Your personal website is a place where you can share your education and career experiences as well as the missions that are important to you, especially if you wish to impart helpful guidance and lessons learned from your experiences. There are no limits to what you can share, in fact you can create an online hub for each subject that you’d like to share with your audience. In this week’s #WebsiteWednesday, you’ll meet an accomplished product designer, app developer, and Effective Altruism advocate who does an extraordinary job sharing the EA philosophy as well as his varied professional experiences online: BrianTan.xyz
BrianTan.xyz is the carefully curated personal website of Brian Tan, an accomplished designer currently working full time with Effective Altruism Philippines, the local chapter of the EA organization he co-founded in 2018. Considered a philosophy, a movement, and a community, Effective Altruism is a response to an obstacle that many people face when trying to figure out the most impactful way to do some good. It’s the obstacle of wanting to help, but not knowing the best way how. In some instances, money and efforts are just not as impactful as intended. Effective altruism uses evidence and reasoning to determine how to help others as much as possible. There are over 170 different chapters of EA in over 40 countries. Brian created his chapter of the global EA movement because he wanted to bring together the local community of Filipinos interested in EA.
Brian and his EA chapter are currently working to spread the philosophies of EA and tackle COVID-19 issues with their ideas. In 2020 Brian gave an introduction to Effective Altruism and its benefits in addressing the pandemic during a virtual event organized by his EA chapter. He shares this talk in an article on his blog. He explains the attributes of Effective Altruists, including the willingness to solve global problems that are big in scale, neglected, and solvable. This includes global catastrophic and existential risks, which are things that could cause humanity to go extinct, thus ending the possibility of future generations to enjoy life. And, as with all other aspects of BrianTan.xyz, he doesn’t just tell – he also shares examples of how effective altruists are doing work in these neglected problem areas.
Brian’s experiences in the tech industry show off his impressive design skill set. On his website, Brian shares many projects from school and various employment experiences in a section labeled My Portfolio. One such experience, the co-creation and launch of the Hangtime app (a platform that helps students compare schedules with friends), served him well for a future project. Two years later, he joined a startup called HeronChat to work part-time as their lead UI/UX Designer, and made significant contributions to the design of their job placement app.
Brian is a very accomplished and globally conscious member of the .xyz community. He serves as a resource to those visiting his website. He shares not only his experiences and samples of his design work, but also the valuable lessons he has learned along the way. BrianTan.xyz serves to educate and inspire, and includes many opportunities to connect with Brian to learn more. You may also visit him on Facebook and LinkedIn.
In this XYZ Quarterly we’ll cover seven helpful tips that you can use to develop a customer-inspired brand and recap XYZ’s Q1 2021 activity.
Evolving your brand to fit the needs of your audience is vital to its longevity. The world is ever-changing, and often unpredictable. From economic stumbling blocks and new health regulations, to environmental dangers, social upheaval, and demographic challenges, the needs of your customer are changing. A customer-focused brand is one that always identifies growing trends and serves their audience in the best and most current way. Being flexible and nimble when necessary can help your brand to achieve true staying power.
In today’s digital world, a thoughtful and purposeful online presence is one of the best ways to stay ahead of the curve. A website with a memorable domain enables you to promote your brand and your evolution of services. It can reach new audiences all over the world and you can showcase your brands exactly how you want to.
That’s the reason this year’s XYZ Quarterly theme is Staying Ahead of the Curve with .XYZ. Each quarter we will provide you with tips on how to develop and redirect your brand to stay two steps ahead. To begin, this quarter we’ll be showing you how to stay ahead of the curve by being customer-focused. We’ll offer you seven helpful tips that you can use to develop a customer-inspired brand, as well as seven .xyz websites that serve as prime examples of these tips.
Read on for Part 1: “Seven key ways to stay ahead of the curve by building a customer-focused brand” or jump down to Part 2: “XYZ’s Q1 2021 Recap.”
Brands that can recognize a universal need and create a digital solution for the greater good can transform their industries. Among the many benefits of digital solutions (efficiency, flexibility, cost savings) one stands out the strongest: improved customer experience. Digital solutions have increased availability to countless new audiences, and have helped many brands embark on new journeys. The customer experience, specifically customer convenience, is at the forefront of these solutions and new ways of business. “It’s never been easier to” is a common expression you’ll hear when anyone describes the new innovations or offerings of a brand that has gone digital. Consider the moment in time when streaming services began evolving the video rental format that had been operating the same way for years. It became easier and easier to access any movie at any time, without the burden or inconvenience of a trip to the video store.
Moxie.xyz is an example of a brand that created a cutting-edge digital solution for the fitness community. They work to connect health and fitness professionals to those wanting to workout from home, on their own time and at an affordable cost. Moxie.xyz recognized that fitness instructors needed assistance taking their services to the digital landscape in order to continue thriving. They created a digital platform of fitness classes filtered by type, preferred instructor, duration, required equipment, and more, all at reasonable costs. Interested parties have the opportunity to become an instructor for Moxie.xyz via a link on the site. The website has made many considerations for the fitness instructor community and has set them up to be leaders in the growing trend of at-home, streaming workouts.
By researching trends, honing in on opportunities for digital solutions as they arrive, and taking action quickly, your digital solution helps you to meet the needs of modern customers. It could even become the new baseline in your industry.
