Web Content Selection

Content is King

In January of 1996 Bill Gates, a co-founder of Microsoft, wrote an essay that holds true today, just in a slightly different context. The “Content is King” essay referred to the process of selling information over the Internet.  In 1996 less than one percent of the world population was using the Internet. The essay was written before most people knew anything about the web.

What is Web Content?

Web content is the textual, visual, or aural content that is encountered as part of the user experience on websites. It may include—among other things—text, images, sounds, videos, and animations.

Wikipedia

website content examples

A business has many options in the type of content it can present on the web.  The two primary elements of web content are text and media. We all know what text is. Media includes several elements. Those are images, video, animation and sound.

In creating web content, text is the first thing most of us think about. But, the phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words” rings as true on the web as anywhere. And the presentation of a quality video can raise a presentation to another paradigm.

Today, on the web, the impact of animation and sound can be very good or very bad. Poor animation can simply be ugly. Unexpected sound can catch visitors off guard and simply piss them off. Be extra careful when using these mediums for your web content.

Web Content Management

Content is king, especially on a website. A beautifully designed website is inviting to new visitors. But, quality content is what gets them to stay on the website and, in most cases, come back repeatedly.

Business Website Content

Content is the key element that makes a business website. It needs to be created thoughtfully and carefully through effective web content management.

Businesses need to update the content of their websites on a regular basis. Old content carries a range of liabilities. It chases away regular visitors to your site. It sends harmful signals to the search engines. And it brings your commitment into question. Updated content can be enticing and encourages them to visit in the future.

Blog Content

Blogs run on a timeline. Content is updated in younger blog posts. Older posts serve as a record of the past and don’t always need to be updated, especially if newer posts update content that is outdated on older posts. Creating a link from the older post to the newer one with a little explanation of the changes helps visitors and has a positive impact on your search engine ranks.

Republishing is another option for older posts. But, they need to be updated and the post should reveal that it is an update. Blog content that is no longer relevant, or out of date, should be deleted and/or replaced when republishing.

Selling Website Content

Many people consider “selling content” as selling a subscription to a blog or selling ad space on a blog. Gates predicted in his 1996 essay that this type of content provider could “expect a lot of disappointment in the short-term as content companies struggle to make money through advertising or subscriptions.”

He went on to predict:

In the long run, advertising is promising. An advantage of interactive advertising is that an initial message needs only to attract attention rather than convey much information.

-Bill Gates

Today, that “initial message” comes in the form of the title and description of the website. These are the first things a searcher sees when they get results in the search engines. If their content quality attracts the attention, then the visitor will click through to the site. Next come the quality of the websites first headlines and text. Their quality determines whether the visitor scrolls further on the web page. Then the quality of the web page determines whether the visitor goes to additional pages.

deck of cards stacked up

As you can see website content can break down at many points. Quality web content management helps avoid this.

Contact us if you need help with your web content.

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Websites Viewed on Mobile Devices

The Web Viewing Shift

It was not long ago that most Americans felt they needed a personal computer in order to stay in touch with the world via the web. Today, most of them are able to do everything they want on a tablet or a smart phone. So why should they spend their money on a desktop computer?

Website designers are creating sites with this in mind. They know that over time more and more sites will be viewed on smart devices while fewer will be viewed on desktops. So the place they need to invest their time is in the mobile design. Today this is done in the “mobile first website design” format.

What is Mobile First?

For years all of the sites we have designed have been mobile friendly. That means they have pages that will operate on mobile devices. As the share of website views has shifted from desktop to mobile, the primary method of website design have shifted to mobile first. A mobile first design begins with the layout of the website in a mobile device. After the mobile design is completed, the site is modified to accommodate the desktop screen.

Our Mobile First Website Design Example

We recently finished a mobile first business website for a new client. J & J Marine asked for a new website. They knew that most of their visitors would use mobile devices. So we approached their site with mobile first website design.

