Advanced Paragraph Plugin by Packerland Websites

Advanced Paragraph Plugin makes impact on Gutenberg Editor

Packerland Websites is excited to introduce a custom WordPress plugin that makes it easier to hyperlink files and edit content. Created by developer Mike McGraw, the open source Advanced Paragraph plugin debuted Sept. 11. It’s free to use and available for download here. WordPress introduced the Gutenberg editor in December 2018, and the Advanced Paragraph plugin makes Gutenberg more user-friendly.

So, what does the Advanced Paragraph plugin do? Three things.

First, the plugin adds a “Packerland Websites” category in the block search.

Second, the plugin extends the Gutenberg Editor to the full width of the computer screen. Gutenberg’s default editor is one-third width of the computer screen and centered. Occasionally, this narrow design makes it difficult to edit the content in the Gutenberg blocks. For example, it’s easier to edit columns with a wide-screen view.

Third, the plugin adds an Advanced Paragraph block to efficiently hyperlink files on a website page. This allows you to easily move from one document to another.

  1. This block acts just like the paragraph block, but it has two extra buttons.
  2. These buttons open the media library for you to select a file of your choice. Files include images, PDFs, or other files in your media library.
  3. Once you have a file selected, the plugin will copy the URL of that file into your clipboard then close the media library.
  4. After that, you can use the normal hyperlink feature to make a clickable link to that file

Efficiently creates internal, outbound links

Hyperlinking is a valuable way to direct your audience to worthwhile information. You can crosslink pages within the same or different websites. In addition, you can hyperlink to graphics, PDFs, or other files that you want your audience to see. The Advanced Paragraph plugin is an efficient way to create these internal links and outbound links.

Please note: You can transform this advanced paragraph block into the default paragraph block and the default paragraph block into the advanced paragraph block.

The Packerland team is excited to make this plugin available to our clients and to the general public. We’re committed to improving user interaction features so you can achieve your digital marketing goals. If you find any bugs in the plugin, please let us know.

We hope you find the Advanced Paragraph plugin to be a valuable tool for adding and editing content in WordPress.

WordPress Advanced block plug-in

Redirects Plugin Created by Packerland Websites

301 Redirect appAs an experienced website builder, I get excited about techie stuff that others might find boring. One thing I am really excited about is the Simple Access Redirects Plugin created by Packerland Website’s designer Mike McGraw. What makes it exciting? The plugin shows that Packerland Websites has the people and technology to build programs that the general public is now using. That’s quite a feather in our cap.

What is a Redirects Plugin?

Let me try to explain in a way that’s not too techie. Essentially, the Redirects Plugin is software on a website that sends visitors and online search bots to a different page than the original page. Perhaps the website is being rebuilt, and the original page was part of the old website. Instead of hitting a dead-end error message, visitors and Google bots automatically transition to the new page. Certainly, you want to avoid sending people to an error page and risk losing their attention. Additionally, you want to achieve the best position on search engine pages, like Google. Google is not impressed with dead-end pages and broken links.

What does this plugin mean to our clients?

The Redirects Plugin is a tool that Mike developed to capture the folders on an existing or previously operating website and redirect them to correct pages intended for the visitor. Not surprisingly, there’s a lot happening in the background of a website that no one sees. However, our developers see it, and more importantly, they understand it. The Redirects Plugin finds the pages that need to be transferred and moves them quickly and efficiently. A task that would’ve taken a long time (and is often ignored by many) is completed in minutes. This leaves more time for our designers to focus on what’s important – developing a website that meet your goals.

What additional features does the plugin have?

The Simple Access Redirects Plugin does more than just handle 301, 302, 400, and 500 redirects. It also adds expired headers to the site which tell the browsers how long to save the files in the cache. Additionally, the plugin scans each page of a site and finds anchor tags thus creating a list of pages that search engines will look over. Mike frequently updates this plugin, making it more feature rich and user friendly. It’s a work in progress, so users who find a bug should contact us so we can fix the issue.

What are your website goals?

Essentially, Packerland Websites builds websites around a marketing plan and the unique strategy you set forth. Before our team begins a website, we ask a lot of questions. Above all, we want to learn about your goals and vision for the site. As a result, our team can create a new website that achieves these goals. We invite you to view our portfolio. Our designers are efficient and experienced developers who know what they’re doing. Plus, they expend less time and labor with the new Redirects Plugin. Ultimately, this translates to more competitive pricing for website design.

