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What we offer 

Our service is designed to help your digital publishing business to grow.

We do that by giving you access to our knowledge and experience, and by delivering projects that sit within a framework that is flexible, resilient and scalable.

Our aim is to offer you a range of creative, application and infrastucture options that will work for you.

In this section you will find an overview of our services and how each of them can benefit your business.

Or simply give us a call 020 7631 9280


Powerful content management application

Our content management application is built from fifteen years of good ideas. Everytime we come up with smart solution for a project, we find a way of generalising the functionality and adding it to our core application.

There are three overriding design principles within the Wide Area content management application that have steered our development path:

1.   Implement a publishing process

The system has to understand that:

•  not all content can be immediately published. 

• different people can do different things. For example, some people can create content but are not allowed to make it live.

• no content should be lost. So if an articles goes through five revisions then all five versions are kept. 

2.   Clearly separate content from design

In general, the people who produce content do not want to manage how it appears on the page. For example, a person writing for for print wants to write their content in Word and not learn how to use Adobe InDesign. On paper and on the web, this separation makes publishing simpler. It also allows content to be more simply targeted at new platforms as they appear, such as iPhone apps and the Kindle.

3.   Allow simple changes to be made simply

There is nothing more frustrating than going to use a system and finding that something which is perceived as a simple change is complicated. For example, if I want to resize a picture in a document then I should be able to do with a few clicks.

With these principles in mind, you can view a full feature list.


Unique website production system

Our unique templating system gives us the ability to deliver a web project with a completely customised look-and-feel and deliver it to you within a budget and delivery schedule that you would expect from a modular system.

The Wide Area templating system was developed so that we could clearly separate content from design when building websites using our own content management system.

Our content management application was built with the precept that the people who produce content do not want to manage how it appears within the page, and the people who design the page do not want their creativity stifled by programmers who want an easy life. 

In essence; we wanted a system that did not let the technical tail wag the creative dog.

Today this system lets us present content from other content systems such as WordPress and off-the-shelf e-commerce platforms, and allows content to be more simply targeted at new platforms as they appear, such as mobile phone platforms, iPhone apps and the Kindle.

And why are we telling you this?

This process is important to you because it is this process that lets us deliver a web project with a complex front end without matching that complexity in the development environment, which means that we avoid risk and cost for your business and for ours.

Read more about our web technologies.


Custom articles to fit your content

Our ability to create custom articles via the Wide Area content management application is a service that clearly differentiates our us from our competitors. 

We developed this feature so that we can manage any content structure in a simple, editable format. We can then deliver complex front-end sites without adding technical complexity to the build process.

This means that projects can be delivered in a cost-effective way and are easy to maintain. 

Here are just a few examples of how we use custom articles to deliver projects:

  • Custom articles can be populated via a feed for data integration projects,
  • Via the management interface for easy, intuitive,
  • From a web page to capture and display user-generated content,
  • Or via a protected web page to create private management pages for users who do not need full access to the management system.

The possibilities are endless. See examples of some custom article implementations


Mobile and tablet apps

Rather than follow the crowd with a 'one size fits all' page-turning model, we take a 'content oriented' approach to app development.

This approach means that the reading experience is always tailored to both the content and each device that we target.

Rather than simply reproducing the printed page as an image, we store each page in our content management application and use the elements of each article to deliver the best user experience possible.

We have expreience at developing for:

  • iPad
  • iPhone
  • Amazon Kindle
  • Barnes & Noble Nook
  • Android phones, tablets and readers

Our approach means that you can leverage the full value of your content in every format.

Read more about our mobile and app production process


Custom e-commerce content

We can deliver e-commerce article pages that are completely customised to the format of your product or service.

Whether you need a range of different formats, or one style that is particular to your business, we can create a bespoke article that accommodates any number of values such as price/discount options, term variations, rich media add-ons and premium display positions.

We can do this quickly and easily using our powerful content management application.

Once we have created the fields that you need to market and sell your product, we then identify the order processing values that need to be added to our flexible e-commerce article.

To date we have used this format to sell job listings, event bookings, directory listings and magazine subscriptions.

Clients choose us because we understand how to add value to content, so rather than code each site with a unique set of requirements, we channel our efforts into application features that we can use over again.

