We all know that Internet changes at lightning speed (could be faster) and that means, techniques and technologies we used 3 years ago are obsolete! You should be on your feet and keep up with these changes constantly. Luckily, there are some clear warning signs that tell you that your site needs an update. Here are the ‘red flags’ that will let you know.
1 – Your Site Looks Like a Coding Freak
How does this happen? You hired a designer to create the site, and then when you needed an overhaul, you hired another to fix it. And then another to fix it. Now, you’ve got ten years of bad code piled on top of bad code and your site’s design is a mess. A better idea is to make a fresh start.
2 – A Fancy Flash Intro Dazzles Your Visitors
Flash was so cool about ten years ago. Now, it’s ‘so ten years ago.’ I guarantee you that nobody’s impressed anymore when you’ve got a flash intro welcoming them to your site. People have no time for this clutter; your visitors want to access the information that they are looking for as fast as possible.
In fact, a flash intro may even keep them from viewing your site. On an older browser, it takes forever for the intro to load. While they’re waiting, they’re going to be clicking the ‘back’ button or heading somewhere else.
3 – You’re Not Being Social
We now live in the world of Web 2.0, and it’s all about communicating and networking. Your site isn’t a billboard or print advertisement; it should be an active part of a community. This means that you need to get out in the social networking sites and create some community.
The more you let your users get involved in your site, the more they’ll stick around. You can install Facebook widgets, ‘Tweet This’ buttons, and even user profile functions for your customers. You should at least have a comments section and be running a fan page on Facebook. These social networking sites are some of the most popular places on the web, so you should be there mixing it up!
4 – The Site Is Covered With Tables
Several years ago, tables were the main design used for websites. Nowadays, it’s totally a thing of the past. Tables are hard to read, and they’re just about impossible for search engines to find. In fact, they’re technically made with invalid HTML code. So, they’ve got to go!
5 – You Still Need To Go Mobile
The entire internet is now going mobile and if you’re site’s not set up for it, you’ll lose customers left and right. If your site isn’t mobile-compatible, it will take forever to load on their mobile devices and it will look like garbage.
Techie experts predict that mobile is the thing of the future, and the number of sales of smartphones is supporting this prediction. Get a mobile version of your site going so you don’t get left behind.
6 – You’re Hiring A Programmer For Every Little Change
These days, more and more companies are using a CMS, or content management system. This is an interface that allows anyone in your staff to make changes when needed. Things happen quickly in the world of the internet, so you’ve got to be able to make these necessary changes without having to hire a web designer again.
7 – No Inspiring Towards Action
Your site needs to have a simple, clear and effective call to action to get them moving. It doesn’t matter whether you’re trying to get them to sign up for a newsletter, donate to a non-profit organization or hit the ‘Buy Now’ button.
Everything needs a strong call to action to get them moving. For example, don’t make them sign up for a membership to buy your product; let them buy as a guest and you’ll remove one more barrier from them taking action.
(Via Tybee Guy.)
Google URL Shortener, aptly named Goo.gl, has been available for use for almost a year, and it finally has its own website. In the past, you could only use it through the Google Toolbar, or through specific Google products such as Feedburner, News, Blogger and Picasa. Now you can get all your Google URL shortening needs done on their recently launched webpage.
Google went about things in a somewhat back-to-front fashion, launching the service itself before the website. Now, with the new website, you can get access to statistics on all URLs you’ve shortened using Goo.gl, provided you’re logged into your account. These stats include traffic, referrers and visitor profiles.
As far as features are concerned, that’s pretty much all you’re going to get. Google have chosen to focus instead on stability, security and speed. According to their blog, their priorities are uptime and spam detection. They’ve also managed to double the speed of the service since its launch, and want to keep it that way.
There are a few unofficial browser add-ons already available to use with Goo.gl, like Chrome’s goo.gl URL Shortener and Firefox’s goo.gl lite, and Google will be releasing the Goo.gl API in the future, making it easy to incorporate their URL shortener in other third party applications.
Another week down, and another chance to gather all the social media wisdom from the experts and put it to good use for your personal brand, your business, or for plain old fun.
Check out these indispensable resources which include an exclusive peek inside YouTube’s inner sanctum, a swath of in-depth iPad coverage, and some essential social business tools.
