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Advice

Simple Types of Usability Tests for Creating Happier Users and Better Websites

Kim Mateus

Even though you might associate usability with website design, it’s been an important factor in our everyday life for at least a century. Frederick Taylor’s Principles of Scientific Management, published in 1911, is the first instance where the world started paying attention to how people use things, and how we can help them be more efficient. In 1936, Frigidaire cited “usability” as a key feature of their new refrigerator. In 1943, Alphonse Chapanis made the case for redesigning airplane cockpits in order to reduce errors.

But it wasn’t until 1985 that Computer Usability Testing & Evaluation was published by Richard Spencer. Of course, by this point, usability wasn’t anything new, so designing computers that were most usable was a given. In fact, the war of operating systems, mainly between Microsoft and Apple, has been centered on usability since the beginning.

When home-accessible Internet arrived and websites became the next usability feat, Steve Krug published Don’t Make Me Think in 2000. I think we can all agree that web designers everywhere desperately needed this book back in 2000 and the web has become better for it.   Continue

Strategy Spotlight with Don: 10 Things to Consider Before Your Next Magazine Website Redesign

very experience you’ve ever had building and rebuilding a magazine website typically begins with you explaining what you want, and then you telling a group of developers and designers what to fix. But when did you become an expert in digital publishing strategy and conversion architecture?

In today’s Strategy Spotlight, Don Nicholas, Chairman & CEO of Mequoda explains why most custom CMS development companies aren’t a good fit for publishers who need strategic help.
  Continue

The 9 Ultimate Digital Magazine Features

Don Nicholas

How do your digital magazine features stack up to users’ expectations?
Contrary to what you’ve probably been thinking, the ultimate digital magazine is built in a browser, not an app. That’s why web magazines are skyrocketing to success, because users are quickly figuring out that they’d rather use a web magazine than an app magazine.

Users are   Continue

Digital Publishers Use Compelling Strategies for Building Audience, Generating Revenue

Kim Mateus

Digital publishers are connecting various parts of their businesses to develop new revenue streams, and generating more traffic and a bigger audience at the same time. Today we’re looking at some of the ways publishers are doing this.   Continue

Creating Digital Magazines: Four Ways to Monetize Your Efforts With a Free Archive

Don Nicholas

“I simply don’t understand the opportunity,” one veteran magazine publisher told me at a recent industry conference. “My magazines are sponsor-driven. My issue archive includes hundreds of back issues. I have all these vendors and partners offering to digitize my back issue archive and make it available online. But I don’t have a clue how I make any money if I do it. Near as I can figure, my digital magazine archive is worthless.”

The magazine industry feels it is on the edge of a Renaissance. Digital magazines are the hot topic of industry events, digital magazine software platforms abound, and massive retail partners including Apple, Amazon, and Google are seducing magazine publishers with their siren songs.

“I simply don’t understand the opportunity,” one veteran magazine publisher told me at a recent industry conference. “My magazines are sponsor-driven. My issue archive includes hundreds of back issues. I have all these vendors and partners offering to digitize my back issue archive and make it available online. But I don’t have a clue how I make any money if I do it. Near as I can figure, my digital magazine archive is worthless.”   Continue

Strategy Spotlight with Don: How and When to Clean Your Email List

It’s not uncommon that when we talk to a group of niche publishing professionals, and we end up in a big discussion about cleaning your email lists.

In today’s Strategy Spotlight, Don Nicholas, Chairman & CEO of Mequoda explains when to clean your list, and how to combat fears about selling a smaller list to advertisers.   Continue

Your Guide to Building a Profitable Subscription Website

Amanda MacArthur

Like any other business, subscription website publishing relies on getting your website taxonomy exactly right. Information architecture isn’t easy to understand – people earn special college degrees in order to grasp it! But subscription websites are different from ecommerce, event, retail, or a dozen other kinds of websites. And you simply can’t learn about subscription website taxonomy from those.   Continue

Email Marketing for Publishers: How to Convert Email Subscribers into Buyers

Kim Mateus

We talk a lot about how to convert website visitors into subscribers when we discuss email marketing for publishers, but once someone is on your email list, what should you do with them? I’m sorry to say, there are lots of publishers out there with large lists who aren’t using them effectively. They don’t want to “sell” to their list, but the consequenc   Continue

Audience Development Expanding Through Major Brand Initiatives at Facebook, Amazon and Instagram

Kim Mateus

Facebook, Amazon and Instagram are expanding audience development options for content publishers
Social media can be a major traffic generator when they approach the right platforms properly. Today we’re looking at news from social media networks that are expanding their audience development opportunities for content publishers.

Our first story takes a look at Facebook and the social   Continue

5 Email Newsletter Best Practices You Can Fix Today

Amanda MacArthur

It’s amazing to see the evolution of the email newsletter – how brands use it to communicate, how the designs have changed over the years, and how the strategies of staying relevant have advanced.

Even though email newsletters have been around for years, they are still valuable for digital publishers. They are often a publisher’s largest source of revenue.   Continue

Strategy Spotlight with Don: The Case for Daily Emails

How often do you publish an email newsletter? Once a week? Twice? For our clients, many of them publish 5 to 7 days per week. Sound crazy?

In today’s Strategy Spotlight, Don Nicholas, Chairman & CEO of Mequoda explains why a daily email newsletter is the right path, and should be considered a service to your readers.   Continue

A Magazine Platform Worth Investing In

Don Nicholas

When you think of a magazine platform, you probably think print and digital. They seem like black and white, but there’s actually a whole lot of grey on the digital side of things. A digital magazine, as defined by the Alliance for Audited Media (formerly ABC) defines a digital edition as distribution of a magazine’s content via electronic means. The digital edition must maintain the same identity of the host publication by maintaining the same brand characteristics.
 Mequoda agrees with this definition.   Continue