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Atlantic City NJ Website Design: Evaluation of the Best and Worst

Atlantic City NJ Website Design

Atlantic City NJ Website Design: Evaluation of the Best and Worst

This article provides an in-depth analysis of the websites for businesses, organizations, and associations located in Atlantic City NJ. This article is intended to be a resource for business owners and website design companies looking to create a new website, or redesign a current Atlantic City NJ website design.

In this article we have included the following information

  1. Brief Overview of the Town from a business perspective, and the need for a functional and beautiful Atlantic City NJ website design.
  2. Best Website Design examples in Atlantic City New Jersey
  3. High Potential Examples of Atlantic City Website Design that would do very well with some strategic design/development changes
  4. Worst Website Design examples in Atlantic City New Jersey
  5. Simple Directory of Web Designers in Atlantic City New Jersey, or web design companies known for their Atlantic City NJ website design work.

Opportunity/Need for Atlantic City NJ Website Design

Analyzing the current business environment and growth opportunities in Atlantic City New Jersey

This city is an easy fit for most small businesses because of the diversity of nearby business enterprises, most notably the casinos and summer tourism industry. Atlantic City NJ is a growth zone that has state incentives for large and small businesses, a growing population and entrepreneurial opportunities for innovative individuals seeking the success of their small business. Aerospace and aviation, manufacturing, education, life sciences, tourism and agriculture are major players in the Atlantic City business scape.

The right economic climate exists for a small business owner to succeed but you’ve got to take advantage of the opportunities that exist on the web. There are plenty of things to get things moving, like promotional advertising and social media, but those things are useless without a great website. People need to able to find your business quickly on the internet and when they do, you have to wow them. Your website may determine a customer’s first impression of the services you offer. Without a first class website your business is just not in the game in Atlantic City New Jersey where the competition is very high in the retail, real estate, and recreational space.

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Best Examples of Atlantic City NJ Website Design

In addition to the most obvious features, there are many little things that make a website design great and effective. Top marks go to beautiful websites that have useful information AND are doing the types of things that make them attractive to Google, while also providing a positive user experience. Through our search, we came across  some good and bad local examples of Atlantic City NJ websites. Here’s what we found:

1. Borgata Casino – https://www.theborgata.com/resort 

Numerical Score: 81/100

Design Grade………  B

Features Grade……. C

Content Grade…….. C

Authority Grade……B

Not all websites are created equal.  We don’t judge them all using the same criteria.  We expect more from a casino which operates on advertising and marketing budgets of millions of dollars annually than we would for, say, a local screen printing company who spends a few thousand dollars per year (at best).

So it is with the Atlantic City NJ websites we evaluated.  Atlantic City really is an example of a tale of 2 cities.  There are casinos with huge budgets located within blocks of small mom-and-pop stores.  They simply must be graded on a different scale.

The Borgata’s website is a bit of a disappointment to the DotCom staff.  Don’t get me wrong, the site is technically solid.  There is also no question that the folks who design and maintain the website have a tough job keeping all of the information current.  It’s a big job.  Organizing and presenting so much information across multiple categories (HOTEL, DINING, ENTERTAINMENT) – each of which are deep with content is a huge challenge.  We recognize their efforts.  That being said, they could have done a much better job.

The website is updated all the time, so by the time you read this article, some of our examples may already have been replaced.  That said, it is almost impossible to find a photo of a single person on the entire website who is not an entertainer.  They seem to have completely abandoned any attempt at making personal connections.  It’s almost inconceivable to me that someone would choose to use a photo of an empty restaurant instead of capturing a fun or intimate moment of a couple or of a group having a great time.  Even the casino shots have empty slot machines and empty gaming tables.  If you look very closely at one of the photos you can pick out the tip of a finger pushing a player card into a slot.  This is more than an oversight, this is clearly intentional and it is a very bad call.    Can you imagine Spa photos without a person in them relaxing and enjoying the treatment?  Well, there’s a first time for everything.

The rest of the site is fine.  It’s professional, it’s well-maintained and current, it is well organized … but it is boring and makes no connection at all.  An interesting side-note is the relatively low number of external backlinks and citations.  This is having a slight negative impact on their (relative) ranking and domain authority – as compared to other casinos which are probably not as strong as the Borgata is in the real world.  I can’t prove it, but my guess is that this is a direct result of the lack of personal / emotional connection they have created on the website.

