Strategy

5 Ways to Boost Your Website's Accessibility

To truly meet and exceed web accessibility standards, it always helps to have your solutions designed and developed by experts in the field. That way, when you launch a new website, you know that your digital presence is built from the ground up to be easy-to-use for everyone.

However, accessibility goes well beyond your site launch! Keeping your website accessible means taking into account all the circumstances that can keep someone from getting information they need— including having a hard time viewing images or reading text. So, while many web accessibility standards are met in the initial design and development of your site, others are always in the hands of your content editors.

It’s important that your website is easy to update and that you and your staff have a set of accessibility guidelines you can follow for consistency. To help you create great content that all your users can appreciate, we've put together a checklist of 5 ways to improve accessibility for your site's content.

 

1. Are your text links descriptive?

10 Ways a Dynamic Infographic Can Help You

Do you meet new clients at trade shows and events? Need to share technical details in an interesting way? If yes, this scenario will feel familiar.

Urban Solar’s team connects with hundreds of decision-makers at trade shows every year. It can be next to impossible to engage every potential buyer— especially with a crowded booth. To help solve this issue, they asked us for a tool to capture attention and give their team strong talking points.

The result: a custom-built dynamic infographic. It’s an eye-catching webpage their team can display to show the unique benefits of commercial solar lighting. Here are 10 ways a tool like this can help your organization:

Sitemaps: An Overview

Sitemap: aka website hierarchy, site architecture, or site structure

When creating a new website, especially one with a lot of content, developing a sitemap is an important step. It creates an organizational structure of the site and helps to set the project up for success by identifying exactly which pages live where.

However, sitemaps, as important as they are, don’t get as much attention as they deserve, and we often find they get confused with other website elements. To shed some light on the topic, we’ve created a basic guide outlining sitemap basics and best practices to help you get a head start on your next website project.

Sitemap Basics

A website is made up of a group of individual pages. A sitemap, in its simplest form, is a list of these pages. Sitemaps can be shown in a document or in an app/program and are typically found on a page of your website.

The City of Colwood: Streamlining Internal Processes

Last year, the City of Colwood, a long-time Upanup client, asked us to develop a tool that would allow businesses to renew their business licenses online. The City was planning to eliminate business license fees and they wanted to create an efficient renewal process to coincide with the change and replace the antiquated systems of the past.  

After 10 months in operation, the City has found much success with their new process. Below is a small case study outlining the challenge, solution and impact of integrating the new business renewal tool onto Colwood.ca.

The Challenge

The City was using a paper system for their business license renewals and had no database for local businesses.

When Does a Microsite Make Sense?

But first, what is a microsite?

A microsite is a branded website that lives outside of a company’s main site and is used to offer focused communication on a specific product or service. Often used as a marketing tool, microsites help to diversify a company’s web presence and generate leads, while providing a flexible, efficient solution that can be tailored to specific markets.  

When does a microsite make sense?

  • When you want to build awareness around a separate sub-brand
  • When you have an abundance of information on one specific product, service, or event
  • When you have a product or service that targets different audiences
  • When you want to improve how a specific product or service ranks on a search engine results page
  • When you want to test a marketing approach for a specific product or service

Viking Air Aerial Firefighter Microsite DevelopmentUpanup’s long-time client, Viking Air, is a perfect example of when it makes sense to develop a microsite.

Enhancing User Experience with IBIC

B.C.’s Indigenous Business and Investment Council (IBIC) came to Upanup with high aspirations. They wanted to create the number one website in Canada for Indigenous Peoples’/First Nation’s economic development—and they wanted us to help them do it.

Since we, too, like to set our sights high, we happily accepted the task. And now, after conducting various stakeholder engagement sessions and developing a strategic foundation based on user experience, we are delighted to celebrate the launch of the new IBIC website.

Indigenous Business and Investment Council

IBIC is a community partner of the B.C. government, whose main objective is to promote economic development opportunities for Indigenous communities, and to advance Indigenous peoples’ participation in B.C.’s economy.

Improving Google Rankings, The First Step: Organic Search, Channel Report

At Upanup we work with companies to help with search engine optimization, which in layman's terms means improving Google rankings. This is an ongoing task that requires consistent efforts to get ahead and stay ahead of the competition. The very first step of search engine optimization is setting up a tool to track the visitor statistics on a site, and getting regular reports that determine strategy and monitor progress.

Google Analytics is the most accessible and popular of several free and paid tools available for tracking your website's traffic. To assist those that are new to the world of search engine optimization, we have outlined below the steps to obtain a basic Organic Search Channel report once you have Google Analytics up and running.

Getting a Basic Organic Search Channel Report Automatically Emailed

1. Make sure you're on the Reporting tab on the top menu.

Google Analytics reporting tab

Best Practices for Online Annual Reports

Not so long ago, nearly all publicly-traded companies produced a printed annual report and usually posted a PDF of that document on their website. Nowadays, fewer and fewer companies are producing an annual report, but more and more are embracing the opportunities provided by web-based communication to post an online version of an annual report, corporate profile or corporate sustainability report.

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