Archive for November, 2009

3 Core Competencies and Your Website

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

Every business primarily focuses on one of three positions in the marketplace

  • Low Cost Provider (i.e. Walmart, Amazon)
  • Brand Leader (i.e. Bose, BMW)
  • Service Provider (i.e. Disney, Nordstrom)

The Low Cost Provider is someone who competes primarily on price for a particular level of quality. The Brand Leader is the company that delivers the latest innovations in their market space first. The customers may be buying the “latest and greatest” or a brand that gives them status. The Service Provider understands their customers’ needs and desires before the customer does and treats them appropriately. The customers of this type of company are willing to invest their money in someone who will truly take care of them or guide them in their selection.

Your website copy should reflect your primary business style. Otherwise, it may confuse visitors or attract the wrong customers to you. For instance,

  • A Low Cost Provider could have price and product comparisons and statements on the home page as well as featured product specials.
  • The Brand Leader may want to use the best graphics and special effects throughout their site. The look must speak to their core audience. Does it explain what the “latest and greatest” is?
  • The Service Provider may want to include a blog about what they do for their clients on a regular basis. Great site navigation and ease of use should be paramount.

Does your website reflect one of these core competencies?

What You Should Do if Someone Else Maintains Your Domain Registration

Friday, November 20th, 2009

In the past year or so, several people have come to me saying that they needed to move their site to a new web-host because they were extremely upset with their current hosting provider. However, the web host also controlled the domain name. Therefore, the old webhost could lock out the client from any information.

These situations are not pretty.

As I mentioned in the last blog entry, it can make good sense to have someone handle your domain name registration. If this situation represents you, then do the next best thing. Make sure you are listed as the official the owner of all your domains.

Your first step is to do a “whois” lookup. One good way to do this is to go to http://whois.domaintools.com/.

whois_Lookup

As of 11/11/09 there was a single text box on the page for you to enter the domain name you are interested in. Enter a domain name in that box; then press the “Lookup” Button.

The page that comes up has several tabs. You are most interested in the “Whois Record” tab.

As you scroll down you will see a line that says “Registrant” followed by a name and an address. (Not to be confused with the “Registrant Search” line above.) This section shows the owner. The email address of the admin or technical contact receives important emails regarding changes to the account. For instance, transferring the domain name to a new registrar is a multi-step process that involves a series of emails to the email address of the administrative or technical contacts for purposes of approving or disapproving certain steps.

If you are not listed as the domain owner, then work with your webhost while you are still on good terms to ensure that you are listed as the owner of the domain name.

Who Should Have Access to My Domain Registration?

Thursday, November 12th, 2009

Many people with websites ask someone else to take care of the issue of domain registration. If this is you, be careful who you trust this information too. You are giving them a lot of power. A person with access to this information can ultimate control of your website. They can

  • Prevent you from moving your domain name to a new website host (a small problem if want to move because of poor hosting services.)
  • Take your site down by telling the world that your files are on a different or non-existent computer

They can do this because each domain registration includes vital information that tells the internet where the actual files that make your website are located. Without this information, nothing on the internet works.

There are still good reasons to let someone else handle your domain registration. Domain names come up for renewal every so often. If you neglect to renew the domain, someone else can register it and take it away from you. Other deviants so that they can charge you $100 or more to get it back. If you often overlook such 5 minute details, you should have someone keep track of your domain names for you.

You just need to be able trust the person you have maintaining your domain name.

    Please come back when we have finished our re-branding and have republished this site