Category Archives: Wordpress
Hey my lovelies,
Nat here, it’s been some time since I’ve blogged on my site..
I’ve been a little pre-occupied.
I don’t know whether you’ve been following Natalie Crowe Designs’ progress over the past 12 months.
But BIG things have been happening.
Perhaps we should start back October 2020…. Yes, that long ago…
I started completing a course on passive income generation through writing online course and turning ideas that have been sitting in my goal book since well before 2016.. into actual tangible results….
I’ve always loved being able to help people and use my skillset to do that.
During the vast majority of my business over the last 13 years, I’ve been teaching 1:2:1 via Skype or Zoom.
I’ve always offered tech support and been fairly predominant as a Website Developer in Maitland, Hunter Valley, Newcastle & Australia. Building Websites & Maintaining them for clients primarily on WordPress.
Following completing the course by a UK mentor mid November 2020, I opened up a Free Website Help group on Facebook and started a mailing list.
The Natalie Crowe Designs | Website Help & WordPress Help group has just surpassed 250 Members and my amazingly supportive online community spans countries through-out the World.
I love the diversity and the factor that no matter what time of day or night I’m online, there is always someone online who is happy to have a chat or the members are busily chatting amongst themselves.
In the group, I hold FREE Weekly TechTalks and Q&As for my community to connect with me and get help with their WordPress, Website & Tech Questions.
The group is growing and it’s meant that I can actually connect and support more website owners, but more than that, I love the idea of being of service! 🙂
My lovelies in my community have dubbed me “WordPress Expert”, “International Guru” ,”Website Wonder Woman” & “Fount of Tech Knowledge”
LOL I laugh at their humor whilst I know I am a talented WordPress developer and passionate about troubleshooting issues, it always seems foreign being coined that type of thing.. it’s taking a little bit to get used to.
Then things got even more interesting!
January I committed to writing my first course…. Teaching WordPress website owners to understand their website and how to use it. It is such an important skillset for a WordPress website owner to have.
I held a couple of WordPress Focus Groups to engage my prospective audience and run my ideas by them. The response was nothing short of mind blowing….
“When can we have access to this?”
“I’d definitely be interested Nat, I’ve seen your teaching style in your Facebook group and it really appeals to me”
I ordered some new tech, started writing the content for the course and was set to start recording 1st of February…
As life does, we had a family emergency that took me away from my business for the whole of February.. I didn’t even get a chance to start the process..
March rolled around, and I was determined to get my course recorded….
MOST coaches tell you not to record a thing until you’ve sold the course….
That in itself gave me hives… You know yourself how stressful it can be trying to plan things on the fly…. given how dynamic my life had been in the weeks beforehand there was no way I could consciously do that…
I knew there was a demand for my offering I’d already done the market research to see what my audience wanted.
Come 1st of March, I spent every waking moment inbetween 1-2-1 clients, curating over 45+ course videos, writing a 100 page self study guide and building an online learning environment using the WordPress + LearnDash integrated with Woocommerce. to allow me to create and sell my own courses on WordPress.
Between the 26th of March and the 31st of March I opened cart for my 1st round of WordPress 101 – 6 week Beginner’s course. Helping you got from UNCERTAINTY to UNDERSTANDING Your WordPress website.
The course has been such a big hit.
I didn’t do a major launch, I marketed to my existing warm audience in my group and had 15 students enroll in the course.
That in itself was a epiphany… this might actually work?
I can do so many things with this..
I can HELP more people..
I can grow this and this amazing toolset of resources I’ve created and it’s not impacting as significantly on my timing…
Better yet, because I can rinse and repeat… I don’t have to charge as much for it… and it makes it more affordable for my clients..
Now that I’ve done the basic social media setup, the email marketing …. this should take more than 7 hours of my time to facilitate lives and I can actually be amongst the process rendering my assistance..
I set the goals – OK = 8 Enrollments / Good = 10 Enrollment / Great = 12 Enrollments
As silly as it sounds.. I was so freaking excited at the prospects…
We reach 13 enrollments 90 minutes before
LOL if you need authentically genuine excitement … and potentially over the top enthusiasm.
This was the live on the 31st March once I discovered we smashed my 12 goal…
The Round 1 – Students board after having to add further cards to my original 12 goal.
