Website Design Company in the Mid-Atlantic Region
Coastal Web Marketing is a Website Marketing Company in Maryland providing web design, SEO and Web Marketing services to help you improve your online presence and increase visitors to your website. We build websites from scratch. No templates! Our websites are unique, attractive and easy to use. We have been the go-to web marketing company since 2007, for hundreds if businesses and non-profit organizations in Maryland, We also have some clients spread across the country located in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Virginia, the Carolina's, Georgia, Alabama, Arkansas and California!
If you’re looking for a hardworking, dedicated Web Marketing company that will work closely with you to design the perfect website for your business, look no further. Before beginning work, we’ll learn your likes and dislikes to create the best possible website design that fits your company’s personality. We believe communication is key. Our staff will keep in touch with you throughout the entire process, so we can deliver a business website that meets or exceeds your expectations.
Coastal web will listen carefully to your concerns and suggest what we think are the best options for your business that will give you a quality product at a price you can afford. Investing in a new website or updating your website is an investment in your business that is well worth the money. We are a successful web marketing company because we work as a team with our clients. We put processes into place to keep your web design project moving forward. With timely input and approval from you every step of the way, we can deliver your website on time and within your budget.
When you’re looking to hire a website marketing company, it’s important to interview several companies to ensure that you find the right fit for you, both professionally and personally. Hiring a professional is also better that going the do-it-yourself route because it’s a specialized and complicated business. You may want to read our blog on hiring a website design company for more information.
What Type of web code should I use?
Huh? You may not understand the question but it is an important question to ask. The 2 main types of website coding out there are known as a cms and the other is html coding.
The cms stands for content management system. It has its advantages and disadvantages. The most common cms is called WordPress.
The advantages of WordPress are:
- Easier to build
- Has built in programs called plugins, which save a bunch of programming time
- Most people can edit the site themselves in a wysiwyg format. What You See Is What You Get (Wysiwyg)
- Contact forms take much less time to build
- If you are paying for web marketing services this is by far easier to manage than html
- Has BLOG included
- has templates to make the design process easier and less expensive
Disadvantages to WordPress:
- Security needs to be monitored at least monthly
- Plugins have to be secured monthly and sometimes they break a feature on your site
- Sites have slower load time for each page - much more web code involved
- Templates have security risks
Advantages to HTML Website Design:
- Fast page loading times
- No plugins to break
- Security breaches are rare (if good passwords are used)
- Once its up it should work for 5-7 years without issues
Disadvantages to HTML Website Design:
- Harder to update basic navigation changes, text, pictures, contact forms
- Custom graphic designer required to make images - design look
- Cost of site design - it takes longer to code than building a WordPress site
So choose wisely. Which one will you pick? Here is a general guideline.
Select WordPress if you:
- You want to do web marketing (SEO, Local Search)
- You want to have BLOGs on your site
- You want to update your site regularly yourself
Select HTML if you:
- Do not plan on paying for web marketing services
- Use your site as a glorified business card
- Do not want the hassle of worrying about security issues on your website
Choosing Among Web Design Companies
Coastal web knows that you have many different web design companies to choose from. However, over the years we have built a sturdy reputation for building quality websites at a price you can afford. We would be more than happy to meet with you in person and give you a free quote on your new website. We can provide you with a list of previous websites we have designed so you can contact those companies to see if they are satisfied with our work.
Our website design company works with both established, and new companies to develop a brand-new website that is up to date with all of the current design standards. Whether you’re not too tech-savvy or you’re on top of your stuff, we’ll treat you with the same respect and will make sure that we explain each step along the way to your satisfaction. We explain all technical jargon in plain English so we’re all on the same page.
Our web design team at Coastal Web will ask questions to aid in the design of your site, so we can help you choose the perfect layout, graphics, photos, fonts, color scheme and more for your custom web design. We’ll give you options to choose from before narrowing it down to the final web design. We offer standard web design as well as custom web designs. We can make you a 5-page site, or a 15-page site! Whatever you need, Coastal Web has it covered.
We very highly recommend signing up for our SEO services so your new website can perform to it’s potential. Signing up for Search Engine Optimization allows you to get a quicker return on your investment. SEO helps your website gain more traffic, and in return can gain you more business.
Custom Website Design Company
Coastal Web Marketing is a custom website marketing and design company serving small business in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Virginia, Ohio, and the Carolinas. With all the options out there for web design, its hard to know which option to pick that’s best for you, your business, and is the best quality for price. There are companies that spend over $100,000.00 on a website, and then there are some who create their website for free using the do-it-yourself method. As a business owner, you know that nothing is ever truly free. You either pay in the long run for something, or it doesn’t work at all, so you have to go a different route altogether.