It may be necessary for your brand to pivot in order to better serve your audience. Making a pivot can help you to improve your results and make the best use of your efforts. Pivots can be made in many different ways, small and large. Consider narrowing your efforts to offer one fully enhanced service that is above and beyond the best in the field. Redirect your marketing to cater to a new audience or demographic that could benefit from your services. Consider surveying your audiences to discover gaps between your offerings and their expectations. You can make your efforts widely known with updates to your website.
HelloWorldRobotics.xyz is an example of a brand that pivoted to serve the market better. With a fleet of skillfully developed autonomous delivery robots fully designed, they recognized a greater need for their technology at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. They realized they could provide a way to help reduce imprudent physical contact. The company launched Project Care, a focused effort to provide contactless delivery of essentials and sanitizing services using the technology they had just developed. Their delivery robots can be dispatched to hospitals, quarantine zones, shopping malls, and gated communities; practically everywhere a person in need could be. HelloWorldRobotics.xyz made use of their existing technology to better serve the needs of their customers.
Adjusting your lens to see the greater needs your products or services could address can help them gain traction and put you ahead of your competition.
In today’s digital world, a strong website user experience can give your brand a competitive edge in attracting and retaining your audience. Designing a website that effectively communicates the value you bring to your audience will help you to generate brand advocacy and customer retention. Becoming hyper-focused on the needs of your customers is one of the keys to creating the most engaging user experience possible. Utilize varying types of media to communicate how your brand serves them, including images, videos, and gifs. Create opportunities to be interactive with your website visitors by sharing their user submissions and hosting topical quizzes or trivia. Be creative and consider surprising your audience with something new or unexpected.
Find inspiration from Foodism.xyz, one of the first-ever social media platforms centered on food. Their mission is to gather all food enthusiasts under a single digital roof, and they do so by creatively engaging them in all things food related. What began as an online presence for their print magazine evolved into a full-fledged platform with a pretty remarkable user experience. Foodism.xyz gives members reasons to log in at least once a day, including the promise of a user-submitted recipe of the day. Not only are viewers excited for a new recipe, but they’re eager to see if perhaps their submission was chosen. Members can also read user-submitted blog posts, mixed in with posts directly from the Foodism staff, covering everything from “desserts of India” to “why it’s time to change up your cooking oil.” Foodism.xyz has created an online atmosphere where viewers can spend considerable time. They make regular use of user participation to collaborate with and build their growing community of brand advocates, strengthening their position as a leading food-based social media platform.
Utilizing engagement and creativity to understand the interests of your customers can help you design an appealing user experience on your website and set you on a course of long-lasting favorability.
Taking the time to identify areas within your company that could be more effective or efficient can help you to develop solutions to improve what you have to offer. This can help you to keep up with the needs of your audience and ensure the longevity of your brand. Larger companies may not need to make a full pivot to keep up with their audience’s needs; they just need innovative solutions to fulfill new requirements. See if you can find ways to improve your customer experience. Streamlining warehouse functions can decrease the time it takes to send out shipments. Adding a chat service to your website can cut down on customer service phone call hold times for your customers. Optimizing the images on your website can decrease its load time and help your customers save a minute or two when online shopping. Improving your operations with your customer in mind can help you continue to serve the growing needs of your customer.
Byld.xyz specializes in providing solutions for this kind of strategic internal optimization. Their website states that “61% of CEOs expect a startup competitor to disrupt their industry at any moment” so they help big companies create innovation internally to keep up with the growing needs of their customers. Byld.xyz determines a solution through three main growth phases: Insights, Labs, and Startups. The Insights phase focuses on identifying trends and detecting opportunities. Based on learnings from the Insights phase, possible solutions and minimum viable products (MVPs) are created during the Labs phase. Finally, these MVPs are put to the test during the Startup phase. Once an MVP is considered ready to become a startup solution, Byld.xyz assigns internal teams to take care of essential functions like marketing and sales, operations, product, and IT.
You can take inspiration from Byld.xyz’s startup process to help improve your own operations. New internal processes can help your brand stay relevant and in demand.
Technology has freed brands and professionals from many location constraints. Email, instant messaging, video conferencing, and messaging platforms make it possible to connect with and serve customers all over the world. Associates are working remotely, enabling them to move freely about the world and still get the job done. While businesses are utilizing digital solutions and operating remotely, they can also rethink how they conduct business. You and your customers can become fully acquainted digitally, with no need to have them travel any distance to meet with you. This helps you to expand your customer base and own your niche. A well-designed website has become an essential way to inform your audience of how your brand operates, your mission, and examples of past projects.
Take note of Wave.xyz, a creative agency that offers complete promotional and branding services to their clients. Their website clearly communicates that they handle everything from the development of a complete strategy, material creation, and campaign management. Wave.xyz sets themselves apart from other creative agencies by choosing to be “nomadic.” Their employees go to their client and work from the front line. Visitors to the About Our Collective tab will find a quote from Jason Syptak, Wave.xyz‘s founder, which identifies the forward thought used in their operations. “We set up shop, work and deliver at the point of impact, or Impact Point as we call it.” Their goal is to immerse their team in the environment and create the most meaningful final product. They don’t have a headquarters because Wave.xyz was born with the idea of traveling to their clients, demonstrating a unique dedication to their audience. Wave.xyz uses their website to inform potential clients about their methods to illuminate the fact that geographic location does not limit their ability to do business.
Eliminating limitations and boundaries created by distance is easier than ever. Being flexible and showing willingness to serve a global audience can position you as an industry leader.
