Turn your website in to a web product

  • by Philippe Bodart
  • 10 months ago

Traditionally, companies built or rebuilt their websites as one massive project with a set budget, timeline and launch. Post-launch, they might update website content incrementally, but usually little investment is made in the site as a whole until the next major “site refresh.” For the company, this means another costly and resource-intensive project that usually happens every several years. In the meantime, the website’s users, as well as the market and business, all move forward, leaving the website to stagnate.

With a more product-centric approach to your website, the website is a living, evolving software application with its own strategy, road map, and team. This product model enables the organization to regularly release new site features or updates so the website can continue to deliver value as the business evolves. In this scenario, the technology and resource investment may be ongoing, but the end result delivers far better returns as the website works harder for the company.

Web products are led by managers, and represent the company's product vision, strategy and road map. With a relentless focus on the user, the website or better web product delivers the best possible digital experience across the customer journey.

Software best practices should apply to websites

Speed and agility are essential. Companies must be able to respond quickly and update or iterate their product frequently. Software delivery methodologies that enable this hyper-responsiveness, such as agile development, allows companies to ship website updates continuously. Fast, fluid website iteration, with numerous weekly or monthly pushes to production, also keeps users engaged in ever-changing, relevant content and features, and supports evolving business objectives.

To further increase product agility, companies are moving away from building websites as monolithic systems that mushroom over time.A monolithic code base eventually becomes hard to work with due to its size and complexity, an issue often exacerbated by bloated code. Updates become tricky as changes to one part may unintentionally break another, resulting in longer development and test cycles. Instead, modern software architects favor a microservices approach that composes a web app using a constellation of separate services ,essentially mini-applications, all running in harmony to create a unified user experience.

Another important trend in software development is serverless architecture, which helps product teams achieve scale faster. A serverless architecture does not mean that there are no servers running code, but simply that development teams don’t have to deal with provisioning and maintaining servers.

Content and content infrastructure is at the heart of a modern website

Like any digital application, content drives the web product experience. But there are several competing agendas to satisfy - end-users expect regular fresh content that keeps them engaged and coming back to your product. Content creators want a self-service control over their narratives, and want a simple interface to push content live in real time. Developers need to assure that they implement the technology and infrastructure to keep these competing agendas in balance with the budget allocated for the web product.

In the past, companies turned to CMS solutions to power content in their websites. This was appropriate in an era when websites were simpler, however, today’s sophisticated web applications, companies that are really going digital need much more. Legacy CMSes were designed for publishing posts and pages, not shipping software and apps. These CMSes were born in a page-centric world, with rigid data models and cumbersome presentation layers. In addition, significant IT time and resources were needed to operate a monolithic CMS that was built to run on-premise or self-hosted. On the content side, developer resources are needed to create and update CMS page templates, taking their focus away from building a great user experience. Content editors have to wait to publish new content, and there’s little flexibility in managing content experiences across the site. Both developers and content editors struggle with the limitations of CMS, wasting time and impacting the ability to deliver new website experiences quickly and efficiently.

Content infrastructure is purpose-built for the modern tech stack. Like other services within the stack, such as maps, payments or messaging, content infrastructure is built as a Service (Content as a Service) . It powers the flow of content between any number of applications and a central content repository, and provides tools to easily access and manage content within applications.

WebriQ and WebriQ goes Mad

For many companies still running legacy and monolithic CMS systems, the challenge is finding the right partnership in providing the the technology stack for the modern web and providing the services that are required to running a web product. At WebriQ and WebriQ goes Mad, we can provide you with the technology and services to run a modern web product. WebriQ has been pioneering websites built on the Jamstack. The Jamstack is the technology platform for a modern web and web product -- with superfast download speeds, complete security, severless architecture, microservices at its core it is the Stack for a modern web product. WebriQ goes Mad delivers you the services that you can not produce with in-house staff, be it web content creation, product description, content for landing pages, blog content and much more.

Learn more about WebriQ and WebriQ goes Mad on GO MAD TODAY