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September 24th, 2013

In the early years of the World Wide Web there were many so-called words of wisdom. One saying with a million variants was, “It doesn’t matter what it is, just throw a website up there!” It was the Stone Age: just having a website gave you points. Today you can take nothing for granted. You must know the crucial components of your site, the elements with financial and brand impact. To that end, we present “5 Website Musts for Today.” Although elementary for some, there are always beginners—and even pros need a good reminder now and then.

1. You MUST know your audience: Critically important to producing appropriate website experiences is knowing your market and audience, and speaking to them. Google has the most widely used tools to make sure your messaging is doing that (especially among small and medium-size firms) but there are others. Minimalytics isweb_musts_mobile blazing something of a new path by crafting site-specific solutions with custom tool combinations—Stripe, Google Analytics, Mixpanel, Asana, etc. They provide site owners the meaning found within, behind, and beyond the numbers, to better understand their audience.

2.You MUST be mobile-ready: With the astonishing advance of smartphones, and the current popularity of our iPad rental and small WiFi devices in general, mobile will be the major segment in just about no time. You can create separate sites for mobile users by adding a mobile (“m”) subdomain—“m.mydomain.com” is the mobile site for “mydomain.com”—but Adobe Dreamweaver, RapidWeaver, and other software can create single sites that scale to smartphone, tablet, or computer browser windows. If you need to, you can rent devices that you don’t own to test across platforms.

3. You MUST investigate changes in ranking and traffic: Loss of traffic/ranking may be due to an inability to create enough “buzz,” neutral or negative reactions to your content (or colors), or problems both simple and complex related to site usability. For example, if the “pages viewed per visit” metric is decreasing, it could indicate that people are using devices smaller than a standard computer rental—poking links with your finger on a 5-inch screen is a lot harder than clicking them on a 24-inch monitor. You should work at least as hard to discern the reason(s) for improved metrics, as well.

web_musts_analytics

4. You MUST have current, relevant content: What pops into your mind when you visit a site where the blog hasn’t been updated in months, or the home page has a banner advertising an event that happened last year? It’s probably not something positive. Just about everyone on Earth has a net-connected iPad rental, smartphone, or PC, so there is nowhere to hide. Creating a blog is an ideal way to keep fresh content up at all times, but letting it die in plain sight tells everyone that you can’t follow through on your own marketing plans. Cleaning up the problem doesn’t erase it, either. Remember: The Internet never forgets.

5. You MUST stay up-to-date with design standards: This means that your overall page layout and theme—as well as the copy, photos, and graphics therein—cannot get stale. There really is a “generational continuum” in the look of the web and its component websites, so sites built in 1999 do look ancient. With dated-looking pages, users will, without knowing it, alter the way they approach, use, and remember the site. Of course, the bottom line is managing your brand identity and displaying it in a clean, clear, stylish, unique way—consistently, across all media, all the time.

CRE keeps you moving forward, all the time, with first-rate iMacs and MacBook Pro rentals for the creative power needed to update your website, to  event production rentals and all the mass storage, rendering power, and post-production gear you need. Call us at 877-266-7725send us a message, or make a visit to our Quick Rental Quote form. There are plenty of ways to get the ball rolling—and, at CRE, we never drop it! Call now!

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