My eyes are glazing over. The light from the dual screens in front of me bores a hole through my retinas to the front of my brain. I bring my hand to my face to wipe a drip of drool forming in the corner of my mouth, as I continue scrolling down the website page to search for any inconsistencies. I inspect the page for clarity, broken links, spelling mistakes. Here I am, wrestling for the first time with nine10’s task of ‘QC’: quality control.
So, maybe that was a bit dramatic. It’s possible that I was not in fact drooling with boredom, slowly turning into a quality controlling zombie. I’ve been working here for a couple weeks now, and the term ‘QC’ has followed me everywhere. I initially disregarded QC as a formality, half-heartedly completed by whoever is unlucky enough to have the time. It took scrolling through ten pages until the bright light of understanding gently descended on me like a dove. Okay, again — not really that dramatic, or sudden. I’ve gradually come to appreciate the task of quality control, because it actually plays a huge role in marketing.
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Quality Control: The Real MVP
Quality control is the last step: the process of making sure every piece of marketing is perfect. Font consistency, mobile compatibility, properly working touch-to-call phone numbers. Quality control makes sure our efforts in planning and creating material wasn’t all for nothing. Every mistake, no matter how small, is a reason in the mind of the customer not to trust the business or, worse, a compromise in the quality of our agency’s work output.
It’s human nature. Quality control experts Kibin found in a study of 1700 dating sites that 43% of of users found bad grammar unattractive (source: colourworks). That’s a huge percentage! It’s the same for a customer-business relationship. Customers assume that the quality of the business is reflected in the quality of their marketing.
There’s a free marketing tip to be taken from this – a point that brings me back to my grade 6 elementary class. Proofread! Check quality as if life itself depends on it! When nine10 designs and writes content for you, we already have quality control covered — at least half of our team “QC’s” each project. But when you supply your own content or creating your own marketing material, this is one area that’s super easy to do on your own, and could be a lifesaver.
Here are some basic areas nine10 goes over before making a website live:
- Spelling and grammar. A simple fix that would be tragic to skip.
- Consistent use of fonts. Your website isn’t a doodle page — we keep it professional (3 fonts max).
- Clarity. Are pictures blurry or pixelated? If so, we look for higher quality alternatives.
- Mobile compatibility. Every website should make it easy for mobile visitors to view it. You don’t want to lose visitors just because they didn’t view your website on their computer.
- Website links. We TRY to break the site. If you can find a faulty link, so will a customer.
- Best practices. There are unspoken rules that every website should follow. For example, a logo should always be in the top left hand corner, and should link back to the home page. External links should always open in a new tab. And so on.
When it comes to websites, pamphlets, and so on, nine10 has quality under control. If a high quality, triple-checked website sounds good to you, you should give us a call! A team of honest, intelligent web marketers are at your fingertips.
I’m a student at Grant MacEwan University in Edmonton, majoring in Professional Communications. “What does that even mean? Sounds like a cover up for something intense,” you say. Unfortunately, it’s not a secret Alberta combat training program. It means I am learning the skill set of strategic writing, editing, and publishing. I could edit magazines, write technical manuals (my nemesis) or create content for marketing agencies. At nine10 I am writing content for blogs, websites, and occasionally trying my hand at different skills around the agency. As I’m going I’m sharing what I learn via the nine10 blog, so make sure you stay tuned!