By Hannah Wallace July 31, 2008

Andrew Foley

Co-owner, Sarasota News & Books

A. It gives the world beyond our corner a sense of who we are. A lot of our business is convincing publishers to send high-profile authors to see us to do book signings, and having a quality Web site allows us to put our best face forward. And we definitely see the results of that. AtLarge designed our Web site; we won an Addy for our e-newsletter that goes out to about 1,000 people.

Bill Robey, President

DooleyMack Constructors

A. We work all over the country, we have project sites in any number of states and we’re working with upwards of 3,000-plus subcontractors at any one time, so it’s a very important communication portal for our field staff. And just on the client side alone, we’re finding more and more of our customers and prospective customers know a great deal about us before they even pick up the phone and call. That comes from our Web pages. Our clients have specialized needs; they’ve done their homework and researched us before they make the very first call. We completely revamped the Web site in February and had almost 3,000 hits the first day alone.

Chelsea Lyman, Events and marketing coordinator

Boys & Girls Clubs of Manatee County

A. It’s a great resource for the community to learn about our mission, and for the club members and their parents to stay updated about club locations, times, dues and events. We work hard to make our Web site convey a positive feeling and to keep our information recent and relevant; we post photos of recent events, for example. People can make donations on the site through PayPal and they can sign up for our e-newsletter. We have a plan in place to continue to grow the Web site—and hopefully grow the organization. Our director of development is working on a blog, we’re hoping to enhance our online donations feature, and we want to start linking to our own Boys & Girls Clubs YouTube channel and launch our MySpace page. [The nonprofit organization this year won a national award from the Boys & Girls Clubs of America for its redesigned Web site, developed by Anexio as an in-kind donation.]

Kate Hill-Moore, Owner

Island Photographics

A. Because we are a visual service, our Web site is critical to us. It is the source of probably 80 percent-plus of our new business. We are constantly updating the content in terms of [photographic] images, and we include a lot of interactive features—contests, portals to go to learn things, guest books, appointment bookings. Destination weddings are a significant portion of our business, and if we’re working with a bride in Oshkosh, for example, she can look at her proofs at a password-protected portion of our Web site and order photos online. We can both be online together at the same time—the bride can design her wedding album by going to our Web site and be directed to our album designer’s desktop; she can actually see what’s going on. Also, if someone from out of town is planning an event at a particular venue, we can go to our archives while they’re online and say, “Take a look at these images [of another event] we took there.” They can see it, they can love it, not love it, whatever.

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