August 12, 2021 - Information Resources
What every prospective online homeowner should consider before breaking ground
When we’re approached about beginning a new Web presence, ecommerce system, or mobile or web application (referred to simply as “site” below), ERA404 likes to pose 10 questions to our clients. This not only stirs up ideas to begin the process, it also allows all parties to fully explore what the process of Web development entails.
1. What are three words you would use to describe your business in terms of focus, pace, and culture?
Oftentimes, the description of your business is identical to your site. If your business focus is technology, customer relations, politics or health, your site should have a similar feel. Is your pace is dynamic and fast-moving (like an online service or new product) or conservative and rock-solid (like a bank or a law firm)? Your business’s culture (fun, friendly, approachable, professional, formal, methodical, meticulous) should also be represented in your site’s design.
2. What are the general purposes for your site?
Your site should have a primary and secondary purpose (and sometimes even a tertiary one). Purposes could be to increase sales and awareness, to assist in distribution of products or services, informational, educational, eCommerce, subscription-based marketing, customer feedback, ISO or employee intranet, employment postings, product support, entertainment or forums.
3. Will this site be part of an existing marketing strategy?
Does your business already have a marketing strategy in place with previous printed collateral material, sites, or advertising campaigns? If it does, please send samples of these pieces to assist in ensuring the site works within the framework of your existing strategy. If it doesn’t, or if you’d like to deviate from your existing strategy, can you provide a description and/or examples of concepting for a new strategy? Would you be interested in working with ERA404 to develop this new cross-media campaign?
[ ] Yes, this site is part of an existing strategy.
[ ] No, this site varies from our existing strategy.
[ ] We currently do not have a strategy.
[ ] We’re developing a strategy in-house and will provide samples and a description.
[ ] We’re interested in working with ERA404 to develop a cross-media strategy.
4. What reactions (calls-to-action) are you hoping to achieve with this new Web site?
While this question hinges on #2 (general purpose), it’s important to outline your customer’s reaction to determine if the site is successful. If the site is information-based, this can be monitored with statistics. Other reactions could be: customer contact, online sales, forum/chat participation, increased customer retention, decreased phone, fax or email support calls, growth of marketing opportunities (mailing lists, newsletters, event participation, and RSVPs), etc.
5. How do you plan on maintaining your site?
ERA404 provides a number of maintenance opportunities including an online content management system (CMS), maintenance contracts, on-site training, or off-site tutorials for manual site updates. If you plan on updating your site at regular intervals, which opportunities interest you?
6. The Competition
Providing ERA404 with links to competition sites enables us to gauge what your competition is doing, how they’ve been successful, how they’ve failed, and what makes your business different. Please list some links to competitor sites.
b. How are you different from competition?
If you have direct competition, please list why your business is different and what you do that makes your business unique.
7. Which existing site designs appeal to you?
Existing site designs do not have to be competition, nor do they have to even be in the same industry. List some sites that you feel satisfy your general purpose and embrace your company’s focus, pace, and culture.
8. Aside from your calls-to-action, what are your short-term and long-term goals for this site?
Do you expect this site to grow, to have new sections, to have new features? Will this site work in tandem with other sites that your business may have? Do you expect changes in offerings, strategy or functionality?
While ERA404 designs all sites to be flexible, we believe pre-planning and preparation can assist in ensuring your site is cost effective and successful at attaining short- and long-term goals.
9. What additional materials do you have to assist us in providing you with an estimate and timeline?
Before beginning design and development, ERA404 provides site mechanicals (wireframes) and information architectures (IAs) to describe site layout, pages and functionality. Do these materials already exist? Can you provide us with sample page content, photography, identity pieces, and artwork? What is your estimated budget and site launch target?
[ ] Mechanicals
[ ] Information Architecture
[ ] Design Storyboards (GUIs)
[ ] Digital Content
[ ] Digital Identity
[ ] Artwork/Photography*
[ ] Budget: _________________
[ ] Launch Target: ____________
[ ] Copywriter*
[ ] Other: __________________
* If you do not currently have a copywriter, artist, or photographer, would you be interested in working with ERA404 to provide these services?
10. What are your expectations to deem this site a success?
For More Questions or Information
Contact ERA404 for more questions to get you going or for design and development estimates by clicking here.
Click the link below to download our “10 Questions” survey. The file is a PDF, so you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader installed to view it. You’re also able to fill-out the form using Acrobat by simply clicking a form blank and entering text or clicking checkboxes. When finished, email or fax the completed questionnaire to ERA404 or print it for your records.
Download the PDF: ERA404_10_Questions
November 3, 2008 - News Articles
The author attributes his new site to ERA404 Creative Director, Don Citarella
Upon completion and launch of John Hodgman‘s new web site, Areas of My Expertise, the author recently mentioned ERA404 on a Twit.tv interview and pays tribute to the colors and theme-switching functionality.Read More
April 30, 2008 - Press Releases
ERA404 Viral Video Gets Rave Reviews on Gawker, Adrants
“In this competitive publishing environment, you need book promotions that are really HOT…This is truly forward-thinking strategic marketing.”
Hamilton Nolan, Gawker
“We’ve seen a lot of videos used to promote all sorts of things…This is one of the best.”
Steve Hall, AdRants
April 1, 2008 - Press Releases
HOW International Design Annual
“Many wine drinkers select wines in part because of the label,” says Creative Director, Don Citarella about his recent designs for the Brooklyn Wine Co.’s Feliz White and Red. “Our main goal was to entice customers to take that first sip. Afterward, the wines speak for themselves.”
To appeal to both Brooklynites and wine connoisseurs, the labels for two of the eight varieties, which will be released over the next two years, feature an image of Brooklyn’s iconic bridge.Read More
February 20, 2008 - News Articles
Florence Fabricant, journalist for The New York Times Dining & Wine section, recently ran the below story and photo, “Food Stuff.” The article prominently displays the Brookyn Wine Co.Wine Labels—Feliz Red, Feliz White—designed by ERA404 Creative Group.
November 12, 2007 - News Articles
ERA404 Environmental Design featured on TWICE.com
By Doug Olenick — TWICE, 11/12/2007
The 600-square-foot area is located on the main floor of RCS’ Madison Avenue shop and, in a nod toward the company’s environmental efforts, is constructed primarily out of bamboo, said Cher Chronis, ASUS’ marketing director. The area will be used to display the company’s current product line up and as a platform to launch new products into retail.
“We wanted to be able to offer an insight into ASUS and we are focusing now on building our U.S. retail image,” Chronis said.
While ASUS has no immediate plan to open selling areas in other retailers, it does want to expand its U.S. retail presence. The company has sold through RCS for the past year and has a limited presence in other retailers, including Best Buy and Datavision, but can mainly be found online at Costco.com, Target.com and Buy.com, she said.
The ASUS store is to be manned by two RCS staffers, and the company’s area sales representative will also pitch in, Chronis said.
The ASUS area features about eight notebook computers, plus the company’s latest 22-inch LCD computer monitor. In its center was a tubular, glass enclosure where the company was showing its latest concept notebook, the eco-book. Like the ASUS store, it too is made partially of bamboo with the notebook’s outer covering and wrist rest made of the hardy grass.
Chronis said the eco-book is still undergoing testing to see if using bamboo as a construction material is viable, and, if so, it could become available next year. The notebook is based on an ASUS S6 model laptop.
The company does have several other more concrete product launch plans that will include a new cellphone, Internet radio and GPS, said a company spokeswoman.