I’d like to talk about a topic that most people avoid. It’s a taboo topic because most business owners are typically positive, upbeat individuals who tend to avoid the negative. Heaven forbid that any pessimism ever shadow the company! But… is it pessimism to admit one’s weaknesses? Absolutely not! So long as once the weaknesses are identified, the beholder of said information approaches these weaknesses with positivity and puts into place a plan to eliminate them.
So then, when talking about websites, how do we find our weaknesses and more importantly what do we do to fix them?
Over the past several months my company has been inundated with a higher than average amount of request for proposals. While we’re used to being solicited for several proposals every day, the last few months we’ve witnessed more than triple!
Every week we take the time to determine which ones we will bid on by using our typical approach. At the beginning of each day we sit down and prioritize, consider the types of projects along with the quality and detail within each. Finally, we assess the feasibility of any budgets identified.
I’ve noticed a trend that is evidently growing. A whole lot of request for proposals start out with wording that reveals an issue with the contract awarding processes of many companies. While the wording slightly varies, it typically starts with “We previously hired a development team that could not deliver….”
I’ve been having a lot of discussions about what an Internet presence encompasses. Only a few years ago this conversation would have been brief, discussing primarily website presence, but today an Internet presence has dramatically evolved into much more! Today Internet presences aren’t centralized around just a website. While a website is an absolutely essential aspect, other presences have also become vital in ensuring an edge amongst competitors. Chances are if you’re not there, your competitors are and they’re gaining business from potential customers that don’t even know you exist. This is almost like if you were a farmer trying to sell your fruit and vegetables on a side street when there’s a huge farmer’s market around the corner. Quite simply… by not using common sense you are missing out and helping your competitors to get rich while you accept the status quo!
After years of discussions with thousands of business owners, I’ve come to the realization that there’s no single location to find clear, concise and non-technical descriptions of keywords related to our industry. For this reason, I’ve decided to create a list of acronyms and abbreviations used when describing projects related to Internet presences on all mediums – web, mobile and social media.
Because technology evolves so quickly I will be adding to this on an ongoing basis so that hopefully it can remain a helpful and useful resource for our leads, clients and any website visitors that may come across this. If there are acronyms or abbreviations that you feel are too technical and require a more simplified description, or if you feel I’ve missed one that should be added to the list, please leave a comment.
Please feel free to bookmark this resource and refer to it on an as-needed basis.
Welcome to the last of the 4-part series that focuses on the dimensions of a successful website. Congratulations, you’ve made it through all four parts and can pat yourself on the back because clearly you’re dedicated to ensuring the success of your website! Last in this series, but not least, I’ll be addressing functionality.
Welcome to the third of a 4-part series that will focus on the dimensions of a successful website. Today I’ll be addressing the topic of organization. I’ve had tremendous positive response to this series already receiving dozens of emails, comments and inbound links from all over the Internet so clearly I’m hitting on a valuable topic that many business owners understand the importance of leveraging the Internet as an important ingredient in gaining and maintaining a competitive advantage in what many would refer to as the new economy, one that is significantly more volatile than historically.
Before I get into the topic I’d like to re-iterate what I consider to be a successful website.
Welcome to the second of a 4-part series that will focus on the dimensions of a successful website. Today I’ll be addressing the topic of design, but, before I do, I’d like to thank all of my readers for their comments, emails and phone calls over the last few weeks. I never thought that only a month into creating my blog I would have more than 2,000 views and several dozen emails and calls. I am truly blessed to be able to help so many wonderful businesses take their success to the next level! It’s a privilege to make a difference one valuable customer at a time.
Before I get into the topic I’d like to re-iterate what I consider to be a successful website. To me, a successful site is one that accomplishes all of the following goals consistently on an ongoing basis.
The dawn of the Internet era. The “dot com bubble”. Everyone was entranced by the misconception that if they built it, success and riches would ensue. It was surreal, the entire world was filled with excitement, a reinvigorated sense of energy almost as if a whole new world was discovered, full of innumerable opportunities and dreams to be fulfilled. Was it all a fallacy? No! Then what went wrong? The same thing that goes wrong over and over again in so many technology projects. The failure to plan. While many people would argue that it was more complex than simply an omission of planning and the argument would quickly spiral into a complex in-depth discussion that covers topics ranging from business to finance to sustainability, in the end every time I’ve had this debate I’ve come out with the glorious prize of the opposing party slowly lowering their head and mumbling “You’re right”. This is not a reflection of my argumentative skills, but merely my ability to showcase the evidence and help them to understand where it all did in fact go wrong. The failure to plan happened at every stage – planning, investment, sustainability assessment, cashflow analysis, accountability profiles and the list goes on. It’s scary to realize how many individuals had their hands in the pot, but nobody spoke up… we were all simply spellbound. Continue reading →
The other day I was having a talk with a colleague that I had lost contact with over the past few years. It was a wonderful time to catch up, right before Christmas and to remember all of the fun and exciting projects we’ve done together over the past several years. He confided in me that in 2012 he would be leaving Sony to start his own online presence, an entrepreneurial dream that he’s held closely to his heart for several years and he asked me what recommendations I could provide him to help him ensure success, after all he was nervous, all the risk was standing on his shoulders. At the same time it was delightful to literally feel the passion in his voice and the anticipation of the rewards he could earn as a result of his hard work. Well after that discussion, I decided that it would be valuable to share with everyone my thoughts on what are the most important aspects of ensuring online success. I hope that you enjoy this read and it opens your eyes to something you hadn’t previously considered. If it helps you or your business to improve even marginally then I’ve accomplished my goals, after all successful businesses are built by one small accomplishment after another. Please note that my advice is assuming that you’ve already done your homework – business plan, competitive analysis, SWOT analysis, etc. and determined that your products and services are competitively viable in the industry. Now, assuming this, let’s get started…