The BIG question many publishers have when making a decision about how to best position their publication online is what is HTML5 and how do you know whether it’s the best choice for your online experience.Here is a short synopsis, along with the three most essential questions to answer that will lead you to make the best decisions for your publication.
WHAT IS IT?
In short, HTML is the behind-the-scenes coding language that lets us see things online. Since the original HTML form of coding was invented over 20 years ago, it has gone through many updates. But it has been more than a decade since the last one, and in web terms that’s the equivalent of a lifetime. So HTML has been behind the times in the digital space.For example, when videos came into the web scene there was no way to integrate it naturally into HTML. So video companies had to develop their own video players, or “plug-ins,” which you may also recognize as Flash, RealPlayer or Windows Media Player, to work around it. This approach worked but was also risky, as we had to download these plug-ins, which took lots of time and could bring with them potential viruses that we did not want to deal with. HTML5 has added capabilities into its code so we can bypass these steps and have a smoother, cleaner integration within our content without having to use plugins.
Basically, HTML5 is the smoothest format to use when publishing your content as a base for expanding across multiple handheld devices. But it pays to establish your online publishing goals in order to decide how to use HTML5 to your greatest advantage. Once you know that, HTML5 is a SMOOTH road to your building your reader list!
LIKE IT? TWEET IT!: HTML5 is a SMOOTH road to building your reader list!
3 ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF ABOUT HTML5
1. Is your content readable on the Apple Newsstand?
If your answer is yes, meaning you have a magazine suitable to submit to the Apple Newsstand or Google Play, then you will most likely need a separate iPad and iPhone app or an Android App. If you are a new publication, the good news is that if you host your apps on a platform with sophisticated enough technology that begins with HTML5, your content will already be available in that format, allowing you to market your publication through your website to build your list of readers before investing in a custom app.
(For more info about investing in the right kind of app for your publication, see our article on HOW TO DECIDE WHAT KIND OF APP TO INVEST IN: 3 CRUCIAL FINANCIAL POINTS TO CONSIDER)
2. Do your readers find your publication through your personal marketing efforts?
If the answer to this is yes, then HTML5 can be a most ideal way to market your publication and give your readers the chance to experience your content in any browser, linked straight from your site. There are many advantages to this,including the chance to increase your SEO while drawing more engaged readers to your site.
(For more info on how to effectively increase visits to your site, see our article on HOW TO BUILD A SOLID, LASTING SOCIAL MEDIA PLAN FOR YOUR PUBLICATION)
3. Is your content anything other than a magazine suitable for the Apple Newsstand or Google Play?
If the answer to this is yes, then an HTML5 version of your publication linked to your site with an effective social media plan in place can help you spearhead your growth exponentially. HTML5 will give you the opportunity to spearhead your publication for exposure to your specific niche audience, growing your list and creating the following you are looking for.
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