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Starting an Online Business All-in-One For Dummies®, 3rd Edition by Joel Elad, Shannon Belew

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Making Your Web Site Functional

Web sites used to be limited in the functions they could offer to customers. You could display static (fixed) Web pages, have forms e-mailed to you with text fields of information, and have customers sign a guest book. Now your site can be fully interactive, where each Web page is built on the spot based on a customer's specific needs. Your site can talk to other computer systems automatically, link back to your own database to read or write information, and process everything from data to audio and video.

images Just because Web sites now can do lots of complex functions doesn't mean that you should put all these functions on your site. Choose a series of functions that serve your business needs and your customer wants. The point of Web site functionality is to support the user experience.

Updating your Web site in a timely manner

Many businesses find that, as their Web sites become more and more complex, they rely on a single person or company to make all their site updates. This situation not only is a bad strategic decision (because it locks you into this entity if you want to keep using your own site) but can also seriously jeopardize your chances of keeping your customers.

Customers are looking for sites that are continually updated with fresh, important, up-to-date content. Businesses that want to succeed have to be able to respond to changes in ...

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