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2014 Best Practices on your Website

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Ryan Thompson and Jordan Wollman, the partners of agency Aria, present the best practices to produce results on digital platforms and websites for 2014

Ryan Thompson and Jordan Wollman, the partners of agency Aria, present the best practices to produce results on digital platforms and websites for 2014

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  • 1. 2014 Best Practices on the Web A guide to designing websites that generate awareness, raise engagement and boost conversions An Educational Presentation | Ryan Thompson (Founder & CEO) & Jordan Wollman (Partner & CCO)
  • 2. Ryan Thompson Chief Executive Officer & Founder @ Aria Welcome! Jordan Wollman Chief Creative Officer & Partner @ Aria
  • 3. We change how people experience destination brands through strategy, branding, marketing and digital experiences

  • 4. What we’ll cover 1) How to think about your website! 2) Planning & strategy for modern websites! 3) The role and importance of content! 4) Information architecture! 5) Design tips! 6) A wee bit of technical stuff! 7) Thinking like a salesperson! 8) Shareability & social integration! 9) Q&A
  • 5. 1. Don’t build a “website” You need a digital marketing platform that is your first, most integrated impression to the world
  • 6. It sure as hell doesn’t belong to I.T. Your website is the center of the hub of your digital ecosystem with many spokes inbound and outbound
  • 7. Think about where the majority of your marketing and advertising lands people… Source: Heather Timmerman on PreviewNetworks.com
  • 8. The Leisure Travel Lifecycle
  • 9. BROADCAST WEBSITE BOOKING ENGINE MOBILE OPTIMIZED
"
 WEBSITE PRINT ONLINE TRAVELAGENTS OWNED MEDIA DIGITAL CONTENT VISITORS GUIDE PR CONTENT PR SOCIAL REVIEW PLATFORMS SOCIAL SHARING
  • 10. 2. Be strategic Your Digital Marketing Platform must achieve specific goals
  • 11. Define your objectives We think they should be: 1) Increased awareness! 2) Engagement! 3) Conversion
  • 12. { Objective:! Awareness ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ Website traffic volume Website traffic referrals Inbound links from third-parties Inbound search volume Email subscriber database growth Social friends, followers, fan volume Social share of voice / Influence Earned media coverage
  • 13. Objective:! Engagement { ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ Website time on site Website repeat visits Website bounce rate Social friends engagement Social sharing Recommendations Reviews Email opens / clicks
  • 14. Objective:! Conversion { ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ Onsite hotel booking Third-party hotel booking Visitor guide download Visitor guide request Website goal conversions Website inquiries Contest entries
  • 15. Understand your! value proposition Sound like branding? Well, it is.
  • 16. Understand your value proposition Your digital marketing platform is just another marketing channel to deliver your brand message
  • 17. S.W.O.T Aria uses S.W.O.T. exercises to define the value proposition
  • 18. Offset weaknesses with strengths.! " Offset threats with opportunities.
  • 19. Strengths + Opportunities =! Value Proposition
  • 20. Identify your audiences With a good S.W.O.T. yielding a clear value proposition: match your audiences to it
  • 21. The intersection of users with your value proposition informs all decisions
  • 22. 3. Content is [still] king Without great content, every marketing function, including a website, will fail
  • 23. Invest in content Content is the smallest budget item but is as important as design and function
  • 24. SEO is dead! Be a storyteller.! ! Write good, interesting, sharable narratives. It’s what your audience wants, and what Google will give credit for
  • 25. How to emotionally approach content 1) K.I.S.S.! 2) Chunk the content! (clear headlines and delineation of ideas) 3) Use images & video! 4) Encourage engagement! (through conversation & sharing)
  • 26. How to practically approach content Every page needs the pyramid
  • 27. The! content! pyramid AUDIENCE & PRIORITY TITLE INTRODUCTION THE SHORT, SIMPLE, “ABOVE THE FOLD” PROOF CALLS TO ACTION
  • 28. 4. Architecture The integrity of the structure relies heavily on its architecture
  • 29. Organic architecture Make decisions early on how you will learn, and implement changes based on user behavior
  • 30. Heatmap by CrazyEgg Track user behavior! ! Use tools to investigate and understand user behavior
  • 31. Eye Tracking by Tobii
  • 32. Horizontal navigation Don’t force visitors down your navigational track: use cross-link architecture. Think Wiki
  • 33. 5. Bring the sexy! (aka Design) “Simplicity isn't simple.”! — Johnathan Ive ! “But it’s so worth the effort.”! — Jordan Wollman
  • 34. Is good design subjective?
  • 35. No.! ! Follow Dieter Rams’ 10 principles of good design
  • 36. 1. Good design is innovative.
  • 37. 2. Good design makes a product useful.
  • 38. 3. Good design is aesthetic.
  • 39. 4. Good design makes a product understandable.
  • 40. 5. Good design is unobtrusive.
  • 41. 6. Good design is honest.
  • 42. 7. Good design is long-lasting.
  • 43. 8. Good design is thorough down to the last detail.
  • 44. 9. Good design is environmentally friendly.
  • 45. 10. Good design is as little design as possible.
  • 46. 6. The technical stuff Getting it right the first time means you don’t have to scrap it in 3 years
  • 47. Evolve… olution Don’t design pages. Think modular — from technology, to design, content and its containers, to features and functionality
  • 48. Open source! When possible, go open source (non-proprietary) ! If not, it means you’re married: long-terms, hidden maintenance costs, and slow adoption of new technology and industry standards
  • 49. Open source! Technology libraries like JQuery, SASS, LESS, Foundation, etc., have massive communities of innovative developers contributing hourly ! That’s a lot of power at your fingertips
  • 50. Think! Mobilewhere the ! First For many, it’s experience all begins
  • 51. Almost 1 in 4 hotel queries come from a mobile phone Via Google/OTX, The Traveler’s Road to Decision 2011
  • 52. Mobile these activities is! serving as a hub for all of
  • 53. Responsive design? Responsive, yes, but mobile-first. Get that part right, the rest is cake.!
  • 54. 7. Remember the bottom line Think like a sales person…
  • 55. Call-to-action Every page should answer two questions: ! So what?! Now what?!
  • 56. Design with purpose Every page needs a litmus test:
 does this serve a specific purpose? Is it necessary? ! If not, scrap it.
  • 57. Utilize landing pages Landing pages are search magnets, focus on targeted content, and are designed to convert
  • 58. 8. Sharing & Social People share content that is interesting
  • 59. Leis ure Fac ebo ok Pin tere st Inst agr am Urb an Spo on Inn Tou ch Jet Set ter Kay ak Trav el + Trip Adv isor Don’t fret: partner with 3rd parties
  • 60. Share contextually Photos on Pinterest Snippets on Twitter Stories on Facebook Deals on Facebook and Twitter Etc.
  • 61. One more thing… Launch Day isn’t the end Activate a marketing plan to immediately drive traffic to your new digital marketing hub
  • 62. Q&A ryan@ ariaagency.com ! @ryanathompson /ryanathompson jordan@ ariaagency.com ! @jordanwollman /jordanwollman

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