- Add Pages! Yes Cindr is no longer a single page website building solution. We have now added the ability to add an unlimited number pages allowing you to build beautiful, rich multi page websites using the same super-simple Cindr interface you’re used.
- Add page
- Duplicate page
- Rename page
- Move page in navigation hierarchy
- Delete page
- Publish / unpublish (draft)
- Add Sites! Another huge feature addition. Our users can manage multiple Cindr websites with a single account. Existing users can quickly add more sites with a couple of clicks.
- Add site
- Rename site
- Publish / unpublish (draft)
- Adjust Bloc Height
- Brand new navigation on published sites
- 6 beautiful new Bloc Stacks to choose from when signing up as a new user
- Moved from a Freemium model to 7 day trial. New users have 7 days to evaluate Cindr before choosing to upgrade to Premium.
- New Blocs. We’ve added lots of cool new Blocs for you to use on your Cindr websites.
- Streamlined and improved our on-boarding process. Users can now signup by simply entering an email (no password needed) or clicking ‘Signup with Facebook’. The site is then built for them in the background before they are beautifully entered into the application tutorial.
- Added the ability to call up the tutorial on-demand.
- Made dozens of smaller tweaks and improvements to make Cindr even faster and easy to us.
- Fixed a lot of bugs.
- Added a tonne of App Blocs. You can quickly add Blocs that integrate with many of your third party services, including…
- Mailchimp – Create a beautiful landing page with Mailchimp list integration in 1 click.
- Eventbrite – Sell tickets through your Cindr website.
- Soundcloud – Add your sounds.
- Flickr – Display Flickr galleries with ease.
- YouTube – Add your favourite videos, quickly and easily.
- Facebook – Allow Facebook users to comment on your Cindr site.
- Google Maps
- Many more…
- Added Contact Form Bloc. You can now add a contact form directly onto your Cindr website in 1 click.
- Added Google Analytics tracking. Track visitors to your site by simply adding your Google Analytics Tracking ID.
- Added custom favicon. You can now upload your own favicon.
- Added custom share image. Upload your own custom image to be seen when your site is shared on social media.
- Added Pricing Table Blocs. A simple way to display pricing tiers or plans.
- Re-categorised some Blocs.
- Revised our Premium plan.
- Fixed lots of bugs.
- Added some spit and polish.
- Changed billing currency to USD ($)
- Reduced monthly cost of Premium from £4.99 ($7.03 at todays conversion rate) to $6
- Added PayPal as a billing option alongside card
- Added automated password recovery option to login
- Email verification now required upon signup
- Added voucher option to Premium upgrade
- Fixed an issue where a particular PayPal Bloc would not pass the Product name to PayPal
- Minor bug fixes and tweaks
- Live Bloc Stack preview allows new users to preview what it will look like across devices.
- Image compression. We now compress uploaded images so your Cindr site loads even faster.
- Small bug fixes and performance improvements.
Last week we started to create Cindr profiles on some of the many sites and services that are there to help startups and new products get noticed. First stop, Product Hunt, here is our review.
After spending the last 18 months with our heads down developing Cindr we needed to start shouting about what we had made, and have been massively impressed with how Product Hunt has helped us to do that.
We got an invite, submitted Cindr and hit HUNT IT.
So, what happened next?
Cindr was up-voted over 200 times and featured on the Product Hunt homepage. This in turn led to us receiving numerous organic reviews on sites around the globe. We have been working hard to try and keep the momentum up and in the last 8 days we have received over 1,000 new signups from the USA, Mexico, Germany, UK and India.
The are a few key things we found when using Product Hunt that make it so awesome. Lets look at them below:
- It’s very quick and easy to sign up and submit your startup / product / service etc (we are fans of speed and simplicity)
- We started to receive relevant feedback almost straight away, some of which has actually influenced part of our current development sprint. We took some early feedback about being able to preview our Bloc Stacks when signing up. We acted fast and that feature is now live.
- Great source of traffic. Product Hunt is hugely popular and got Cindr on people’s screens. We started to see a spike in traffic within minutes of publishing.
- The guys at Product Hunt tweeted about Cindr not long after we signed up and were also in touch via email throughout the week.
- The website is backed up by a great iOS app.