For more information about the Redirects Plugin we developed or websites built around a marketing plan, contact us at Packerland Websites, Green Bay.

2 Website Developers Join Team

website developers join Packerland Websites
Packerland Websites has added two experienced website developers to its staff. From right, Tom Norman and Miranda Schlise-Gomez have joined website developer Mike McGraw and owner Bill Koehne. Their team creates powerful, effective websites for businesses, nonprofits and municipalities.

Packerland Websites is growing. Two experienced website developors, Tom Norman and Miranda Schlise-Gomez, have joined the staff at the Green Bay office, 2140 Velp Ave. The website builder now employs three full-time website developers. They create powerful, effective sites for businesses, nonprofits and municipalities.

“Having three full-time developers on staff gives our company a wide breadth of abilities and deep scope of talent,” said Bill Koehne, owner of Packerland Websites. “It also allows me to shift my focus from developing sites to developing business strategies and goals for each client. We have so much more to offer clients today than I imagined eight years ago when we opened.”

Experienced website developers

Norman, of Green Bay, worked in the security field for 15 years before changing careers to website development. In 2013 he earned a Web Development Certificate at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. He has nine years of experience designing websites.

“I enjoy trying new processes and can adapt to new and unknown situations,” Norman said. “Every project is different. Different design, issues, challenges. I really love the building process, putting it all together.”

Norman also enjoys working with varied clientele who look to Packerland Websites to grow and promote their business or organization. “Each client is unique in their needs and behaviors which makes every interaction important,” he said. In his free time, Norman enjoys reading, writing, watching sports, playing video games and doing woodworking and refinishing projects.

Making websites come to life

Schlise-Gomez, of Green Bay, graduated in 2017 from NWTC with an Associate Degree in Web Development. She was previously employed as a web developer for an Oshkosh advertising agency. Schlise-Gomez said she enjoys the “puzzle aspect” of designing websites.

“There is always a new piece to put together,” she said. “When it comes to working with clients, I enjoy the satisfaction on their face when they see their website come to life.” She tackles web development from a practical standpoint; she integrates the technical and artistic elements into a unified package.

“My approach is to find out what the client needs and do my best to accomplish it,” she said. After hours, Schlise-Gomez enjoys playing guitar, singing, and writing songs. She also enjoys going to Escape Rooms and Brewers games.

Contact our website developers

With the addition of two developers, Packerland Websites is ready to serve more clients at its Green Bay and Abrams offices. Contact the website professionals at 920-826-5901 or Bill@PackerlandWebsites.com.

Packerland Websites Introduces Support Ticket

support ticketWebsites built by the pros at Packerland Websites effectively market your business 24/7. Long after you’ve closed your doors for the day, your website is still working for you. To keep your website up and running (thus making you money), Packerland Websites introduced a new Support Ticket system. Occasionally, a website will have issues that need to be fixed. You might see something on your website that just doesn’t look right, or perhaps you want to add something out of the ordinary to your website.

Team of website developers ready with support

Updating a website regularly with fresh content keeps it up-to-date and interesting for return users. Additionally, new content, posts, and pages improve a website’s ranking on search engine pages like Google. With the content management system we use, you can easily update your website yourself. However, some techniques might be beyond your comfort zone. That’s where our team of three full-time website developers steps in to help. You can count on the Packerland Websites team for updates and trouble shooting. The Support Ticket system we developed streamlines the process.

How to Submit a Support Ticket

Submitting a Support Ticket requires a few simple steps:

  1. Go to the Packerland Websites’ Contact Us Page and click the New Ticket button.
  2. Fill in the blanks on the Support Ticket form.
  3. Be detailed in your request. Include the page URL and a detailed description of what you need.
  4. Click the submit button.
  5. Watch for a confirmation email reporting that your Support Ticket is being processed
  6. Once our team resolves your issues, you’ll receive a confirmation email.

Security, functionality, performance is important to us

Finally, if you need support for website components you purchased, such as domain names, web hosting, SSL certificates, email accounts, or other component products, please sign into your account and contact support directly. Support is available 24/7. The ongoing security, functionality, and performance of your website are important to us. Let us know how we can update or change your website to maintain its optimal performance. The Support Ticket system makes it easy.