The course is currently in it’s First Week as of the 15th of April.
I am so ecstatic that not only can I now offer to build websites & maintain them, I now have an online learning platform that I can facilitate WordPress Courses – Teach others how to learn WordPress and improve their understanding and no doubt there will be more to come.
WordPress Websites, Courses & website help
This year, during the pandemic I have achieve so many things towards my end goal – “to make a difference “:)
I am still offering Website Development & Website Maintenance – you can check my website package pricing here .
I most definitely am still helping Website Owners 1:2:1 via Zoom on their Websites & Tech
I am now offering FREE Website Help, Tech Help & WordPress Help group on Facebook
Setting up a new WordPress website and growing your presence online can be challenging, however it doesn’t have to be. Knowing what is going to be right for you and the complex task of having to wade through the plethora of options available can be daunting. This is where connecting with a WordPress Website Designer or WordPress Specialist can be of great benefit.
Natalie Crowe of Natalie Crowe Designs helps you take the hassle out of tackling technology.
Natalie is a WordPress Website Designer & Online Business Mentor in the Hunter Valley, NSW, Australia. She works with clients all over the world as a WordPress Specialist and offers a range of WordPress website packages to suit any budget.
With her WordPress Website Packages starting from $880 + GST ( $968) Natalie’s NCD Starter Website package includes a custom built 5 page website, 12 months website hosting and domain and includes taking care of the monthly backups and WordPress updates for your first 12 months.
To find out more about NCD Starter Website here.
Cheap WordPress Website Design doesn’t always mean value for money. However, Natalie Crowe Designs has you covered for affordable website package prices, reliability, experience and down to earth customer service.
Whether you are:
- looking to get a new WordPress Website,
- needing WordPress Website Technical Support or
- wanting WordPress Website help,
Natalie Crowe Designs is more than happy to help.
You can explore Natalie’s full range of WordPress Website Packages via her Website Prices page.
WordPress is a robust content management system that you can create virtually anything.
Therefore, you are only limited by your imagination.
And with the help of Natalie Crowe Designs anything can be achieved.
Good Morning everyone,
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been working with clients who have been impacted severely by the Coronavirus. These businesses are all now either having to look to take ORDERS online or to start MEMBERSHIP/ONLINE LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS for their clients to keep connected with them.
It’s been heart breaking to watch and hear the updates and the impacts on my own family have been immense, we’re now limited to one income and I know there are so many businesses whom aren’t sure how they are going to get through this. I wanted to try and help as many as I can.
After surveying prospects and following conversations within my social networks there appeared to be a real need to be able to accept payments online for basic ORDER FORM type scenarios ie local bakery being able to take payments for their home delivered bread, and the local cafe being able to facilitate online purchase of meals for delivery. Also those homemade product businesses at our local markets that no longer can operate due to the social distancing laws here in Australia. As well as for businesses that offer services to groups and individuals such as local Gyms and groups, specialists and those that offer face to face meetings needing to move to a more modern / online medium. Those who need an ONLINE LEARNING / MEMBERSHIP site where they can securely share content and provide to their customers.
After much spending the last two days crunching numbers and work out what would be the best option. I’m pleased to introduce our two new website packages specifically designed to help out clients who are needing to go online to continue doing business as a result of COVID-19, these packages have LONG TERM benefits, whilst they are designed to get you up and running ASAP, you will be able to grow and strength your online presence with these new packages.
I’ve put together full product pages for you for each package however here’s a quick run down on each:
NCD Quick Order + Website Package
One package focuses around an ONLINE ORDER FORM connected with STRIPE to accept payments online that go into your bank account within 2 business days. This website package contains a 5 page website, blog + 1 page custom order form with all the basic components you need to start selling online ASAP. This would be perfect for anyone selling a handful of items or have set priced items you’d like to sell online however are not wanting to worry about full blown ecommerce store with all the complications and setup.
Quick List inclusions:
- 5 page website + blog
- 1 page eCommerce order form connected to Stripe
– Payments are processed within 2 business days and deposits the money less the fees to your bank account.
- Setup of your Stripe Account on your behalf in order to accept payments online.
- Setup of your custom order form.