- It’s free. The best things in life always are.
Overall we had a great experience using Product Hunt. It has given us a traffic boost and got Cindr in front of people, which is exactly what we wanted.
To get started at Product Hunt visit https://www.producthunt.com and login with Twitter or Facebook.
If you’d like to check out Cindr you can, for free at http://cindr.com
All organisations should be considering whether they can utilize video content, so what are their options?
Video has been one of the runaway successful trends of the last few years. All the social media channels now allow their users to host video content. YouTube has over a billion users and last year saw a 40% increase in people watching its videos.
So how can you incorporate video into your website and your marketing? The answer to this depends on what you do, who your audience are and what you want to achieve. We thought now would be an opportunity to outline 6 different types of video content.
Explainer videos answer questions that customers or potential customers might have about a company’s products. Explainers might cover problems that are solved by the product and be an important part of pre-sale promotion or they might provide guidance or tips on using the product. These are commonly used by software companies and other ‘low-touch sales’ businesses. It’s also worth considering that you can use animation for explainers if it’s easier to explain that way or simply if you’re not confident in front of a camera.
A knowledge sharing video is where you use your expertise to educate your customers or casual browsers for free. The free part is important. This is about building trust, and every time you refer to your business or product you chip away at that trust. That doesn’t mean you should never mention the brand, only that you need to weigh it up. People are less cynical when someone is helping but wants nothing back. There are plenty of tradespeople who do videos on how to do basic DIY tasks, sacrificing the odd sale for their brand. Youtube is full of young entrepreneurs whose business models revolve purely around this type of content.
This is content designed to bring across company culture. This is really about brand awareness, and if done well, people will know you are, they’ll want to work for you and people will have confidence in your brand. For some businesses however, culture can be difficult thing to communicate.
The easiest way to create video is just to present stills with a voiceover, and there’s plenty of software that makes this simple. Worth considering if you want to show off the visual aspect of your business or products without expecting people to scroll through a gallery.
Just got a great idea, but nothing to build around it? Not problem, with vines you just need 6 seconds.
Okay, so webinar is one of the most annoying words in the world and we normally love portmanteaux*, but if you have enough people who are interested in a topic, it’s a good way to use video as a means of communication with your customers. You can take questions and the live-format means people put aside a prolonged amount of time to spend in your company which is a rarity. Also, it might be a live event, but you can always upload the recording to your site for future use.
Still unsure of what will work? Now that you’re thinking about it, perhaps you’ll start to notice what other people are doing and inspiration will strike.
*= yes this is the plural of portmanteau, we checked.
We managed to get through the whole article without mentioning Cindr is a super-simple website builder that lets you add video REALLY easily your site.
Video? Facebook? Yeah, we’ve been busy!
You can now easily add Youtube clips or Facebook videos to Cindr sites with our 4 Video Blocs. We’ve added Facebook Like and Share buttons to some of the existing Footer Blocs so you can get people to spread the word about your site and increase traffic.
You can now interact with your users with our Comments Bloc. This allows people to leave comments on your site using their Facebook profile.
We have also introduced the ability to save versions of the site before deciding to publish.
We’ve also written this article about the different types of video content you can add to your site!
- Video Blocs (Facebook and Youtube) added.
- Facebook Like/Share Buttons added to Blocs
- Facebook Comments Bloc added.
- Save, Open, Publish and View functionality.
- Duplicate Bloc functionality.
- Jiggery-pokery to the application that you won’t notice but will make you happy without ever knowing why.
The secret to growing your bricks-and-mortar retail business through the internet isn’t necessarily through selling products online; it’s through promoting the experience of visiting your shop.
The reality and the opportunity
Independent retail is hard work, but things are looking bright at the moment. Until recently, things seemed very gloomy indeed. Footfall was diverted to retail parks and everyone was scared about ’showrooming’.
Now it looks very different. Independent business is filling the gap left by the downsizing major brands. This is turn is making the high street a more interesting place to visit.
If you own a shop, and you’re reading this because you want to know how to sell thousands of items a year online, then I’m afraid this article might disappoint you. The companies that dominate the market either specialize in selling online or are major chains with a physical and online presence. The former are incredibly efficient, constantly adapt and pay less tax than you. The latter are often just moving profits around to stay afloat and might be next week’s bad news story.
