Construction Business Management

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Blogs & Websites: The 5 Signs of Website Wellness

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The RCD SWOT Team monitors trends in the AEC sector to provide targeted information about strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that may impact your business.

The Internet is full of websites, some good, some not so much. How firms represent themselves on the web can have a negative or positive influence on the site’s visitors. Joe Pulizzi, author of Get Content, Get Customers, stated “blogging business websites attract 55% more visitors than non-blogging business websites.” Pulizzi’s news gets even better as “80% of traffic to corporate blogs are first-time visitors.”

Ask yourself, would you prefer to visit a healthy site that provides usable content, or a dysfunctional one that has little to no sense of purpose?  This is why it’s important for owners and managers to perform a website checkup to ensure maximum good website health.

It is alive!
The medical community realizes optimal health is a delicate balance among the mind, body, and spirit. Similarly, websites are a holistic collection of multifaceted processes and systems which give it life. Just as Frankenstein did not exemplify the perfect much less average human condition, neither do websites that show poor health in these areas:  

  1. Physical

In “AEC speak,” would you build a house that didn’t include running water or electricity? Probably not. Then do not launch a website in which the pages are not properly indexed or optimized. A website that lacks indexing and optimizing is operating at a major disadvantage because the site won’t be on Google’s radar. 

The site’s architecture should enable high usability. A recent article1 defined site usability as containing these elements:

  • Ease of learning - How fast can a new visitor learn the site?
  • Efficiency of Use - How fast can a returning visitor accomplish his task?
  • Memorability - Can a returning visitor remember the system’s processes, or will he have to start again at the beginning?
  • Error frequency and severity - How often do users make errors, and how do they recover from them?
  • Subjective satisfaction - How much does the visitor like using the system?
  1. Emotional

 Have you participated on other blogs, forums, wikis or social media? It’s a buyer’s market which makes it difficult to succeed without connecting to your firm’s stakeholders. For Amanda Wilson, a building solutions consultant and blogger, the payoff is when customers leave comments about her posts. Cha-ching! Comments are a form of Internet currency.

Listen to the comments and conversations intently. It’s a bad idea to post answers that are on “automatic pilot,” especially when asked the same question, repeatedly.

Jody Brown is an architect who writes the humorous blog, Coffee with an Architect. Brown’s biggest takeaway about blogging is to “be yourself because it’s difficult to be interesting if you’re always trying to promote your brand.”

  1. Spiritual

Nobody wants to do business with the virtual equivalent of the guy in the polyester leisure suit and puka beads who’s looking to score.  Instead, let your website reflect ethics and integrity. It doesn’t have to be the Mother Theresa of websites, but transparency alleviates fear when you respect your site visitors.   

  1. Intellectual

Do you have a blog? Does it relate to your audience and address their pain points? Successful blogs extend the conversation gauntlet and offer relevant content.  Brown focuses on the heart of his blog which is architecture, whereas Wilson mixes business with pleasure – travel and new products. Both pour their personalities into their strategies.  

  1. Environmental

Have you taken out the trash or is your site littered with unnecessary, extraneous content and images? Leave ample white space to make the read more enjoyable. Ads might add some much needed revenue to the bankbook, but they can irritate readers.  The worst offenders are the “floating” ads that move across the screen along the reader’s natural eye path. Aside from interrupting the reader, they can reduce the page’s SEO value.
Business websites are similar to their brick and mortar equivalents. Visitors enter looking for something. Can they find it on your site? They won’t if your website isn’t healthy.

Will your website pass or fail a diagnostic exam?   Let us know. We’d love to hear from you.


1King, H. J., & Jannik, C. M. (2005). Redesigning for usability: Information architecture and usability testing for Georgia Tech library's website. OCLC Systems and Services, 21(3), 235.

Deborah Reale has twenty years of experience in business management developing strategies that covers the construction, retail, public relations industries. Currently, she serves as the social media strategist at Reed Construction Data. In addition, Deborah is pursuing a doctorate degree in Business Administration with a concentration on Information Systems and Marketing.

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