As if that’s not enough, there are always those hilarious cat videos.
- How a Facebook Group Helped Reunite a Band for Charity
The band God Street Wine became popular in the 90s and played their last official show in 1999. But thanks to a group of fervent Facebook fans, the band is reuniting in NYC for a good cause.
- Top 10 Recut Movie Trailers on YouTube [VIDEOS]
We’ve picked ten of the best recut movie trailers on YouTube that add a horror angle to the most light-hearted of films.
- 3 Ways Live Events Improve Online Communities
While there is a lot of chatter about online communities, less is said about how to connect your online community members with each other, or with you, offline. Check out these three tips for improving your online community.
- The History of Location Technology [INFOGRAPHIC]
Location-based social networks may be hot now, but location technology is nothing new. This infographic explores the history of location tech from primitive to advanced.
- Exclusive: Inside YouTube’s War Room
Whether positive or negative, whenever a major social site rolls out a new feature, users respond very loudly. For their recent redesign, YouTube was prepared.
- Top 10 Funny Cat Videos on YouTube
Whether you want talking cats, surprised cats, dramatic cats or nom-noming cats, this lists should tickle your funny bone with ten examples of the finest feline vids on the Internets.
- HOW TO: Clean Up Your Facebook Profile
With all your friends, Fan Pages, apps, and friends’ apps, your Facebook feed can get pretty hairy. Check this guide for some quick tips on cleaning it up.
- 3 Tips for Managing Your Online Reputation
As we spend more of our social lives online, our reputation becomes harder to manage across many networks. Here are some tips for keeping tabs on how the web perceives you.
- 6 Ways Brands are Using Social Media For Real-World Action
Businesses should start thinking about new ways to mobilize their social media audiences to take action in the real world. Here are 6 great examples of just that.
- 5 Ways Mega Charity Events Can Harness the Power of Social Media
Mega charity events like Twestival and 12 for 12k have demonstrated fantastic principles for grassroots cause efforts. These 5 pointers came from social media experts in the non-profit sector.
For more social media news and resources, you can follow Mashable’s social media channel on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.
Tech & Mobile
- iPad App Hands-on Reviews: Twitterific, Netflix, and ABC [VIDEO]
Want to see some of the most anticipated iPad apps in action? Check out these video reviews.
- 10 Great Sites for Watching Video on Your iPad
As we know, Apple and Flash (by Adobe) do not intend to play nice anytime soon. However, there is hope for mobile web video in the form of HTML5. Here are 10 sites that utilize the new code to render video on the iPad.
- 3 Ways to Destroy an iPad [VIDEO]
Whether for marketing, science or sport, some individuals are more interested in destroying the iPad than in ogling its sleek design. Check out these three videos and quench your thirst for techno-destruction.
- 10 Awesome Apple iPad Cases
Apple’s iPad hit shop shelves last weekend, so we thought we’d bring you the best cases you can currently buy — as well as some coming-soon options that might be worth holding out for.
- 5 Fantastic Free iPhone E-book Reader Apps
In case you’re not grabbing an iPad any time soon, we’ve pulled together a list of five free apps that offer you e-book reading abilities on your iPhone.
- 4 Web-Based Meeting Schedulers Reviewed
A slew of online applications are attempting to eliminate the headache of scheduling meetings. Here is the run down of four applications that just might make the logistics a little easier.
- 3 Reasons to Get Excited About the Apple Game Center
This summer, the iPhone and iPod touch will get an operating system update (iPhone OS 4.0) that will include a new service called the Game Center. Here’s why we’re psyched about it.
- The 10 Best ‘Get a Mac’ Ads
Love them or hate them, Apple’s iconic ‘Get a Mac’ ads made a huge impact on pop culture. We’ve learned that the campaign is slated for the deadpool, and rounded up ten of our favorites.
- 10 Free Services to Monitor Your Site’s Uptime
You can’t sit staring at your website(s) 24 hours a day to ensure it’s up. Fortunately, there are free services out there that can do it for you.
- How Publishers Plan to Monetize iPad Content
The release of the iPad has the publishing world wondering if paid digital content will put the industry back in the black. A few publishers are already taking some interesting approaches.
For more tech news and resources, you can follow Mashable’s tech channel on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.