The truth is that unless what you sell is really specialist or bespoke, and it’s within a market sector that attracts enthusiasts, your online sales are unlikely to set the world on fire.
You can’t compete at what they do, but guess what – they’ll never be able to compete at what you do.
Achieving success lies in working out what your existing strengths are and using the internet to magnify them. This principle should inform everything from promotion to social media, but before you do that, the first thing to consider is your website and work out what you want to achieve with it.
Sell the experience.
Obviously you’re in the best position to know what makes your business valuable, but here are a few things to consider when creating your website.
Range – is it the range you have in store that people are interested in? Then use pictures to illustrate this. Just like an estate agent uses pictures to create the impression of space, so you can with your goods or displays. This doesn’t have to mean including a comprehensive list of what you stock – this is will just be time-consuming to maintain, and the point is to reassure the customer that when they walk in to your shop, they’ll find something they want.
Style – are aesthetics an important element to what you sell? Then take your time when photographing. If your products and shop don’t look inviting then your site will lose customers, not gain them.
Personality – is it the friendliness of your staff, or atmosphere? Then inject this into the language you use. Don’t try to copy what you’ve seen elsewhere – you can still be professional without being boring.
Events – do you have gatherings, meet-ups, workshops or tastings? If so, promote attendance, show pictures and make them prominent.
Expertise – FAQs and reviews on Amazon and no replacement for conversation, consultancy and knowledge. What might your customers be interested in? If customers trust your opinions, then that’s the foundation for customer loyalty.
Store info – make it easy for people to find the answers to the common questions – opening hours, phone number and address. They’ve already decided to speak or visit, so don’t make them look too hard!
Tell a story. Use a single-page website – you can control the customer’s journey and it will help you focus on the essentials. Don’t write content for the sake of it. According to Hubspot 55% of people spend less than 15 seconds on a website. Make sure they’re looking at the right things – the things that will bring them to the shop.
Do it yourself – don’t pay someone to develop your website. It will cost you a lot and a third party is an obstacle to getting changes done. Use a website builder, you’ll be surprised how easy it is to create your site and it can be maintained quickly and easily.
Working through these considerations, you’ll realise how much value there is in your brand, and that having a website isn’t a chore begrudgingly undertaken out of necessity, but an opportunity to bring across your passion for what you do, a passion that might prove infectious.
This release is all about our tutorial for first-time users. Previously we had a short series of videos, but we wanted something more interactive that got our new users to experience the simplicity of the interface and get the buzz of creating as soon as possible.
We think we’ve cracked it with our walk-through tutorial that gets people to add a Bloc and make style and content changes to it. We want everyone to experience the thrill that comes when you’ve built a beautiful site and it feels like we’ve just moved one step closer to our goal.
- Added a tutorial for first time users.
- Added a new header Bloc.
- Added some subtle animations to certain UI elements.
- Some small bug fixes and tweaks.
More and more professionals are using on-line hubs to complement or replace the traditional CV.
The times, they are a… changed.
There are few documents less exciting in this world than CVs. How can one describe them? Informative. Functional. Comprehensive. These are not words that set fire to your imagination.
The traditional Curriculum Vitae is a terribly boring way to get the measure of a person. CVs do, however, all look similar and are therefore a time-efficient way of making quick decisions at the start of a lengthy recruitment process. But do they help people make the right decisions? Employers in increasing numbers don’t think so, and are looking for ways to find out more about potential employees beyond the rigid structure of the traditional resumé.
Jobseekers are being Googled, looked up on Linked In and even Facebook-searched. Sometimes this might be driven by negative reasons but if someone is not going to hire you because of those pictures of you lying on the pavement after the Christmas party then perhaps that wasn’t your dream job anyway. More often, recruiters just want to find out a bit more than can be conveyed on a document. A document so dated in format it’s still commonly known by a latin name.
Take control of your online presence
So if people are looking for you online, doesn’t it make sense for you to be custodian of that information? So change your Facebook status to private, make sure your LinkedIn profile is updated and build yourself a personal profile website.
