The Great Web Bear
Blog Post #1
Taking a Walk Down Memory Website Lane
By: Shando Darby – Senior Vice President & Marketing of Ursinet Hosting
Back in the late 1990’s I discovered the Internet and, along with it, what the effects that websites can have on my life. The first website was actually published back in 1991, which was the year I graduated high school. Nirvana was taking over the music world, but by the time I caught up with the net, my fixation was on AOL and connecting with others via “the personal profile.” Now I’ve made so many “profiles” I can’t remember most of them, but when would an actual website hold meaning for me?
As I sit and type this blog, I’m trying to think about what websites first caught my mid-twenties’ mind. Were they music related? Were they celebrity related? Was it a company?
I did a web search on “Popular Websites from the 1990’s.” I needed something to jar my memory. Lo and behold this search became fruitful, hysterical and an oh-so-sad look of the Internet 1.0 from those days. We have come so far! It was like CD’s before the MP3, it was the vinyl before cassettes, it was eight-tracks before even that. Thankfully we have evolved online!
One example that came up was Ebay. I remember being fascinated with Ebay and how you could purchase things through the Internet including the crazy items you could find for sale! My best friend loved Whitney Houston, so he was able to track down memorabilia of all kinds and special CD’s that could only be purchased in Europe.
As you can see, Ebay evolved from bulky text and basic color schemes to a cleaner more integrated site.
I remember Napster and all the controversy that came along with it.
Napster still exists, but you need to pay with a 30 day free trial. But man those wild west days of the web! Commerce, culture and art were just trying to desperately catch up. When you realized the power of the Internet and websites, you had found pure gold!
Now of course there are millions of websites and it is hard to get attention. You have to do all sorts of things to get any notice. From updating its content constantly to checking your “Google Analytics” and a lot of other mumbo jumbo, that can make one’s eyes glaze over very quickly.
What does a website mean to me now? Do I want to feel like I can go somewhere? Do I want to feel something from its content, photos and videos? I want all these things from a website. It’s a lot to ask for, isn’t it? We expect a lot out of a website these days. We want it to load quickly, of course, but we also want it to be useful, interactive, entertaining and keep our attention for more than a few seconds. Click bait is a thing and especially people who grew up with the internet have a much shorter attention span and less patience for a higher number of clicks to get to important or relevant content. We need menus that are easy to navigate and intuitive. We want content to engage our minds, sight and heart. Once again, we are asking a lot from a website. So for those of you who have a domain, does your place on the web engage and take your audience somewhere, or does it just give boring straightforward information? Does it keep a person’s attention for more than a few seconds? Is it useful and dynamic? For those of you who want to start a website, the question is, “Am I able to create a website that people will talk about and stand up against other sites in that genre or product line?’
We have taken websites for granted these days. We assume every company, every celebrity, everything has one, but of course there are many companies, celebrities and people who do not have their own reflecting their full potential. Imagine if every person you knew had their own domain. Imagine every person trying with all their might to get you to view their site. All the updates on your Facebook feed would be of friends saying, “Look at the new content on my website!” It would be insane if everyone were communicating with their own domains, but at the same time it would be amazing to see what people learn about themselves without filtering and monitoring, learning video/photo editing, and even manipulating all the mumbo jumbo I spoke of earlier in this blog. What would our friends look like to us then? Imagine all of us exchanging ideas on our websites. I think it would be fascinating, scary and overwhelming, but we want Ursinet [link] to be the hosting company they choose to start their vision with and we want [Ursinet link] to be the platform of innovation and imagination for all of those creative and dynamic people. We want to help inspire people to have a voice with their domains. We want to help people reach their goals whether it be monetary, artistic or personal. Contact us now if you are interested in having Ursinet Hosting be the foundation for your online persona.