With Coastal Web, you don’t have to worry about any of this. We won’t charge you $100,000.00 and we won’t give you a free website that wastes your time and doesn’t work. We create quality websites that you’ll love for an affordable price.
Initial Appointment with your Web Designer
At your initial appointment with our web designer, we’ll discuss what your goals are for your website. We ask a reasonable amount of questions to get a good idea of what will work best for your business. We have been designing websites for many years, and we know that each industry/business is a little different and we need to build a plan based around those needs. As a custom web developer, we do not believe “one size fits all”, which is why we design our websites from scratch. We can help you choose the best options for you and your business that gives you a quality product at a price you can afford.
We can offer services of a wide variety. Whether it’s the inexpensive solutions for a start-up business or the more extensive solutions for more established companies. We can help with basic web designs to custom web designs or Content Management System Websites to sites with a shopping cart for online purchases. Our website design company has helped many businesses with their web page designs. We know what the project entails, so in most cases we can get you a quote for your project at our initial meeting. We know your time is valuable, so we won’t pressure you to set up a second meeting or sign a contract before you walk out of the door.
Coastal Web will treat you with respect and offer you a great product for a reasonable price. Chances are, there is a business in your neighborhood that we have helped created a website for. At this first meeting, we will also determine is you want to utilize our recommended SEO services. It’s easier to build a website from the beginning using SEO, but we can optimize your existing site as well.
Once your site is live, your online work is not done. We will follow up with you monthly, quarterly, or annually based on your needs. We can add new web pages, optimize for SEO, add a shopping cart, and more. When you think about it, our website design company is just like your business in that we have to charge a fee that pays for our staff and expenses when making website updates. Nothing extravagant, and a reasonable industry standard profit margin so the company can stay in business.
We have been providing computer technology services since 1993, so you can rest assured that we will be around a lot longer. It does take talent to do a good job for our customers, so we are not the cheapest website design company out there, but we are also very reasonable with our fees. Although it has happened, we rarely lose a customer because of our design or our results. We care about our customers and go that extra mile to make sure they have a successful online campaign! Don’t take our word for it, check out our reviews on Google.
If you’re ready to hire a custom website design company, be sure to get a free quote from Coastal Web Marketing. Call us today at 410-420-9390 or use our contact form to set up a meeting.
Responsive Web Design
Responsive web design takes the approach that the design and development of a website should respond to a user’s behavior and adapt based on screen size, platform and orientation. Simply put, responsive web design will change the size and orientation of a web page based on the screen size of the device you are using to view it. Whether the viewing screen is a desktop monitor, tablet, or mobile phone, your website will function correctly.
Have you ever used your smart phone and had to enlarge and swipe a web page to view it properly? That is NON-responsive web design. Responsible responsive web design viewed on your smart phone will be fast to load, easy to read, easy to tap on links, etc.
Studies show that a large percentage of mobile users will abandon a website if it is not built with a responsive web design, and they will go back to their search results to find a similar site that can be viewed more easily. If you bring up your website on your smart phone, can you see everything easily? If not, you may want to consider updating your website with a responsive web design.
If you still have doubts, did you know that Google will now penalize websites that are not mobile friendly by putting them farther down in the search results? Yikes! With Coastal Web, we make all of our websites responsive designs, so you won’t have to worry.
Web Designers You Can Count On
Coastal Web Marketing is a Maryland based web marketing company that designs websites for surrounding areas such as Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Ohio, and the Carolinas. Every new site we build is built with a responsive web design and meets or exceeds all industry standards. You can rest assured that you will get a good looking, easy to navigate, mobile-friendly website that will increase your business.
Our web designers are highly trained and up to date with the most current design fads out there. Your website will be created with the current design standards in mind so your website is not only modern, but also attractive and easy to use. If you’re looking to get a new website for your company, or a website redesign to incorporate responsive web design, call Coastal Web Marketing today at 410-420-9390 or use our contact form and someone will get back to you.
The Best Web Designs Use Photos
The best web designs do indeed use photos – a variety of high quality photos that reflect your brand and what you do. Choosing photos for your website is extremely important to aid the look of your overall design. Photos help define the look and feel of the website and also show the personality of your business. From a design perspective, photos also help to move your eye around the page, which in turn causes consumers to stay on your page longer and see more information. People would much rather look at a webpage that has many pictures, something to keep their eye entertained, rather than just a page with plain text.
High quality photos and logos enhance the look of your website, while dated photos and logos do the opposite. If you have photos or a logo that looks dated, we can fix that! We can revamp your logo while also keeping the same feel as the original. We also offer photo services if you would like new, updated photos on your website.
Here are 4 types of photos we will put on your website.
