================================================== WebWord.com Newsletter "Usability & the Internet" ================================================== List Owner John S. Rhodes John@WebWord.com .................................................. February 23, 2000 Newsletter #43 .................................................. Table of Contents 1. A Sitemap on Every Page 2. WebWord.com Discussion Board 3. Open Topics: WUBOR and International Usability 4. Open Company Information 5. What is WebWord.com Exactly? 6. Flooz, Tower Records, and Godiva 7. What Can You Find at WebWord.com? - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ITEM #1 A new WebWord.com Report is now online: --> http://www.webword.com/reports/sitemap.html "A Sitemap on Every Page" Peter Van Dijck wrote me about how he uses a sitemap on *all* of his web pages. He has a small site about Columbia, and at the bottom of every single page, there is a sitemap. In his report, he presents some very interesting statistics. The majority of his visitors use the sitemap. For the details, read the report. You can read the Report here: --> http://www.webword.com/reports/sitemap.html - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ITEM #2 WebWord.com Discussion Board As many of you probably already know, WebWord.com now has a discussion board. In just a bit over 1 week, there are now 50 participants. The board has been surprisingly active with over 27 messages and 10 discussion groups (10 topics at this time). I admit that I have written several of the messages and I have started most of the topics, but I'm certainly not the only person participating. The one thing I really don't like is that people have to register for the discussion board. Several people told me that they were upset about this. I apologize for the pain. At some point in the future, we'll bring things in house and open up just about everything to everyone. You can preview the topics now, but you can't do much else in that mode. If you'd like to preview the board, or if you'd like to join a lively community of people, head here: --> http://www.vicinities.com/webword/ - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ITEM #3 Open Topics: WUBOR and International Usability We've been very busy at WebWord.com, behind the scenes, which I'll talk about more in Item #4 below. I wanted to let everyone know that the Web User Bill of Rights (WUBOR) is still being worked on. I'm getting close to drafting a document to pass along to Sean Lindsay (the co-author of the document and editor of DisabilityTimes.com). When that is ready to go out, I'll let you know. If you have suggestions, pass them along to me at email@example.com We've also been working on figuring out how usability is seen around the globe. Who is looking at it? What are the core issues? And so on. I'm really quite surprised to find very little. In fact, I have had a hard time finding general web design information as it relates to global issues. I'm talking about cultural issues, language barriers, and that sort of thing. If you have suggestions, resources, or ideas, please pass them along to me at firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks. - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ITEM #4 Open Company Information People like to know how WebWord.com is doing, so I tell them from time to time. Also, it is in line with our Open Company Manifesto ( which you can find here: http://webword.com/moving/opencompany.html ). It spells out why we do this. Here are some statistics on WebWord.com: 2074 Newsletter Subscribers 167 Daily News (WebWord Addiction) Subscribers 50 Discussion Board participants Average Number of Hits Per Day 1,025 Average Number of Page Views Per Day 821 Average Number of User Sessions Per Day 448 Average User Session Length 9:37 I think the most interesting number is the Average User Session Length. People are spending a lot of time at WebWord. (Thank you!) I am trying to help you to understand what we are trying to accomplish and where we are going. You'll see the vision take shape over the course of this year. I'll share more and more as we move forward. I hope our openness is refreshing. In our line of business, it is an odd thing to disclose all of this information. However, we feel that linking to news, linking to competitors, and listing jobs for other companies is a path to success. We do not feel it is foolish to keep our readers and subscribers well informed about usability, human factors, web design, and the general user experience. If possible, we'd like to become an industry reference site, but I'm getting ahead of myself. I'll speak more about this in a future newsletter. In the time being, perhaps you'll be interested in Item #5 below. p.s. If you'd like to get daily news updates from WebWord.com, you can go here to subscribe: --> http://webwordaddiction.listbot.com/ - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ITEM #5 What is WebWord.com Exactly? I am often asked this question, but up until recently I have kept a low profile. WebWord.com was originally my personal web site. But it has rapidly grown in readership and in scope. As the numbers above indicate we are a news source and a place for people to learn about many things. This will always be true. We want to help as much as possible. However, there are now three people working at WebWord.com, mostly behind the scenes. We do web consulting, interface design, and more. We'd like to say for now that we are available to take on your projects. Yes, we write proposals. Yes, we help people understand their customers. And yes, we do various web development. There is a lot in the works, and we expect to see things grow at an insane rate. Many people didn't know we did this kind of work. But we do, and our subtle approach has been effective. We have seen that providing information and helping people is our key to success. In any event, now you know that we can take on your projects. Over time I might be a bit more blatant about this, but I'd rather stay on the course we have charted for a time. If you have questions or comments on this editorial, throw me an email at email@example.com -- Thanks. - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ITEM #6 Flooz, Tower Records, and Godiva A very kind colleague threw me $25 worth of Flooz. (Thanks Mark.) Flooz is basically a gift certificate that can be used at many different web sites. The idea is interesting. It is like getting a gift certificate to an entire mall or shopping outlet. So, I went shopping at Tower Records to get a video tape (Monty Python). First, I have to say that the selection was rather large, so that was good. And, the search engine dished up many possibilities. But, the ordering of the results was really quite a problem. They didn't make an awful lot of sense. And, DVD's were mixed in with VHS. Next, I tried to find the top 50 best-selling video tapes. No luck! I tried again and again to find a way to get a list of bestsellers, either in general or in specific categories. This activity burned up about 1/2 hour of my time. Finally, after finding a tape I wanted, I went to figure out how much the shipping would be. Well, they wanted me to register first so I could proceed to the checkout. Argh! I just wanted to know if my gift certificate would cover the item and the shipping. They wanted me to register to find out the total cost. My overall experience at Tower Records: UGH! So, I left. I went to Godiva to get some chocolate. It was a great experience. All information was there and things were well labeled. Also, the colors were nice at Godiva. I felt better about shopping there versus Tower Records. I don't normally notice that I "feel good" about a web site, but Godiva captured the experience. Especially in contrast to the bleak Tower Records site. Godiva and Flooz both did a great job with the follow up email confirmations. The experience was a good one overall, but it wasn't as easy as going to a mall or department store. - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ITEM #7 What Can You Find at WebWord.com? Articles (Moving WebWord) <http://webword.com/moving/> Expert Interviews <http://webword.com/interviews/> Recommended Books <http://webword.com/books/booksindex.html> Newsletter Archive <http://webword.com/archive> Weblog Archive <http://webword.com/weblog/index.html> Usability Reports <http://webword.com/reports> Recommended Web Sites <http://webword.com/hotsites.html> Free Stuff <http://webword.com/freestuff.html> ---- End of WebWord.com Usability Newsletter #43 ------ (c)1998-2000 by WebWord.com. 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