2. Ten – http://play.tenacnj.com 

Numerical Score: 70/100

Design Grade………  B

Features Grade……. A

Content Grade…….. D

Authority Grade……D

We don’t shy away from controversial subjects nor are we necessarily drawn to them.  However, we felt we had to weigh-in on what is happening with this situation – mainly because of how clever the owner appears to be.  If you would like to understand more about what is going on, you can read about it here:  http://www.phillyvoice.com/former-revel-still-closed-atlantic-city-launches-faux-online-gambling-website/

The website is early-stage.  It really doesn’t meet the strict criteria of a website we would review for an article like this, nor would it normally rate as one of our top 3 choices.  However, we are stretching our guidelines in this case simply because of how clever it is.  While the physical casino is still closed for business, the online gaming portion is alive and kicking.  By all appearances, they appear to be one of the strongest players in the market in this respect – which is no small feat.  We applaud their creativity and “hutzpah” for standing up to the bully bureaucracy from the state regulators.

Now, for a few pieces of advice.  Get busy keeping your website visitors informed (as much as you can without getting into hot water with the state regulators) about what is going on.  The communication on this website is non-existent.  Begin building your content, your social content (and following), and any other content assets you can.  Get these things posted in a meaningful way.  Your Google ranking, your Google Trust Score, and your Domain Authority are terribly low.  This is to be expected for a new website but you could be much more active right now working on this.  There is no reason to wait.  Frankly, with the fight against “big government” regulation, you have a unique and compelling story that you could be using to attract attention.  You are wasting a huge marketing opportunity.

3. Atlantic City Aquarium –  https://www.acaquarium.com 

Numerical Score: 66/100

Design Grade……… D

Features Grade…….D

Content Grade…….. D

Authority Grade……D

At first glance this website appears to be much better than it actually is.  The HERO photos/slideshow are compelling and interesting and they did a fairly solid job on the way they present the navigation options.  They grouped the navigation options in a smart way into 2 groups of 5 – which is the perfect way to handle this situation.  This establishes a strong positive initial reaction and doesn’t overwhelm the website visitor with having to decide between 10 major navigation choices (which causes confusion).  I also appreciate that they seem to have included useful information which helps me understand who they are and what they have to offer in a well organized manner.

Where they fell short is on photos throughout the website to enhance the pages and to show off what they have to offer.  As with so many websites we evaluate, if they would have simply hired a professional photographer for a couple of hours, they could have captured the experience in a way that would have helped the website visitor emotionally connect.  It would be so easy to see the aquarium through the eyes of a child and to experience the joy and wonder.  Much more troubling than the lack of photos is the lack of video.  Aquariums are made for video.  There is not a single video included in the entire website and there are only a few low-quality videos on YouTube.  We suggest they provide a series of 3 videos, each 1 to 2 minutes and professionally produced.  These should be promo style videos that capture the experience and the fun of the aquarium.  Then they could also include another couple of dozen short videos that show every different type of fish and creature in the aquarium.

They apparently do not wish to host Parties or Special Events because they could not possibly have done less in this section to promote these items.

It is interesting how many companies and organizations don’t seem to understand how powerful of a sales tool a great website can be.  It is often perpetuated later down the road when they will again give a “half effort” the next time they redesign the website.  Why?  Because they will say that the website really doesn’t bring in any business anyway, so it’s not worth the extra time, money, or effort.  <sigh>  THAT is exactly why it doesn’t and never will.

High Potential Examples of Atlantic City NJ Website Design

There are a lot of websites that kind of fall in the middle. They’re not good, but they could be worse. Most of these “high potential” website design examples are placed in this category because they scored low on our evaluation, but the businesses themselves are so great that we see a huge opportunity for success. Here are the local websites we found that don’t stand on their own yet, but could be absolutely killer if they made the right moves.

