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Local sites shine in this year’s Best of the Web

The Rochester Business Journal’s annual Best of the Web competition turns 20 this year.

Few could predict the changes coming to online business—from search engine optimization to mobile applications—when the first competition was held in 1996.

The websites of area businesses and non-profits have evolved over time. Not only is a website now considered a given in virtually all industries, it’s only one part of an overall strategy to use the Internet to reach customers and supporters.

The original idea of the Best of the Web competition remains the same: to draw attention to the best websites produced by organizations in the Rochester area. For the first time, one category focuses solely on mobile sites.

Readers submitted hundreds of nominations for the 2015 competition. The screening committee also reviewed dozens more websites from previous years and other lists. This year’s finalists range from multinational corporations to small non-profits.

Judges evaluated the finalist sites based on navigability, usability, functionality, content, art and visual design, and standards compliance.

Judges’ remarks can be found at go.rbj.net/2015bestoftheweb.

This year’s judges were:

  •  Matt Dana, director of Web and instructional development, National Technical Institute for the Deaf at Rochester Institute of Technology;
  •  Mike Johansson, lecturer, department of communication at RIT, and consultant, Fixitology;
  •  Lisa Kribs-LaPierre, co-founder, This Good World;
  •  Mike McDougall, president, McDougall Communications;
  •  Eric Miltsch, founder, Command Z Automotive Consulting Inc.;
  •  Becky Olsen, co-managing partner, Biznetix; and
  •  Laura Segave, health IT director, Innovative Solutions, and president, Digital Rochester.

The judges will be available for a panel discussion and Q&A at the Best of the Web breakfast March 12. The event will be held at 7:30 a.m. at the Radisson Hotel Rochester Riverside. A Google Analytics workshop will follow the breakfast from 9:45 to 11:15 a.m.

3/6/15 (c) 2015 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or email rbj@rbj.net.

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