Uncategorized,web development

Limitations of Shopify

  • Jason
  • ON
  • February 12, 2018

Shopify is great way to get your eCommerce business up-and-running quickly and cost-effectively. Yet, here at Brain Bytes we often hear from companies that got started with Shopify and are beginning to outgrow it.

Here are the most common Shopify limitations we see:

  • Checkout flow: Shopify offers very few customization for checkout flow. If you want to do something different than the default, there’s a good chance that you just can’t. For example, you can’t do one-step checkout in Shopify which could be costing you as much as 22% of your conversions.
  • Limited ecosystem: Compared to platforms like WooCommerce and Magento, the Shopify ecosystem is very small and many plugins require additional monthly fees, adding significant cost over time.
  • Contact forms: Contact forms don’t let you specify the subject line or email address that information is sent to.
  • URL Structure: Shopify URLs aren’t always ideal for SEO and tend to have unnecessary “junk” in them, for example “/pages/” precedes all page URLs, offering no real value for users.
  • Category limitations: Shopify does not support multi-level categories beyond two (2) levels and the workarounds for this tend to get confusing.
  • No manual order placement: There’s currently no way to create orders manually as an administrator. For vendors that may need to take orders over the phone, this can be a serious impediment.

Though it takes a little more effort up-front, at Brain Bytes we usually prefer WooCommerce because of its infinite flexibility and ability to scale from simple “Shopify” style websites up to true enterprise level eCommerce. There are no design limitations such as the ones found in Shopify, and virtually all aspects of your website can be customized to meet your businesses needs, however simple or complex.

If you are looking to build a future-ready eCommerce website, contact us for a free consultation!


Why PR agencies love Brain Bytes Creative

  • Jason
  • ON
  • March 7, 2017

At Brain Bytes Creative, we take pride in our ability to build strong, long-lasting relationships with our clients. This is what sets us apart from the pack. We don’t believe in simply working on a project and moving on. Our belief is that partnerships are much more meaningful and beneficial for not only our clients, but for our own business as well. Why? Because, helping our clients win and achieve their goals is our biggest motivation. When you win, we win. It’s that simple.

When we think about some of our best partnerships, we immediately look to our relationships with PR agencies. Our team has worked hard over the years to build strong partnerships with some of the best, most reputable PR agencies in the country.

So, let me go over a few reasons why PR agencies love Brain Bytes Creative.

First of all, we are responsive.

Brain Bytes Creative was built around this simple yet seemingly difficult to find idea. Our founders heard over, and over, and over… and over again, complaints and dissatisfaction around the responsiveness of their digital agencies. We work hard to change this notion. Our goal is to deliver vital information you need to make your business stronger. Data is everything in today’s business world. The Brain Bytes Creative team commits to deliver projects, information, and meaningful data on time and on track. In fact, sometimes we go over the top to make sure our partners get the responsive service they deserve. So, don’t be surprised to get an email after midnight from one of our team members!

We make PR agencies look good.

We understand that your relationship with your clients is top priority and key to your success. We strive to make your company the hero! Whether it’s website design, a digital marketing campaign, graphic design work, mobile app development, writing fantastic content, business strategies, or even the need for a solution or software that doesn’t yet exist. We are there to make that happen.

We are critical thinkers and problem solvers.

Solving specific problems is the basis of everything we do. Your clients have probably come to you with the problem of an outdated website, that needs a new website design. With consumers functioning more and more in digital, we understand this and are there to help. We build beautiful, thoughtful websites and mobile apps that are easy to use maintain and navigate. But, a great website is only half the story. Digital marketing is what brings it all together. Our team is composed of digital marketing experts. We also know that your clients may simply need graphic design work for a great one page mailer or a pamphlet. We are here to help with the small “easy” projects too! Our clients have even brought requests to create software solutions to resolve their most frustrating and difficult technical problems.

Passion is one of our best traits.

Finally, we are passionate about everything we do! That passion translates directly to our clients as well as yours. We love to help them win, and we have fun doing it! Passion is what drives us!

In closing, we are here to help and we always love a new challenge and new opportunities to build relationships. So, if you are tired of the same old song and dance from your current digital agency give us a call.


Brain Bytes Creative and Clutch

  • Jason
  • ON
  • March 1, 2017

In 2011, a group of talented storytellers came together to take Atlanta by storm. From digital marketing to development and design, this passionate group of creatives committed themselves to helping other entrepreneurial organizations—small and large—achieve great things through their digital marketing efforts. We called ourselves—Brain Bytes Creative.

Our efforts have paid off. With clients ranging from well-known brands like Kimberly Clark and Porter Novelli, to smaller, startup firms, Brain Bytes Creative sought to fully understand the business needs of their clients and to translate those needs into real, measurable, bottom-line driven results.

Achieve Great Things With Digital Marketing

Clients immediately notice something different about our agency—Brain Bytes Creative really cares. Other people have noticed too. Clutch, a B2B ratings and reviews firm that evaluates leading digital agencies around the globe has collected reviews from four of our clients. Take a look at what some of them had to say about Brain Bytes Creative.

Our Ratings

As one client, an HR technology company, said:

They really immerse themselves in the business even to the point of becoming experts. They just don’t feel like an agency.”

It’s that high level of deep understanding of our client’s business goals that ensures that Brain Bytes Creative can deliver. As we like to say: “We can rock it out!”