See some recent examples of our custom e-commerce implementations

We can deliver e-commerce article pages that are completely customised to the format of your product or service.
 
Whether you need a range of different formats, or one style that is particular to your business, we can create a bespoke format quickly and easily using our powerful content management application.
 
Once we have created the fields that you need to display and market your product, we then identify the order processing values that need to be added to our flexible e-commerce article.
 
To date we have used this format to sell job listings, event bookings, directory listings and magazine subscriptions.
 
Clients choose us because we understand how to add value to content, so rather than code each site with a unique set of requirements, we channel our efforts into application features that we can use over again.

Subscriptions e-commerce application

Subscriptions are a are key requirement when generating revenue from content, whether that content is electronic and behind a paywall or is print publication.

Our Subsforce application is a stand-alone content management module that lets you create customised subscription landing pages in just a few minutes.

Each element of the page is under your control, so you can manage the creatine elements and the contract options via a drag-and-drop interface. 

Payment can be processed online via a cred/debit card payment gateway such as SagePay, EPDQ or PayPal, or we can simply collect payment information and deliver it to you or your bureau securely. 

Subsforce lets you control every element on the page...

  • Price
  • Term
  • Payment options
  • Delivery regions
  • Data protection options
  • Additional data capture such as gift options or demographic data
  • images
  • Single or multi-page layout

See examples of some Subsforce pages


Advanced WordPress projects

Our unique templating system can now talk to WordPress. This means that if you are currently using WordPress, we can deliver a unique front end look and feel for your website without having to move your content.

Our own content management application was built with the precept that the best content structure for website users is not necessarily the most efficient structure for content producers.  

We can now apply this concept to WordPress and other content management applications.

This system also allows content to be more simply targeted at new platforms as they appear, such as mobile phone platforms, iPhone apps and the Kindle. Plus, it gives us the flexibility to filter the content according to the capabilities of the platform.

This means that your content creators manage every output via the familiar WordPress platform and your customers get the best experience from their device.


Social network integration

Social networks are an intrinsic part of the digital experience for today's content consumers, which means that they are intrinsic to our service.

We ensure that each social touch-point is optimised, for both your content creators and your consumers.
 

New content can be posted to your chosen network immediately, either in its original form or edited, and users can share their experience of your site with their friends and colleagues.

Exposing your content to communities is not just about scattering widgets on the page. Interaction needs to be targeted, transparent and appropriate if you are to successfully engage with your consumers.


Client data integration

If you have access to data that has a commercial value to your customers then we can work with you to optimise that value and create a valuable online asset.

Assuming that you have the raw material, we can slice and dice your data to create something that will create real competative advantage to your business. Aside from our experience and expertise, the flexibility of our content management application and our unique templating system means that we really can leverage your content into a tangible business asset.

The distinct separation of content from design means that we can accommodate almost any form of data. So long as we can access it, then we can use it to create custom articles, ready to manipulate on the front end.

The source of your data can be a bespoke or a proprietary system. Likewise you can continue to maintain the data via its source of origin, or we can build you a bespoke management interface. We will work with you to define the work-flow that best suits your needs.

Once we have the data in our content management application, we can set about creating value by presenting it in a way that is most meaningful to your customers. Because we do not have to mirror the content structure on your web site, our options have not been limited before we start.

By working with you to produce a detailed design brief with detailed wire-frames, we will be sure to deliver the key commercial requirements for your project.


Subscription fulfillment integration

We specialise in delivering e-commerce solutions for the print and digital subscriptions market.

We have delivered integration solutions for all of the leading subscription fulfillment bureaux and several bespoke applications used by UK publishers.

As with all of our integration projects, our approach is to separate the front-end user requirements from any data structures that we need to send orders to your bureau or application.  

The flexibility of our content management application and our unique templating system means that we can create great usability every time.

The fulfilment bureaux and applications that we have worked with include:

  • CDS Global
  • Dovetail
  • DSB.net
  • Gordon & Gotch Myriad
  • QSS
  • Salesforce.com

To find out more about our subscriptions management experience, read about our IPC Media project and our Telegraph project


Events micro-site production

Our events marketing module provides a simple interface for you to build a micro-site for each event that you run, and manage the pages as the event moves through its promotional life-cycle.