People in creative industries such as writing and photography have been using websites for this purpose for years as it allows them to showcase their work visually, but it now makes sense for a number of different careers. “We already accept LinkedIn profiles as an alternative to CVs”, explained Liam Reese, recruitment project manager for Unibet, one of the largest European on-line gambling operators, “and I’ve noticed an increase in candidates having their own website in recent years which can work in a person’s favour as it injects some personality into their application.”
What are the advantages?
It suggests that you’re serious about your career. You’ve invested time and possibly money into a resource for people to find out more about you.
It’s easy to maintain and update. With a half-decent website builder you can create it quickly (but don’t rush!) and you can also update it in seconds if you’ve just pickled up a skill or a qualification.
You can express yourself creatively. Although you should be sure that what you’re presenting is relevant to a potential employer, you can give it personal touches – make it attractive and easy to read.
You can include evidence. If you have something to show for your experience you can include it on the site or as a link. A related article you wrote, more information about a certain project, testimonials, or your LinkedIn profile.
You can browse. A website allows the user to navigate to areas they have an interest in without having to read stuff they already know about. Perhaps they want to know more about that project or your personal interests? They can click a navigation link and get straight to what they’re after.
It puts you ahead of the pack. Not everyone’s doing it… yet.
Tips and advice
The single-page test. Does it fit nicely and tastefully onto one page or do you need pages? If you need pages, it’s too long. Simple.
Wait until you’re ready. Don’t start telling people about it until you’re sure it sells you. This sounds obvious but spelling mistakes and holding pages aren’t going to open any doors for you.
Make contact details easy to see. Don’t make anyone look too hard for your mobile number and email address.
Keep it up-to-date. Once it’s out there, you just don’t know when it might be looked at – opportunity often arrives at times you can’t predict.
Think about your audience. Make it easy for people to find what they’re looking for – don’t include stuff that only you’re interested in. With all communication, you should always ask yourself – what am I hoping to achieve? If you don’t know the answer, leave it out.
Sell yourself. Your website should sell you while remaining true to the real you.
Have your own URL. Having a website is great, but owning your own domain is the next level. Remember when we said it looks like you take your career seriously – this is the icing on the cake.
Cindr is a super-simple single page website builder. Try it for free.
- Redesigned UI, we’ve made Cindr even easier, faster and more intuitive to use.
- Re-wrote the Cindr application core to improve performance and enhance user experience.
- 6 fantastic new Bloc Stacks to get new users started.
- 7 bold new Header Blocs.
- 3 colourful new Content Blocs.
- Added subtle new animations to certain Blocs.
- Redesigned the default styles for many of our existing Blocs.
- Streamlined our signup process.
- Added confirmation to any function that remove Blocs.
- Redesigned login and signup areas.
- Fixed lots of small bugs.
- Added a meme Bloc. Why? Because we can
Weddings are expensive enough. Perhaps it’s time to give yourself a break, and use a website instead of traditional invitations?
When we got married about ten years ago, my soon-to-be and I tried to do everything ourselves to cut on costs. Luckily, out of our peers, we were the first ones to tie the knot so everyone found our efforts charming. At least I think they did. As time has went on, weddings got more extravagant. Venues became quirkier, entertainment became more interesting and speeches started to resemble presentations. The only thing that seemed to be reducing in scale were the grooms’ hairlines.
One of our homemade contributions were the invitations. Simple homemade cards that were, thanks to me not being involved in the design, simple and tasteful. With each passing year, the invitations we received from others became more outlandish, expensive and attractive. I’m pretty sure that one year we received an invitation stitched onto a leaf? And then in 2012, we received our first emailed invitation.
Since then more and more couples have saved themselves a lot of time and expense by moving away from paper invitations. Why?
Cost seems to be peoples’ main concern. Sending out an email is free. As for your wedding website, well if you’re paying more than £8 per month then you’re paying too much.
Time is the other limited expense when organizing your big day. Making your own invitations isn’t a quick job. For some people, tying ribbons and sealing envelopes is a pleasant way to wile away the evening hours; for others it’s an unwanted task and a source of stress. If you’re in the latter camp, your options are to pay for someone to make your invitation (and then we’re back to cost) or to find a website builder to make a web-page with all the information housed there for your guests to browse at their leisure. An invitation they can’t lose! Find an easy website builder and you’re looking at between 30 minutes and 2 hours to build something beautiful and functional.
