Category Archives: Improving Your Website

3 Tips for Creating Content for Your New Site

Should you want to create the content for your site redesign, this is typically considered the “heavy lifting” portion for the client. Content can include items such as copy, images, videos, audio files and PDFs. Compiled below are a few helpful tips before you begin.

The Use of “Click Here”
Try not using “click here” in your copy, as it typically does not align with best web practices for some of the following reasons Continue reading

Innovative Concept for Redesigning Your Website

NetSquared.org has been working on its website redesign, with the goal being to provide ways to connect to useful tools and each other.

In an effort to engage site users in its redesign, they have created the following process:

1. Receive input from users via an online survey.
2. Share survey results and next steps with the community.
3. Create design mockups to share with the community and receive input.

For more information and see the outcome, read the Redesign thread on the NetSquared blog.

Online Video Tips for Nonprofits

Kivi Leroux Miller, from NonprofitMarketingGuide.com made a request on Twitterfor guest blogger posts regarding nonprofit video, so I will attempt to accommodate her request.

Equipment
If you are a 501(c)(3) organization, you can apply for a Flip Video Spotlight kit to be used by untrained staff and constituents to help highlight your work with video.

Filming
» Each shot should be between 10 and 15 seconds
» Shoot close ups whenever possible
» Film people – create a personal story

Editing
» Keep your total video length under 2 minutes
» If you want to create a longer video, break it into episodes
» Adding words? Translations? Remember that online video typically is in a smaller viewing pane, so keep in legible
» End with a call-to-action and provide users with a URL shortcut to a page with additional information & a donation opportunity

Posting
» Create a YouTube channel for your nonprofit
» Insert the video into widgets that can be spread virally
» Add a video index on your site

View some great examples of nonprofit videos at: 
http://helpCUREnow.org/videos.

A Little Added Value Gets Repeat Customers

A few weeks ago, I went to Chicago for a birthday weekend with “the girls”. Typically when I travel, I do my best to bring my dogs, but sometimes I am unable to do so.

For this past trip, I chose to keep my dogs at The Boarding Bungalow.

I originally chose it because there were actually pictures of small dogs on the site. Most boarding sites typically have photos of all large dogs, and I liked the fact that owners of small dogs used this place as well.

So, they had me – at least for one time. But I’ll go back. Even if they raise their prices Continue reading

Missed Opportunity: The 404 Page

The 404 page is what a user sees when they go to a page that no longer exists on the site. Are you missing an opportunity to keep a user engaged when they visit one of these pages?

Mistype a URL shortcut on your site. What does your 404 page look like? Is there an opportunity to optimize this page with links back to the homepage or most visited pages on the site?

Or, perhaps, could you even invent a user experience that Continue reading

Stop Asking for Email Addresses

Well, at least quit asking without offering a benefit exchange. Many sites have an area in the upper, right corner that ask you for your email, but they don’t offer anything in return. While you can’t imagine why someone wouldn’t want to sign up for your informative monthly newsletter, many people need more of incentive to give you their personal contact information.

Do you know of a company that is doing a great job of acquiring email addresses in an inventive way?

Provide Easy Access to Social Networking Tools

The American Red Cross has created a great page that outlines all their various disaster relief tools that are available. Some of their social networking and web 2.0 tools include banners, Facebook resources, flickr tools, texting, videos and widgets.

Unfortunately, this great resource is hidden and is not easy to find from the main website. Participants may also want to participate by telling others about how they donated blood or volunteered. The American Red Cross could make this page more generic and less about “disaster relief” in order to expand its reach to a wider audience.

CURE International developed this concept in a different way Continue reading