James Royal-Lawson


Why (Swedish) companies are lost on the web

Jim Carlberg, Planner at advertising agency Pool was quoted in the Swedish publication Internet World in an article about why Swedish companies are lost and confused on the internet.

Jim had made some good points, especially his closing words – it’s about identifying customers needs and finding some genuine business advantage.

Here’s a translation of what Jim said:

“The fact is that the web is still a bit of an unknown territory for many companies. That they haven’t decided what to do can be a combination of insecure buyers and offensive sellers. Companies have many, persistent, suppliers who demand their attention: ‘You have to do this, you have to do that’.

As the web is in a state of constant development, companies crank up their budgets for next year, as next year there’ll be newer and even more impressive things, things that, as yet, no-one knows how they should be used. Many companies probably try to buy themselves out of the situation instead of actually submersing themselves in the subject and considering what goals they have for their web-investment. At the end of the day, it’s about identifying customers needs and finding some genuine business advantage.”

It’s about web presence not web sites

Once upon a time, your company’s website was the central point of all it’s online activities. The point was to get your target audiences to visit… No wait. back in the day, no-one thought about target audiences. The web was a niche thing and it was all about hits and grabbing as many visitors as you can.

Today your corporate website is irrelevant. It’s not the focal point of any one’s valuable surf-time; apart from, perhaps, you and your employees. Your web strategy is not about a web site. What matters today is your web presence; your distributed web site.

You will presume, at first thought, that I am talking about brand management and marketing plans. Yes, I am to an extent – those functional areas are part of the mix – but your web presence needs evolve to entwine itself in the way that every part of your company goes about it’s business.

For many departments this will translate to social media, for others it will necessitate a need to co-ordinate and co-operate across internal divides like they’ve never done before. The Internet has opened up an opportunity for convergence through distribution. Enlighten and Educate your organisation now.

10 reasons why all-Flash websites usually suck

Last week, Simon Sundén published a post in Swedish called 10 anledningar varför sajter helt byggda i Flash oftast suger (10 Reasons why sites completely built in Flash usually suck).

He’s right. They do. There are numerous reasons why all-flash sites fail to be a good choice. Simon had a problem getting down to as few as 10. In all my years I’ve still yet to be presented with a convincing argument for a site to be totally Flash-based.

Here is a brief translation of Simon’s 10 reasons. Some of the 10 points do have workarounds or solutions, but that’s like treating an illness you could have avoided catching in the first place.

  1. Long loading-times
  2. Accessibility
  3. Mobile compatibility
  4. Problems with visitor statistics
  5. Browser & mouse functions (CTRL-F, right-click, etc)
  6. No unique URLs – forget “caring is sharing”
  7. Back and Forward buttons don’t work
  8. Copy and Paste
  9. Indexing by search-engines
  10. Internal links and SEO

Flash objects have their use, but put quite simply, a wholly Flash-based site just doesn’t live up to the web standards we should be following to make the browsing experience more enjoyable and successful.

there is a difference between telling a credible, interesting, and concise story, and junking up people’s browsers with superficial hype and marketing-oriented language.

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