The internet now moves at such a rapid pace that one can really throw out all the standards and theories of behaviour and habit of web users. A recent article I read had one small piece of information that caught my attention.
“In May, 14.5% of all website traffic was to social networking sites and forums, while search engines accounted for slightly more than 10%.”
So what are web users looking for when they enter cyberspace? Clearly not information, but interaction. The one-way street of information now seems to be a dying beast. A user not only wants to be informed, but also wants to have an opportunity to interact with the information and the source.
When I launched my first ever website in 1997, all I needed to do was plonk some information of the site and people read it. Simply put, it was ‘Here I am, believe what I say, now buy my junk.’ This mentality, or perhaps I could be as bold as to say marketing, worked quite happily and lazily up until about two years ago. A slow change at first, but now ‘at full speed ahead’ in giving an extremely powerful set of tools to users; read consumers here.
Not only can users ask questions, but they can also form opinions about a product, service or person as never before. Not just simply ‘Googling up’ the ‘buy me I’m good’ details, but following on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or any number of social sites where the reputation, personality, mood, temperament, political opinion, beliefs and morality can be scrutinised.
And just as an afterthought. Where do you think human resource departments start their scrutiny of candidates nowadays?