Analyzing your niche’s marketplace may lead you to create a completely new product or service. World events, newly developed technologies, and changing attitudes are all opportunities to create brand-new services, projects, or communities. An evolving marketplace continually provides new opportunities to work towards improvements, and increase efficiency and convenience. Many brands find a problem or pain point and solve it in a new way. Being innovative can assist your continued relevance and position you ahead of the curve.
Learn from KetoChow.xyz, who addressed an obstacle in the trending ketogenic diet lifestyle. KetoChow.xyz recognized the growing desire for a healthy and convenient meal-replacement option to serve the ketogenic community. There are ample protein shakes and meal-replacement shakes on the market, but KetoChow.xyz wasn’t seeing any that met the trifecta of requirements to make them perfectly ketogenic: high fat, moderate protein, and very low carbohydrates. Founder Chris Bair has been following the ketogenic diet since 2014. As a customer himself, it was easy to center the customer in his strategy. He took something that worked for him in his journey and developed it to make it available for the mass market. KetoChow.xyz created a shake mix of their own. Customers can add water and heavy whipping cream or avocado oil to create a convenient ketogenic meal replacement. KetoChow.xyz created an innovative solution for the ketogenic community, positioning themselves at the forefront of ketogenic meal-replacements.
Creating a brand new product or service that fills a gap in the marketplace can create incredible value for your audience and establish you as a forward-thinking brand.
Expanding your services can help you to provide more value to your audience. You can develop a second leg of your main service to combine two services in one offering that hasn’t been done before. Increasing your services can increase the size of your brand and demonstrate your awareness of the growing needs of your customers. Once you have developed your unique combination, you can add new pages to your website and/or launch a sister site to work in conjunction with each other. Many companies have fully reinvented themselves to take advantage of digital opportunities — online stores and applications can put all of your existing services at a customer’s fingertips, at any time of the day.
Learn from Spot.xyz, a startup that’s working on a workplace solution that aims to bring the spirit and utility of being in the same physical office to a digital experience. Their platform is combining features of a communication platform with that of shared workspaces. Spot.xyz includes virtual shared spaces and office services complete with chat rooms organized by topic, as well as private groups and direct messaging. They are positioning themselves as the virtual hub for your organization, and they are bringing together a channel-based messaging platform, a secure document sharing system, and an office simulation experience. Spot.xyz’s strategy of combining the many needs of the modern office in a single platform could place them ahead of competitors that only offer a piece of what they do.
Offering multiple products or services that customers need can help you to create a unique solution that positions you at the forefront of your industry.
Brands that stay ahead of the curve stay focused on their customers. Keep an eye on growing trends and the changing needs of your audience. Strive to offer them the best experience possible by adapting to new situations and perspectives when necessary. That could mean layering and increasing your services, developing smaller innovative solutions to improve what you currently provide, or making a drastic change that better utilizes your resources. Every improvement can be promoted with a website that is as adaptable and flexible as your business.
Following the examples of the seven .xyz websites above can help to keep the customer at the center of every decision and help to ensure the longevity of your brand.
2021 is well under way. For XYZ, Q1 was filled with innovation, accomplishment, and anticipation. Here’s how we made a big entrance into the new year.
In our continued effort to help the next generation of internet users make their mark online, we changed the face of the beauty industry online forever. We proudly introduced the first-ever domain names made for the beauty industry: .Beauty, .Hair, .Skin, and .Makeup! These exciting domains allow beauty brands, professionals, and influencers to acquire affordable, memorable URLs that match their brand name, first and last name, social handle, or creative idea. We also introduced .Quest, the domain made for gurus, experts, and authorities in any field. .Quest is the perfect domain for internet users to show their website is the destination their audience is seeking. These new domains are affordable, unrestricted, and available to anyone looking for a head-turning brand presence.
Flawless beauty brands are getting online with .Beauty, .Hair, .Skin, and .Makeup domain names. Many smart brands and visionaries have already taken advantage of these exciting domain opportunities and exceeded our expectations. A .Beauty, .Hair, .Skin, or .Makeup domain can enable beauty brands, professionals, and fans to launch affordable, memorable URLs that match their brand name, first and last name, social handle, or creative idea. Some noteworthy early adopters have already realized the value of these extensions. To name just a few, we’ve noted registrations such as www.MaxFactor.beauty, www.Barbers.hair, www.Freckles.skin, and www.Glossier.makeup!
We also launched .Quest, the domain intended for gurus, experts, and authorities in any field. .Quest is the perfect domain for internet users to mark their website as the destination their audience is seeking. Some of today’s gurus are already on board, including Twitch co-founder Justin Kan who launched www.Justin.quest as the dedicated home for his podcast The Quest. New apparel brand www.GoldenAge.quest is paying homage to famous expeditions with their Explorer Series t-shirts. Each t-shirt design charts a different well-known voyage from history.
At the onset of March, eight of our domains joined .xyz in achieving MIIT accreditation in China. We’re thrilled to say that any owner of a .Rent, .College, .Monster, .Baby, .Security, .Protection, .Storage, or .Theatre domain in China can publish their site live to a global audience. Meanwhile, .xyz continues to enjoy its position as one of the most popular domains in China, having maintained MIIT accreditation since 2016. With adopters ranging from startups, individuals, and organizations, we’ve seen so many launch creative websites on their .xyz domains. Be sure to check out our blog to learn first hand from .xyz adopters and discover their inspiring websites for yourself.
