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Fast and Easy Website Tune Ups


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Fast and Easy Website Tune Ups

  1. 1. Fast & Easy Site Tune-Ups Jeff Wisniewski Web Services Librarian University of Pittsburgh [email_address] NSLS 2009
  2. 2. Do we REALLY hate to redesign? <ul><li>Maintenance = Boring  </li></ul>Redesign = Exciting  NSLS 2009
  3. 3. Redesigning is Expensive! <ul><li>Redesign is expensive for you </li></ul><ul><li>Redesign is expensive for users </li></ul><ul><li>Lots of important sites don’t “redesign” </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  4. 4. Amazon 2000 NSLS 2009
  5. 5. Amazon 2006 NSLS 2009
  6. 6. Amazon 2009 NSLS 2009
  7. 7. This idea is not exactly new… <ul><li>The Quiet Death of the Major Re-Launch </li></ul><ul><li>By Jared M. Spool </li></ul><ul><li>Originally published: May 20, 2003 </li></ul>
  8. 8. Users dislike redesigns…a lot <ul><li>Facebook anti-redesign group has 1.7 million members. </li></ul><ul><li> redesign drew over 2,000 comments often strongly negative. </li></ul><ul><li>The Guardian,, and the BBC also transformed themselves recently, with ‘robust’ opinion voiced on each. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Redesign and the five stages of user grief <ul><li>Denial: “Why did you change it? I was always able to find what I needed!” </li></ul><ul><li>Anger : “You have rendered the site useless and I will never use it again!” </li></ul><ul><li>Bargaining : “If you could just revert back to the OLD ejournal page that would be great!” </li></ul><ul><li>Depression : “I have no idea what I’m going to do now…” </li></ul><ul><li>Acceptance : “While I dislike the design I was able to find the catalog link quite easily…” </li></ul>
  10. 10. Happiness Time Launch YOU USERS
  11. 11. Time until “redesign” (months) 12 0 6 amount of maintenance performed a lot pretty much none
  12. 12. … because two minutes is a minute too long! <ul><li>Credibility </li></ul><ul><li>Content </li></ul><ul><li>Design </li></ul><ul><li>Tech </li></ul><ul><li>Metrics and assessment </li></ul><ul><li>Social </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  13. 13. Credibility <ul><li>making your website in such a way that it comes across as trustworthy and knowledgeable </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  14. 14. It’s a Matter of Trust <ul><li>PHP example: </li></ul><ul><li><p>Copyright &copy; <?php echo date(&quot;Y&quot;) ?>My Library, My Town</p> </li></ul>NSLS 2009 JavaScript example: <p>Copyright &copy; <script type=&quot;text/javascript&quot;> var d = new Date(); document.write(d.getFullYear()); </script> Regardless when the site was created update your © !
  15. 15. Add Photos to Contacts NSLS 2009 Muriel Simms Geology Librarian 41 Malachite Way Room 12-B
  16. 16. Feature your physical address prominently NSLS 2009
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  19. 19. Design Matters <ul><li>Users judge websites QUICKLY and SUPERFICIALLY </li></ul><ul><li>Users judge well designed websites as more credible than those less professional looking. But don’t look TOO slick. </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  20. 20. Exercise: Credibility Assessment <ul><li> </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  21. 21. Turn Boring Old Contact Info into Exciting hCards Using Microformats! NSLS 2009
  22. 22. What they are <ul><li>microformats are a set of simple, open data formats built upon existing and widely adopted standards </li></ul><ul><li>re-use existing XHTML and XML to convey metadata and other attributes </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  23. 23. What they are <ul><li>Microformats are a way of encoding certain types of information so that computers know what type of information it is and can take appropriate action with it </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Contact info </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Events </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>reviews </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Semantic technology </li></ul><ul><li>They are EASY to create </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  24. 24. How to create them <ul><li>Creation tools: </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Dreamweaver Microformats Extension tool </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Viewer: </li></ul><ul><li> (Firefox) </li></ul><ul><li> (IE) </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  25. 25. Why they matter <ul><li>Currently supported by firefox and IE </li></ul><ul><li>Soon to be supported by all major browsers </li></ul><ul><li>Supported by Yahoo! now and other search engines soon </li></ul><ul><li>Good customer service </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  26. 26. How they work <ul><li>Information is encoded using a microformat </li></ul><ul><li>Information is encountered by a microformat aware tool </li></ul><ul><li>Tool presents user with option to import, export, or otherwise work with the data chunk </li></ul>NSLS 2009
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  32. 32. Do your links stink? <ul><li>They should! Have scent that is…. </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  33. 33. Click here…NOT! <ul><li>Replace all instances of the phrase “click here” </li></ul><ul><li>Click here for current articles. </li></ul><ul><li>becomes </li></ul><ul><li>Current articles are available here. </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  34. 34. Be a wordsmith! <ul><li>Replace vernacular with plain, action orientated words </li></ul><ul><li>Circulation…are we in a hospital??? </li></ul><ul><li>Examples? </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  35. 35. Move important info out of the “dead zones” NSLS 2009
  36. 36. <ul><li>Banner Blindness </li></ul><ul><li>Nielsen”: People have a tendency to never look at the slim rectangular area that's above the page's main headline.” </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  37. 37. If it looks like a duck… <ul><li>… or an ad or promotion, it will likely be ignored </li></ul>NSLS 2009
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  39. 39. Harness the Awesome Power of the 3 Question Survey <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The questions: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the purpose of your visit to our website today? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Were you able to complete your task today? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If you were not able to complete your task today, why not? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>P.S. ask for their email </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  40. 40. Design <ul><li>… matters! </li></ul><ul><li>Users judge websites QUICKLY and SUPERFICIALLY </li></ul><ul><li>Behaviour and Information Technology, Volume 25, Number 2/March-April 2006, pp. 115-126(12) </li></ul>NSLS 2009