- Pictures you have taken or have paid a photographer for use on your website
- Pictures we take for you of your business
- Pictures your manufacturers or suppliers have given you permission to use on your website
- Stock photos you purchase from a photo website
NOTE: Stealing pictures from the Internet is not acceptable as you do not want any legal issues with your website! Saving a few bucks is not worth the potential legal trouble.
Photo galleries are handled separately from general photos for your website. If you’re interested in a photo gallery for your website, please let us know.
Digital Image Formats
Did you know using the right digital image formats can help optimize your website for both speed in loading and search engine optimization? How do you know if you’re using the right types of image files across your website? Below, we’ll explain the differences between the major image file types and when it’s best to use each. Your web design team at Coastal Web Marketing will help you choose images for your website.
- 16 bit data format
- Can display millions of colors
- Common, and compatible across most platforms and displays
- Uses a compression algorithm to sacrifice some image data to reduce file size
JPEG’s use of compression is great for most webpages because it reduces page load time – which is a search engine ranking factor. Use JPEG files for real-life photos of people or products (digital cameras save their images as JPEGs by default), as well as images that contain lots of color and light/dark shading.
- Uses 256 indexed colors
- Can utilize progressive loading (a low-quality version is loaded first, then more details are filled in)
- Can be animated
Since GIFs use a limited color range, their file sizes are generally small and don’t require compression. However, this means they are not the optimal choice for displaying details. Use GIFs for simple images with few colors, small icons, and of course, animation.
- Capable of displaying more than 16 million different colors
- Supports transparency settings
- Uses what is called lossless compression, which means no data is lost when saving
- Two types: PNG 8 is similar to GIF, and even smaller file size than GIF. PNG 24 is similar to JPEG, but lossless compression means larger files than JPEG
Because they display so much detail and use lossless compression, PNG 24 files tend to be large. They are best used for logos that use transparency and fading effects, or for other complex images. Just be aware that the larger file will take longer to load.
Another digital image format is .PDF. The .PDF format is usually a document, such as a warranty or owner’s manual.
Once we have worked together to decide which image file types to use for the various parts of your website, we can improve their SEO performance by optimizing the metadata for the images. If you’ve signed up for our SEO services, we will create an image sitemap to help search engines index the images on your website. This step is increasingly important if your site is an E-Commerce site with photos of your products.
How Should I Send You My Logo?
The higher the quality of the logo, the better. If you have a couple copies of your logo in different formats, go ahead and send us what you have. We will determine which one has the best quality. Preferred formats are: .ai .psd .pdf .png (other file types are ok as well.)
How Do I Send My Pictures?
- Create a blank email and attach 1, or possibly more, photos to your email program (Max file size per email attachment is around 7MB).
- In the text area of the email specifically tell us the page that each photo will go on and a description of what the photo is. You may know what an excavator model 6700 is but we probably won’t. It is helpful if you name each of your photo files.
- Label the photo where you want it on the page if there is more than 1 picture per page. Before &After photos have to be labeled. (Ex: excavator-before-1.jpg).
- If you are not sure how to do this correctly, then call us for more details or use Method B.
- Create a folder on your computer with the name of your business.
- Go into the new company folder that you just created and create a folder within for each of the page names of your new website.
- Copy the picture from your computer or your camera and place it in the appropriate new folder for that page.
- Label the photo. Tell us what it is and give more details if there is more than 1 photo for a specific page. (Ex: before-shot-excavator-1.jpg)
- Once you have copied all of the pictures into the folder recheck to make sure everything is correctly labeled and placed in the correct folders.
- Copy the main company folder onto a flash drive or a cd and mail to us. We will not return the disk so make sure it is a copy.
- Create a compressed folder file by right-clicking just like you did to create the original folder. Instead of choosing new folder, at the bottom of the list, choose the option for “Compressed (zipped) Folder”.
- Name this folder businessname.compressed.
- Copy the original folder with just your business name into the compressed folder and email us the entire compressed folder by dragging it into an email like any other attachment.
Note on pictures: The picture should be the same file size as when you took the picture. If you reduce the file quality then it may show up grainy. If a picture you send us is only 2" x 2" we cannot make that picture any larger than the size you send us without degrading that image. We come across that once in a while as an older site may have some really good pictures but they are too small for the new site. You may need to retake that photo or try to find the original.
If you’re ready to partner with a web marketing company you can trust to work as hard for your business as you do, then call Coastal Web Marketing today for a free Website Design Analysis or a free SEO Analysis to see how well your site is currently performing. Call us at 410-420-9390 or click here to send us your request for a FREE Analysis.
Illustrations in Web Design
Illustrations have a place in web design. Sometimes, a photo just doesn’t tell the whole story. That’s where illustrations come in. Illustrations are perfect if you’re trying to describe or show a process or even explain something a littler more complicated. Our graphic designer can create unique, custom graphics for your website. If you’re interested in having custom vectors created for your website, contact us today.
