Monday, June 11, 2012

Why Businesses Need to Upgrade Their Websites to 2.0

Web 2.0 is a confusing idea for many people to grasp. The reason is that it is nothing really new. So when web design companies suggest that you might need to upgrade your ecommerce web design to Web 2.0, what are they really saying? Basically, Web 2.0 is not new "software" but it is a new way of using existing tools, software, and languages to provide a more user friendly environment. So, upgrading to Web 2.0 is not a true upgrade.

So what are the benefits of Web 2.0? Well, the idea of using existing technologies to improve the user experience is not a new concept, but their use with the Internet is a fairly new idea. In essence, Web 2.0 makes a website more interactive by eliminating the need to reload a web page every time the user changes something on the site. Rather than constantly reloading the entire page to the customer, Web 2.0 sends only that data that has been changed. As you can imagine, this makes the process much smoother and faster for the user. This is a huge benefit for individuals using mobile devices that have a lower memory threshold. Web design companies will incorporate new bits of scripting languages or programming techniques within an ecommerce web design to incorporate the Web 2.0 functions.

Some of the applications that are directly related to Web 2.0 include podcasts, blogs, and wikis. These are some very popular items on the Internet today. When a business is looking at upgrading to Web 2.0 many times the question is really should we incorporate the use of podcasts, blogs, and wikis on our website. Web design companies will incorporate Web 2.0 scripting languages within a new website, so if your ecommerce web design is fairly new you probably have aspects of 2.0 already functioning on your site. Adding podcasts, blogs, and wikis can provide a big boost to some companies, while other businesses will not benefit at all from these elements. Podcasts can be a great way to keep customers informed about new products or services. They are also a great teaching tool and can generate interest in your site from other media outlets. In addition, blogs and wikis provide some of the same benefits. Blogs can keep people informed about your company and get people talking about your company. This is a great way to learn what your customers want to see in the future. Wikis are popular for customer generation but also provide an excellent collaboration tool for employees. Because wikis can be edited by anyone, your employees are able to view material written by a coworker and make adjustments or additions without sending documents back and forth. This ensures that everyone is working with the latest copy. It is also a great way to update policies or frequently asked questions.

Another element of Web 2.0 is social networking sites, such as MySpace, Facebook, YouTube, etc. These sites are a major part of many company marketing budgets and for good reason. Users of these sites number in the millions with visits on a daily and even hourly basis. Many web design companies are creating ecommerce web designs that working with social networking sites as opposed to being separate entities. There are some great positives for using these sites to get the word out about your business, but these are not going to directly generate sales. This is an element of social network marketing that is just coming to light, which is one reason why they use of these methods should be supplemental to a traditional website.

Upgrading to Web 2.0 is not a traditional change, but it is an important one which will benefit most businesses. In most cases, your website is already using the technology without your knowledge. Regardless, the world is moving to a mobile device society and Web 2.0 will help you keep up. So when web design companies suggest that their clients incorporate Web 2.0 into an ecommerce web design they are simply trying to ensure that customers are ready for the future.

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