Back when we were telling you about how users were getting more ruthless
online, we mentioned that "successful web sites are now determined by how quickly users find what they are searching for". Well, that doesn't just pertain to the little guy's website, but the big boys as well.
A recent article
in the New York Times noted that: "Such technology stalwarts as Yahoo, Amazon.com and Research in Motion, the company behind the BlackBerry, have all suffered embarrassing technical problems in the last few months."
With more users online, no longer are the hiccups and minor technological errors acceptable. The Internet is now an integral part of our day and we can no longer afford to have a site go down or load improperly. Not only may it be an inconvenience, it may also have an impact on profits, marketing and overall image that an organization works so hard to maintain. In addition, many organizations offer so many options to organize, maintain and otherwise engineer our lives -- what with online calendars, documents and spreadsheets, photo albums, among others -- that should their systems not be able to support it entirely and continuously, customers' lives are literally held in the balance.
The consequence of such missteps often result in angry blog posts and heavily broadcasted 'tweets
' complaining and bemoaning the loss of their necessary site. With the need to acquire more customers, Web services are under more pressure to out-perform their competitors, but should stay realistic when extending their reach. Ultimately, their goal is to deliver well-developed products.
Jesse Robbins, a former Amazon
executive reminds us that "Web services should be held to the same standard of reliability as the older services they aim to replace".
The lesson learned is that your users care and are paying attention more than you think. They notice irregularities and they'll probably notice how poorly a site performs more than they will acknowledge how well it upholds. They expect that sites won't crash and it's not unreasonable for them to.
As we evolve throughout many generations of the Web
, users will demand more from sites. As exciting as it is to get caught up in the technological advancements, it's more important to understand what it takes to offer and provide such services without disturbances.