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Thomas Cook redesign: Has it improved usability?

Travel agent Thomas Cook introduced some changes to its website last week, aimed at improving navigation and relevance for its users.

We looked at the site a couple of months ago, finding a few problems with the holiday booking process, so has Thomas Cook resolved any of these issues?

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Tips on providing user reviews

User product reviews are a must for retailers and when used well can enhance the credibility of a site and nudge customers towards buying a product.

Reviews can have the benefit of bumping up conversion rates and average order values, as well as providing some unique content for the search engines.

Here are some tips for retailers on providing user product reviews... 

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BBC iPlayer revamp improves usability

It's only around six months since the iPlayer was launched, but the BBC has introduced a new beta version that aims to be more user-friendly.

iPlayer beta

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Huffington: attempts at neutrality in journalism are overrated

At the Personal Democracy Forum in New York City, Arianna Huffington, founder of The Huffington Post, used her time on stage to ostensibly deliver the type of message the audience was looking for.

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PHP Caching Tools & Techniques

PHP is installed on more than 20m websites, including some of the most popular websites in the world.

It's easy to install, easy to work with and when put in the hands of a competent developer can achieve the performance and scalability that highly-popular websites and demanding web applications require.

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Site review: Sky News beta

Sky News is in the process of updating its website. It currently has a new beta site running alongside the old one.

Sky News beta site

It has a bigger, bolder look, but is it an improvement on the old version? 

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The Web Week in Review

From more Yahoo drama to a big money investment and rumoured acquisition to the news that the mobile phone may be great for brain tumours, the tech news that interested me this week was diverse.

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Would a Cost-Per-Engagement model attract advertisers to spend more online?

Over the past few years, CPM has become the common currency for online advertising. But is the model still relevant?

Should we be buying online media based on engagement rather than just passive consumption?

In the current tough financial period, would advertisers be willing to commit more budgets online if customer engagement was guaranteed?

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Outsourced DNS hosting providers

An often overlooked factor in maintaining a high level of website uptime is having a reliable DNS service.

If your DNS fails or is slow to resolve, your uptime will suffer - even if your website itself is technically "up".

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SEO: best bang for your buck for generating online leads

E-consultancy’s recently published online lead generation report shows that natural search, email marketing and paid search are still the most commonly used methods for generating online leads.

However, PPC claims the larger proportion of the budget, even though natural search is seen as the most effective method for lead generation.

Given that search engine optimisation provides the most perceived value for money, why aren't more marketers investing in natural search over and above other methods?

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Is Web 2.0 changing the entrepreneur-VC dynamic?

In Web 1.0, a considerable amount of startup activity was centered on the notion that the internet was a "commercial" medium.

It wasn't uncommon to see an e-commerce startup raise an eight figure round of funding early on in its lifecycle.

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How much change does your site really need?

In an online retail market expected to double in size to £78 billion by 2010* the potential rewards for e-commerce businesses are huge. Equally, so is the pressure to stay ahead of their competition. 

The desire for online businesses to become bigger and better inevitably affects their approach to redesign. There’s a huge temptation to introduce the latest whiz bang functionality and super cool design which will appeal to a whole new generation of customers.

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