4. Bass Pro Shops – http://www.basspro.com/

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

5. Fox Rothschild LLP, Attorneys at Law – http://www.foxrothschild.com/

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

6. Angelo’s Fairmont Tavern – http://www.angelosfairmounttavern.com/

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

7. Cuba Libre –  http://www.cubalibrerestaurant.com/en/atlantic-city/

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

8. Levine Staller Attorneys at Law – http://www.levinestaller.com/

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

9. Holtzman Gallery – http://holtzmangallery.com

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

10. AC Metropolitan Business & Citizens Association – http://mbcanj.com

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

11. Meet AC – http://meetac.com

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

12. Cooper Levenson – https://www.cooperlevenson.com

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

13. Rob Kos Shore Marketing – https://robksm.com

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade D

14. Dock Oyster House – http://www.docksoysterhouse.com/

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade D

15. Wonder Bar – http://wonderbaracnj.com/

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade D

16. Atlantic City Florist – http://www.atlanticcityflorist.com

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade D

17. Playground Pier AC – http://www.playgroundpierac.com

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade C

18. Steel Pier – http://www.steelpier.com

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade D

19. Los Amigos – http://www.losamigosrest.com/home.aspx

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade D

Worst Examples of Atlantic City NJ Website Design

Choosing the worst websites in a town like this is painful. As a web designer in the Atlantic City NJ area, I’ve seen these types of mistakes over and over that are wreaking havoc on these businesses and killing their SERP ranking. Some of these websites are so terrible that I’m assuming they came free and ready-made with a domain purchase. The mistakes are numerous and easy to avoid if you’re a web designer who know’s what you’re doing!

20. 11th Floor Creative Group – http://www.11floor.com/site/index.html

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade F

21. Mel’s Furniture – http://melsfurnitureac.com

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade F

22. Atlantic City Arts Commission – http://www.atlanticcityart.org/

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade F

23. Hurvitz Law – http://www.hurvitzlaw.com/ 

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade F

24. Knife and Fork Inn – http://www.knifeandforkinn.com/aboutus.php

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade F

25. Atlantic City Ballet – http://www.acballet.org/attend 

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade F

26. Targan & Pender – https://www.targanpender.com 

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade F

27. White House Subs- http://whitehousesubshop.net

Atlantic City NJ Website Design Grade F

Directory of local Web Designers serving Atlantic City NJ

Below is a profile of each website designer in Atlantic City New Jersey (physical address is listed as Atlantic City) or web company who is known for their Atlantic City NJ website design work.

Website Designers in Atlantic City New Jersey

DotCom Global Media

http://www.dotcomglobalmedia.com/

DotCom has roughly 20 full-time employees and is a full-service website design and internet marketing agency.  They have been in business since 1995.  DotCom works with dozens of clients in Somers Point and the surrounding area.  Of particular note is their national and international client list working with companies like Nike, Disney, and the New York Yankees just to name a few.  They have won numerous awards and have a stellar reputation.  In October 2016, the founder was honored to be selected to speak at the #1 rated small business conference in the U.S. (Forbes and Inc. Magazine).  This is clearly the top website design company in the entire region.

Evolve Studios

www.evolvestudios.com/

Evolve appears to be a small collection of independent contractors and service providers.  It appears they’ve been in business for over 10 years and they serve mostly local clients.  Their work is solid.

JSE Design Studio

http://www.new-jersey-webdesign.net/

JSE has been creating poor to mediocre websites for a painfully long time.  Frankly, we are surprised they still make websites.  They are mostly known for their Point-Of-Sale systems and other types of technical support -which we understand is much better than their website design.

Townsquare Media

http://www.townsquaremedia.com

Townsquare Media is well positioned thanks to their affiliation with the local radio industry. While the name is familiar with businesses in South Jersey, Townsquare Media is more infamous than famous. Their website designs are stock layouts and the SEO and digital marketing services they offer seem to lack a customized strategic approach. We have only heard bad things about this web design/marketing company. You could get the same quality for much less money with those starter packages that come cheap with a domain name purchase.

While there is no shortage of business activity in Atlantic City NJ, companies actively operating in this town are lacking in the area of effective web presence. This is a missed opportunity both for businesses and for potential customers. Most Atlantic City NJ websites are poorly designed, and worse- they’re virtually impossible to find through online search.

To up your chances for success, get your Atlantic City NJ website design set up the right way on the right platform, with an approach that draws targeted traffic. A beautiful website that’s supported with smart tools and a digital marketing strategy will drastically help your local NJ-based business to thrive.

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