Saying Goodbye to Linda, Our Summer Unicorn

By Jodie Riccelli

August 7, 2014

It’s a sad time for YIKES. Our summer intern, Linda Gorman, is leaving to go back to college. Linda will be a senior at Syracuse University this fall. Prior to interning at YIKES, Linda studied abroad in Japan for a semester, tackled numerous independent projects, and interned at other reputable businesses.

While at YIKES, she was instrumental in supporting work on a wide range of projects, learning ColdFusion along the way. Her knowledge in a variety of technologies and her keen editing abilities were a great addition to the team. Linda is truly a tech unicorn with the ability to program in different languages, work proficiently with Bootstrap, test UX/UI, develop dashboards, and more.

While at YIKES, she discovered Indian Food, cappuccino potato chips, and Pho. We couldn’t be prouder. We wish her the best of luck in the upcoming school year. It was an honor to have her part of the team this summer.

Luckily we can continue to follow her successes on Twitter and her website!

As one door closes another opens they say. Therefore we are looking for interns! You can get more information on our jobs page.

Tech Unicorn by Phine. Can you spot all 8 technologies plus a bonus YIKES logo icon?
Tech Unicorn by Phine. Can you spot all 8 technologies plus a bonus YIKES logo icon?

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YIKES Gets Serious About Contributing to Open Source

By Tracy Levesque

August 6, 2014

Inspired by Helen Hou-Sandí’s WordCamp Philly keynote, “How I convinced my boss to let me work on WordPress full-time,” we’ve decided to donate a collective 5 hours a week to the WordPress Open Source Project.

We want to give back to the project and community that provides a free, open source and fantastic software platform to build and maintain great websites. We decided to start with 5 hours a week with the goal to increase those hours in the future.

Tracy Levesque contributes time as the co-lead of the WordPress Training Project (aka Theme School). The project’s goal is to create WordPress-approved, classroom-style curriculum instructors can use to hold in-person WordPress classes and workshops. She is also involved with initiatives to bring more diversity to the WordPress Community and newly obsessed with designing Dashicons.

Programmers, Evan Herman and Carlos Zuniga, spend time combing through trac tickets, testing code and submitting patches. Evan also helps out on the support forums. He even received an in-person thank you at WordCamp NYC from a person he recently gave assistance to.

We are excited to make our commitment to helping build the software we use every day and supporting the vibrant community surrounding it official.

Evan working at WordCamp NYC Contributor Day
Evan working at WordCamp NYC Contributor Day

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Summer Camp for Geeks: WordCamp NYC

By Jodie Riccelli

July 29, 2014

With WordCamp NYC 2014 only a few days away, the YIKES team is looking closely at the schedule and getting excited. Tracy will be speaking on Saturday, August 2nd at 2:45pm. Don’t miss her presentation: 6 Ways to Up Your Theme Game. Besides Tracy’s presentation, here are a few things we are looking forward to:

WordCamps are always fun, and I am glad NYC was able to have one this year. I am looking forward to seeing WordPress friends from all over the World and recruiting new folks to join the WordPress Training Project. I also love learning new skills and teaching some as well.
– Tracy Levesque, Web Designer/Developer & Co-Owner of YIKES, Inc.

I’m looking forward to networking with some of the smartest people in the WordPress community and learning more about contributing to the community. I also just enjoy being around like minded individuals who love WordPress as much as I do.
– Evan Herman (WordPress Developer)

Everything is great in NYC. I have no doubt that WordCamp will be any different. It’s always exciting to share in the enthusiasm of the WordPress community. I’m anxious to see what new and exciting things I learn this weekend, and I look forward to meeting new friends!
– Jodie E. Saueraker (Sales and Marketing Director)

After a very successful WordCamp Philly this June, I am looking forward to spending a beautiful summer weekend in New York with other WordPress aficionados. WordCamps provide a great opportunity to meet people in-person, chat, swap stories, and share solutions.
– Mia Levesque, Web Project Manager & Co-Owner of YIKES, Inc.

We are bringing the infamous YIKES swag including bottle openers, beer koosies, and pins! See you in New York.

Bottle Openers - YIKES

WordCamp NYC is this weekend at the Brooklyn Marriott.

YIKES is proud to be a Broadway Sponsor of this year’s event.

