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Intranets: That Giant Sucking Sound

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Intranets are places where someone - usually a customer, partner, or employee - signs in and then tries to do something.

Given my own experience as the user of intranets, and as someone who rebuilds broken intranets, here's my take on the current state of intranets.

Intranets, on the whole, are TERRIBLE.

Is Your Website Hot?

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When you were a kid, did you ever play a game where one person was blindfolded, and was supposed to find something, with hints from the other people in the room: "You're getting warmer…nope, you just went cold…yep, getting warmer…now you are really, really hot!"

That's what it's like for your website customer. The customer is the person with a blindfold, groping around, and your website navigation and content are the people in the room.

Are You Contributing to The Big Fat Website Disconnect?

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I am your customer. I have a Problem. I am looking for the Best Solution to my Problem. You sell the Best Solution, but I don't know that yet.

I go to Google. I type in a phrase describing my Problem, or perhaps a phrase describing my imagined Best Solution. I may remember hearing something specific about the Best Solution - such as a company name, a product name, or even a model number. I know that the more specific I am, the faster I will find my Best Solution, and the faster I can buy the thing, and then go on to do all the other things I have do to today.

Is Your Shopping Cart Killing Your Sales?

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Imagine you are in a physical store. You've just put an item into your cart. As you do so, a store clerk comes along and grips your head with his hands and turns your head so that you are forced to stare at your cart.

"Look in your cart. See what you've bought? So far, you've bought one container of sour cream."

You murmur in agreement, amazed that this is happening.

Confessions of a software buyer: "What happened after I said yes"

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I admit it. I'm proud to have identified the question that ALL software buyers ask as they are trying to decide if they want to buy some software: "What's going to happen to me after I buy?"

Actually, this question is asked by ALL buyers for ALL products, but it's especially acute with software buyers, because the post-purchase experience can be so traumatic - and so far from the promised and hoped-for experience.

Janet, an ex-programmer who is no slouch when it comes to technology, is a trusted vendor and someone I respect. She has a DSL connection to the Internet. This is what happened to her in her recent quest to purchase Adobe Photoshop.



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