Web Publishing Roll Up: A New Year of Redesigns and Trends

2 minute read
Marisa Peacock avatar

Web publishing in 2010 is proving to be as exciting as 2009. And this year, publishers are wasting little time. Redesigns, funding and trends for what’s to come in the next millennial decade are all making headlines.

Redesigning for Advertisers

USA Today has unveiled its second website redesign in less than three years. This redesign emphasizes online advertising, by offering advertisers a variety of formats (14!) from which to choose. The last time USA Today underwent a redesign it focused on integrating social media, including user comments and community features.

So why is it trying to attract more advertisers? After laying off 37 staffers at its newspaper and magazine, USA Today is struggling much like other newspapers to keep costs down, while trying to generate more revenue, while trying to retain and attract readers.

Hyperlocal Gets a Financial Boost

DataSphere, a startup that helps media companies set up hyperlocal sites and monetize them, has raised US$ 10.8 million in funding. The new dough comes from existing investor Ignition Partners and two other unnamed sources.

Learning Opportunities

Hyperlocal, as you may remember, refers to news coverage of community-level events. News companies that want to go hyperlocal partner with DataSphere, who provides a technology platform, a local ad sales force and then splits the ad revenue. 

You’d think creating hyperlocal websites would be more work than it’s worth, as each market’s issues are unique. DataSphere however repackages existing content on the media site based on the specific neighborhood where the news takes place, making the process a little more manageable and a lot more attractive to news companies.

Magazine Tech Trends for the New Year

The first month of any new year promises to be full for predictions and trends. This year isn’t any different. Folio announced the four magazine tech trends for 2010 recently. Among them, we learned that  

  1. Readers will benefit from multichannel content distribution: No longer can magazines focus solely on print or web. Instead they need to spread out and offer content through digital and mobile formats, including web sites, blogs, podcasts, virtual events, video and many others.
  2. E-publishing is Now: Get on the bandwagon. Find a way to offer content via Kindle, Nook or tablet.
  3. Personalization is Key: All media will become even more targeted and personalized. Customize content so you get to know your readers.
  4. Content Reigns Supreme: Multichannel, E-publishing and personalization are nothing without great content.