BC Tips are best practice memos distilled from our constant monitoring of websites, and e-mailed to subscribers twice-weekly. Each tip consists of a characterisation of the featured site, a screen shot of or link to the highlighted practice plus ‘the takeaway’ – our commentary on how it can contribute to a more effective website.
What is RSS?
Many websites have links labelled "RSS". This means that you can find out about updates to our website without having to visit the site in your web browser. This feature is often referred to as "syndication" or "aggregation". Sometimes it's just called subscribing. And these days, instead of one of these words, lots of sites will use a feed icon that looks like this: Whenever you see this icon it means: The site you're viewing has a feed available.
How do I use RSS?
Just like when you want to watch a video clip or listen to music on the web, you need a "player" of some kind to subscribe to feeds. Good news: Most of these tools are free, and there are many to choose from, so you can find the one that best suits you. The "player" for a feed is called a feed reader . This tool lets you subscribe to any feeds you want, checks automatically to see when they're updated, and then displays the updates for you as they arrive. Internet Explorer 7, Firefox and Safari all include feed readers.
Once you have a feed reader, just click on our RSS icon and follow the instructions.
First Group: Timetabling convenience
The advantages that HTML formatting can give over the PDF format.
Weetabix: Guessing games
Largely unfamiliar iconography is more likely to hold visitors up than help them move smoothly around a section.
The World Bank Group: Relating to youth
Mature commitment to engaging with young people involves writing about chosen topics in a more direct and challenging ‘voice’.
The Democratic Convention: Blogging on to community
Blogs mark another step towards the long-spotted but generally elusive goal of creating genuine community-driven sites.
Time Warner: Cutting to the action
Design born of practicality shows an attention to detail and an understanding of the target audience that is too often missing.
The Last Email: Lacking in reassurance
Establishing trust remains a critical but difficult issue for new businesses on the web.
UNESCO: Getting recruits to select themselves
An effective device to reduce the number of unsuitable or speculative candidates applying for jobs or programmes.
Greenpeace: Respecting names
A simple and inoffensive way of recognising and respecting national differences.
Grainger: Failing to get personal
Named contacts are generally a good thing to include on a business website, but sometimes it would be best to leave it at the level of name and number.
Card Fountain: Keeping quiet about registration
A prompt to sign-up at the end of what appears to be an online demo is not what new users or existing members will want to hear.
Chicago Tribune: Presenting three faces on one site
Many organisations want to offer a service to different audiences, and face internal struggles over which should get the best billing on the home page.
Aral Lubricants: Oiling a smooth-running catalogue
The public part of a B2B platform is set up as a supremely accessible catalogue of specification and data sheets.
IBM: Choosing the right pitch
A simple journey to find the relevant set of products then cleverly offers three sales pitches in one.
Webmarchand.com: Localising an online directory
Potential customers are saved time by customised country directories.
Atofina: Getting the chemistry right
One of the more intriguing brandbuilding efforts on the web.