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  43. 43. Web 2.0-ify Your Logo NSLS 2009
  44. 44. Characteristics <ul><li>Small chunks of large sans-serif type </li></ul><ul><li>Cheery colors </li></ul><ul><li>Rounded edges </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>NSLS 2009
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  46. 46. Be an Icon icon <ul><li> </li></ul>NSLS 2009
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  49. 49. Get creative (commons) that is… <ul><li> </li></ul>NSLS 2009
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  51. 51. The Need for Speed <ul><li>So, just how slow are you, and why? </li></ul><ul><li>Install Firebug + Yslow in Firefox </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  52. 52. Don’t Make the Server Think! <ul><li>Change these: <a href=&quot;;> </li></ul><ul><li>To these: <a href=&quot; / &quot;> </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  53. 53. Cache cache’ <ul><li>Why does cache matter? </li></ul><ul><li>Empty cache=http requests=slower </li></ul><ul><li>Full cache=fewer http requests=faster </li></ul><ul><li>Exploit the users cache to speed up your site </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  54. 54. For server admins <ul><li>Server configuration file </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Set certain file types to stay fresh/not expire </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Image file types, css, js files, pdfs </li></ul></ul>NSLS 2009
  55. 55. Add Expire headers <ul><li>When expire headers are set, the browser caches content from the server on the client side. </li></ul><ul><li>First-time visitors make lots of requests, the second time visitors visit the page, the browser uses the cached content. </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  56. 56. For the rest of us… <ul><li>STEP 1: You should have a file called .htaccess in your server root. If not create one. </li></ul><ul><li>STEP 2: Add the following code: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li><FilesMatch &quot;.(pdf|jpg|jpeg|png|gif|js|css|swf)$&quot;> </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Header set Expires &quot;Thu, 15 Apr 2010 20:00:00 GMT&quot; </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li></FilesMatch> </li></ul></ul></ul>NSLS 2009
  57. 57. Combine small images into image map <ul><li>Yahoo! High Performance research shows that a combining multiple smaller images into a single image speeds downloads due to fewer http requests </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  58. 58. Eliminate Inline Scripts <ul><li>In most cases calling scripts from external files will speed page download time, especially if these items are cached </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  59. 59. Except…For your homepage <ul><li>In line scripts for your homepage </li></ul><ul><li>making HTTP requests is MUCH more expensive than the size of the data coming down </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  60. 60. Example <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>External CSS: </li></ul>NSLS 2009 Inline CSS: Speed tested with:
  61. 61. Results NSLS 2009
  62. 62. Spring Cleaning <ul><li>Tidy your homepage </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>NSLS 2009
  63. 63. Thin Is In <ul><li>Is your CSS…bloated? </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  64. 64. Search Engine Optimize (SEO) your site <ul><li>Google webmaster tools </li></ul><ul><li>Site link > Diagnostics > Content analysis > Title tag analysis </li></ul>NSLS 2009
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  66. 66. SEO <ul><li>Make sure your pages use heading tags, and make sure you use them properly </li></ul><ul><li><h1> </li></ul><ul><li><h2> </li></ul><ul><li><h3> </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  67. 67. SEO: Page Titles <ul><li>Global find and replace…rewrite page titles with the following format: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Document title | Section name | Library/site name </li></ul></ul>NSLS 2009
  68. 68. Add Labels to Your Forms <ul><li>Why? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Accessibility: Read by screen readers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Accessibility: larger click target </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>User friendly: Checkbox text (not just the checkbox itself) becomes clickable </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How? </li></ul><ul><li><label for=”affiliation&quot;>Affiliation: </label> </li></ul><ul><li><input type=”checkbox&quot; name=”affiliation” value=“cardholder”> </li></ul><ul><li><input type=”checkbox&quot; name=”affiliation” value=“visitor”> </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  69. 69. … and While We’re Talking About Forms… <ul><li>Use radio buttons and check boxes appropriately: </li></ul><ul><li>Radio buttons: list of two or more options that are mutually exclusive and the user must select exactly one choice. </li></ul><ul><li>Checkboxes are used when there are lists of options and the user may select any number of choices , including zero, one, or several. </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  70. 70. Social Media Optimize your site <ul><li>Make your site social media friendly. Why? </li></ul><ul><li>Social media provides innovative ways for libraries to connect with users we may never see face to face </li></ul><ul><li>To encourage, promote, innovate, learn, adapt </li></ul><ul><li>To improve customer service </li></ul><ul><li>To discover and deliver what users want </li></ul><ul><li>To “market” without marketing </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  71. 71. Add Social Bookmarks Links <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>*special credit: add them to catalog records too! </li></ul>NSLS 2009
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  73. 73. Social media metrics in a minute <ul><li>Are you having an impact? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Page rank analysis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>best job of the big three search engines in indexing and integrating social media sources like blog posts, videos, and Flickr photo sets </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>NSLS 2009
  74. 74. Social Media Metrics <ul><ul><li>Social media presence analysis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Bookmarks </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tone analysis…what’s the nature of the buzzzzzz? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Stars </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Scars </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Neutral </li></ul></ul></ul>NSLS 2009
  75. 75. Create alerts <ul><li> </li></ul>NSLS 2009
  76. 76. Questions? NSLS 2009
  77. 77. Thank you! NSLS 2009
  78. 78. Resources <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>http :// </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>NSLS 2009