- 12 month Hosting, Domain & needed software licenses.
- 12 months WordPress Backup & Updates Plan. usually $65 a month yours for 12 months included in the price.
- Optimisation of your content & submission to the search engines once you’re ready to launch.
I’ve offered to cover $811 off the development price to help you out.
Learn More here: COVID-19 RELIEF | NCD Quick Order+ Website Package
NCD Online Learning + Website Package.
The second package focuses on clients who want to SELL MEMBERSHIP or essentially COURSES ONLINE where you are able to create free & paid content including videos and other media to provide lessons and training for your prospective customers. This includes courses, their relevant modules, sections, lessons + quizzes in an easy to use dashboard for both Student and Teacher.
In terms of the technical site, we take all as of the hassle out of setting up the infrastructure of your online environment, we work with you to get the site up and running inclusive of up to 4 hours consultancy via Skype throughout the setup process, whether that be training, troubleshooting or working out the best form of action for you.
We also do all the setup for your VIMEO account (Video hosting account) and include 12 months subscription in the pricing.
We setup the Payment Gateways which include either PayPal or Stripe which means you won’t have to struggle trying to work out what needs to take place.
With the blog component to get you started we help you put together your first 4 blog posts during the initial setup which you can schedule to be released at your leisure.
We setup and integrate your social media platforms, including Google My Business and Facebook or preferred alternative and brand them to suit.
We offer the down to earth technical support, via Skype, Facebook Page Messenger, Phone & Email and support you through the process.
We take care of 12 months Website Backup & WordPress Updates
I’ve offered to cover $1280 off the development price to help you out.
LEARN MORE here: COVID-19 RELIEF | NCD Online Learning+ Website Package
January saw so many sites attacked by automated hackers looking for websites with vulnerabilities in which they can exploit for personal information.
Some of these hackers attack websites for the purposes of siphoning personal and financial information which they can attempt to utilise as a means of financial gain.
Common activities include:
- Obtaining email address to send spam
- Installing malicious codes and software which may result in forms of payment.
- Redirecting visitors & website traffic to other websites which often they are setup as an affiliate which may create funds for them.
Whilst being one of the best content management systems out there, WordPress; like any open source content management systems, does have vulnerabilities when not correctly maintained.
In this case, a number of clients who were currently self-managing their accounts – whom had not kept up with internet security, backed up the website or completed the needed website maintenance, were the hardest hit.
But what on earth does that “correctly maintaining your WordPress website” mean??
“Self-Managed WordPress Websites” are basically WordPress websites that have been built for you, whereby you take over the responsibility of maintaining the website, ensuring the website is running the latest versions of each of it’s components and making relevant changes as need to the pages and page content.
In order to correctly maintain your WordPress websites, it means you need to keep the WordPress software and it’s relevant plugins and themes regularly updated. It means making a regular backup of the website files and the database. It means making sure you’re not using the default settings for things like login credentials or non secure settings, and using plugins that are regularly update by their developer.
You can also look to utilise more advance strategies like customising your WordPress database tables names to make then unique, changing your SALT keys regularly and if you were implementing new functionality for your website, that you’re using tested and regularly updated plugins and themes.
I think my WordPress website got hacked / How can I tell if I’ve been hacked?
There are 3 main characteristics we’ve seen of late with websites who have been hacked, some are more obvious thank others. However, Hackers have accessed the website and injected malicious code into the websites and modified files that resulted in:
- onscreen errors,
- search engines such as Google – identifying the site as containing malicious code / marked them unsafe
- or the most commonly – the website has a series of codes injected into the website that force visits to be redirected to unsafe and undesired websites.
AdsForMarket – WordPress Website Attacks
One of the primary redirects or spam codes injected into some of these websites were for a domain called “Adsformarket”.
This adsformarket is owned to a private entity and was registered through a domain provider Eranet, whom I’ve contacted to ask them to look at what their users are doing. However hackers can easily change their domains names and use the same scripts elsewhere, whilst we can try and have these creators dealt with, it’s hard to prove and it won’t entirely stop the from doing this again. So the best way to counteract this is to implement stronger security measures.