Each instance of our events module is tailored to the requirements of each customer. The set-up process consists of three steps:

We first identify each different types of event that you run (one day conference, two day conference, awards dinner...)

Next we define the functionality that needs to be associated with each event type (places, seats or tables, member discounts, early-bird discounts, single or multi-delegate booking, on-line payment...)

Then we work out how each event, or group of events, should be displayed [sponsor logos, conference programme, speaker pages, voting pages, short-lists, winners...]

Once we have captured this information and designed some templates, the events management interface is created so that you can add new micor-sites quickly and easily.

Once created, your web pages can be edited, added to and taken away so that your site change change with the publication and sales cycles.

The management interface gives access to delegate lists and booking information, along with easy access to the micro-site conent.


Online payment processing

For real-time payment processing we can integrate your website with your online payment gateway of choice.

Our existing customers use a range of solutions including Paypal, SagePay, Barclays EPDQ, Authorize.net and Google Checkout.

If you are looking for a solution that captures credit/debit card or Direct Debit payment data for batch processing, then we can offer a secure solution that meets payment card industry (PCI) standards.

All of our developers are CRB(Criminal Records Bureau) checked in line with PCI guidelines.       


Custom Google Analytics reports

We use Google's  API to create custom reports and dash-boards.

Delivered either as dashboards within our content management application or as a set of restricted access web pages, these reports form the basis of your visitor or e-commerce management data

By capturing analytics for targeted actions on your site, we can deliver accurate data and deliver it back to you in a meaningful way.

Examples of our custom reports include subscription sales activity, job applications and industry data usage.

Custom reports can be delivered as dashboard within the content management application or as a set of private pages on your website, depending on who you want to deliver the data to.

As standard, our application  includes a custom activity report for each individual article so that you and your editors can monitor the popularity of each article in real time and with one click.


Search engine optimised websites

Our projects are always optimised for search.

We follow Google Webmaster guidelines when defining a site structure and include schema tags and site maps as standard. Page and image tags are all managed via our content management application.

Provided that your content is of high quality and is written in form that will match intuative search requests, then you can expect sustainable improvements in your organic rankings as you add more conent and build strong commercial links with relevant sites.

If you need faster results, then you can invest in seach engine marketing activities such as pay-per-click advertising.

What we don't do is offer any services that claim to manipulate organic search results. 

We advise our clients to follow Google Webmaster Guidelines:

  • make pages primarily for users, not search engines
  • avoid tricks intended to improve search rankings
  • don't participate in link schemes designed toincrease your site's ranking

Ad trafficking and serving

We can accommodate your ad trafficking needs either by incorporating ad tags to your exisiting ad provider or by setting up an open source solution such OpenX or Google's free DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP) application.

We also offer a managed service where you send us the creative and booking information and we place the ads.

This service allows you to focus on selling while we deal with all of the technical issues around file formats and scheduling structures.


Ad production

Our design team can produce banners and buttons to market your services.

We offer creative design, fast turn-around and high quality production in your required format; including simple graphics, animated gif or flash format files. 

We can also create: 

  • bespoke marketing landing pages,
  • bespoke email design
  • re-usable email templates,
  • surveys and data capture pages

Website design

We offer a wide range of design options provided by our in-house creative team and our network of creative agencies and freelance designers. This means that we can always fit your style and your budget.

Whatever creative option you choose, we will manage the creative process from concept to sign-off. Our project management process will ensure that every design meets the functionality and usability standards that we need to deliver the project. 

Our project delivery process always starts with design, and the full creative is signed off by you before the site is built. Our team of highly skilled front-end developers then faithfully translate your flat design into CSS/thml and deploy our templating system to link in the content.

This approach means that your design is never compromised by functionality.


Email marketing

We offer a range of services that let you manage your email communications successfully.  

Email marketing consists of four key activities;

  • data collection,
  • email communication production,
  • bulk email delivery
  • and list management.

Any or all of these activities can be managed and delivered by our content management application, managed by our CMS and delivered by an external provider via their application programming interface (API), or managed and delivered outside of the Wide Area environment.

Take a look at our marketing tools to see what features are on offer from our application, or call to discuss options for integrating with your existing provider.

Our objective is to create a solution that is right for your business. 