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WordCamp Philly 2014

By Jodie Riccelli

June 11, 2014

This past weekend, YIKES had the pleasure of being a sponsor for WordCamp Philly. WordCamps are informal, community-organized events that are put together by WordPress users. Everyone from casual bloggers to core developers can participate, share ideas and get to know each other.

This year nearly 400 were in attendance on Saturday to navigate through over 30 different sessions that covered everything from the basics of setting up WordPress to automating theme development.

WordPretzels from Center City Pretzel Factory
WordPretzels from Center City Pretzel Factory

Friday kicked off the weekend with the speakers dinner at Moriarty’s in center city. This was an opportunity for all those presenting to meet one another or perhaps catch up from previous WordCamps. On Saturday morning the events began bright and early at 8am. This year WordCamp was held at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. Attendees were greeted with “W” shaped pretzels from Center City Pretzel factory in South Philadelphia! Ice cream straight from the famous Franklin Fountain in Old City ended up being the perfect afternoon treat. Attendees got to sample a variety of flavors of the local favorite.

WordCamp is typically broken down into four different tracks: User, Power User, Designer, and Developer. This year also included two breakout panels and a keynote address from Helen Hou-Sandi. Helen is the Director of Platform Experience at 10up, a WordPress core committer and the WordPress 4.0 release lead.

Helen receiving her WordPress pillow from the folks at YIKES.
Helen receiving her WordPress pillow from the folks at YIKES.

Tracy giving her presentation
Tracy giving her presentation

YIKES, Inc. co-owner, Tracy Levesque, gave her presentation “6 Ways to Up Your Theme Game” as part of the Designer track. There were many presenters and all were great. It was a full house for most sessions. If you are curious about the other presentations, the day’s schedule is still online. Search #WCPhilly on social media for great tips and tricks!

The day ended with a farewell from the organizers, Brad and April Williams, Doug Stewart, Reed Gustow and Liam Dempsy. We want to thank them and all the volunteers for their hard work organizing a great event.

After the closing remarks it was off to the Girl Develop IT and YIKES happy hour at Khyber Pass Pub. Can you say bacon grease popcorn? Yum! They provided great cocktails, beer and snacks for a hungry bunch. Everyone got a chance to catch up from the day and get ready for the after party at Buffalo Billiards. Drinks were poured, pool was played, and friendships were solidified.

Sunday was Dev Day and was held at City CoHo Philly Nexus. Dev day is a chance to contribute to projects and WordPress core. Here Tracy and a team of brilliant people got to work on the WordPress training initiative.

Team Training getting it done.
Team Training getting it done.

And that is a wrap from WordCamp Philly 2014. We will see you next year!

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The Personal Side of Working for a Benefit Corporation

By Mia Levesque

May 23, 2014

Paul Andre LevesqueOn Saturday, May 3, 2014, my father had a massive stroke. My parents live about 375 miles away. My four siblings and I are scattered throughout the East coast. We all arrived Saturday or Sunday, to be by his side as he entered his hospice journey. When my father took his last breath on May 9, 2014, I was able to be by his side, fully present. I was able to stay and help my mother cope with her enormous loss. I had the support of my family as we all gathered to grieve.

Recently much as been written on B or Benefit Corporations and the concept to of ROWE (Results-Only Work Environment). I am fortunate to co-own and work for such a company — YIKES, Inc., a web design and development company in Philadelphia.

YIKES started in 1996 with the concept of creating a company that the three co-founders would want to work for. This led to the realization that we were what was becoming called “a sustainable business.” Joining the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia in 2003, we found like-minded business who adhere to the triple-bottom line of People, Planet, Profit. YIKES even won a Triple Bottom Line award in 2005.

In 2010, we became a Certified B Corporation. Being a B Corporation allows us to share our philosophy of the power of business to do good, to change the world for the better. YIKES, Inc. has an excellent reputation for conducting its business activities with integrity, fairness, and in accordance with the highest ethical standards. In 2013 YIKES, Inc. was among the first companies to become a Pennsylvania Benefit Corporation, furthering our commitment. YIKES, Inc. was just recertified as B Corporation in March, 2014. But anyone can learn more about B Corporations online.

What I want to talk about is what has this has meant to me over the past 3 weeks. As I sit here on my final day before I return to work, I want to acknowledge mostly my co-workers who are so competent and compassionate that I could do what I needed to do, which was to be with my father, my mother, and all my siblings. That our families where together to say goodbye, to honor my father with a dignified death and funeral, to give each other the support we needed.