We’ve been busy preparing for the relaunch of our latest domain acquisitions. We’re excited to continue to serve the real estate and transportation industries with .Homes, .Autos, .Motorcycles, .Boats, and .Yachts domain names. They make it easy for brokers, dealers, and service-providers to create memorable domains that match what their audiences are searching for. Starting in June, we plan to make these unrestricted domains even more affordable. Stay tuned for more information!
XYZ supported five student-focused hackathons in the first quarter of 2021. Participants at Hack BI 2021, UPES-CSI, UofT Hacks, SacHacks, Makeathon 3077 received .xyz domains to help them launch their ideas and projects online. Located throughout the United States, Canada, and India, the hackathons all celebrated technology with workshops and mentors that helped participants learn and grow. XYZ is proud to help participants share their ideas and solutions with a global audience via their new .xyz domains.
We also supported entrepreneurs and small businesses by partnering with business education platform StartUpStarter in March. Free .xyz domains were provided as part of their No Code Week, a 9-day event where leading companies in the no code space taught participants how to build apps, a website, and even entire businesses.
Your personal website gives you the perfect space to share your career accomplishments and personal interests with audiences around the world. It’s where you have complete design control to show off anything you’re proud of. Whether you want to display your previous work experiences, photos of your pets, or tales from the job, your website is where you can share what you want, when you want. This week’s #WebsiteWednesday features a website that shares the personal interests of a healthcare professional: McCluskey.xyz.
McCluskey.xyz is the website of recent Colorado transplant Zach McCluskey. A few months after settling into his new life, Zach began blogging on McCluskey.xyz about his life in Colorado, and his passion for his hobbies: running, music, and healthcare. “I created McCluskey.xyz after moving across the country to Colorado as a way to continue to share my multifaceted life with family and friends, as well as followers,” Zach explains. “The posts are a great creative outlet for me, and the website has become a place where I can go long-form with my stories and thoughts–something that isn’t easy on social media.”
Zach grew up in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. His family lived in a house in the woods, which helped create his strong love of the outdoors. He began running cross country in junior high, and hasn’t stopped. While in college, Zach began focusing on writing songs and playing shows with his band, and also remains a central interest in his life. Once Zach realized his career aspirations were in the healthcare field, he began an accelerated nursing program, which ultimately led to an exciting nursing opportunity in Colorado Springs. As an added benefit, Zach is thoroughly enjoying the abundance of scenic running trails in Colorado.
On his homepage you’ll notice his creative use of a logo that incorporates the “Y” of his last name into the .xyz domain, helping viewers to remember his URL. But that’s not the only synergistic aspect that attracted him to this XYZ Registry domain ending. “I chose to build my personal website on .xyz because I wanted to have a concise domain name with some personality. Plus, it didn’t hurt that there was a Z in it. You know, for Zach.”
Zach uses his blog to share powerful stories regarding his healthcare journey, his love of running, and his passion for making music. He started writing about healthcare when he moved to Colorado to begin his nursing career, when his first position was on a Surgical/Trauma Step-Down Unit. He writes that after caring for the trauma population, and the extensive studying to obtain his national trauma certification, trauma had evolved from a curiosity to a passion. He shares insights on a memoir he read, titled “Trauma Junkie,” about a California flight nurse in the Bay Area, where he was inspired by stories of life-saving attempts. He also shares stories of his various, impressive certifications and insightful experiences resulting from the pandemic.
For inspiration to pull your running shoes out of the closet, read Zach’s thoughtful posts about running, including stories about finding great trails, tips for new runners, and stories of first experiences with the trails of Colorado. A post from the end of last year details an awesome virtual running challenge that Zach accepted in lieu of the interrupted Chicago Half Marathon he was originally signed up for. The virtual challenge called for running the distance of Chicago’s elevated train lines over the course of eight weeks, which amounted to 131 miles. Exceeding that goal, Zach ran an impressive 283 miles and lived to write about it as well as share a few scenic photos from the trails.
Zach’s music blog posts range from stories of musical inspiration, newfound musicians that have sparked his interest, and posts about making his own music. One such example is a post titled “One More Kiss,” where Zach shares a newly recorded version of a holiday song he wrote in 2010. He is not alone in publishing music on a .xyz name – joining many melodious .xyz end users who are making contributions to music.
Zach uses his website to illustrate his personal brand online by showing his passion for his career and his favorite hobbies. He welcomes his friends, family, and anyone intrigued to learn more to reach out. Zach writes “I will continue to share more about my experiences in healthcare here on my blog, including education and certifications, interesting articles/books related to medical and nursing subjects, and new developments in health care.” You can reach him on Facebook, or his similarly named Instagram @McCluskey.xyz and Twitter @mccluskey_xyz.
If your work is whimsical and adorable, but you want potential customers to know that you mean business, it’s important to organize your personal site in a sophisticated manner. Take, for instance, a plush toy designer and illustrator who wants her work to be enjoyed for how sweet it is, but also wants to illustrate her interest in taking on exciting new projects. This week’s #WebsiteWednesday features a personal website that is as savvy as it is sweet: LindaDesign.xyz
LindaDesign.xyz is the online portfolio of Linda Raymond. Linda’s from San Gabriel, California, and studied toy design at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles. She graduated in 2017 and began working at MJ Holding Company, the largest North American distributor of trading cards, trading card supplies, collectibles, toys, and hot trend items. There, Linda worked on the toy design team with a focus on plush and novelty toys, a couple of her passions (in addition to cats). Currently a product designer with Good Smile Connect, Linda is able to explore another of her biggest interests. As you’ll read on her homepage in a succinct blurb, Linda has a passion for Japanese culture. Good Smile Connect (GSC) is a Japanese manufacturer of hobby products such as the Nendoroid and Figma product line. In other words, it’s a great match.