Clients immediately notice something different about Brain Bytes—we really care.

And we do. Another client, a cybersecurity firm, said:

“I love working with the people from Brain Bytes. Not only are they accommodating, but they also provide strategy when we need to refocus.”

Another client, a medical device manufacturer, called out the collaboration and communication that makes Brain Bytes an integral part of their team.

“Brain Bytes acted as if they were my internal digital marketing team versus being an external vendor.”

Learn more about Brain Bytes and read our reviews in full-length on our Clutch profile.


Why non-billable activities are important

  • Jason
  • ON
  • January 20, 2017

We are constantly given reminders to produce results, record our time, always be closing, and how important billable hours are. While being productive and working on billable activities is clearly important, they aren’t the only things that matter nor are they the only measure of a successful day. So how can non-billable activities help you? Now, I’m not saying that you should pull out a book or start watching YouTube at 11am while you have a big project deadline looming. But I do think they should be apart of your normal daily activities. How you manage your time is everything.

So, what is it about non-billable activities?

I wake up everyday and spend the first 30 minutes to an hour (after I make coffee and grab a quick bite to eat) reading up on some of my favorite blogs, magazines, and writers. Moz, AdAge, Inc. are just a few of my favorites. I do this before I even start digging through my emails. I read things that I know have the potential to teach me something. I look for something that interests me and relates to what I do. Not only do articles from your favorite sources have the potential to teach you about how to better your business, they can also provide you or your team with valuable information when going after a lead. You might see an article on a prospect’s personal achievement or maybe read about a new Google rule or software trend. Maybe it’s about a competitor. Read up. Stay up-to-date. Learn more.

What about new tools?

My company, Brain Bytes Creative, recently invested in an amazing lead-gen tool called Redbooks. This stage of my morning usually happens at coffee number 2 or…maybe 3. Redbooks has everything from email addresses for the biggest fortune 500 C-suite execs to information about the company such as which agencies they use, media spend, and more. This is invaluable, to say the least. I get live updates on saved contacts and any time they have been mentioned in the media. Again, as I said above, this is a great way to start a dialogue. Regardless, it’s a great way to open up a door and say “hello,” “congrats,” or “we can help!” I spend a lot of time on these updates and learning about my clients and prospects.

Learn from your mentors

Another non-billable, yet helpful activity is to learn from those you look up to in the business world. Maybe it’s Steve Jobs or Richard Branson. Maybe it’s some of my favorites like Gary Vaynerchuck or Oren Klaff. Who ever it is, spend time reading their blog, books, and articles. Watch them on YouTube. Learn from what they do and what they have done to get to the point they are at. More importantly, learn from their mistakes. Most people who have enjoyed a high level of business success are often very open and honest about what they did wrong on their journey and lessons they learned from those mistakes. There is a reason you respect them. Apply it to your own life.

So, do these non-billable activities directly generate revenue? Maybe not. But they do get your mind ready to work. For me, these daily activities are a dose of inspiration. They help me find new ways to think and do my job better. They show me new perspectives and help open doors to become a better person. So spend time preparing for your day. Start a routine that works for you and stick to it. Learn to make good habits and take the time to better yourself and your work. Trust me, your boss will definitely appreciate it.

web development

Three reasons to secure your website with HTTPS

  • Jason
  • ON
  • December 23, 2016

Astute visitors to the Brain Bytes website may have noticed that it’s secured using HTTPS. Yet our site doesn’t take credit cards, there is no client login option, and we don’t ask visitors for sensitive information. So why did we secure the site?

Reason 1: HTTPS is faster than HTTP

There is a common misconception that sites secured with an SSL certificate are slower than those that aren’t. This was once true (though negligible in most cases), however the new HTTP/2 protocol requires SSL. HTTP/2 is a low-level update to HTTP that focuses on speed, and only sites secured with an SSL certificate can utilize the performance improvements of HTTP/2.

Reason 2: It’s good for SEO

Website performance is a known search ranking factor in Google, Bing, and other search engines but since October 2014, Google has used HTTPS as a ranking signal. Though HTTPS is a “lightweight” signal, when combined with site speed improvements we’ve seen positive results for our clients when it comes to overall organic search volume.


Reason 3: It’s future proof

Not Secure Warning in Google ChromeStarting January 2017, Google will begin rolling out new measures in Chrome that will more clearly indicate that a site is insecure. Initially these changes will focus on sites with password and credit card inputs, but eventually Google Chrome will label all HTTPS pages as non-secure. Mozilla, the makers of FireFox, made a similar announcement back in April, 2015 that they would be very slowly deprecating support for HTTP.

How do I secure my website?

Here are the high-level steps to moving your website from HTTP to HTTPS:

  1. Generate a CSR and request an SSL certificate. You can get a free SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt.
  2. Update your website to use relative and protocol-relative URLs wherever possible.
  3. Install the SSL certificate and browse the HTTPS website using Google Chrome with verbose warnings enabled (navigate to chrome://flags/#mark-non-secure-as and select “Display a verbose state when password or credit card fields are detected on an HTTP page” from the drop-down, then click “Relaunch Chrome”). If you see warnings like this, be sure to fix all occurrences before moving on to the next step:
  4. Finally, 301-redirect all “http” URLs on your website to “https”.
  5. Monitor your analytics and Search Console accounts closely for at least one week. React quickly to unexpected data and messages to avoid impacting your visitors and organic search rank.