Boating Business Website

We designed the J & J Marine site in the mobile first format. When a website is designed in mobile first format the designers focus on the layout and look of the site on mobile devices. Then they modify the design to accommodate desktop screens. This is a good way for businesses to create their websites today. The reason is that most site visits today are made on mobile devices.

Mobile Focus Will Increase

In the near future the share of devices sold is expected to increase for mobile devices and decrease for desktops. Take a look at the predictions made by statista:

device share of website views

Old Sites Need a Mobile First Website Redesign

There are still many small businesses that have websites that are not mobile friendly. In order for their websites to live up to their full potential, they need to be redesigned in the mobile first format.

We offer mobile first website redesign services. If you have a website that needs to be redesigned, then give us a call. We will review what we can do that will make it mobile friendly.

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Why Business Websites Must Go Mobile

How Did We Get Here?

In June of 2007 Apple announced the first iPhone. Since then, the race has been on by various manufacturers to win market share in the mobile device markets. Almost overnight the websites designed strictly for the desktop lost significant value. As time passed, more aggressive businesses were redesigning their sites to accommodate the desktop as well as mobile devices.

The Mobile First Concept

In recent years it has been suggested that websites be designed with their primary focus on mobile pages. This makes sense considering that today more websites are being viewed on mobile devices than on desktops. Some ask “Why do you do this?” The answer is quite simple. Business needs to focus on their greatest market share. And today, more pages are being viewed on mobile.

Different screen size devices.
Mobile Devices Are Replacing Desktops

The Coming Shift

In the near future there will be an even more significant shift in web usage, out of desktop computers and into mobile devices. Not long ago households saw the PC as a necessity. It was their only connection to the web. Today many of those PCs are aging out and they are not being replaced. Web goers are getting everything they need from their mobile devices. So they have no reason to replace their PCs.

Handling Change

Recent generations have done well managing the changes in their lives caused by the web. Just look what has happened over the last 60 years. Baby boomers had to deal with the c prompt (C:\>) at their desktop computer. This brought on fear, literally! Members of that generation were either enthused about the power of the PC or they were frightened by it. They wondered “What do I do if this expensive machine breaks? I’m dead meat!” Today the Baby Boomers are handling their smart phones with ease.

Generation-X witnessed the advancement of the PC and the introduction of mobile devices in their primary working years. They saw the change as positive and were not afraid for it. They have managed it well.

Next, the Millennials came into the workplace with knowledge of how to operate a PC through most of their lives. The mobile device was viewed with less fascination then the preceding age groups. It was considered a normal part of their lives. They will hardly notice the shift.

In comes Generation-Z.  Born from the mid 1990s to the early 2000s, Generation-Z has had access to the Internet most of their lives.

“Today’s teens had phones when they were in elementary or middle school, compared to high school or college for their older counterparts. And that shift is already shaping behaviors. Teens are moving from texting to messaging apps and from shopping on desktop computers to shopping on their phones.” (think with Google).

The baby boomers, Generation X and the Mellennials will all see the ease with which Generation-Z is able to fill their wants and desires with their mobile devices. They will envy that expertise and confidence. And many of the older age groups will make an effort to increase their knowledge and expertise. And they will do it with ease.

The Change In Retailing

The business world is beginning to get the picture. On April 7, 2017, Bloomberg reported that “America’s Retailers Are Closing Stores Faster Than Ever” (Lindsey Rupp, Lauren Colenam-Lochner and Nick Turner – Bloomberg). And this is happening for a good reason. Consumers are getting more satisfaction with less effort when they purchase on the web. Why would anyone drive to the mall to purchase a high quality pair of binoculars if they feel there is a good possibility that they may not find what they want? If they order on-line, their options will increase and the headaches will decrease. Businesses that want to keep up with their markets will need to design and create new display and delivery systems that will satisfy Generation-Z and be friendly enough to entice the Baby Boomers to join the party. Everyone in between will fit right in. The size of that market should blow us away!

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