I make note here NO WEBSITE IS 100% HACK PROOF. However we can make various modifications to help strengthen the website boundaries and with regular maintenance, website backups & updates. Website owners can decrease the downtime and the cost it would take for their websites to be recovered.
Getting help – if you think your WordPress website has been hacked:
If you think you may have been hacked or you’d like some help with your website.
Natalie Crowe Designs is happy to work with you to address the issue.
Please contact us or give us a call to discuss your options: 0423285233
3650 days of life and business lessons!
Wow! Wow! Wow! As we come to the closure of a decade and 2020 rolls on in. It’s amazing to take a look back at where we’ve come from and where we’re going in business. 3650 days?! What did we do with them all?
The last 10 years have altered and changed my course tremendously. I’ve seen highs and lows in my personal life and business however the continual indicators show I’m onto a good thing here.
Business is growing, I’m busier than I’ve ever been. I’ve established myself and my brand as a strong local contender in various communities both online and offline and most importantly I’m enjoying the process and as I always intended… I’m HELPING people. Win Win!
Adapting to change – Same Great Services
Whilst technology has definitely changed and we’re more mobile or responsive device focused, the decade of instant gratification, social media and being able to find pretty much anything from the palm of your hand in a matter of seconds, has meant as a business owner we’ve needed to be adaptive and responsive to our clients needs.
- Building new websites,
- Improving existing websites,
- Specialising in WordPress Websites,
- Offering Website Help, Technical Support and Training,
- Providing Website Management and monthly update packages,
- Helping you get found through Search Engine Optimisation,
- Engagement Marketing,
- Provision of Hosting and domains,
- Social Media setup and management
- & so more.
Events that have shaped Natalie Crowe Designs
10 years is such a massive timeframe, and with the diversity of events that have occurred; some of them big, some of them small, all of them have contributed to the person I am and who I’ve become and how my business has evolved.
- From deciding I wanted to help people with their websites and shaping that into a tangible business idea as a means of supporting myself, then that need and desire growing with the birth of my daughter.
- Having to re-establish my life in the Hunter Valley, after an 8 year relation dissolving and continuing to make a living, working through Family Courts / Custody Battle that set me back $25k+ in legal fees all whilst simultaneously keeping our heads above water. My business supported us.
- Through moving 7 times before eventually generating & saving enough money through my business and finding a bank that would accept me as a self employed business owner, and validate that my business was more than a hobby in order to purchase our own home in the Hunter Valley.
- To, continuing my studies getting additional qualifications and improving myself and expanding my services from not only WEB DESIGN but to BUSINESS MENTORING evolving my business into a one stop shop.
- To supporting hundreds of local businesses over the years and through the growth and trajectory of my business being able to contribute to countless causes in our local community, donating thousands of dollars to help people get back on their feet, and utilise my experience to better themselves.
- To finding the love of my life, having same sex marriage laws passed and to being able to get married which for the most part was funded by my ability to generate an income and paid outright which meant we didn’t have to go into debt to be able to bring our family together to celebrate our union. Something I was so ecstatic about in 2018.
I am so grateful and proud of each and every moment and what I’ve overcome to create a life that I love and a business that supports me and my goals. Acknowledging, not all of these things are solely business related but they were possible due to my business or have have contributed as pieces of the puzzle that’s formed the Natalie Crowe Designs of today.
2020 – A year of continuing to offer enormous value & honouring my self worth
In 2020, I’ll be working closely on my message, whilst wanting to help people hasn’t changed, I have spent a great deal of time analysing my business and one thing is clear, I always go above and beyond. My clients are the most important part of my business but at times I’ve found myself over extending, over delivering and ultimately to my own detriment burning out.
$30,000 in uncollected payments, donations, volunteer work and unpaid accounts.
‘There’s always more’ mentality and my generosity can often get the better of me. It’s been a few years now, but prior to our hourly price increase of $80/hr the tally of discounts alone given to the community in one 12 month span equated to close to $30,000!!
At the time I couldn’t even fathom that I’d discounted developments or not collected payments, volunteered a multitude of hours through that year / completed unpaid work, however it was clear, come the end of the year how burnt out and exhausted I was, how disappointed I felt not attaining the goals I’d set and how much that $30,000 would have made a difference in my life at the time if I’d only honoured my selfworth and trusted that my effort and contributions to all of these amazing causes was worth receiving payment.
