Monday, January 4, 2010
Time to change the way we think about 'Websites'?
“...the way we’ve built Web sites for the last 15 years hasn’t really been designed to deal with the amount of data we’re now seeing because of the real-time Web,” said David Pakman, a partner at Venrock in New York.
There was an interesting article today in the New York Times about where VC money will flow in 2010. Although we are not seeking any VC funding this year at Compendium, the above statement is really a compelling synopsis as to what we are doing here.
Since the beginning, 'websites' were designed to be like a Magazine or a Catalog....meaning like paper. Of course the web isn't constrained by the limitations of paper and we interact with the web completely differently...but we still have the same website thinking that we did back in 1995. (homepage, navigation tabs, connecting paths and static content)
The design is based on a visitor "intending to come" and most web marketing has been designed to drive people to the site through branding methods and clever URL's.
The new web drives traffic through search and social media referrals. Direct navigation is rapidly shrinking as a traffic source. Design based on URL navigation doesn't make a lot of sense any more and what we are seeing is a new model based on landing pages specific to the searchers intent along with the 'humanization' that comes from organizations leveraging social media.
This is what works so well when companies blog for search engine optimization. Corporate Blogging Software with a focus on Search Marketing is becoming the hub of on line marketing strategy. Do your prospects need a website or simply a page or two that is specifically targeted to meet their needs?
What David Pakman and I seem to agree on is that the web is about data and the new version is going to focus on organizing that data (content) to better meet the needs of the user. More often than not, those users are searchers...another kind of known data right?