While a student at Otis College of Art and Design, Linda and her classmates were encouraged to make websites for their online portfolio. Linda took inspiration from her friends in the same college class. The exact domain she wanted was available from .xyz. “I then just tried to make a site that had a color scheme that complimented my mascot character, the wolfbee, and tried to make things organized and neat.”
The first things you’ll notice on LindaDesign.xyz are a title bar featuring Wolfbee, the aforementioned mascot, and Linda’s name with the titles “Toy Designer” and “Illustrator” just underneath. Then you’ll notice her menu offerings and a precious caricature of Linda in her own style. Next, a small blurb telling viewers of Linda’s love for plush, toy development, Japanese culture, and her interest in new project ideas. The colors she has chosen perfectly compliment her mascot. The menu bar features three succinct main tabs, perfectly organizing her site without any unnecessary links that might distract an end user and cause them to trail off towards another website.
The first tab, Portfolio, allows you to choose from her portfolio offerings in a convenient pulldown menu, or you can click to visit the portfolio landing page. Here is where users can get a true feel for the variety of skill and professionalism in Linda’s repertoire. Her projects range from plush and novelty toy designs for MJ Holding Studios and Wicked Cool Toys, a collection of her Inktober artwork, and the full design components of a game that encourages children to practice tidiness entitled Stuffy Squirrel, complete with a plush cast of characters. In a category of miscellaneous types of work titled “Non-projects and others,” viewers get a glimpse of even more of Linda’s range, including an array of extremely impressive sketch work and professional packaging projects as well as delightful craft projects, including plush versions of My Little Pony.
Selecting About takes you to a page featuring a full size image of Wolfbee, as well as the introductory blurb also featured on her homepage. Below that are links to download .pdf versions of her resume and portfolio. At the very bottom of this and every page on the website is a smaller version of Wolfbee with a welcome to “Contact Me!” accompanied by Linda’s phone number and email address.
This invitation to reach out is reiterated on her Contact page, which has that same information but also includes an HTML form to send Linda an email directly from her website. This design technique saves the user the added step of leaving the website in order to make contact, risking distraction and a possible missed opportunity.
Linda’s seamless navigation, proper organization of her ample portfolio, and easy methods of contact paint a clear picture of a true professional. She looks forward to updating her website to include more of her recent work, and is excited to display more of her experience creating 3D models using Blender, a 3D computer graphics software toolset. If you’d like to reach out to Linda, you can email her directly from LindaDesign.xyz and you can also find her on Instagram.
It’s important for brands to promote their philosophy in a way that will resonate with viewers. The winning combination of a catchy domain name, a bright website design, a clear mission, and adorable products can ensure your website is not only seen, but makes your viewers smile. In this week’s #WebsiteWednesday, you’ll learn how a children’s clothing label in Spain donates a portion of their proceeds to charity and opts for a bold yet minimalistic website design in harmony with their merchandise: Unsmile.xyz
Unsmile.xyz is the online home of Unsmile, a unique Spanish childrenswear brand. Unsmile makes cool t-shirts with a minimal design and complex message to invite creation. They encourage viewers to “put on our shirt and make the world something different.” Their name stems from a delightful philosophy: Cherish the smile of children, and even the “unsmile,” because without it the smile itself cannot be fully appreciated. This is akin to the belief that without the rain, there can be no rainbow. Or without sadness, happiness wouldn’t be as wonderful. This meaningful mission, fully explored on the Manifesto page, can entice viewers to further explore the site.
Simplicity applies to more than the designs of Unsmile.xyz’s website and clothing. Their merchandise selection, found on the Shop tab of the main menu, is considerably light yet each piece boldly promotes the brand’s message. There are a few children’s t-shirts, a tank top, and even a small handbag featuring precious frowny faces and simple phrases like “how do you want to smile at the world?” and, “let’s be serious let’s smile.” Each item welcomes the viewer to click again to see more of the features and specifications, and allows size selection before adding the item to your shopping cart.
There are two very special features that make Unsmile.xyz’s shopping experience unique. Firstly, their core piece, the Zero T-Shirt Unsmile Pack, comes with a special fabric marker for children to personalize their new t-shirt. And second, in the description of each item, the website states that 1 Euro for every item purchased is donated to the CurArte Foundation and will go towards hospitalized children and their families. The CurArte Foundation, established in 2006, has three main objectives: Contribute to changing the culture of care and attention for hospitalized children and adolescents, promote the humanization of hospital care, and work on a tailor-made project for each hospital based on their needs. Creating a cooperative relationship between your brand and a compassionate charity like The CurArte Foundation is a fantastic initiative, and being sure to promote this type of initiative on your website will better inform your customers of your interest in helping others in need.
Unsmile.xyz‘s homepage contains imagery of children wearing the brand’s T-shirts as well as various “unsmiles” on their faces. Each section of the homepage is filled with text blurbs such as: “(De)revolution of the child’s smile that vindicates things and causes that do not produce laughter,” “what shirt do you wear and why,” and “unsmile intervenes on reality,” providing an artistic and creative illustration of the brand and it’s vibe. And of course, you can’t help but notice their extremely large, animated, sad face emoticon logo. The whimsical, winking image evokes a vibe of youthful innocence that fosters happiness and joy.
