Beantin

James Royal-Lawson

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8 Articles worth reading… (Spotted: Week 37-38, 2010)

Children’s Websites: Usability Issues in Designing for Kids

9 years on from their first survey, Nielsen have produced a new study into the usability of Children’s websites. “It’s now common for a 7-year-old kid to be a seasoned Internet user with several years’ experience.” – If we think that the millennials are the internet generation – in 10-15 years this wave of 7 year olds will be in the marketplace.

No One Is Looking At Google Instant

A small eye tracking study (14 searches by 7 users) but contains some interesting finding – one such finding was all of their test participants didn’t look at the screen whilst typing their search phrase!

New navigation for our intranet – please help!

More practical advice from The Intranet Professor. A lick of paint for an un-respected, un-loved, un-used intranet, or full renovation?

A Comprehensive Guide Inside Your <head>

Excellent guide to the <head> section of HTML. As technically the head is limitless, there are a number of additional things Alex could have included (but you have to draw the line somewhere!) Nevertheless, one link reference that really should have mentioned is rel=”canonical”.

HTML5: The Facts And The Myths

I Had the pleasure of listening to Opera’s Bruce Lawson evangelise HTML5 at Disruptive Code this week. This Smashing Mag article by him and Remy Sharp is a good primer for those of you who don’t know that much about it.

Internet Explorer Extinct by 2013? 2010 Update

In 2008 web dev & design site Sitepoint predicted that they wouldn’t be receiving any visits from people using an Internet Explorer browser – here’s their 2010 update. Interesting stats and interesting to see the continued trend of browser usage in the dev/design world.

Let’s create a neat graphic and pretend that it’s true

Read Jesper’s Churchil-eqsue post, then read Amber Naslund’s post 3 Reasons B2B Social Media Makes So Much Sense. Two boxers each waiting to pounce from their respective corners of the ring? Is one of them half-way up the garden path? Can you apply behaviour analysis and “CRM the living shit out of all the data” to B2B customers in the same way you can B2C consumers?

Japanese Mobile Users Can Sign In to Facebook Using QR Codes

Facebook are experimenting with using QR codes generated whilst you are logged in to the standard site in order to authenticate your log-in to the mobile site. All done in a couple of clicks rather than a load of fiddly typing. Sounds like a usability win to me.

Close your corporate website and move to Facebook?

Earlier this week the Swedish arm of international advertising agency Grey decided to shut down their corporate website (and blog) and move their site over to a Facebook page. Idiot move or genius?

Maintaining a website: Boring and awkward?

According to David Schweiler, Digital director at Grey in an article on Resumé, the big advantage of moving to Facebook is that “[you] don’t have to update your regular website anymore, which is both boring and awkward”.

On their website there is a screenshot of a Facebook status update saying that they have moved to Facebook because “We want be where people already are.” and then say that 2.5 million Swedes are already there.

Screenshot of the new look grey.se

Not recommended…

Generally if you have an existing website, then I wouldn’t recommend that you delete it overnight and switch over almost entirely to Facebook. There’s a number of reasons why that’s a silly thing to do – one of which is that it rips the heart out of your search engine profile, leaving customers searching and finding nothing, or at best a page not found.

…But nothing much to lose

In Grey Stockholm’s case, they really didn’t have much to lose. Their old regular site was totally built in flash. It was almost certainly difficult for them to maintain and update. Probably also difficult to measure and assess the success of the site in fulfilling its goals.

Screenshot of the old flash-based grey.se

As a result of being a (poorly constructed) flash-based site, their entire profile in Google consists of 7 pages, most of which is scrap that shouldn’t really be indexed, but has been picked up and included by Google.

From one walled-garden to another

GreyStockholm on Facebook

So by moving their website to Facebook they have effectively moved from one walled garden (Flash) to another walled garden (Facebook). Yes, it’s going to be easier for them to publish updates. Yes, potentially they are going to bring themselves closer to their customers than the site did – but that’s more of a reflection on their (old) site rather than websites at large.

Grey.se as seen in Google's index

What this series of events in the development of their web presence shows is the agency’s lack of understanding of how the web actually works. A lack of understanding of search engines. A lack of understanding of task-based surfing behaviour. A lack of understanding of some basic web standards and techniques. Sadly this is all too common for traditional advertising agencies.