When I go back to work tomorrow, I will check in with all my clients who are are very important as well. They are not just the lifeline of our business, but many are long-term colleagues from our many years in business. I know that there may have been bumps and disruptions in the projects I manage, as my co-workers stepped in without any foresight or planning, which is possible when one takes a vacation but not in an emergency situation.

I end this with the hope that this concept of life-work balance continues to become the norm. That more workers won’t have to make hard choices about work over people, adding stress to one of the most difficult times we humans face — the loss of someone we love. In my sadness and grief, I know that when I remember this time, it will be without regret because people do come first. I had the support to make this happen. I will carry a deep gratitude to all those who gave me this gift. It is not one that enough American workers get, but one that I believe, as a business owner, is possible.

Paul Andre Levesque

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Join YIKES during Philly Tech Week

By Jodie Riccelli

February 28, 2014

Tech Mix It Up: A Diversity Networking Affair
Monday, April 7, 2014 – 5pm to 8pm

View our Facebook Event here!

Philly Tech Week 2014 presented by AT&T is a week-long celebration of technology and innovation taking place April 4–12, 2014. This year, a group of like-minded individuals, joined together to host a networking affair to celebrate diversity within the tech community.

This event brings together tech people from diverse backgrounds including race, ethnicity, members of the LGBTQ communities and people with disabilities. We invite you to help us make a more creative and innovative tech community by joining the conversation.

There will be food, drink, music, games, prizes and a chance to network with some of the best and brightest diverse people the Philly Tech Scene has to offer.

Let’s crack the brogrammer code!

Our goal is to engage a network of individuals who are willing to support the mission of diversity in the tech community. Through events such as this we hope to encourage businesses, individuals, volunteers, and the community to get involved and support our mission.

*ASL interpreters provided

Premiere Sponsors:



Platinum Sponsors:

WordPress-LogoThe WordPress Foundation
Chovanes Law LLC

Gold Sponsors
O’Donnell & Naccarato

Food and Drink Sponsors
– Cedar Point Bar and Kitchen
– Khyber Pass Pub
– Philly Fair Trade Roasters
– Mugshots Cafe
– Spodee
– Philadelphia Brewing Company
Betts Gourmet Cheese Spread

Prize Sponsors
– Uber
– Bishops Collar
– Mirror Image Media
– WP Engine

*Zero waste event made possible by Bennett Compost

uber_lockup_black (jpeg)We’ve partnered with Uber to offer all new users a free ride, up to $20, using the promotional code TECHINCOLOR.

We also want to thank many of the media outlets who are supporting this event:

Philadelphia Weekly – 10 Can’t Miss Happenings at Philly Tech Week

uwishunu – Our Guide To Philly Tech Week, Returning April 4-12 With More Than 100 Events Across The City, Including A Massive Game Of Tetris On The Cira Centre On Saturday, April 5

Philly 360 – 11 Must-Hit Events For Philly Tech Week – April 4 -12

CBS Philly – Guide To Philly Tech Week

Philadelphia Generocity – Our Social Impact Guide to Philly Tech Week 2014

Girl Develop It Meetup

Girl Geek Dinner Meetup

Haverford College

Philadelphia Weekly Blog – Last night’s #techInColor mixer chipped away at “cracking the brogrammer code”

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Meet Evan Herman

By Jodie Riccelli

February 6, 2014

We are excited to welcome web developer, Evan Herman, to the growing YIKES team. Evan is an accomplished WordPress developer, and we really love the fact that he geeks out on WordPress as much as we do!


He has developed two plugins for WordPress that can be found in the WordPress Plugin Directory.

  • YouTube Plus allows you to upload content to your YouTube account without having to leave your WordPress dashboard.
  • WordPress Icons – SVG will install 500+ SVG glyph icons for use on your WordPress website.

In November of 2013, Evan was interviewed on WP Tavern with Marcus Couch. You can listen to the podcast on the WP Taven website.  During the interview, Evan talks about his observations of the WordPress community and the future of plugin development.

He loves the WordPress community to a degree that when he gives his contact information, he always includes his user name! I would classify Evan as a “lunch bucket” type of developer. The kind of guy that isn’t seeking notoriety or accolades and isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty in mind-numbing code. He simply gets the job done for the betterment of the WordPress community and moves on to the next project.”  – Marcus Couch

We couldn’t agree more! Evan is a great addition to our team, and we are excited to see the great things he will build for our clients. Read what he has to say about working for YIKES on his blog.