So what about the content you can include in a digital invitation? You can include everything you would do in a paper one – schedule, list of accommodation venues, map, RSVP address. Except on a wedding website the accommodation list can contain links to the booking pages of the venues, a googlemap can be used to get directions while your guests are driving, and the RSVP is an email link – far quicker and more reliable than expecting people to post their replies.
You can also include a link to your wedding list, add photographs and include a forum for people to discuss their arrangements.
After the wedding you could even email your guests with a link to a ‘thank you’ site, that could include pictures of the big day.
So, if you want your guests to have a letter through the door and get tactile with your invitation, then you can’t beat the traditional posted invitation.
However if you want to save time and money as well as make it easier for your guests to RSVP, book their hotel and choose a gift, then go digital.
- Added text alignment option to Text Blocs (ability to align text in all other relevant Blocs coming up next…).
- Updated application fonts.
- Updated Font Awesome to version 4.4
- Small UI tweaks
- Cindr is officially now out of beta. Thanks to everyone who provided valuable feedback during our beta phase!
- You can now signup and login to Cindr using your Facebook account.
- 4 fantastic new Bloc Stacks to get new user started. Many more to follow soon…
- Improved the look and feel of the Bloc Stacks selection screen.
- Added 2 new header Blocs, 6 new content Blocs and 1 new text Bloc.
- Improved the way Cindr Free users can interact and identify Cindr Premium Blocs.
- Added confirmation to logout.
- Made some minor changes to our UI to improve consistency.
- Fixed a bug that could result in the content duplication controls being duplicated.
- Made some significant performance optimisations to our API.
Films and TV only have technical experts in very particular roles, so there’s surprisingly few of them to choose from.
Here at Cindr, a day at the office looks like a scene from a film about hackers. Our cursors are underscores, we type in green and we all have cool usernames like D34dman3000. These are some characters who are almost as awesome as us.
David Lightman (Wargames)
He introduced the world to the modern definition of hacking and was the originator of the idea that teenagers could disrupt the world from their bedrooms. Luckily by the time of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Matthew Broderick was only using his powers to change his grades on the school computer system.
Data (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
Miles Dyson (Terminator 2)
Not content with inventing the bagless hoover, Miles Dyson went on to bring about the near-extinction of humankind by helping create in Skynet in The Terminator films. Miles is that wonderful techie character archetype – the guy who doesn’t consider the moral implications of his pursuit of science, as oblivious to the T1000 as JJ Thompson was to Hiroshima. We also included him as Tom in the office can do a top impression of him dying. You are now free to google JJ Thompson.
Lisbeth Salander (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo)
A multi-dimensional and thoroughly modern character who is both vulnerable and in control, with technical skills that are vaguely realistic. All of which means we have nothing funny to say about her, so let’s move on…
Neo (The Matrix)
Our favourite example of The Body-Length Black Coat Paradox. Everyone in The Matrix wearing one looks like they’re super-cool and might have a shotgun. Everyone in the real world wearing one looks ridiculous and might have a hobby performing amateur magic. Presuming we all actually live in the real world of course.
Peter Gibbons (Office Space)
Your life isn’t downloading kung-fu, or flying around in a metal suit. It’s sitting in a booth knowing that if you didn’t come to work tomorrow no-one would notice. Except maybe your boss, but only because he has nothing else to do.
Harry Caul (The Conversation)
We’re just including this so everyone knows we’ve seen Coppola’s 70s surveillance paranoia classic The Conversation, which makes us seem more interesting than we actually are.
Bonnie Barstow (Knight Rider)
Sadly there’s really not many techie women on the screen to choose from. Trinity’s too much like a character from a computer game. Angelina Jolie’s Acid Burn from Hackers was a possible. And then we remembered Bonnie from Knight Rider, the lead engineer for Knight Industries. We were impressed by her technical and mechanical know-how, but mainly we like her because she invented ‘Super Pursuit Mode’ which is the coolest name for anything ever. We’ve also made a pact that next time one of us has a child, it will be called Super Pursuit Mode.
Who have we missed?
A bunch of new stuff has just been released? Want to know about the best bits?