Job Opening – WordPress Website Developer

Packerland Websites LLC Job Opening – WordPress Website Developer

WordPress Job opening

Duties:
Packerland Websites is looking for an individual who is trustworthy, motivated, and experienced with the use of WordPress Web designs. If you enjoy Web design and using your expertise in website design, layout and functionality, this is the position for you.

Sales continue to grow for our company, and we need a designer dedicated to bringing a project together. Our website clients include government entities, nonprofit organizations, small businesses, corporations, and ecommerce. This variety keeps projects fresh and unique.

The ideal candidate should be comfortable working with themes, designated plugins, and style sheets and be capable of editing themes, either through their design or with child themes. The candidate will work with an experienced individual who will create the structure for a WordPress website.

Qualifications in order of importance are:
• Possess a strong understanding of Web applications and design with WordPress
• Degree in Design and/or WordPress, Web technologies, equivalent or working toward degree.
• 1+ years of professional experience, with the ability to work on high profile projects for key accounts – Entry level candidates will be considered
• Experience with HTML, CSS and editing child themes
• Pluses: PHP, MySQL, Shopping cart and ecommerce experience.

Additional Information:
• Email cover letter and resume.
• Provide Links to projects you have done.
• Ability to work from home or office on a self-directed basis.

You are welcome to contact us with early interest and follow up with additional information

WordPress 5.0 Update: What you need to know

On Dec. 6, WordPress released a major update to its website building platform. If you’re someone who regularly makes updates to the pages of your site or post regular blog posts, you’ll start to see some changes in the layout of your editing page. You can download the tutorial by clicking here or if you are still using the classic editor click the button below for that tutorial.

Classic Editor

The release of WordPress 5.0 introduced a new page editor: Gutenberg. Gutenberg introduces “blocks” or dedicated content sections that you can easily add and arrange to your web page. If your site has already updated to 5.0, you’ll notice that the content on your existing pages has been organized into a Classic block. The Classic block has all the same features and capabilities that the previous page editor did, but now it is just a part of a bigger picture. To this bigger picture you can add Paragraph blocks, Picture and Gallery blocks, Text Heading blocks, and more! There are even Layout blocks that allow you to add buttons or arrange your content into columns with ease.

If your site is already updated to 5.0 and using Gutenberg, you can access these new block features on any Page Edit page by using the plus sign in the upper left corner:

WordPress 5.0 update Gutenberg

If you click on a block to edit it, you will see more options appear just above the block. For even more settings, click the 3-dot icon at the end of the row of options:

WordPress 5.0 update Gutenberg

Once a block has been added, you can move it to a new position on your page by hovering your cursor over the block and clicking and dragging the block by the grid icon:

You’ll see that some of the familiar buttons on this page are not in their regular spots, but they haven’t left! The Preview and Publish/Update buttons are still in the upper right corner:

The Text/Visual options for viewing your content are now hidden in this 3-dot icon at the very top right of your screen:

WordPress 5.0 update Gutenberg

Just click the 3-dot icon, then select either Visual Editor or Code Editor:

WordPress 5.0 update Gutenberg

If you previously had content on your page, you’ll probably see that it’s been moved into a smaller editing area, which from now on will be known as the Classic Block. This has all the controls you’re familiar with, including the Add Link and Add Media buttons.

WordPress 5.0 update Gutenberg

If you can’t see these options right away, make sure that you are in Visual Editor mode (see previous image) and click inside the text editing area to start editing the text.

Packerland Websites is working on a new tutorial booklet that will explain what each of these blocks do and how to use them. For those of you who have been using the WordPress page editor regularly, we hope this quick guide will get you comfortable with WordPress’ new look and help you maintain the current layout of your website. If you’re someone who doesn’t often look behind the scenes of your WordPress site, don’t worry! We’ll take care of the updates and inform you of any changes that will affect your site as soon as we are aware of them. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to Contact Us. Packerland Websites is here to help in the ever-changing world of web!

Classic Editor

Website Makeover: Stunning Before & After Images

Packerland Websites launched three new websites this spring, and the striking before-and-after images showcase the stunning improvements at a glance. However, the website makeover is more than superficial. The entire experience for visitors and website owners has improved dramatically. Here are the major ways the websites have been enhanced:

  • Bold and colorful images fill the Home page with vibrancy and create an inviting landing page for visitors. This contributes to lower bounce rates and higher conversion rates.
  • Mobile responsiveness conveniently resizes the websites for viewing on cellphones and tablets
  • Straightforward navigational menus make it easier for visitors to find what they’re looking for
  • A content management system makes the websites less cumbersome to update for administrators
  • Website administrators have access to a training video, printed booklet, online tutorial, and phone and in-person support from the experts at Packerland Websites

City of Oconto Falls: cityofocontofalls.com

The City of Oconto Falls website has the added benefit of compliance with the American with Disabilities Act, making city information available to visitors with special needs. The overall look and feel of the website makes the city more attractive to residents and visitors alike. Taxpayers will be happy to know that the website didn’t cost the city a fortune.

