Why did we start the awards? Quite frankly, when we research businesses for stories we write, one place we check is the company's website. And we were appalled at many of the websites we saw.
We figured that by showcasing the best websites run by both small and big business, we would educate you lot about best practice.
Some industries like tourism are highly dependent on websites. Yet it is astonishing how bad many websites run by tourism companies are: merely a brochure stuck up on the internet highway.
We also want to keep raising the bar. So if you are feeling pretty smug about your website, even more reason to attend tomorrow's Web Awards webinar where we will showcase our winners in the following categories:
- Best site (under 20 staff)
- Best site (over 20 staff)
- Best design
- Best search strategy
- Best social media strategy
- Best blog
- Best eCommerce site
Already there has been a big improvement in the standard of entries.
Editor James Thomson, who led our team of judges, says it was great to see less cluttered and cleaner designs, much better functionality and a huge focus on SEO.
But he makes the point that if there has been such a jump in standards in one year, it sends a warning to many small businesses that their websites need constant refreshing.
"I think small businesses are going to have to allocate more money to their websites just to stay competitive. Large businesses now have huge teams working on their online strategy so the edge that smart small businesses had for a few years is waning."
Even more reason to see you tomorrow at the SmartCompany Web Awards. Register now!