Brands can make a strong impression with customers by promoting their products and their philosophy with a clear and easy to navigate website. Unsmile.xyz sells children’s clothing and shares a portion of all sales with an organization that helps the families of hospitalized children. Their website features bright backgrounds, easy navigation, and charming products. These features paired with the philanthropic initiatives of the brand can help to resonate with viewers and leave a lasting impression. Take a look at their adorable options for yourself. Unsmile.xyz can also be found on Facebook and Instagram @unsmile.xyz.
Greatness can be achieved when innovators recognize a universal need and get to work towards a solution for the greater good. We see this type of innovation a lot within the .xyz community. Moxie.xyz is a digital fitness studio focused on connecting health and wellness professionals to those wanting to keep moving from home at an affordable cost. Spinster.xyz created a platform for feminist dialogue. And Starship.xyz is an autonomous robot delivery service working to ensure a more efficient and cost effective future of delivery. These end-users created solutions for universal needs. Similarly, this week’s #WebsiteWednesday features another robotics company, this one in Southeast Asia, honing their focus to greatly reduce the risk of contagion in the home delivery process: HelloWorldRobotics.xyz.
Once considered a luxury of ultimate convenience, home delivery became a standard necessity due to the Covid-19 global pandemic. According to the CDC, a primary way to stop the spread of disease is to “put 6 feet of distance between yourself and people who don’t live in your household.” Following these guidelines has led people to reduce the number of errands and shopping trips they make. And this has led to an unprecedented rise of the home delivery option, thereby creating an increase in the need for delivery drivers.
HelloWorldRobotics.xyz considered the risk involved for both drivers and buyers in a new atmosphere of high contagion, in addition to the pre-existing risks of deliveries in unsafe and less accessible neighborhoods, as well as delivery obstacles like traffic congestion and lack of parking. HelloWorldRobotics.xyz states on their homepage banner that they’re dedicated to making delivery smarter, cheaper, and faster with their “No.1 Autonomous Outdoor Self-Driving Delivery Robot in Southeast Asia/Malaysia.” But you can use it’s more memorable name: TARS.
TARS, a name borrowed from the robot of the same name in the film “Interstellar,” is a “last mile” delivery robot that aims to eliminate risk and increase efficiency during home delivery. In a product’s journey from warehouse shelf to a customer’s residence, the “last mile” of delivery is the final step of the process, or the point at which the package arrives at the customer’s door. Described as a smaller version of a self-driving car, the TARS robot uses a sensor system named LiDAR (Light detection and ranging sensors). LiDar is a core component for self-driving cars, like GM’s Cruise and Alphabet‘s Waymo, and other robotics companies, like Boston Dynamics. The technology allows computers to take a 3D image of the world around them. The sensors measure the range or velocity of objects using a process that is similar to radar. They bounce lasers off objects and when the light returns, the sensors can properly map out a proper route.
HelloWorldRobotics.xyz claims they are the first robotics startup to design outdoor “last mile” robotic delivery solutions in Southeast Asia, as well as the first startup in the world to develop what they call a “safe-drop.” A “safe-drop” is the deposit of a delivery in a safe, secure area at their location if they are otherwise unavailable to receive the delivery. With TARS, HelloWorldRobotics.xyz developed the safe-drop functionality so recipients can pick up their packages in front of their homes 24 hours a day (even in gated communities), eliminating the need to walk to guard houses or parcel locker locations.
HelloWorldRobotics.xyz’s homepage features an informational video about TARS and LiDAR, which also shows the impressive robots in action. Sharing this video on their website is a great way to introduce potential users to the available technology. It helps increase awareness by showing TARS in action, which can bolster the possibility of adoption.
As detailed on HelloWorldRobotics.xyz’s About tab, Founder and CEO Kennedy Wai has accrued an impressive number of accolades and awards since graduating from National Chiao Tung University in Taiwan with a degree in Electrical & Computer Engineering. The website’s News tab features audio and video clips from Malaysian technology podcast Plug-In with MARii, which offer keen insight on the genesis of Wai’s innovative company.
At the onset of the pandemic, Wei and his company launched Project Care (Covid19),a focused effort to provide contactless delivery of essentials and sanitizing services via their TARS robots. The Project Care (Covid19) tab on their website contains useful information about this ambitious project. They explain that TARS delivery robots can be dispatched to hospitals, quarantine zones, shopping malls, and gated communities — nearly everywhere a person in need could be. Robots are deployed to deliver food and essential items to recipients after receiving directions from remote operators.
HelloWorldRobotics.xyz explains their contactless delivery process via an illustrated guide. The illustrated guide for contactless delivery in hospitals and quarantine zones shows a member of medical staff placing food on the TARS robot. The guide shows the cycle of the robot then delivering to the quarantined destination within the hospital, reaching its location and awaiting pickup of the food, and then returning to the pick-up location to await the next order. Interested parties can also click the link at the bottom of the page to email the company for more information.
HelloWorldRobotics.xyz effectively welcomes business inquiries and partnership requests on their Business tab. Aiming to collaborate with existing e-commerce platforms, startups, restaurants, grocers, and dispatch companies, HelloWorldRobotics.xyz promises a next level experience for their customers. They offer various ways to reach out to them via their Contact tab. Be sure to check out their Instagram feed for compelling imagery of TARS, as well.
