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March Madness – Lessons Learned, Part 3

April 11th, 2011 by Erick Beck

Looking back we can read analytics and web logs to get a good idea of who came to the site during March Madness and what they were looking for. That’s the easy part; the hard part is evaluating our performance and taking away lessons to learn for the future.

From a technical standpoint we did a good job. The site stood up to the increased load, and would have been able to handle considerably more if it had come. The content that we posted, though, was not as pro-active as was the technical measures that we took. The web calendar was probably our most successful measure in this respect. We did take active measures to get the event information posted there as soon as possible and to get the event linked from the main university web page.

Given the fact that analytics showed (and common sense would suggest) a significant uptick in the number of people visiting the Athletics page, I’m disappointed in how we handled that content. We didn’t make any significant changes to that page until after the championship, and in retrospect we could have made finding things a lot easier for visitors looking for information on the women’s basketball team and their tournament run.

Improving on this process is going to be one of my goals for this year. While we will never have access to the detailed information that the Aggie Athletics site has, we can and should make an effort to be more responsive to what people are looking for at the time. With that in mind, I have made some small updates to the Athletics page to highlight the Equestrian Championship that our team is competing in this weekend. This feature can hopefully continue to grow and evolve as our teams compete in other title events, and in so doing make the university web site more valuable to those interested in keeping up with the Aggies.

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Monday, April 11th, 2011 www.tamu.edu
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