CRM reporting and integration

If your website is part of a wider communications strategy then we can integrate with your established CRM package to remove any duplication of effort or message.

As long as we can send and receive files to your CRM solution then we can update customer records with their on-line transaction activity. 

If you don't have a CRM process but want to create one, then we will work with you to capture your requirements and recommend a suitable path.

One option available to us it to build a simple admin interface within our application that lets you create and manage client accounts, however, if you need to manage actions outside of the website then we would recommend integration over build.

Our approach is to always work with best-of-breed applications that operate in an open environment with an established and active user-base.

We are experienced Salesforce.com integrators.



Consultation and requirements capture

At the start of each project we make sure that we understand all of your requirements from a commercial, functional and operational perspective.

To do this we use a system called viewpoint analysis which is based on the premise that any system can be viewed from a number of different angles (or viewpoints).

So rather than starting from the premise that ‘I want a system to do the following’, viewpoint analysis starts from the premise ‘What are we all going to do with the system’.

Each Wide Area project includes:

  • Stakeholder review
  • Extensive consultation
  • Detailed requirements capture

This process ensures that each stakeholder within the client's organisation is considered and non-functional issues are covered such as hosting, security and maintenance. We adopt this practice to minimise risk and ensure that our clients understands the true cost of ownership - we aim to avoid surprises at all costs!

See some examples of completed projects


Project planning

Once we are satisfied that we have captured all of your project requirements (commercial, functional and operational), we will produce a project plan that will include a key set of milestones, together with a series of tangible deliverables. Project time-lines can also be agreed.

Project milestones will map the implementation process and identify dependencies between tasks, on external services or on contributions from you.

The plan will typically include a series of delivery milestones which give you the opportunity to sign off the project in a stages rather than in one go, at the end. Our aim is always to eliminate risk and avoid surprises.

See some examples of competed projects.


Project delivery

Your project will be delivered using an online application that lets you track progress, comment and feedback to our development team.

Where appropriate, each project delivery milestone will be made using a live web environment. This approach allows you to sign off on all usability issues such as performance and load times before launch.

Your project will be delivered using an online application that lets you track progress, comment and feedback to our development team.

Where appropriate, each project delivery milestone will be made using a live web environment. This approach eliminates any risks associated with a big deployment at the end of the project, and allows you to sign off on all usability issues such as performance and load times prior to project launch.

By getting you to sign off the project is phases, we avoid any risk of significant change requests at the end of the delivery process, keeping the project on schedule and on budget.
It also removes any large scale deployment processes from the end of the project, and all associated risks.
By getting you to sign off the project is phases, we also avoid last minute change requests at the end of the delivery process, keeping the project on schedule and on budget.
Our change control process will keep you in control of your project at all times. 
See some examples of completed projects

Website Hosting

Your website can either be hosted by us as a part of a managed service agreement, or it can be hosted within an infrastructure that is owned by you.

Managed hosting

Managed hosting is a popular option for clients with whose core business does not include any IT infrastructure or expertise. 

Clients who choose this option benefit from an infrastructure that is both scalable and resilient and completely managed by us. We work to 500% bandwidth excess even at peak times, and our uptime rarely falls below 99.9% per calendar month.

Client-owned hosting

If your preference is to host your websites within an infrastructure that you own, then we offers a range of services that include the sourcing and the set-up of a hosting infrastructure and the ongoing management and maintenance of the chosen solution.

This service comes in two forms; passive and active management. Passive management is where we monitor your site availability and performance, report any issues and provide updates for you to install.

Active management is where we manage the relationship with your hosting contract on your behalf, apply updates and deliver support services.


Content management application provision

The Wide Area content management application is available as a service or under license. 

Software as a Service (SaaS)

In most instances our Wide Area content management application is delivered to clients as a service. All client access is web-based, and the application is maintained and supported by our development staff. 

All SaaS customers benefit from regular application updates and feature releases. 

Software under license

Where clients want to host and maintain the application within an existing IT infrastructure, then we will issue a license to use. Our standard licensing agreement is based on term and number of users.

Software updates are issued as a part of the license agreement. 

Read about our application platform and infrastructure


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Tel: +44 (0)20 7631 9280

Email: info@widearea.co.uk