Hi All,

Thanks to the wonderful PHP Framework, Yii, I have been able to get my first online project up and running. After 6 months of hard work, sweat and tears, it’s finally up and running.

It’s a cashflow forecasting tool for small business which can be used to identify months with challenging cashflow issues or it can be used to create cashflow tables/charts for use in business plans.

Check it out at




Great job. It’s a nice and clean design. Did you use a template or do the design yourself? If you could share some insights about how you went about customizing the design, it would be very helpful for those of us who are new to the framework.

It’s a clean design, but you have one issue:

I see that you’re using the sidebar for top-level navigation.

That’s actually not nessecary because you have the same stuff in the main navigation.

So you could actually remove it or replace it with something else. :)

Otherwise I like it.

I am quite fond of orange for navigational elements as well. ;)

@windsor. Thanks, I deliberately wanted to keep the UI simple to use and navigate because as I add functionality to the application it will be complicated so I didn’t want the UI to add to the complexity. I used open source css templates and modified them quite a bit for my purposes. If you do a search on the web you can find a number of open source templates.

@jacmoe. Well, yes and no. The sidebar navigation is there for actions - kind of like a sub menu for when the user interacts with the database items. When that is not happening, however, I didn’t want to either have no action sidebar or and empty action sidebar so I just populate it with the main menu bar items. Not ideal but I couldn’t think of a better solution. Thanks for your feedback. The orange links came with the template. I didn’t like it initially but it has grown on me.

It’s time for me to get a little more focussed on marketing my website. Does anyone have a coherent marketing plan for websites that they have used? It’s probably a silly question but I find that even though there is a plethora of information on the web for marketing websites, much of it is inconsistent and not very relevant. It’s mostly tryign to get me to buy some service.

I would really like to hear from someone who has successfully marketed their website and what specific marketing strategy really worked for you.

I know I need to be patient before search engines start to take notice but there must be much work that I can do in the meantime.

Thanks in advance for any responses.

Here’s some pretty good reading about startup marketing:

Try to post on twitter plenty. Make sure you use your hashtags to get your tweets into relevant streams. Also follow people that post on similar or related topics. Twitter is useful for making connections with like minded people but you can’t beat contacting bloggers directly and trying to get them to write about you. Of course you need to find bloggers that would be interested. Posting on forums around the subject and adding value to discussions helps massively - strike a balance between promoting your site and helping though.

Not saying I’ve got it all nailed by any stretch. I’m going through this myself right now. I know quite a bit of the theory though!

A couple of small observations: I’d take the adverts off. Realistically you’re not going to make any money from them unless you get a decent volume of traffic but they “cheapen” your product and may put people off signing up - which is your primary goal I assume. Also that support pdf you’ve got is awesome - you’d be better off having it as pages on your site though. It’s more accessible plus you can use the content (it’ll need some re-work) to suck up some search traffic.

Finally make sure your SEO is good. There’s a fabulous site in my signature to help you with that :wink:

Hope that helps,


Thanks Paul. That’s some great advice. You’re the second person that has recommended that I take the ads off so I think I’ll finally take that advice.

That support pdf took me a month to write so I’ve put a lot of effort into it. I wrote it in such a way that I could easily turn it into a html document so I’ll do that too.

I’ve found twitter to be pretty good but I haven’t really used it to its full effect. I only post on it when I release a new article. I should post more often about any business/cashflow related information. I’ll get more active in it.

Thanks for all your great advice.



Finally, after many weeks of work I have created a new theme for my website. Decidedly better than before and now that I’m using Yii’s theming capability, it makes it easy to change themes. I have implemented many of the suggestions I have received from members here and every little improvement just makes the website that much better so thank you to all that have given me feedback.

However, I do have questions for some more improvements I want to do but aren’t working but that’s a question for another time. Now it’s time to rest for a few weeks and enjoy the xmas holidays!

Phew! Finally, I have completed the on-line documentation. Now I have implemented everyone’s advice from this forum so once again, thanks to all. If anyone wishes to visit the website and give me some advice on improving it, as you can see I take your advice seriously and attempt to implement it. But with every advice I have implemented, I think my website has improved. So thank you all!