CIC Association

Serving Community Enterprise

My area of expertise so to speak is the use of the web!


Over the past 10 years I have been writing websites for people and have learned a great deal (have in fact been writing websites since HTML 1 first came out). Two major things I have learnt is small business do not make good use of the web, and small business can challenge much larger business on the web.


Over the next few weeks I will share some tips and pointers on designing and using the web to promote your CIC.


So my first tip is; ‘less is more’ when it comes to websites home pages. If you go to a website and the first page you get, normally the home page, is ten five line paragraphs how much do you read? The answer nine times out of ten is none of it.


Two or three short two or three line paragraphs are often as much as anyone will read unless they are already very interested in what you have to sell. You front page wants to be bullet points of your site not the whole site explained in one page.


Also learn to write for the web, throw away the rule book on repeating words in sentences. Look how many times CIC appears on the home page of the CIC Association website. After reading that page you know that the site is about CIC’s. So does a Google robot, which means that it so it also knows that your key words are the right words for your site. This improves your ranking with the search engines.


Avoid useing moving pictures on the home page!! That includes scrolling text, it distracts from the rest of the page and some web users will not be able to read the page at all. If your readers get distracted they do not take in your message and may miss something which is vital to your whole proposition.


Final tip tonight before you even buy your domain name know what your website is for! Seems obvious, you will be surprised just how many business people when I asked them why they want a website say because everyone else has one, or even I am not sure really. You need to know what you are going to use your website for and what your message is going to be.


In my next entry I will talk a bit about accessibility of your website and a few simple things you can do to make it easier to read, or indeed to be read.


Steve

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