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Everything posted by mac6986

  1. In my rambling I think i forgot to elaborate on it. You are correct Shadow, what I was referring to was the old ways of using all your key words in the meta tag field, with the new Google algorithms, it will actually be detrimental to your rankings to do it the old way. Yes you do want a short description in there, but most eCommerce platforms will do it for you. I know with shopify, there is a section while setting up your store that asks you " write a short description about your store " and under it you are limited to 140 characters. This is what they will place in your meta tag.
  2. after spending the past 3 hours on the phone with Google Technical Service, I'll tell you everything I heard while its still fresh in my head. The old ways of meta tags and inserting keywords in the <head> tag of HTML are being phased out and will be dead very, very soon. ( if you don't know what that means, don't worry. you wont need it) There are 3 primary ways to get your website traffic up: 1 - Original, Organic content. If your selling products, write original product descriptions. Add category pages with descriptions about items in that category. write up how-to articles ( if that applies to you ) and so on. Put as much information and be as descriptive as possible. This is the what the bots that crawl the net are looking for. On that subject, add content on a regular basis. When the bots come back and search your site for content and it constantly finds new stuff, you will be bumped up the rankings of Google searches as your site is looked at as an active, changing site. 2 - Backlinks. This is where you have links to your site on other websites. As the bots surf the net and see that there are links on other sites that refer back to yours, that will bump you up the rankings. A good example would be making how-to videos on YouTube, and putting a link to your website in the video description. 3 - PPC Advertising. Pay-Per-Click is exactly as it sounds. You pay money to have your site pop up in search results, and only pay when someone actually clicks on your link. you can do this through Google directly and also on Facebook too. Social media is a great tool as well. I have a few niche markets, one of them being fire & emergency service graphics, decals, and promo products. I pay for likes on facebook, which increases my audience, ( currently a little over 20,000 likes) and when I post pictures of completed jobs, I get plenty of messages asking for me to quote something else. My ROI is fantastic. and every time I increase my advertising budget, I have not been disappointed I recommend setting up a Google AdWords account (PPC Ads) and calling customer service. They have great people and are very willing to help and explain things step by step. When I first started, it all looked like chinese and I really didn't know what I was doing. it took a few months of me being stubborn and wasting money to finally call them and figure out how to use it properly. as far as ecommerce, I use Shopify ( The best part of this platform is the open end for software developers to make apps to integrate into the software to make it do exactly what you need to do. My favorite add-on was a product customizer where customers can customize decals and other products and see their item in real-time. once its finished, I can get a high quality render to print off exactly as the customer designed it.
  3. I have to be honest, Sales 4U does not say vinyl graphics, graphic design or marketing products to me. IMO it says " I sell stuff " and that's it. This is even more evident online. You have a finite window of time that someone might glance at your name in a google search and you need to make it very clear what you are and what you do. you can leverage your products once you have the customer, but when someone searches online for " sign maker in XX town " they want to find someone who makes signs. same with promo products, and shirts, and so on. I live on the east coast, boats are a big portion of business for me. one of the sign shops in town, registered, and its just a re-direct domain. it sends you to his shops website. You could do something similar. The NEW customer is very fickle and easily swayed. I've had customers co me tome from the next town over. I ask them why they came to me instead of the sign shop they have in their town, and sometimes its as simple as " I didn't like their name." Customers ALWAYS judge a book by its cover. just my .02
  4. mac6986

    Trailer Setup.

    Ill start off by saying I have not done this but I did look into doing it in the past, wasn't financially possible at the time. A recommendation would be to have a workbench basically going the length of one side of the trailer. If you are set on mounting your cutter, use some rubber bushings between the cutter and whatever surface you decide to mount it to, to absorb some of the road shocks and jostling. Don't skip the generator. you can always have both, and plug your shore line into someone's power when you have the opportunity, but you don't want to limit yourself and make that your only option for power. Im sure there will be more than one occasion you want to set up and no power is within reach of a cord.
  5. how intracate is the logo? even an extremely simple weeding job x 1000 pieces is going to be very tedious and very time consuming. time yourself on how long it takes you do do one at a NORMAL pace, (im sure your pace will slow from the first one to the last one) and multiply. take your hourly rate and charge accordingly.
  6. mac6986

    Mounting options and Best material

    Max Metal and Tapcon's,thats your best bet right there. Personally, I cant stand exposed fasteners, I would throw some screw caps over the tapcons to match the substrate. He may not want to go crazy, but each job you do is like a visual resume to possible new customers. Make it look presentable. Remember, the customer doesn't know what they want until YOU tell them what they want. In this situation, I wouldn't have even suggested coro.
  7. mac6986

    Backsaving an EPS file

    For future refrence, you can "place" files that were saved in newer versions of illustrator, into older versions. File>Place and select your file. it will not be immediatley editable, you will have the image trace options across the top, but dont use those. select the "embedded" button and it will open up the vector data associated with the file. you may have to un-group and release some clipping masks but its a simple enough work around.
  8. mac6986

    ????s about a printer

    Yes, its definitely an investment. just for round numbers, be prepared to spend around $10K on a decent used printer and laminator and material if/when you decide to take that plunge. until then, just get in contact with one of us here and we will be happy to get you any printed items you need at a good price you can mark up and still make a profit on.
  9. mac6986