Your time is worth the money & you are worthy of payment:
My aim for 2020 will be to shape my business in a way that still delivers enormous value for my beautiful clients, however values my worth, my time, my contributions and supports and nurtures healthy boundaries.
This year, will be the year that will enable me to set and reach my goals and still allows me to honour myself, avoid massive burnout that I’ve experience in the past and also enable be me carve out time to create new products and services, study further, connect with all of you and improve what I can offer you as a part of my web design and business mentoring services.
What to expect as of January 2020
In summary, 2020 will still very much be a year of service, I’m still going to offer the same amazing customer service, delivering enormous value through my products and services and doing my very best to continue to help and support your businesses in the best ways I know how.
I’ll be restructuring my pricing and packages a little to ensure that I’m honouring my boundaries, however most of the modifications will be behind the scenes and all be it that it sounds a little confronting, I am enormously excited for the factor that implementing these new strategies will mean I’m utilising my time and resources better and I essentially will be able to engage and support more business owners and causes whilst simultaneously supporting and honouring myself.
I can not wait to share the progress of 2020 with you. From works in progress, completed projects, to resources and tools, tips and insights, causes and community events we’re getting behind and so much more.
If I can be of any assistance moving forward to help you establish and grow your online presence, provide website help and support please don’t hesitate to contact me.
To have a chat about your requirements and start moving forward with your goals in 2020.
I would LOVE to arrange a FREE 30 Minute discovery call with you to discuss your options and help you get your goals underway!
Send a message via the form below or feel free to give me a call on 0423285233.
Natalie Crowe Designs
Web Design & Business Mentoring
Web Design Australia | Looking for help with your website?
Natalie Crowe Designs offers affordable website help.
Struggling with your website? Natalie Crowe Designs is a website design company australia offering affordable website package pricing and down to earth business mentoring.
We are based in the Hunter Valley near Cessnock, Maitland, Singleton and Newcastle and work with clients all over the world.
We primarily work with WordPress Websites however have 11 years experience working with a range of systems and would be happy to offer assistance regarding any website issues you may be having.
We tailor packages to your requirements, this could include:
- WordPress Website Maintenance – Backing up your website and completing routine updates to core WordPress, plugins and themes
- Content Changes and Content Writing
- Search Engine Optimisation – basically getting you in front of the right people at the right time, whether that be local listings, accessing a page on your website or social media
- Social Media Management – primary Google My Business & Facebook
- Skype Business Mentoring: General Business Mentoring from getting clear on your ideas and what you’re wanting to achieve through to general business management and clarifying your vision and strategies.
Tell me a little bit more about Skype Business Mentoring:
Skype business mentoring uses the online tool that makes meetings a breeze. You can meet with me in the comfort of your own home at a time that’s suitable for you to discuss things that matter to you. The Skype program itself is used to make voice and video calls, send files – one of the major functionalities I adore – is the”share screen” for training purposes. Best of All Skype is free to use. You’ll simply download the Skype application from Skype.com and install it on your device – (ideally your computer) however it does run on other smaller handheld devices like your mobile phone. You’ll then either create a free account or login to an existing account and connect with us by searching for “NatalieCroweDesigns” or providing your details and we’ll connect with you.
Skype Business Mentoring is a lot more flexible and cost effective as we no longer have to charge for travel and it means we can meet with more clients either during the day or evening depending on your requirements.
Skype mentoring allows us to go through content more thoroughly, you can connect with me and discuss your ideas, obstacles you’re having and how to overcome them. We also provide online training one on one and can offer website help troubleshooting problems or addressing issues. A great example could be around using the “share screen” functionality which allows you to actually show me first hand what is happening for you and allows me to offer assistance. Perhaps you’re getting an error message on your website or even just on your computer. I can work with you to address the issue.
My primary focus here is to help you with your websites and business. If I can be of any assistance, feel free to send an enquiry via our request a quote page or contact us today on 0423285233
Improving a new client’s existing website:
In September this year we had the pleasure of communicating with the lovely Ruth from Ruth Crawley Beauty.
Ruth had contacted us in regards to her existing website wasn’t performing well on the search engines. We took some time to review her situation and see how best we were able to assist her.