- You can now sell on Cindr! We’re really happy to announce that you can use Cindr to sell directly using our 1 click PayPal purchasing Blocs.
- New Cindr Free Blocs. We always try to introduce some new Blocs with every release for our Cindr Free users to try out. Our favourite is the new header Bloc.
- Premium Blocs. We’ve introduced a range of Blocs for users of Cindr Premium including dedicated price list and menu Blocs.
- Social Media Sharing. We’ve introduced controls for you to easily share your site on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and LinkedIn.
- Simplified the account area. Less clicking to get you to where you need to be.
- For a more exhaustive list of changes, click here.
Don’t have a Cindr site, then for goodness sake get to cindr.com and put that right! Start building using our free website builder- there’s no signup required until you publish…
- Improved architecture monitoring.
- Many refactoring and optimisations changes.
- Improved how 3rd party fonts are imported into the Cindr application.
- Small changes to the tutorial
- We’ve added 7 brand new ‘Pay with PayPal’ Blocs that enable 1 click PayPal purchasing, allowing your users to purchase products on your Cindr site quickly and easily.
- Introducing Premium Blocs. We will be rolling out a number of Premium Blocs, available to Cindr Premium users, that will hook into third-party services allowing you to extend the functionality of your Cindr site.
- Added social sharing to Cindr UI allowing you to easily share your website on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+.
- Improved our upgrade journey making it simpler for you to subscribe to Cindr Premium.
- Added 2 new Premium Content Blocs. These price-list Blocs utilise new content duplication functionality, allowing you to create and edit a price list or menu in seconds.
- Added 2 lovely new non-premium content Blocs.
- Added a bold new header Bloc.
- Added content duplication options to selected existing Blocs.
- Added basic social meta tags to published sites.
- Streamlined our on-boarding process.
- We’ve added an audio track to our video tutorials.
- Uploaded images now align properly.
- Added a preview pane to Site Title & Description settings allowing you to see what your meta info looks like in search results.
- Made it even faster for new users to sign up and publish their website.
- Small UI updates and improvements.
- Improved our server architecture to ensure Cindr is faster and more stable.
- Depreciated the existing product content Bloc as we have now introduced Pay with PayPal Blocs which use a similar layout but integrate with PayPal.
- Restructured a stack of code to help us sleep better at night.
- Moved Cindr settings into the main application to cut down on load times, streamline the process of updating settings user experience.
- A lot of bugs fixed.
- Created a super-sexy looking animated loading icon. Then we put it in the trashcan. Cindr is so fast is does not need loading icons
Don’t let your customers get lost in details, they have a simple need which you can deliver on.
As we explained in our blog post about the benefits of a single page website, a well designed single page site can make more impact and control the attention of users in a way that content-heavy multi-page sites can’t manage. In a series of blogs we’ll look at different types of websites and examine what value a single-page brings over multi-page for specific uses.
We’re feeling peckish, so this week we want to talk about restaurants…
Let us paint a picture for you… you’re in town. You want a bite to eat but haven’t made plans. You use your smartphone to google what restaurants are in your area. You want to know what’s on the menu and make a judgment on whether it appeals, either through pictures, reviews or just how they present themselves. What you don’t want is to waste your time looking round the site, waiting for pages to download or, (shudder), having to download a PDF of a menu.
This is an area in which small restaurants have an advantage over chains. A chain restaurant will have a behemoth of a site for the group, with postcode search to locate the restaurant. Someone at head office has decided what they need are email addresses for marketing, so they’ve given prominent position to their mailing list. There might even be an app for you to download and never use. Different features that all have one thing in common – they weren’t designed for your simple need – to make it easier right now to choose where to eat.
A simple problem demands a simple solution:
A layout that focuses on photographs of beautifully presented food, a menu, contact details for booking and where to find the restaurant. Maybe you have a philosophy that you want to tell people about? This is best achieved on a smooth scrolling single-page. Take your customers on a journey, show them how good the food looks, tell them what they can have, tell them where to find it and make it easy. Something that shows you care about what you do – your passion will leap off the screen.
So now you know what you need, try building it. Cindr is our website builder. It’s free to set up a site. You might surprise yourself by how quickly you can create something beautiful.