Facebook is no substitute

Grey may be saying that they’ve moved their site to Facebook, but there are certainly numerous tasks and situations where a well thought through and effective “regular” website would be perfect. Situations where a Facebook page is no substitute.

In the hours since Resume published their article they have doubled their number of Facebook fans from 77 to 154. So, perhaps one goal has been reached.


A Swedish take on Grey’s move to Facebook by Magnus Nilsson can be read here: Flytta från webben till sociala medier och blotta ditt nederlag and another one here by Thord Daniel Hedengren: Reklambyrå stänger sin sajt och flyttar till Facebook.

Update: 20110328

Grey Stockholm recently merged with Ogilvy Stockholm to form a new agency called Ingo. In connection with this merger Grey renamed their Facebook page from greystockholm to ingo.

7 Articles worth reading… (Spotted: Week 35-36, 2010)

Finding the Balance: Users’ Needs Vs. Clients’ Wants

A another look at the classic user v client dilemma. One of the key things to finding a good balance is stakeholder buy-in and inclusion.

Surprise, surprise! Having no secure icon on a page increased conversions by 400%

An split testing case where removing a green “secure” icon from the page made a vast improvement – their conclusion: “Make each page designed to get the user to do one thing, and try to focus all of their attention on that one thing”.

Putting people at the centre: social staff directories

Alex Manchester in this article from Step Two explores the potential of people search and staff profiles and their role as the very heart of intranet. He also gives examples of people-related concepts in use within organisations today.

Facebook As A Company Intranet Is A Nightmare Waiting To Happen

Building your entire intranet using Facebook would be an utter nightmare! But let’s not forget the relevance of Facebook as part of internal communication and collaboration. Colleagues who are friends with each other will almost certainly use it to communicate in some way at some point – even if it’s just a “running late for 9am meeting” or “working from home today”. Organisations should consider ways to take advantage of that.

New guidelines for (Swedish) public bodies and companies who want to be present on Facebook

Swedish guidelines published by The Swedish Data Inspection Board recommending how you should deal with communication channels with user generated content, such as Twitter, Facebook, Youtube in order to be compliant with Swedish law.

WordPress Fat-Loss Diet to Speed Up & Ease Load

If you are using wordpress for a business site you might want to consider some of the following tweaks – or bring someone in to do them for you.

Google Instant – a Reminder that Google is not equal to SEO

reality check from Jesper. Yes Google is really important, but it’s not the whole picture. YouTube, Facebook, Intranets, on-site search – Search is a lot more than Google, but it’s all about serving up what people want when they want it.

50% of the online population of Sweden has a Facebook account

Swedish population: 9,340,682.
Under 12s: 1,243,275.
Over 75s: 798,446.
Approx online population therefore: 7,298,691.
Facebook accounts in Sweden: 3,645,820.

Population figures from SCB. Number of Facebook accounts from Facebook via Facebakers.

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5 Articles worth reading… (Spotted: Week 17, 2010)

Twitteranvändning i Sverige

There has been constant speculation about how many active Twitter users there are here in Sweden. This article (in Swedish) makes public some research that Microsoft has commissioned. That survey states that 8% of Swedes have used Twitter. 5% use twitter monthly, 3% user it Weekly. Clearly being 35-44 and a daily user makes me quite special!

Why We Share Information

We are more willing to share with people with trust, especially mutually. Repeated communication helps build up that trust (doesn’t need to be very frequent or even face to face).

How to Break the Tyranny of E-mail

Oscar Berg writes about how to beat email as the tool of choice within the enterprise organisation. Summarising his post to it’s simplest possible – email is incredibly easy to use and flexible; your collaborative alternatives need to be equally as easy to use, and you need to train and coach people effectively.

Why I don’t like Facebook ‘Likes’

Facebook is a company that needs to make money, and it’s going to do that via fantastic amount of data it has about it’s 400 million users. It’s a marketeer’s wet dream. Biggest risk with Open Graph and “likes” on web pages is that it could tip the balance just a little too far. Remember that social networks always die in the end, just a matter of when.

Six things you can do in-house to improve your SEO

Not necessarily a list of the simplest and easiest things you could do in-house, but it’s a worthwhile read and not at all wrong.

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