Sunday, February 22, 2009

Why Is Website Evaluation Important?

A website costs money. In most cases, government websites are paid for with tax dollars. The public trusts us to make sure their tax dollars are well spent. It’s your job, as a government web manager, to make sure your website is written and designed well, that visitors can use it easily, that it’s accurate, and that it’s contributing to the achievement of your agency’s mission. You need to evaluate and test your website routinely to make it more efficient, appropriate, and useful to your visitors.

The best way to improve the effectiveness of a Web site is to have data that indicates how it’s performing. Many measures can be used to improve your website. Web managers no longer need to rely on conjecture, opinions, hunches, personal preferences, or other subjective information. Decisions can be based on data and research.

Specific Policy, Legal or Other Requirements for Doing This

Not only is it the right thing to do, it’s the law:
  • The Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) requires your agency to establish performance measures to show how you’re achieving your mission. Your agency website should be an integral part of that plan.
  • OMB Policies for Federal Agency Public Websites (OMB M-05-04) and the related OMB Circular A-130 also refer to measuring satisfaction and performance.
  • The Interagency Committee on Government Information (ICGI) recommended that agencies measure customer satisfaction and usability in its June 2004 report to OMB, "Recommended Policies and Guidelines for Federal Public Websites".

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

What Is Website Evaluation/Web Metrics?

Evaluating your website is a best practice for managing your agency's website. It's the process of collecting, analyzing, and evaluating data that tell you how well your website is meeting its objectives, so you can make improvements. Routinely evaluating your site helps create a higher quality product that meets your customers' needs and your agency's mission. It's not a one-time exercise; it's an ongoing process that requires an overall strategy to determine what, when, and how you’ll evaluate your website.

Read more about why website evaluation is important and how it will give you return on your investment.

There are two kinds of performance measures related to websites, and they are sometimes confused:
  • Website effectiveness: First, you should measure effectiveness in terms of visitors' experiences on your website. For example, you can measure how many people visit your site, how satisfied they are, and how well they're able to accomplish what they want. The jargon for this kind of measurement is "Web metrics" or "Web analytics." Read more about different types of website evaluation.
  • Achievement of agency mission: Second, you should measure the impact of your website on achievement of your agency’s mission. These performance measures address the extent to which your agency is achieving its mission specifically because of its website. Read more about tying evaluation to agency mission.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Website Design and Development

DIS Website Services can create a website design and development package that fits your agency’s needs. Our staff of professional designers and developers can build and design fully customized websites. Or we can build websites using standardized templates. Whatever your needs are, we take pride in working hard to produce a product you will be proud of.

  • Original Website designs
  • Adherence to strict developmental standards to ensure functionality, usability, and accessibility
  • Customized feedback tools on your site using data collection forms and surveys
  • Choose from user-centered design, empirical measurement, or iterative design methods
  • Interactive and completable PDF documents
  • Optional training for your staff which will allow them to perform website content updates
  • Optional maintenance packages
Key Benefits of using DIS Website Services
  • Our websites are built by professional graphic designers and web developers with over 10 years experience.
  • Your project will have a dedicated project manager and single point of contact making all aspects of project communication easier and more timely.
  • Thorough website testing for use with PDAs, screen readers, and up to 20 different web browsers on several different operating system platforms to ensure your website is fully accessible and viewable to all audiences.
  • Our website development is fully compliant and tested with the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards for web development to ensure use of industry best practices.