Manna for Life: mannaforlifegb.org

The Manna for Life website has the added benefit of a phone icon with one-touch-tap so visitors can readily dial Manna for Life or find its location. The website’s mobile responsiveness specifically targets the demographic of the Manna for Life audience. Visitors predominantly use mobile devises, not desktop computers. Besides the warmer and more inviting overall look to the website, the design brings attention to the organization’s focus: Meals, Jobs and a Thrift Store. Once again, the website didn’t cost a fortune, because the price was discounted 50% for the nonprofit organization. It’s Packerland Websites’ way to give back to the community.

Boulder Lodge: boldlodge.com

The Boulder Lodge website has the added benefit of one-touch location finder, which is important for a resort. Campers driving to the resort for the first time will have an easy way to find their vacation get-away. The one-touch phone number makes it handy for people to call for reservations.

The old website was designed to tell visitors about the lodge, but the new website makes these visitors want to go there.

An additional feature is a photo gallery which labels and shows an image of each of the camping and RV sites. Campers can view a site before they book it. The website has the potential for real-time, online booking, if the client chooses to implement this feature.

This website didn’t cost a fortune, either, because Packerland Websites believes that municipalities, nonprofit organizations, and businesses and all need effective websites, built within their price range.

View images of the Website Makeover

We encourage you to view the slideshow to see for yourself how the Home pages of these three websites have been enhanced. If you dig a little deeper and visit these three websites, you’ll find other enhancements described above.

 

Interested in a website makeover for yourself? Contact Bill at Packerland Websites today.

Websites that kick butt as a recruitment tool

Job recruitment by LeTourneau PlasticsA commercial contractor I spoke with recently said he didn’t need a website. What he needed were more employees! In today’s tight job market, he was missing out on a golden opportunity. Why not create a website that kicks butt as a recruitment tool? As employees are hired and the organization takes on more work, the website pays for itself.

The planning that goes into every website developed by Packerland Websites begins with the same important question: What are your business objectives? If you have jobs to fill, employee recruitment might be at the top of your list.

I asked Tracy Beyer, Human Resource Specialist at LeTourneau Plastics in Oconto, how the company uses its website (built by Packerland Websites) for recruitment. After all, the manufacturer has a roadside sign directing job seekers to its website.

1. Post job descriptions in real time
LeTourneau often has more than one position open. To save time and labor, LeTourneau directs candidates to the website right away instead of manually changing the roadside sign as positions change. The website makes it easy for LeTourneau to announce each opening and post its job description. The job postings are readily available 24/7, convenient to anyone searching after hours.

2. Easy navigation directs candidates to applications
The most useful recruitment feature on the LeTourneau website is the simple pathway to the employment opportunities pages (About Us > Employment Page > Apply Online link). The link directs candidates to the online/printable application and the application instructions. The Employment Quick Link found in the footer of every page also brings candidates to the application link.

3. Streamlined application processing
The Human Resources employees have automatic access to applications immediately after the applications are submitted. The website forwards applications to the staff’s Outlook email inboxes. The staff can instantaneously prequalify the candidates and advance to the next phase of the hiring process.

4. Adaptable content for recruitment
WordPress (our CMS–content management system), makes it easy for multiple users to change and update content. This flexibility is helpful at LeTourneau because the staff is able to modify the text according to specific application requirements and processes.

5. Give recruits a reason to choose you
Serious job seekers will research employers online before they apply for a job. An attractive, user-friendly company website will contribute to the strength of your brand. Visitors to the LeTourneau website see images and text describing the company’s history, capabilities, products, and commitment to quality control. The employment page touts the company’s competitive wages, full insurance benefits, 401(k), vacation, paid holidays, and 1st shift Monday-Friday schedule.