Infographics and More
Illustrations for your website might include infographics, diagrams, decorative designs, hand lettering, etc. Most illustrations in web design are computer generated, but hand drawn lettering and artwork is also used, depending on the website’s feel and purpose.
We can create custom infographics for your website and your print marketing materials. Illustrations can be stand alone or work together with photos and videos to explain a process or otherwise help you get your message across. We offer video services, so if you’re interested in having a custom video for your website, contact us today at 410-420-9390 and we can get started.
If your website is slow to load, was built using a freebie web builder program, hasn’t been updated in several years, is hard to navigate, hasn’t seen a visitor in days or all of the above, you may want to think about a website redesign. Coastal Web Marketing can complete your website redesign to deliver increased traffic, increase conversions, and improve the look and functionality of your website. We work with small businesses throughout Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and the Carolinas.
Experienced Web Designers
We are experienced web designers who understand the redesigning a website is not losing the personal touch from your business. Your new website needs to reflect who you are and what your business is all about. We provide you with a uniquely designed, user friendly website built to convert visitors to customers.
Once our web designers get a feel of the look you want, we can help you decide on style, color schemes, fonts, photos and more. Our web designers can add new pages to reflect new products or services you offer, consolidate other pages, suggest different page names and more. As with any website we build, your website redesign will have responsive web design so people can easily view it from any device.
We can also incorporate SEO into your website redesign, for a separate fee. Adding our SEO consulting services into the mix will help launch your website redesign in the most cost-effective way possible, to help you get a faster return on your investment.
If you need a website redesign to bring new life to your website, call Coastal Web Marketing at 410-420-9390 or use our contact form to request a consultation, and someone will get back to you.
How often should I change my site’s web design?
That's really a judgement call. Some of our customers have kept their design for as little as 18 months and others haven't changed it for over 7 years. If you have a marketing budget, the average renewal time frame is around the 3-5 years period. After that time frame, a website may appear dated due to rapidly changing web technologies. Most clients move forward with a new design because the company is promoting a new product line or because they transitioned from residential to commercial services. However, most businesses switch because they desire a new look with the latest technology that is most visually appealing to consumers.
Why do some companies charge $1,000 for a website while others charge as much as $20,000?
That's a good question. Would you buy your food at Bob's Bargain Basement or would you feel more comfortable shopping at an establishment like Giant Foods or Wegmans? Some of the cheaper computer tech and web design companies come and go so fast that it's hard to believe that someone would actually trust them with their time and money. On the other hand, you don’t want to overspend for your website. I know of a company that charged over $100,000 for a website; the customer was clearly willing to pay for a top-of-the-line job. However, we could have completed that same project with equal or better results for under $10,000! The pricing really depends on the company and their technologies, the talent they use, the cost of their overhead, their pricing mentality, and their profit margins. When you are dealing with a professional website, always compare apples to apples! Also, ALWAYS make sure the company has sample sites to view as well as good references.
If I buy a website from your company, how long will it take to design the site?
We can have a custom-built website design completed in about 6-12 weeks. More often than not, it takes a little longer as we are usually waiting for text and pictures from our clients. If you find you are having a tough time writing text, we now offer text writing services!
Do I need website programming for my site?
Some sites do and some sites don't. For example, if you wanted to feature a calendar on your website, you can very easily create it without website programming. However, if you desire a programmed calendar on your site, you will have many features and display options that may benefit you. For instance, if you want a user from your company to update your calendar quickly, easily, and on a regular basis, a programmed calendar is most likely your best option. A website with a "shopping cart" feature such as Amazon.com would also require programming. For more information about our programming options, feel free to give us a call at 410-420-9390 and we can answer any questions you may have.
Which server/web hosting company should I use?
We recommend GoDaddy. However, it all depends on your wants and needs. You can either use one of the larger web hosting companies or a small, local company. Of course, both options have their advantages and disadvantages. One advantage of local companies is they can easily be reached by phone to answer your questions or make corrections, whereas a larger web hosting company may take a bit longer to get back to you! If you are using a specific platform, such as WordPress, some companies do not handle the files well or have a very slow loading response time. Contact our office for your specific needs to determine what the best solution is for your type of web code.
Should I host my site on a Windows or a Linux server?
Use a Linux based server.
Will you train me to update my own site?
Absolutely! If you prefer to update your own site we can provide on-site training at an hourly rate. If you later decide to no longer update your site, no problem! We'd be more than happy to take care of it for you!
If you have any questions that weren't listed here or answered to your satisfaction, feel free to email us your question and we'll get back to you as soon as possible!