Think of your online presence as a digital ecosystem. Site traffic and user experience nourishes its health and supports its growth. Your website, social media outlets, SEO efforts, user-generated content, video, audio, etc. are all rooted in the same soil.

That ‘soil' is composed of the five elements of the digital landscape: content, information architecture, interactivity, visual design, and functionality. Let's take a quick review of these elements and explore how they propel your site's growth.

Content. The bedrock of the online experience. Good content is clear, succinct and respectful of the user's time. It cuts through information overload and reaches out to engage minds. Creating content opens and maintains the experience we want customers to have. Do you have a plan to provide fresh content on a regular basis?

Information Architecture. You expect to find what you need online quickly and to work with it effectively. Consider how that accessible, effective structure will accommodate a growing user base while maintaining meaningful conversation. Think objectively, does your site organization anticipate the interests and needs of visitors?

Interactivity. Users expect a two-way conversation. If the interactive elements are personal and relevant, visitors will feel that your company genuinely cares about meeting their online needs. They'll be more open to an ongoing conversation. Engagement takes many different forms, depending on the medium: e.g. blogs have comments, social networks focus on sharing, and larger websites might have product customization. How do you support interactivity and engagement?

Visual Design. In the blink of an eye, visitors make emotional judgments of your site's visual appeal. Visual design elements set the right tone and present content in the best possible way. But the work has only just begun; how will your visual design adjust and change as your digital ecosystem grows?

Functionality. Your vision relies on technical efficiency, quality and accuracy. What's more, your choices must serve both your business's goals and your audience's needs. Broadly speaking, you can choose either open source or enterprise technology. Among a range of factors, budget, dependability and scalability will inform your choice. What are your priorities?

Now let's take a big-picture perspective. There are two complementary sides to every digital ecosystem; internal and external. The inner workings of your organization represent the internal element, while the dynamic between your brand and audience represents the external. The sweet spot, the foundation for remarkable user experience and results, lies at the intersection of your business's needs, your user's wants, and the technical capabilities to realize this vision.

Fortunately, the variables in the digital ecosystem are finite and within our control. Our vision guides the five key components of the ‘soil' and sets the stage for our efforts to bloom.

How do you nurture your digital ecosystem so you get bountiful results?

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