A New LIVE! Site for a New RFID Era

By Mark Roberti

We have revamped RFID Journal's events website to help a new audience find sessions, exhibitors and other features relevant to their needs.

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RFID Journal is now into its second decade covering radio frequency identification, and I firmly believe the second will be nothing like the first. For the past 10 years, RFID solution providers have been enhancing their products to meet customers’ needs. Early adopters have done the painstaking work of figuring out how the technology can deliver value, as well as working with solution providers to ensure their products are mature enough for use in mission-critical applications. The hard work is complete, and businesses worldwide can now take advantage of RFID technologies to improve the way they do business.

Adoption will ramp up significantly during the coming decade. RFID Journal has been preparing to handle a massive increase in traffic that will occur as companies turn to our website for information about products and vendors, as well as how firms in their industry are employing the technology to improve the way they do business. Last year, we entirely revamped our website’s underlying infrastructure, moving it to the cloud. The site is now faster and more secure as a result.

After completing the work on the RFID Journal website, we applied the same infrastructure upgrades to our events site, so that it, too, can handle the many companies that will want to attend our LIVE! events to learn how RFID can help them improve their businesses. We also completely redesigned the site’s navigation and organization to make it easier for first-time attendees to find the speakers, sessions, products and exhibitors of interest to them.

Taking a page from Microsoft‘s tile approach to Windows 8, we created tiles to show the major aspects of the event: Agenda, Exhibition, Awards, Hotel Information and so forth. Under each, we created tiles showing many of the available features. For example, if you click on the Agenda tile on the homepage, you will see eight additional tiles: Agenda at a Glance, Keynotes, Tracks, Preconferences, Post-conferences, Training, Co-Located Events and Speakers.

To make it easy for potential attendees to find what they are looking for, we have added several tools that make it intuitive and easy to navigate the site, so all the information you need is at your fingertips. When potential attendees click on pages in the For Attendees area, for instance, the right-hand column will display tabs with all the items that might be of interest to them, such as the agenda, brochure, hotel information, concierge service, speed networking and so on.

Current and potential exhibitors visiting the site’s For Exhibitors area would see an entirely different navigation—they would see links to Marketing Resources, Get More Leads, information about how to enter the RFID Journal Awards and the Coolest Demo contests, and so on. There is a lot of information here about the tools we have created to help exhibitors, so I hope they will take the time to explore this section of the site.

We have seen an increase in traffic across RFID Journal‘s news, events and awards sites, as well as at RFID Connect. In addition, we’ve also noticed an increase in registrations for our newsletters. This tells me a growing number of companies are realizing that RFID has matured and can now meet their needs at a price they can afford.

I’ve written in the past that RFID deployments need to become easier, and that if vendors want to see adoption increase, they need to offer products that do not require a Ph.D. in physics to deploy. I believe in practicing what I preach, so our aim is to make the LIVE! website easy to navigate, so that visitors need not spend a week figuring out whether the conference has what they seek. I would love to hear your feedback or suggestions for the site, so please feel free to send me an e-mail.

Mark Roberti is the founder and editor of RFID Journal. If you would like to comment on this article, click on the link below. To read more of Mark’s opinions, visit the RFID Journal Blog, the Editor’s Note archive or RFID Connect.