After almost a 3 week build our new website is complete!!! Google has now crawled and indexed their servers with our new information as well, but remember always use our landing page as a starting point, do not use a search engine as the old information with still be on servers for months to come.
Work is now done on the transition of all pages over to the new format, we deleted pages and content that were not being used, and we have now started on the individual pages on updating any content that needs to be.
Some big changes are as follows.
1. We changed the font and the size from standard to make it easier to use.
2. We are going through our you tube account and updating each video for the waterfalls and also posting them directly to each page so you can see them easier. This is were you can help by submitting any videos that you have that are of high quality and we can post them as well.
3. Google maps are slowly being made up and posted along with better directions and the little ins and outs of the waterfall in question, you can also help out here by sending us your thoughts, tips and tricks, etc…
4. Pictures, pictures, pictures. We will slowly be going through all the pictures that we have on the website and replacing them with higher quality ones that you want to submit. Here is were all of you can get involved by submitting your best shots for the website and social media pages. A few notes about this though is in order. The use of plugins and viewers usually don’t work very good, as they tend to break down and get corrupted at some point, we will simply post individual pictures for now. If you would like to submit any pictures do them with a watermark on them with your name if you can. If you can try to teach yourself how to add your details on your picture in all the areas on your software program that you use, that way its a simple cut, paste and post for us. We want to be able to give you credit were its due, but don’t make it hard for us on this end, and REMEMBER, we are not responsible for telling the world its your picture, this is your responsibility if it matters to you. Once a picture is posted people can download it, wipe the details from it and use it for whatever purpose they want to. Some photographers have gotten themselves in some trouble over this for creating such a storm online over their picture being used for things by others and embarrassing themselves by portraying themselves as holier than though, if you know what I mean. Remember this is about all of us and our great city as a whole in sharing our pictures to the world, THIS IS NOT ABOUT YOU.
5. Our old website that was up for about 7 years was never changed in a lot of areas, but now we can make changes daily as its much easier to use, here are some stats for you that you may be interested in. The old site had 500 pages submitted but only 6 were ever indexed and the pictures were not even listed. Now with the new site we are as of today at 490 pages submitted and 478 are indexed, along with 1654 pictures submitted and 839 indexed!!!! The new site is being crawled daily now by google so the content is being updated to the world at a very fast rate, we are all extremely pleased with how its all going.
6. Social media is a HUGE part of the City of Waterfalls Initiative, but from now on the website will be used as a starting point for everything. In simple terms all stories, events etc, will be posted here on the website and THEN cross listed on the appropriate social media channels. This way EVERYONE will know about what is going on and not just a small corner of the world. If you are a social media expert on a specific platform and want to give back to your city then let us know we can always use help with running some of our groups, pinterest, twitter, etc…
7. What else can we do? What is missing? How can we make the website and visitors experience even better? REMEMBER over 75% of all traffic to our website is from tourists outside of Hamilton!!!! To reach us go to the contact us area on the website and submit any questions, contributions etc, that you may have.