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About Gerry McGovern

For your web content management solution, contact Gerry McGovern http://www.gerrymcgovern.com

Subscribe to his New Thinking Newsletter: subscribe@gerrymcgovern.mailer1.net
Usability and Listening to Customers Have Limits

Listening to customers and making sure your website is usable are important to website success. It is much more important, however, to have a website that delivers real value both to the organization and the reader. Going for value can sometimes mean going against customer feedback and usability best practice.

It’s Time to Get Serious About Metadata

When it comes to the Web, there is nothing more misunderstood than metadata. Technical people search vainly for a way to automate its creation. Many editors and writers want nothing to do with it. And yet without quality metadata a website cannot properly achieve its objectives. It’s time to get serious about metadata.

Quality Metadata Makes For Successful Web Content

Metadata is a web writing skill. It helps your readers quickly find what they need. Metadata is an essential part of successful web sales and marketing efforts. It helps influence people to buy. In every sense, metadata can drive action. It can help you achieve your objectives.

How to Get Great Content From People

There is a need to connect the person who creates the content with the person who reads it. Content creation must be seen as an important and valuable task within the organization. When a piece of content delivers value, the person who created it should be praised and rewarded.

If You’re on the Web, You’re in Sales

Everybody on the Web is in the business of sales. It doesn’t matter whether you’re managing an intranet, a government or university website. You’re still selling something; still trying to get someone to do something. What do you want people to do? How are you going to convince them to do it?

Be a Website Editor, Not Administrator

There are two roles in web content management that matter: editors and writers. Editors decide what should get published. Writers create the content. Most websites started off with administrators-webmasters-who had lots of responsibility and little authority. Today, we see the emergence of the web editor, a position that will become increasingly important.

Content Management: Design for Rule, Not Exception

If your website tries to be all things to all people, it will fail. It’s very easy on the Web to try to do too much. You need to relentlessly focus on what most of your readers do most of the time. Don’t let anything else get in the way.

Learn How to Implement an Effective Web Style Guide

A style guide helps you quickly and cost-effectively publish content that is of a consistent quality. It is particularly important when there are lots of editors and authors involved in the publishing process. A good style guide takes a lot of time and effort to create. Unless its implementation is policed, it will not achieve its objectives.

Content Management : A Process, Not a Series of Projects

When something is new, we need to approach it in an exploratory manner. We need to experiment and try things out. And so it has been with the Web. That period is now over. We need to move from seeing our websites as a series of projects, to managing them as a well-planned process.

Web Content Management: A Lot of Great Progress

Every day there is tremendous work being done on the Web. Talented, dedicated people are working with limited resources and support to achieve brilliant results. If you’re one of those people struggling to achieve the recognition you need, take a moment to take a bow.

How Much Human Support Should Your Website Need?
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A website should be measured based on the value it creates. What results do you want to get from your website? A 100 percent self-service website may simply not deliver the results you need. The right mix of self service and human support may in fact deliver the best value.

The Secret of Managing A Successful Website

The Web is about self-service. To achieve success in self-service you need to really understand how your visitors think and behave. If they are to serve themselves they must feel comfortable and confident. That requires getting to know their needs in a comprehensive manner. It requires an ongoing conversation with them.

The Three Core Principles of Great Web Design

The essence of a website is self-service. There are three core things that self-service needs to get right: convenience, speed, and price. Convenience means task achievement with minimum effort. Speed means that you get in and out of a website as quickly as possible. People are cheap on the Web.

Are You Publishing Too Much on Your Website?

Many websites are still publishing content that is not core to their business. The justification is that such content will indirectly deliver benefit. This is not a good idea. Focus on the content that is directly applicable to your organization’s objectives. Any other content confuses. It wastes time and money.

Don’t Make These Mistakes When Buying Content Management Software

Most organizations don’t need content management software. Unless you have a very busy website with lots and lots of content being published, the return on investment is not there. The majority of those who do require such software need a very simple, streamlined solution.

How to Tell People What Else You Do on Your Website

People come to your website on a mission. They want to do something specific. They are tunnel readers. Telling them what else you do-without annoying them-is a major challenge. Doing it well is about relevance and context. It’s about presenting the right content at the right time.

How to Make Links Work for Your Website

Quality links from external websites will help get more of the right people to your website. Well written links within your website will ensure your readers can act in a way you want them to. Linking is about driving action. It’s about getting the right people to the right content as quickly as possible.

Metadata: Seven Tips for Writing Better Keywords

The shift in how search engines treat keywords is significant. They tend to ignore the keyword meta tag and rather look for keywords in the actual page content. This means that you need to figure out your keywords before you write any content. Then, you include them throughout your content, particularly in headings and summaries.

Do You Have a Smiling Face on Your Website?

If you think it’s great to have a smiling face on your website, join the crowd. It’s hard to find a website these days that doesn’t have a happy face. Unfortunately, the happy face syndrome is often a reflection of lack of focus. When everyone is smiling, where’s the differentiation?

Why Google is Such a Great Brand

Google has clarity and focus. Google knows that great brands serve a purpose. They are useful. Google genuinely believes in the motto: the searcher is king. It demonstrates that you can put the customer first and make a profit. Google keeps it simple and wins.

Words Come Before Looks in Web Design

Advertising agencies tend to design awful websites because they are obsessed with getting attention. When people come to your website, you have already got their attention. They want to do something. They want detail. They want facts. The thing they value most is their time. So don’t waste it.

Web Design: Never Let an Ad Agency Near Your Website

The average advertising agency fundamentally doesn’t get the Web. Saatchi & Saatchi, BBDO Worldwide, J. Walter Thompson and Ogilvy are great advertising agencies. When it comes to managing their own websites, however, they are rank amateurs. They bring their print and TV thinking to the Web with embarrassing results.

Content Management: Web Publishing Needs Real Discipline

Too many organizations take an unprofessional approach to the content they publish on the Web. Many web managers still seem to believe that if they get the technology right the publishing will look after itself. Quality publishing requires skill and discipline. Unfortunately, discipline is something many web teams are lacking.

Web Content Management Predictions for 2004

This is the year when web content comes of age. Organizations will slowly stop viewing content as some cost that needs to be managed. Instead, they will begin to see content as an asset that can drive profits and productivity. A new role will emerge within many organizations: the publisher/editor.