The Real Difference Between a Web site and a Web Presence

If you are looking for a Calgary Web Design (or a Web design anywhere else in the world) , you will need to consider if your Web site will emerge as a real Web presence.

A website is, in essence , a singular online entity . It has a unique domain , localized navigation , some kind of Web design surrounding the site content and is, for all intents and purposes, a standalone resource . The general design approach from the 1990’s into the new millennium was to design a website as a digitized, online version of a company brochure . In fact, many companies simply copied their brochure content over from print to their new site . Of course, the Web evolves quickly and so do search engines and marketing techniques . Combine this with cutting edge design and functions are reduced in price or even free , the the website from a few years ago can easily get lost or outdated .

What are some signs of an outdated Web site?

  1. Dated Web Design – most web designers now develop for a 1024 wide screen resolution, however the past standard was 800 wide, so simply designing to the narrower width can make a website look dated. Older designs will have dated functionality and scripting as they were built using less advanced coding standards. Ideally, a web presence will be updated continually to allow for better security, contemporary design and up-to-date information. Which leads me to…
  2. Dated Content – an obvious factor is web content that is dated or has the latest news release from months to years ago . This includes broken links within the site or to a third party website.
  3. Dated copyright Notice – enough said.
  4.  Little or No Communication Functionality – most older and simpler sites rely on basic email and maybe a contact form , which is all good as they are keys of communication . However, newer sites can now offer “Live Support”, forums and interactive flash media to their gamut.    
  5. Little or No Search Engine Marketing –  chances are if the site is not updated regularly or built to newer standards the owners aren’t going to be out promoting it. This includes Search Engine Optimization and/or online ad campaigns . 

Does this sound like your website? Then read on to discover the keys of turning it into a true Web presence.
A web presence differs from a single website in that a web presence is a chain of people doing the conga versus the wall flower at the party.
A Web presence is considered a living document as it expands and gains attention and gets people involved.  
To take your current Website or if you are planning a new Website from scratch , you would benefit from following these key features to make your websitea true online presence :

The Web site itself:

  1. Have a unique web design that is uncrowded, professional and attractive , but does not impede navigation through the web pages, nor access to any of the content in the site .
  2. The design should not limit expansion , but encourage it – your site can easily have new web pages and the latest functionalities added . Think about a blog or forum – these tools are built to expand and manage new content easily .
  3. A Well Planned Navigation and site flow are used to define which are passive sections , which are active, which are dynamic or static and which will expand . Intuitive navigation will provide for the visitor to access any page from any page , with the least amount of click throughs . Clear logical grouping of content into section/page/subpage is key .
  4. Have unique content that is written for the Web , not just copied from a Print document or technical paper . You can make these documents into White Papers or single PDFs for downloading , leaving the Web content to be search engine optimized and edited to flow from one page to the next .
  5. Add Reasonable Functionality – Don’t get a blog if you aren’t going to use it . Determine early on who will do the Web site updates and maintenance and then decide on a back up person to ensure the updates are done no matter what , either your Webmaster or a trained editor who can manage the site using a CMS . If you have a portfolio, use a dynamic gallery to show it off . If you enjoy writing, then get a blog, make sure you understand how to use it properly . If you want to start e-commerce, be prepared to learn how to manage the catalog and admin areas .
  6. Search Engine Optimization – starts with the organic results generated by how the site is built, how accessible it and its content is, and how it relates to other websites. Then get your site manually listed in the top search engines and directories and start building reciprocal or back links to your site to help increase exposure and build popularity.

Once the site is live, you will need to:

  1. Regularly review your organic SEO terms in your Meta tags and in your content
  2. Find ways to build passive income via affiliates, e-commerce or onsite advertising.
  3. Begin a targeted ad campaign using CPC paid listings such as Adwords, Facebook ads, Adbrite, etc.
  4. Collect Information about your visitors using Opt-in newsletters and special offers.
  5. Get feedback whenever possible from your visitors.
  6. Build your website to be an interactive and unique experience.
  7. Investigate different media such as graphic design/print, vehicle signage, mobile, radio, in-person business relationship building to elevate your Calgary Web site to a higher ranking .
  8. Maintain your update schedule and get involved in posting to othe sites, blogs and groups.

A Web presence is a greater influence than a “standalone” website because it has an active audience on the front and an active administrator in the back .

A stand alone web site provides a passive focal point for your business  , but a Web presence can take your success to a whole new level of interactivity with your customer base and can provide a growing revenue stream .

Are you a Calgary business looking for a new or revitalized Web Design?

If so, please contact Calgary Web Design Team at for full Web development and Photography services.


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