Decatur's Brighter Technology part of growing sector [The Decatur Daily, Ala.]
(Decatur Daily (AL) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Feb. 27--Brighter Technology owner Cliff Loehr makes it his business to help small businesses connect with customers online.
His website design and hosting company offers custom services and technical support and has been in operation for nearly three years. While Loehr handles most of the programming and business management, his son, Andrew, is in charge of the graphic design and user-interface duties. The Decatur business is a part of growing technology sector that's changing the way companies do businesses with their customers.
The Decatur Daily interviewed Loehr to discuss how he got started, emerging trends in the field and what advice he has for those who want to get into website development and hosting.
Question: Why did you start Brighter Technology
Answer: I started my business to provide a better, full-service technical solution for small-businesses owners. The idea is to offer site design, programming, web hosting and general tech support in one package. Most small businesses struggle with an initial investment needed for a custom website. So by merging design, development, hosting and support, I can spread most of that cost over the term of a hosting and support contract.
Q: What's your experience in technology and website hosting
A: I have been doing tech support for 20 years and developing websites for 15 years. I added web hosting two years ago so my clients could get everything in one stop.
Q: What type of services and products do you offer
A: Web design, which includes programming custom business functions, and web hosting. Also tech support, which could be anything techy a small business might encounter, from Wi-Fi, network, server and PC support, training and printing issues. That also includes any changes needed to the company website. Other hosting companies typically do not help you edit your website.
Q: What are some emerging business trends in the field
A: The biggest trend for small business is to use your website for more than a brochure. Moving parts of your business operations to your website makes them available to customers, employees or you while your out of the office. For example, tracking orders, time cards, scheduling, product inventory and things typically stored on paper or in a document on the boss' computer. Of course, not everything works best on the web, and security is an issue. That's where custom programming and ongoing support is needed.
Q: What advice do you have for someone interested in starting their own company like Brighter Technology or getting into the field
A: There is lots of competition in the technology arena, and the internet makes them very easy to find. You have to be helpful, beneficial and supply solutions that make sense and do it all at a price people can afford.
Q: What is an average day like at the office
A: On to phone, helping clients or working on someone's website. Coffee helps, but it's the challenge of making a website look awesome or a program to work right that keeps me going day to day.
Q: What skills, training, and education are necessary, or would you recommend to enter the field
A: I found it's not so much what you know but how you apply it. For example, so many solutions for small businesses lock them into a single tech expert, where every little change to their website requires a programmer to make an update. Using your technology skills to trap your customers is my No. 1 pet peeve. By providing solutions that can be updated as easy as editing a word processing document, you make life easier for everyone.
Q: What should small businesses keep in mind when trying to attract potential customers with their website
A: SEO, which stands for Search Engine Optimization, is the art of making your website easier to find. This requires a well written website and ongoing "fresh" information. Search engines love websites that are alive and changing daily. This is also something Brighter Technology can help with.
Tiffeny Owens can be reached at 256-340-2440 or email@example.com.
Established: 2010 by Cliff Loehr
Experience: 15 years
Websites: www.brighterhost.com, www.brightertechnology.com, www.nitebulb.com and www.folkloehrdesign.com
(c)2013 The Decatur Daily (Decatur, Ala.)
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