The .xyz community consists of many startup businesses making the most of their websites to help solve real world problems and universal needs. HelloWorldRobotics.xyz shares their technology and spreads their mission for safe and effective autonomous last mile delivery. Follow HelloWorldRobotics.xyz‘s continued growth on their website, Facebook, or Instagram.
If you’re a creative in the online community, a personal website can be essential to grow your online influence. People are visual, so it’s more beneficial to show them your talents rather than just telling them.Your resume, samples of your work, and your proudest accomplishments are primary examples of what you can put on display. If you have a diverse skill set, it can be challenging to decide how to organize and showcase your work on your website so that it captures all your talents. Your website’s audience consists of potential collaborators, clients, and employers, so making sure it’s well-organized is a top priority.
In this week’s #WebsiteWednesday, you’ll learn how Los Angeles creative and self-professed “writer, sometimes illustrator, art director, story consultant, podcaster, and game developer” Leighton Gray serves as an example to follow for building an organized personal portfolio site via her own online portfolio: LeightonGray.xyz.
LeightonGray.xyz is the personal website of Leighton Gray, a very busy creative living in the Echo Park neighborhood of Los Angeles, California. She hosts two podcasts. She is a prolific illustrator. She has even had public speaking engagements about art history, video games, and Twitter. She writes and develops games for Game Grumps, an American independent video game publisher. And, she was named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 – Games list with her writing partner, Vernon Shaw. Together they created Dream Daddy, a cross-platform simulator that Nintendo World Report said “succeeds at creating developed characters that have unique stories, interesting dialogue, and fun personalities.”
So how does a writer-illustrator-art director-story-consultant-podcaster-game-developer showcase all their various skills online? Here are six tips for achieving an organized and diverse website design like LeightonGray.xyz.
A striking domain name will get you noticed immediately and can encourage a new contact to dive right into your website.
Leighton wisely selected her full name as her domain name, one of the most memorable selections you can make. The .xyz extension in her URL, she explains, made it zing. “The .com domain for my name was already taken, and I had never seen a .xyz before and found it unique. I find it more memorable than a more traditional .com domain. Looks great on business cards, too.”
A unique name paired with the allure of your .xyz domain can make visitors take notice. A memorable domain name can make the difference between a successful web presence and being just another website. Imagine you’re walking through a shopping mall among a sea of shops. An enticing shop name paired with an eye-catching window is likely going to see an impressive rush of visitors. That’s the goal for your website.
Displaying the projects you have poured your heart into is a great way to highlight your capabilities.
You’ll notice on the menu just beneath Leighton’s About tab that there are four direct links to specific projects she wants to spotlight. These projects showcase her diverse interests and accomplishments.
First is a link to the landing page for her podcast for the “terminally online,” the Leighton Night Podcast. The next option, Fearful Fathers, leads to a page sharing Leighton’s presentation for the 2019 Game Developers Conference (GDC) titled “Dream Daddy & Fearful Fathers: How Indies Can Cope with Being Terminally Online.” The third option, Metamodernism, is a direct link to a page full of resources on Metamodernism, another of Leighton’s passions. The fourth and final option, Deep Cuts, leads visitors to a page dedicated to Leighton’s horror movie-themed podcast of the same name.
By including a variety of your passion projects on your website, you can show visitors just how multitalented and proud of your work you are. This can then generate increased audiences (and potential clients) by word of mouth.
It can be tempting to use elaborate detail when working on design projects, and creating a website is no exception. However, simplicity is often best as it yields a website that is concise and easy to navigate.
Leighton’s website is both clean and bright. Her Homepage and About page feature a stark white background with her small logo on the top left that states her name inside a word balloon. Using this iconography makes it clear that Leighton is an illustrator involved in comic art. Below her name, she’s specified three of her main working interests: illustration, writing, and games. This directly informs visitors on her primary areas of expertise.
It is best to avoid complexity in favor of strong content and a simple design. Doing so can better retain the interest of your visitors, and can also provide the best platform to showcase your talents.
Your personal website is an extension of yourself. You can use it to make sure your visitors truly get to know you. Some great ways to achieve this are by using design techniques that match your aesthetic and by writing copy in your authentic voice.
Leighton uses a menu on the left side of the homepage which encourages viewers to navigate to her About page. Then, she uses her unique voice to write a short biography with noticeable wit. This works to share her personality and demonstrates her abilities as a multi-hyphenate creative.
Designing your website as an extension of yourself gives your visitors more of a complete picture of you than simply providing samples of your work.
Provide clear and welcoming channels of communication on your website for potential collaborators or employers. They are interested in your content, and your website design can put them one click closer to reaching out to you.
Leighton’s About page includes her email address and links to her Twitter, Instagram, and Twitch. Listing multiple methods of contact gives potential collaborators or employers the choice to use the channel they prefer. Leighton stands to earn income from her video game, Dream Daddy, so she’s included a direct link to the game’s website, as well. Being able to read about this video game and then go directly to its download site may be just the incentive needed for a potential player to make a purchase.
Employing multiple ways to contact you on your website makes it easier for potential partners to reach out. This is a great way to drive more opportunities for collaboration or employment.
Make your homepage a superior first experience for your visitors. This will grab and hold their attention, encouraging them to see what you’re all about.
