online revenue.  They're often interested to know our thoughts on sales techniques which can yield incredibly positive results, for in some cases relatively small investment.

We wanted to share with our friends and those who visit the site some of the learnings we've had over the years. We hope this brief list can help others in achieving their online and eCommerce goals.

If you'd like to talk with us further about our experiences, or other successful tactics we've identified from our past projects, feel free to contact us! We're always available.

WordPress, Joomla or Drupal: Does Freelancer Success Determine Which Platform Is The Best?

I wanted to offer an assessment of a report I recently read which analyzes freelance opportunities for the design and development of Content Management Systems (CMS).  The report examines freelance work performed using WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal.

The report was written by DoNanza, a search engine focused on work-from-home and freelance jobs. In its Work-From-Home Market Trends Report for the third quarter, DoNanza proclaims that "most CMS sites use WordPress while the largest budgets go to Drupal developers".

How the Health Care Debate Impacts Small Business

If you are a small business owner, or an entrepreneur seeking to start a business, you will be impacted by the current plans for health care reform.  There are no easy answers, and business owners will be required to shoulder a certain amount of responsibility.  The key questions are how much responsibility will small businesses be required to shoulder, and what are the long term impacts of this change.

Joost vs. Hulu: A Study in Contrast

In late 2006, I had the opportunity to become a beta tester for Joost, an Internet TV service.  The product was exciting and seemed to be the next wave of content distribution for the web.  I downloaded the Joost video player, and within 15 minutes I was watching television channels from around the world.  There were movies, sports, classic shows, documentaries, and much more.

So given this exciting technology, why did Joost announce this week that they are reinventing their business, with a new service and business model?  The plan is to abandon ad-supported television shows and instead become a video technology provider to media companies.

The reasons why provide a cautionary tale for any new business owner or entrepreneur looking to grow a company.

Advanta closes all accounts; where do small businesses turn for credit?

A few weeks ago it was announced that Advanta would be leaving the credit card business.  This notice was particularly difficult for many small business owners, since Advanta typically considered small businesses to be their primary market focus.

The Wall Street Journal article goes on to say the following (emphasis mine):

Small-business owners have been among the most severely hurt by the credit crisis and recession. Banks have pulled back on small-business loans in recent months, forcing company owners to rely more heavily on plastic for many of their expenses. Card issuers are leery of small businesses because of their volatile revenue streams.

According to a recent survey by the National Small Business Association, credit cards are the most popular form of financing used by small business to finance their capital needs. One-third of small businesses reported that their credit lines had been reduced in the past six months.

Using credit cards to finance a small business is an easy solution when no other options are available, but I highly caution all owners to avoid this step without a very firm process in place.

Now is the perfect time to start a business

Some may read the headline of this blog post and think to themselves, "Ron has fallen off his rocker!"  Given the difficult economic conditions, daily layoff announcements, and federal government bailouts, many may feel the best plan is to stay the course and ride out the financial storm.

I tend to prescribe to a slightly different philosophy, one that thrives on opportunity.  As Alexander Graham Bell famously once said, "when one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us."  I challenge you to consider the current environment as not one filled with despair, but instead ripe with new opportunities for the picking.