    ????s about a printer

    a "cost effective machine" usually ends up being more expensive in the end. If you're dead set on printing, do it right the first time, you WILL save money in the end over bargain shopping and trying to save money in the short-term. Aqueous inks don't really last. period. Steer toward Solvent/UV/Latex. Roland makes a solvent desktop model, the BN-20. I had one and it was a great starter. you are limited to 18.9" at its widest print width tho. you could pick one up used on the net, they usually go for about 4-5K. Do your research. If you come across a model or brand that you havent seen anywhere else or heard anyone talking about on this and other message boards, just think about how hard it will be to find parts when it DOES break down. You say you don't need a high-end model, but the brand name printers have lots of support and parts are usually easy to get. If you eventually find one that you like and are convinced you want to buy, go see it in person if you can, get test print, and if it cuts too, get the test cut as well. Your best bet is one that needs no work done to it. You don't want to open that can of worms because someone selling a non-functioning printer is looking to offload it, no matter what it takes. Next thing you know you get it home and all the boards are fried, and the ink has dried up through the entire system. I've been there, and thought I could bring Mutoh Falcon back from the dead. That was a $3000 mistake I learned the hard way.
  10. As the title states, I need 25 tank tops made, I have the shirts I want to use on jiffy shirt, and I have eps artwork already sized and ready to go. logo is too intricate to use HTM need a price. PM me for more details Thanks in advance
  11. mac6986

    ????s about a printer

    +10000000000 Get your feet wet and stick to cut vinyl for now and learn all the in's and out's of cast vs. calendared, when and where to use each, application techniques, etc. . . . become a master of your craft before jumping to the next thing. Start out doing the cut vinyl in house. Outsource everything else and mark it up. There are plenty of us here that you can sub work out to. Then you can provide more products to your customers without having to buy every machine to do every different type of sign imaginable. Build up a customer base, and once the work is steady and it would be more cost effective to buy a printer and print in house vs. outsourcing, that's when you take the plunge and get a good solvent printer. I made the mistake in the beginning of turning work away because I couldn't do it in house. Always tell your customer " Yes, we can do that." then sub it out to a professional if its something out of your league, and mark up your costs. simple as that.
  12. mac6986

    My first Tee Shirts

    Nice shirts But you might what to spell check your title, people might think you're talking about something else
  13. mac6986

    Instructional Video

    GREAT MARKETING!!! But I still don't know what they're promoting.
  14. mac6986

    48" T-square overkill?

    the worst is a brand new blade, and not even realizing you cut yourself, until you start saying " where the hell is all this blood coming from? OH! its me! " not that I'm speaking from experience or anything
  15. mac6986

    48" T-square overkill?

    gotta admit, that is pretty neat
  16. mac6986

    Vector Magic (Desktop)

    Illy CS6 with the pen tool and lots and lots of patience. IMO nothing beats the human eye and a little bit of skill. If this is a business for you and not a hobby, invest in a good design software like Illustrator or corel. and take some time to learn how to use it. We all have money invested in our own endeavors, now invest the time in yourself to learn how to use these programs to the best of your abilities and set yourself apart from the rest.
  17. mac6986

    job over the weekend

    The job as a whole looks good, customers that continually feed you work are great. A couple of constructive criticism points tho: - I dont know if you did this, but if not, you could have saved yourself the time of doing the job over if you had given them proofs and simple renderings of how it would look prior to cutting the vinyl. takes a bit more time but much, much less than removing and re-doing, regardless if your getting paid to do the job again. The down side do re-doing a job you've already finished is pushing your other customers delivery/install dates back to accommodate this one. - The lighted sign, the text doesn't look centered top to bottom on the sign face. the gap along the top of the lettering is larger than the gap along the bottom edge. Just some things to consider. Other than that, nice job.
  18. mac6986

    I need some decals printed

    Any time! Just let me know whenever you need more! and that goes for everyone on the forum! happy to help.
  19. mac6986

    Help with fitting for a tshirt

    you shouldn't just add stuff just for the sake of adding it. You're foregoing design rules just to "get your moneys worth" IMO, the design needs work. You need to adjust the kerning in the top line of text. And that last letter looks more like a "P" instead of a "D" Also, your boarder & shadow are inconsistent between your top line and bottom line. They don't have the same thicknesses. Constructive, not bashing.
  20. mac6986

    Large Format Printing Help!!

    Not sure how on your model printer but that looks like you need to do a manual cleaning. Ink builds up on the print head and then drops off in the middle of the print.
  21. This type of job you would price per letter as everything else is already there. How tall are the letters as I see you put that its two lines of text. Side note, it would be a good idea to invest in a ladder if you plan on doing any more signs. There's nothing more unprofessional than having to ask the customer to borrow their equipment.
  22. mac6986

    If you had 2K which Vinyl Cutter would you get?

    I was once told this by an old-timer: " find the largest [ cut size ] machine you can afford and buy the next step up. " The week after I bought my 24" cutter, I wished I had gone larger. You can always cut 24" rolls on a 30", 40" or 50" machine. You can't do the reverse. Personally, I would go with a Roland. If you ever decide to get a Roland printer down the road, it will work seamlessly with your cutter
  23. mac6986

    Price help....

    You could be in the right ballpark if you plan on installing everything in under 2 hours. But you're to vague with your dimensions. Price is always based on time and dimensions, relative to what material you decide to use. Figure out how long it will take to do everything. 75% of your bill is going to be time!
  24. mac6986

    eBay issues??

    I used to be like that, but it can burn you out real quick. I have found after taking the plunge and taking my business full time, the pressure is the driving factor to going out and getting more sales and coming up with new products for my store.