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Pearson attends the ColdFusion Summit in Las Vegas

By Jodie Riccelli

January 14, 2014

Our ColdFusion developer, Pearson Barlow, headed to the West Coast at the end of October to attend the Adobe ColdFusion Summit 2013. The summit provides a great way for developers to learn about new ColdFusion innovations and also network with other folks in the field.

ColdFusion Summit
Pearson at the ColdFusion Summit 2013

Below are some of the moments that Pearson found to be the most significant.

Web Application Best Security Practices:
Amazing two session presentation by Jason Dean of Dakota County Technical College. The sessions covered everything from rock solid security policies and variable encoding, to smart hashing and encryption.

Mobile Application Development:
CFClient is the new cat on the block. Amazing what this tag can do to assist developers in creating powerful rich mobile apps. We are extremely excited about this new targeted functionality that will be bundled with the new ColdFusion Splendor.

HTML5 Charting:
“A picture is worth a thousand words” Charts allow us to visualize massive data feeds from user trends to sales figures and HTML5 charts bring customizable, dynamic imagery to viewing that data. The new ColdFusion 10 allows us to quickly generate, responsive HTML5 charts on the fly, enabling zooming and delivering dynamic elements to our clients data — what’s not to like?

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7 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Virtual World

By Mia Levesque

December 26, 2013

Happy New Year! Could there be a better time to review your online presence and get organized? We don’t think so. Here is a handy list of New Year’s Resolutions to get you started.

1. Change Your Passwords

There have been a lot of security breaches in the news these past years. From Yahoo! to Gmail to Twitter. When was the last time you changed any of your passwords? Current guidelines suggest a password of at least 12 characters with a combination of the following:

  • Lower case letters
  • Upper case letters
  • Numbers
  • Special Characters

Maybe go a step beyond and start using a password manager.

2. Make a Social Media Plan

  • What Social Media do you currently use? (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Instagram)
  • Do you think you are using Social Media in the best ways for your company or organization?
  • Do you have a schedule for updating your Social Media? Are trusted people in charge?
  • Is your branding consistent across you Social Media profiles (updated images and backgrounds)?

3. Review Design and Usability

  • Are you using old technology? For example, is your WordPress up-to-date?
  • Does your site look contemporary?  Do you need a redesign or a site make-over?
  • Do you have a dynamic sitemap?
  • Have you reviewed your site for SEO (Search Engine Optimization)?
  • Is your site viewable on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets?

4. Update Security and Maintenance

  • When was the last time you backed-up your databases and content? Is this done automatically?
  • Is your site secure by today’s web standards and have you scanned your site for vulnerabilities?
  • Do you use any security features or plugins?

5. Check Domain Name(s) (e.g.,

  • When does it expire?
  • Who is your domain name registrar? This is the company that registers your domain name(s) (e.g.,, Network Solutions,
  • Do you have the account login information?
  • Who controls it? Check to see who is listed as the owner, administrative and technical contacts.

You can find helpful information at

6. Verify Hosting

  • Who hosts your website? This is the company stores and serves you website (e.g., WPengine,  Dreamhost, Rackspace, CanvasDreams).
  • Do you have all login/account information?
  • What hosting package are you using? Do you need an upgrade?
  • When is your hosting renewal date?
  • Do you have an active credit card on file for automatic renewals?

7.  Take a Technology Inventory

  • For example, does your site use WordPress? Custom PHP? ColdFusion?
  • Are you using PayPal, Salesforce, an eCommerce solution?
  • Do you send out an enewsletter (Mailchimp, Vertical Response, Constant Contact)?
  • Do you use Google Analytics or Webmaster Tools?
  • Are your listings up-to-date: Google Places for Business, Bing Local, etc.

Need help getting organized?

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Top 10 things to consider when choosing a hosting provider

By Jodie Riccelli

September 27, 2013

Hosting is an important part of your website plan!

Choosing a web host is a critical decision and an important part of your website plan. There are few key factors to keep in mind when choosing a web host. As a client of YIKES, Inc., we can assist you with finding the most suitable hosting provider. However, we thought it was important to understand some factors that go into finding the best provider for your site.

  1. Cost
  2. You get what you pay for! The hosting for your website is the foundation it sits on and the engine that makes it run. You need to invest in good hosting. The cost of hosting is something that should be calculated into your entire website budget. Hosting companies that offer “cheap” and “unlimited” accounts should be approached with caution.