We noted that although her site did have some optimisations in place it wasn’t drawing enough attention on the search such as Google & Bing.
Evidence of this was shown when you couldn’t type in any of her service names followed by broader area locations for example the “Hunter Valley” or “Maitland” opposed to her actual suburb of her Beauty Studio Heddon Greta, Heddon Greta is only a short drive from Maitland or the Hunter Valley and Ruth’s business wasn’t coming up.
We started working out the best way to improve the situation. We need to add more content connected to Ruth’s site that the search engines could explore that details more in regards to her services and also helped her strengthen her presence online.
Web Design & Content Strategy:
We decided to implement A BLOG, DEDICATED SERVICE pages and implement some SKYPE MENTORING & TRAINING.
- BLOG – short for Web Log – it’s like an online diary for your business.
Whilst you don’t necessarily have to write your content from a personal “Dear Diary” type scenario. However due to the competitive nature of the beauty industry and the ability to add new content in the form of a blog post, targeted to the type of information that your prospective clients are going to want to read – answering questions they have and demonstrating your wealth of knowledge is truly valuable.
- Some of Ruth’s recent blog posts include:
- Dedicated Service Information Pages – Individual pages with dynamic content added
Clients could then easily share that particular service around via the link or even just key in the search engine the name of a product or service and the service area for example if they were looking for Micro Skin Needling Hunter Valley or Microdermabrasion Maitland chances are these dedicated pages are more likely to show up.
- Business Mentoring & Training via SKYPE
Although Ruth is only a short drive away from my office in Abermain, the convenient of being able to jump on an program on our computers or phones and have a quick chat, video call, share files and my favourite feature – share screen we’re able to do so much more. Share Screen allows you to connect with a Skype user and they allow you to view their screen or you can share yours. We used this amazing tool during training or to walk you through how to address an issue – ie completing a tasks you’ve not done before or solving problems that are coming up for you. It makes it 100% easier, more cost effective and the turn around time is cut down to a 1/4.
Ie Ruth needed to know how to do a particular task or reiterate something we’d discussed in our last mentoring session, we quickly connected via Skype and I was able to walk her through the process. It’s pure genius! And I LOVE the feature.
Ruth Crawley Beauty Studio provides professional beauty services for the Hunter Valley including Heddon Greta, Maitland, Cessnock and Kurri Kurri.
These services include: Micro Skin Needling, Microdermabrasion, IPL Hair Removal, LED Skin Healing, Manicure & Pedicure, Oxygen Therapy, Spray Tans Services, Facial Therapy, Waxing Services & Peel Treatments
By appointment only.
Thursday, Friday & Saturday.
Late appointments are available Tuesday and Thursday evenings.
EFTPOS is available.
For appointments phone:
0438 279 099.
IMPORTANCE OF UPDATING YOUR WEBSITE!
It’s been a busy last few days, we had a client come on board, whom had been held at the mercy of an international hacker, who utilised an outdated software or content management system behind their website to hack into their online database. The hacker had gone the step further and initiated taunting and demanding money. So it required further contact to the appropriate authorities…
Althought,The client acknowledges that given that the website system was built 7 years ago, that they were an easy target. It’s a big reminder to all website owners *You need to keep your systems updated and implement security measures* otherwise there are people out there who will attempt to do the wrong thing…
If you’re using a system that is open-source or that is free to use, it’s more important than ever to upgrade that system and keep your site up to date with the latest security, as that the source code is available to everyone and hacker use these type of systems in order to exploit people… Keeping in mind, there is always good and bad in every situation, as long as the appropriate security measures are taken, you can benefit greatly from content management systems such as WordPress, or Joomla etc, one these precautions have taken place..
Natalie Crowe Designs will be working closely with this client to get this website back on track, we’ve currently accumulated a whole day over the last 3-4 days, in addition to a midnight call out to address the emergency, all of this time has been spent trying to address the issue. And are now having to implement a clean version of the latest software and rebuilt the website system.
If you find yourself in the same position or you have not updated your website for some time, get in contact with us so we can help you get your site up to date and also make sure it’s secure! It’s a loss of revenue, loss of business and damage to your reputation when it comes to issues with your system security and we’re here to help.