Holiday Gifts for Nice (and Naughty) Web Workers
Making a list, checking it twice.
Carefully determining who has been naughty and who has been nice.
This is possibly the most arduous task to complete during the holiday season – but not so much when it comes to Web professionals. Trying to separate the naughty from the nice isn’t so difficult in this profession if you know what to look for.
And once you know the difference, you’ll be able to find the perfect gift for both. Naughty and nice, that is.
Here are ten great holiday gifts for the naughty and nice Web workers in your life:
1. A Sweet Computer
The computer is the very foundation of the Web professional’s work, so nice ones deserve – in fact need – a sweet set-up. Display is critical, so this Web worker requires a top-notch LCD monitor to provide a clear picture that will be easy on the eyes so she doesn’t get worn out quickly. An ideal set-up would include not one, but three different monitors so she can accomplish multiple tasks at once.
The naughty Web worker, on the other hand, will be using machines with limited processing speeds (Intel Core i3 or lower) and small amounts of RAM (1-2 GB). If they’re really bad, they’re even stuck with an old cathode ray tube monitor that’s big and clunky, hurts their eyes and takes up so much space that they can only fit one on their desks.
2. Powerful Analytics
Nice Web pros understand the importance of analytics. In addition to just using Google Analytics, they’ll also appreciate a service like Crazy Egg, which provides heat maps of a user’s site and shows where visitors click and how they use the site, all helpful details for owners redesigning their sites for optimal visitor experiences.
Conversely, naughty Web pros rely on ineffective analytics tools with slow speeds, an inflexible back-end analytics interface and conspicuously absent basic functionality like proper page-path analysis, site overlay and on-the-fly segmentation.
3. A Cooler Domain Name
No Web worker’s job is complete without a killer domain name. A strong domain name is one that will be traced back to a brand/company, is easy for users to remember and will show up organically for relevant searches. While the work of coming up with a great concept lies on each individual, there are plenty of services out there to help nice pros track them down. DomainsBot is probably the most well-known, but Domainr, Domain Tools and BustAName are all valid options to pass along to your nicest Web workers.
Naughty workers, however, will spend 2012 on their WordPress.com subdomains.
4. Some Cloud Credits
Even today, few Web pros are using the cloud to its full potential. Most take advantage of shared storage, backup and email; but what about the cloud as a productivity tool? A smart Web pro can use a notebook service like Evernote to help preserve ideas and material and access it from anywhere in order to efficiently start and complete tasks throughout the day no matter where they may be working.
Unfortunately, naughty Web workers still haven’t figured out that the cloud is more than just an invisible hard drive and continue to do little more than pay to host a few extraneous documents that they’ll probably never interact with again. Their loss.
5. Website Redesign
The best Web pros know that a website redesign takes more work than simply slapping on a new color scheme and turning it live, so let 'em have it. The most important part of the redesign process is one of the very final steps – testing. Before launching the new new site for your nice Web worker, find users on which to test it and encourage extensive feedback from them so you can make modifications before it goes public.
Naughty pros don’t test redesigns and will eventually find a considerable amount of problems they overlooked (and likely didn’t even think of). Best to stay away from a redesign altogether.
6. Software for Websites
Any good business owner knows customer relationships are the keys to success. Nice ’Net workers utilize customer relationship management (CRM) software to improve these vital connections. Giving your nice Web worker a CRM software like Salesforce will help enhance all customer experiences, specifically in finding and winning new clients and maintaining existing relationships, all while reducing costs in both marketing and customer service.
Naughty Web professionals have no need for CRM tools, so best to give them AOL shares instead.
7. Mobile Applications
Highly advanced mobile devices like smartphones and tablets provide access to the Web almost everywhere. Our nice Web pros will make good use of cloud service providers like Dropbox, Box and Evernote to use their apps and access data on-the-go.
Naughty Web pros just want to play Angry Birds -- maybe a $20 feature phone for them.
8. Bigger Social Network
A great tool that the nicest Web pros can use to maintain consistency among social networks is the HootSuite social media management dashboard, which allows them to control their various social profiles from a single administrative console.
On the contrary, the best thing you can do for naughty Web workers is to make sure they don’t find their way off of MySpace and onto more relevant social networks.
9. Funding, and lots of it
Nice Web professionals who may still be uninitiated with how to get started finding funding can make use of sites like KickStarer.com, ProFunder.com, GrowVC.com, GoFundMe.com and more to hook up with eager (and wealthy) investors.
Since their naughty counterparts aren’t doing much to make any money, the most useful gift would be to set them up with accounts on CareerBuilder because their Web careers probably aren’t going to last long.
10. Website Magazine
Don’t forget, the best Web professionals keep up-to-date with the latest industry news and helpful information by reading the magazine for website success, Website Magazine.
So, congratulations, nice or naughty Web workers -- this one's for you!