  3. Compatibility
  4. Take a moment to understand the technologies that are being used within your website. For example if you have a WordPress site, your hosting provider should be familiar and compatible with WordPress. Find out if it is a Linux or Windows based server. Also find out if they are running the most current version of PHP and databases such as MySQL.

  5. Tech Support
  6. Having an accessible tech support team is crucial. Is there a telephone number to reach customer service? Are they available 24 hours a day? Is there a live chat feature? Are you able to send service requests via email? You want to be able to easily reach your hosting provider in the event of an outage or even to inquire about billing issues.

  7. Email
  8. If you are planning on using your web service provider as your email service, then you need to first find out if your hosting provider provides email. If so, you will need to establish how many email accounts you will need. Does your hosting provider offer a webmail interface or will you be using a third party such as Google Apps to access your email?

  9. Reputation
  10. Find reviews from other customers on the hosting provider. Is their reputation documented online? Online research will be instrumental in finding out information about the hosting company’s reputation. Tweet out a request for testimonials for a specific hosting company you are considering. If the company is attentive and confident about their reputation, they will retweet your request.

  11. Security
  12. Many hosting providers offer firewalls and other security features to protect your website. This is important to protect your website from being compromised. Added security features are a huge benefit to investing in a good hosting provider.

  13. Choosing shared, dedicated or cloud
  14. You should have an understanding of the traffic on your website and what you expect to get in the future. You should also take an inventory of any special features on your site. For example, will it have e-Commerce or will you need reporting on your website? For shared hosting, ask how many other websites are hosted in their shared environment.

  15. Resources
  16. Resources such as CPU and memory allotments are often glossed over. Larger high-traffic sites, data-rich sites, sites with custom functionality, and e-commerce sites require higher CPU and memory allocations otherwise they will slow down or crash. Also, make sure the host offers SSL support if you need secure forms for ecommerce or other sensitive information.

  17. Storage and Bandwidth
  18. Unlimited bandwidth is a myth. Many hosting providers that claim to offer unlimited bandwidth have restrictions outlined in the “fine print.” Read the terms of service carefully to understand exactly what you are purchasing. Reputable hosting companies will often outline the costs for going over your allotted bandwidth and storage.

  19. Backups
  20. It’s critical that the hosting company you decide to hire offers daily server backups. This will ensure that you always have a fresh copy of the most important information. In the event that your website crashes or is infiltrated with malware, the server can be easily restored. The same holds true for databases. You want to make sure that daily database backups are being executed.

Confused about any of this? Please feel free to contact us.

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YIKES Philabundance Food Drive 2013

By Mia Levesque

September 17, 2013

Join us for our 2013 Philabundance Food Drive and help fight against hunger.

Join YIKES, Inc. again in collecting donations for our Philabundance food drive. We are offering a number of ways to get involved this year! Last time we raised nearly 300 pounds of food. This year we plan on beating our previous record.

[button bg_color=”#35804c” link=”” window=”yes”]YIKES, Inc – Virtual Food Drive[/button]

“Each year, there are more than 900,000 food insecure people in the Delaware Valley alone. Through the support of people like you, thousands of seniors, children, working families and others will have access to the basic need of affordable and nutritious food.” -Philabundance

How can you join YIKES, Inc. and contribute to making a difference:

  1. Drop non-perishable food items off at our office*. The high-priority items are listed below. Please make sure the food items are packaged in boxes, cans or plastic bottles, and do not have to be refrigerated. Items should be recently purchased and in good condition.
  2. Take part in our coin drive! Bring your loose change to our office* and fill our coin jars!
  3. Join us for our virtual food drive which will allow you to make a donation online to support the fight against hunger. Click here to visit our virtual food drive page.

*Donations will be accepted from now until November 28th, 2013 at our office. We are located at 204 East Girard Avenue in Philadelphia. The office is open Monday-Friday 9am to 5pm.

High-Priority Items

  • Canned/ Shelf-stable tuna
  • Macaroni and Cheese
  • Canned Pasta
  • Canned Beef Stew
  • Canned Chili
  • Creamy Peanut Butter
  • Jelly
  • Canned Green Beans
  • Canned Corn
  • Canned Fruit
  • Breakfast Cereal and Hot Cereal

YIKES, Inc - Philabundance

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What is ColdFusion and why is it cool?

