Implementing a World Wide Web Site for Your Organization

Implementing a World Wide Web Site for Your Organization

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An increasing number of organizations are realizing the need for a Web site to publicize their products and services. This 200-page CTR report assists the webmaster in designing, developing, maintaining, and enhancing state-of-the-art Web sites. It describes techniques, products, and new technologies that will be integral to Web site development in the future.

World Wide Web Background

CTR's report, Implementing a World Wide Web Site for Your Organization, is a guide for designing, maintaining, using, and protecting a company's Web site. Today's businesses are taking advantage of the Web to sell products, publicize their services, and reach new customers worldwide.

In many cases, information systems (IS) managers have been handed the title of "Webmaster" in addition to their regular duties. The report offers the tools IS managers need to execute an effective strategy and provides an overview of the security concerns and content standards in place today.

The Web is simply a client/server (C/S) Internet application that allows users to navigate the Internet using hypertext documents. Originally, the Web was designed to allow the sharing of information within the scientific community on an international level. But in the early 1990s, general users gained Internet access through commercial services such as America Online (AOL) and CompuServe.

The report discusses the current and developing Web applications as well as the future of the technology.

Connecting to the Web and Selecting Web Software

Choosing an Internet Service Provider (ISP) is the first issue when establishing access to the Internet. An organization must use an ISP to directly link to an Internet backbone. The report explains the types of connections, operatingsystems, and protocols associated with the Internet and the possibility of using the Internet or intranets to replace the traditional local area network (LAN).

The software tools needed for using the Web, such as Web browsers, search engines, and directories are also discussed. In addition, the report examines the benefits of linking the Web site to company databases and addresses the protocols that provide the interface.

Web Site Design and Implementation Guidelines

Although some organizations may not make money directly from a Web site, the cost of not having one can be devastating. A company without a Web site is not considered to be on the cutting edge.

Implementing a World Wide Web Site for Your Organization offers a step-by-stepWeb business plan which includes determining the purpose of the site, defining the target audience and requirements, and actually selling the idea to others within the company.

The most critical step in implementing a Web strategy, however, is the design of the site itself. In many instances, a company's Web site serves as its first impression. If the site is dull and unprofessional, the user may form the same opinion about the company.

The report examines every design aspect, from choosing theWeb application language to placing the company logo and using the best colors. A comprehensive set of design guidelines is also included to help insure a well-executed, state-of-the-art site that will encourage repeat visits.

Web Site Management

Because a Web site should reflect the most current information, it must be continuously modified and updated. The report stresses the importance of establishing a change management policy and offers a list of its possible functions. The report explainshow to create a successful Web site "team" led by the administrator or Webmaster. Team members should represent the different facets of the company such as marketing and customer service and be encouraged to openly express their ideas.

Web Site Security Concerns

Web site security is a vital concern for both Web site creators and users. Implementing a World Wide Web Site for Your Organization addresses the most threatening Web site security concerns and the steps necessary to help prevent them.

Because many organizations are connecting their corporate databases to their Web servers, security has become an even more critical issue. The report highlights important security strategies designed to help protect corporate resources.

Additional topics include security for commercial transactions, viruses, E-mail, and writing secure common gateway interface (CGI) scripts and programs.

CTR's report will help you do the following: learn the structure and background of the Web, develop a step-by-step business plan for implementing a Web site, identify the most critical aspects of Web site design and management, and understand the importance of security on the Internet and within intranets.