Don't Lose Sight of Your Business

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With customer loyalty and 225 billion residual income at stake, can your business afford not to develop an accessible online Web presence?

Since their successful application to GAWDS in May 2004, UK web design company - Southbourne Internet are leading the way in managed accessible web site design and development, offering a formidable blend of comprehensive website management programs and accessibility through client-managed web systems with maximized market penetration.

Vincent Marcello, Director of New Media and Communications, and Alan Hill, Director of Web Development formed Southbourne Internet / SONET a year ago with the simple yet powerful goals of providing fully accessible, optimized and highly visible web sites with scalable levels of customer autonomy.

Accessibility means: increased market share and penetration, improved usability, simpler maintenance, reduced development costs, optimal search engine readiness, future-proofing and far greater cross-browser compatibility, especially with emergent technologies like hand-held, WAP-enabled and tablet devices which, in commercial terms, mean greater revenue.

Skilled accessible web development companies such as Southbourne Internet levy no additional fee for W3C standards-compliant, fully accessible web solutions. Accessibility is an integral aspect of their services from both a viable business web development model and an ethical business perspective.

The UK's over 50s are worth £175 billion; the over 45s own 80 percent of the country's wealth and over 50s have a 30 percent higher disposable income than those under 50 (source).

People in the UK with disabilities have an annual spending power of £50 billion (source).

It is estimated that over 10 percent of the British population suffers from some form of impairment, be it mental or physical (source).

There are two million blind and partially-sighted people in the UK (source) with roughly 10 per cent of the population showing symptoms of dyslexia (source).

And these groups will vote with the back button and leave a poorly designed inaccessible site, often never to return.

It is evident those businesses not intent upon the path of accessible web development will forfeit considerable and ever-increasing revenue as global Internet penetration escalates, permeates homes and leverages the wealth of online purchasers.

The benefits of standards-compliant development are further realized in website visibility with regard to search engine optimisation (SEO) since the resultant markup – the code under the bonnet – is invariably as much as 60 percent leaner, meaning the copy, the surfer-visible content, is more easily accessed and digested by search spiders which gather web content for the likes of Google, Yahoo!, MSN and other search engines.

With 47 percent of shoppers using search engines to locate products online, Southbourne Internet recognize it is imperative the development and update processes embrace SEO as integral to website SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) prominence and successful marketing.

Along with Internet marketing, ecommerce web design, PR and promotion feature heavily in Marcello's skills portfolio, as do project authoring and directing. He has received Rock-America's Best Video award for the remix of Yello's The Race. His other achievements include authoring 'The Kingdom Concept', a portal for Saudi Arabia encompassing foreign ministry and embassy websites incorporating virtual tours of Saudi Arabia and online education that Prince Turki Al Faisal, Ambassador and Minister to the United Kingdom, requested Marcello present at the Royal Saudi Arabia embassy, and now a project under consideration in Riyadh.

Southbourne Internet endorse and employ the Government Standards for Technical Architecture and the e-Government Interoperability Framework which sets out the policies and specifications for achieving interoperability and seamless information flow and which sits well with their philosophy of enabling business through technology.

For further information or an informal chat, Southbourne Internet can be contacted via their website Southbourne Internet

Text by Incisive Copy for Southbourne Internet

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Vincent Marcello
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