By Jodie Riccelli

September 9, 2013

Adobe ColdFusion is a commercial, enterprise level, application server product. It’s a rapid application development platform for web applications. At YIKES, we are big fans of developing in ColdFusion or CFML. We have been using it to create websites since 2001. We find it to be the perfect solution for some of our larger projects. Started in 1995, CFML grew into the full platform that it is today.

An interesting fact, more Fortune 500 companies use CFML than any other language! Even the government prefers it over any other language!

Key Points of ColdFusion:

  • Highly secure code
  • Easy to read code
  • Highly Scalable – especially as your visitors increase
  • Great charting component
  • Award Winning (GIDS, SIIA Codie, JOLT)
  • Easy and fast deployment

Visit our portfolio to see some of the work we have done in ColdFusion. Our lead CFML Programer will be attending the 2013 Adobe ColdFusion Summit. Check back for his reports.

OncoLink Cancer Resources developed in ColdFusion
OncoLink Cancer Resources developed in ColdFusion

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SBN/YIKES Technology Forum

By Jodie Riccelli

August 6, 2013

On August 1st, YIKES had the pleasure of hosting a Technology Forum with The Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia (SBN) at the amazing offices of Benjamin’s Desk in Center City Philadelphia.  The original idea was to create an event that catered to small and medium size businesses and helped address some of the biggest technology concerns. From there the event evolved into an open forum with a panel of experts that addressed topics such as web design, mobile app development, SEO, and social media.

The panel at the SBN/YIKES Technology Forum.
The panel at the SBN/YIKES Technology Forum.

SBN has been an intricate part of the sustainable business community for many years now. YIKES, Inc. has been a member since the beginning, and we jump at any chance to partner up with them to provide original content to the community.

Members of the panel were as follows:

The discussion was greatly varied, but the panel of experts shared some really valuable information. Mr. Spencer talked about branding and consistency within your online marketing plan. He also addressed combining traditional marketing methods with your online strategy. A big topic of conversation was whether or not a business should be on all social networks. The answer to that was big resounding “No”. Find the social networks that are appropriate for your business.

Ms. Beadel had some wonderful information to share about SEO. “Create content that tells the right story, the Google stuff will come naturally”, said Stephanie. She also had some great suggestions about contacting journalists and bloggers. Press releases seem to be too broad. She encouraged folks to reach out with one or two sentences and one call to action. “Be so relevant that they will think it’s awesome”, she added.

Mather Wiswall talked about the advantages of having a mobile app and whether your business should have one. There was also discussion about the difference between a mobile website and a mobile app. He mentioned some statistics regarding mobile usage and also talked about how showing up in the app store can assist with better SEO. Additionally, Mr. Wiswall talked about QR codes and how they can assist in your online marketing efforts.

Myself, I talked about creating solid content for your website by asking yourself some very important questions such as “What do people ask when they call my business?” We also discussed design vs. function and how important it is to create a website that is easy to navigate through. Most importantly, when it comes to websites, why you must maintain them and keep  them current. “Think of your website as an employee at your business.

The Panel at the SBN/YIKES Technology Forum.
Members gather for networking at the SBN/YIKES Technology Forum.

The entire event was moderated by the magnificent Joe Taylor Jr. Joe was able to keep the panel right on track and direct all audience questions while keeping the event entertaining. He also was able to offer up some insight in regards to delivering “snack size” chunks of information to your audience and the idea of “astroturfing” – the artificial creation of a grassroots buzz for a product, service or political viewpoint. Commercially-motivated astroturfing is called “astroturf marketing.” (Definition courtesy of SearchCRM)

Following the panel discussion members were able to sit one on one with the panel and participate in our version of a “Happiness Bar.” There, specific questions were addressed and connections were made!

Special thanks to:

  • Laila Coelho Reilly for her hard work in organizing this event.
  • Jamie Gauthier, Executive Director of the Sustainable Business Network, for her opening remarks.
  • Katie Cohen, Community Manager at Benjamin’s Desk for helping put this event together and preparing such a beautiful space!
  • Everyone at Benjamin’s Desk – you are amazing.
  • Mugshot’s Coffeehouse for the delicious breakfast.

All in all in was an information filled morning with some great networking. We had a ridiculously good time and look forward to doing it again soon. You can continue the conversation about the topics covered at the forum by using #SBNTech on Twitter!