6. Bells and whistles
Dress up your website with features that will resonate with potential employees
• Clickable “Now Hiring” button on the Home page
• Employee testimonials, either written or video
• “Meet our Staff” pages that include photos and professional bios
• Employee profiles as Blogs and Vlogs
• Job satisfaction surveys
• Photos, videos, and articles that demonstrate the company culture
• Compensation, training, and benefit package information

If you have jobs to fill, are you giving recruits a good reason to choose you? Your brand is more important than ever in today’s competitive job market. We can help you build that brand and attract talented employees. Give us a call today, 920-826-5901.

Designer joins Packerland Website team

Alexa Vander Wyst has joined the team of Packerland Websites in Green Bay as a WordPress web developer. A Little Chute native, Alexa earned a Bachelor of Designer Alexa VanderWyst joins Packerland WebsitesFine Arts in Graphic Communications at Northern Michigan University in 2016. After graduation she landed a job designing websites in the U.P. More recently, she was employed as a graphic designer and website coordinator at a promotional products company in De Pere.

“With her background in graphic design and website development, Alexa brings a combination of talents to her new role at Packerland Websites,” said Bill Koehne, owner. “Aside from her technical skills, she has a knack for communicating with customers to help them create websites that meet their business goals.”

Alexa said she’s always had an interest in art, and the more she learned about graphic design the more she liked it.

“I like solving problems and I like organizing things, which are very good skills for a graphic designer,” she said. She’s looking forward to applying her visual design skills to create vibrant and user-friendly websites for clients of Packerland Websites.

In addition to her role as a full-time website developer, Alexa works part time behind the scenes at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center. She enjoys listening to music and spending time outdoors, especially hiking and downhill skiing.

“With Alexa onboard, Packerland Websites is poised and ready to take on more clients,” Bill said. Contact us at 920-826-5901 or visit us at 2140 Velp Avenue in Howard to find out how we can help you.

Website banner photo: Professional tips

Here are six things to consider when snapping a website banner photo, because you want to greet visitors with a look that says, “Wow!” You have only one opportunity to make a good first impression, so your landing page needs to be attractive and memorable. That’s why an impressive website banner is so important. Visitors can quickly scan the banner image to learn about your website and your business. Colorful photos work great as website banners. They engage viewers and draw attention to your brand.

Example of cropping for website banner photo
When posing a photo for a website banner, it’s best to position your subject to the right or left side to allow room for a Call to Action button. Take a high resolution, wide angle photo that you can crop to 437 pixels tall and 1,750 pixels wide.

So let’s take a look at what makes a good website banner photo, because snapping the right photo takes some planning.

1. Extra wide image

• Think of a website banner as a long sign stretched across a wide area.

• Most banners are three to four times longer than they are tall, 437 pixels tall and 1,750 pixels wide.

• Take a banner photo by holding your camera in the landscape position, not vertical.

2. Cropping a Banner Photo

The digital photos you snap will undoubtedly be square, not rectangular, which means you’ll need to crop the top and bottom of the photo so you’re left with a long, narrow rectangular image that serves as a website banner photo. To do this, begin with the end in mind. You know you’ll need a wide image, so when you pose the photo, think about how the image will look after it is cropped. Here are some tips:

• Remember that at least a third of the top and/or bottom of the photo will be cropped away, so place your subject appropriately.

• Position your subject to the right or left side, so that once the image is made into a banner, text can be overlaid on the banner without covering up the subject.

• Use a high resolution camera in order to maintain the clarity you need once you crop your photo.

3. Background

Put some thought into how the background looks when posing your subject.

• Avoid busy or distracting backgrounds that will take interest away from your main subject.

• Stand far from your subject (or stand closer but zoom out) so you have background on both the right and left sides of your subject.

4. Composition

• Rather than centering your main subject in the photo, offset the subject one-third of the way into the photo. This composition will increase interest and provide space to overlay a call to action box.

5. Go Panoramic

Consider using a panoramic setting on your camera or Smartphone to capture a wide screen image.

• Keep your camera as level as possible as you pan across your subject.

• Move the camera, not your body, when taking panoramic shots.

• Avoid panoramic photography of moving objects. The blurriness might ruin your photo.

6. Start experimenting

• To capture the best wide screen image for a website banner, take lots of images.

• Move around as you snap photos to experiment with different angles

• Move forward and backward to photograph subjects at varying distances from your subject

• Try different poses.

• Avoid harsh shadows.

Have fun creating the images that show off your brand, because website banners that “pop” will encourage visitors to more fully interact with your website.