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My Trip to WordCamp San Francisco

By Tracy Levesque

August 2, 2013

A week ago today I was watching my colleagues present while scared out of my mind over my impending talk at WordCamp San Francisco: What You Don’t Know You Can Do: WordPress Development for Absolutely Everyone.

I had spoken at a few WordCamps before, but this was the big one AND was being live streamed. For some reason the live stream folks freaked me out more than the audience at the venue. However, I warmed up with some yo-yo tricks and was feeling good by the time I started speaking. I really do love talking to people about WordPress and that makes it easier.

I had a fantastic time at WCSF. I learned a lot, met a ton of awesome folks, and participated in Contribute day answering support questions. Helping people in the support forums is addictive, and I plan on continuing to contribute to the WordPress community.

I was very impressed with the number of Women involved with WordPress.

Some Women of WordPress @courtneydawn, @sabreuse and @Ipstenu
Some People of WordPress @courtneydawn, @sabreuse and @Ipstenu

The afternoon of my talk was filled with great female presenters:

The after party at Automattic headquarters was super fun as well. I met a cool 13 year-old kid named Noah. He showed me where all the cool swag was. I have no doubt he will be working there some day.

I also ended the party playing Rock Band which is my favorite video game ever.

I am already looking forward to WCSF 2014 and bringing more of the YIKES gang there with me.

Thank you to all the organizers and volunteers for putting on an amazing conference. See you next year!

In geek Heaven playing Rock Band at Automattic headquarters
In geek Heaven playing Rock Band at Automattic headquarters

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YIKES, Inc. Becomes One of the first Pennsylvania Benefit Corporations

By Mia Levesque

January 22, 2013

Certified B CorporationPhiladelphia, PA, January 22, 2013 – Award-winning web designer YIKES, Inc. is among the first companies to become a Pennsylvania benefit corporation. The company filed its amended articles of incorporation at a ceremony held Tuesday January 22, 2013 at the Independence Visitor Center in Philadelphia.  Secretary of the Commonwealth Carol Aichele was on hand to accept YIKES’ registration as a benefit corporation.

“At YIKES, Inc. we believe that business can change the world for the better. We are dedicated to building a more socially, environmentally and financially sustainable local economy. Becoming a benefit corporation allows us to show our commitment to our values and beliefs as a business,” says Mia Levesque co‐founder of YIKES, Inc.

YIKES, Inc. is a Philadelphia-based, full-service, web design and development company. YIKES builds smart, effective, creative web solutions for businesses and non-profit organizations. As a company, YIKES has been dedicated to sustainable business practices since 1996. The company is committed to building a more socially, environmentally and financially sustainable local economy, YIKES is a socially responsible business observing the triple bottom line: people, planet, profit. YIKES is proud to have earned B Corporation Certification and is a member and sponsor of the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia. YIKES received the 2011 B Corporation Award “Most Inspirational Project,” and the Triple Bottom Line Award at the 2005 Social Venture Institute. The YIKES office is located in a LEED Platinum certified building and is powered by 100% Renewable electricity. Additionally, YIKES is a certified Woman Owned Business by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Bureau of Minority and Women Business Opportunities and City of Philadelphia Office of Economic Opportunity.

Secretary of the Commonwealth Carol Aichele stamps YIKES papers.
Secretary of the Commonwealth Carol Aichele stamps YIKES papers.

Pennsylvania is one of 12 states that have passed legislation creating benefit corporations, which allows sustainably minded companies to adopt a corporate structure that frees them of the traditional corporation’s requirement to maximize profit and shareholder returns.  A benefit corporation allows – and requires – its directors to take into account “public benefits” that include the environment, the community and other constituents, some of whom may have no direct connection to the entity. Under the new Pennsylvania law, any corporation that elects benefit corporation status must, in addition to its stated business purpose, also adopt a purpose of creating a “public benefit,” and must also file an annual benefit report and fulfill other requirements of the law in order to maintain benefit corporation status.

“Governor Corbett’s number one priority is having a job available for every Pennsylvanian that wants one,” said Aichele. “The governor is working hard to make Pennsylvania attractive for businesses to locate and expand, and providing companies the option of registering as benefit corporations is one more way of doing that.”

To learn more about YIKES, Inc., visit, email, or call 215-238-8801.

Contact: Jodie E. Saueraker
Sales and Marketing Director

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