You’ll see that LeightonGray.xyz opens directly to Leighton’s illustrations page, which showcases her colorful, female-inspired artwork. This includes artwork for a podcast titled “Leighton Night,” which lends a strong clue that there’s more to Leighton than her illustrations.
Spotlighting your strongest imagery or work samples on your homepage creates a great and memorable first impression for the visitor.
Your .xyz domain will stand out on your business card, so your website ought to stand out too. After all, it’s the place to incorporate all of your varied skills and accomplishments in a clean and organized manner. Following these six tips, LeightonGray.xyz spotlights her illustrations, podcasting, video game creations, and more on her vibrant and easy to navigate website. She is a great example to follow for how you can showcase your many skills and stand out with your own .xyz domain.
If you’re interested in discussing a possible collaboration with Leighton, or simply wish to enjoy more of her witty content, connect with her on Twitter or Instagram, or reach out at LeightonGray.xyz.
Maintaining an online community means keeping up with a lot of moving parts. Managing subscriptions, publishing new content, and launching engaging initiatives takes skill and focus. It can be difficult to juggle these when using different platforms for each arm of your output. The most simple solution to take control of these tasks is to use your own website. It brings your community under one roof, boosts creative control, and provides flexibility for you and your members. In this week’s #WebsiteWednesday, StudyHall.xyz showcases seven ways to manage a thriving online community through your independent website.
StudyHall.xyz is an independent media outlet and online support network for media professionals. Founded in 2015 by journalists Kyle Chayka and P.E. Moskowitz, StudyHall.xyz‘s goal is to promote community and collaboration in the media industry. They do this by operating StudyHall.xyz as an online community for freelance writers. Memberships range from $2 to $11 per month. StudyHall.xyz’s over 4,500 members can network and share experiences through the platform’s Listservs and Slack groups. StudyHall.xyz also sends a member digest with commentary on current news and resources for aspiring journalists. All these member benefits are managed and maintained via the StudyHall.xyz website.
StudyHall.xyz makes smart use of their independent website to serve as the hub of their community. Follow their example to discover seven key benefits your website provides for managing your own thriving community.
Everything about your website’s appearance, from design and content to layout, feel, and features are fully within your control. This means you have the freedom to share the content you want without worrying about censors, filters, or guidelines that could limit it.
StudyHall.xyz is an independent media source, so being in control of their image online is crucial for standing out to potential members. They take advantage of this freedom by using each page of their site to promote the different features their program provides. The homepage outlines the benefits that members are offered in each subscription tier. They have a newsfeed page featuring subscriber stories and essays. The Community page promotes the benefits of their Listserv and Slack groups. They also preview their platform’s benefits to potential members via the Resources page. These include a transcriber database, media guide, and a form for promoting a writing opportunity on StudyHall.xyz. Because they own their website, they never have to deal with set-in-stone UI templates.
Use your website to take control of your community platform, say what you want, and promote its benefits.
Google and other search engines index the content you publish on your website. That means you can optimize it to appear in results for search terms that potential community members are looking for. Where some platforms limit your published content’s reach to only their users, your website opens your potential reach to a global audience.
StudyHall.xyz publishes free reporting and essays to give potential members a taste of what they offer to full members. These include career perspectives from journalists, advice for starting out, and commentary on the state of journalism. Because this content can be optimized to appear in relevant online searches, more potential members will see it when looking up these topics on their own than if it were only shared on social media. This opens StudyHall.xyz’s content up to a wider audience and helps attract more subscribers by amplifying their voice. They’re also able to link to these pages directly when promoting their membership via email, forums, and social media.
Use the global reach of your independent website to amplify your content through online searches.
Your website is your piece of online real estate for as long as you want to own it. That means you are not limited by the short or long-term success of another platform. You are not likely to be stuck having to move your entire community over to a different technology in order to stay relevant to new members. Keeping your community’s home base to your website means that they are never left scrambling to find a new home due to changes outside of your control.
An independent website offers you longevity and control. As long as you have your domain name as your permanent address online, you are in control of where your community meets and where potential new members can find you. You also completely own all content shared on your website. This is important because some third-party platforms have the power to claim ownership of content published by their users.
With an independent website, StudyHall.xyz don’t have to worry as they own their brand and complete catalog of content. They own all monetization on future usage of their content as well.
Grow your community with the confidence of ownership on your independent website.
Using a website where you control the membership features is a handy benefit. You are not limited in what you are able to offer, and you are in control of how much it costs for you to offer it. If you are gathering your community via social media alone, you may not even have the ability to charge for memberships. Using your website to manage memberships gives you the flexibility to create custom subscriptions however you want. This gives you the flexibility to make it as easy as possible for your members to choose an option that fits their budget.
StudyHall.xyz uses their website to offer different prices for similar membership options which are segmented for certain users. Using highly customized memberships makes the benefits of their community more accessible to all media professionals wherever they are financially.
Enjoy the freedom to truly customize your offerings as you like for your members on your independent website.
Membership platforms make money on their users’ transactions. These fees are an important revenue source membership platforms rely on to continually offer the easiest solutions to small businesses that don’t yet have the ability to create their own. However, if you have the ability to develop your own independent solutions, you can bypass some of these fees. This is often part of growing as an online service. Setting your website up as an e-commerce platform with custom solutions means you can cut down on any “middleman fees.” Doing away with third-party fees can increase the funds that you have to put back into improving your platform.
StudyHall.xyz switched from using a third-party membership platform to accepting payments right on their website. This allows them to collect member fees directly for one smaller transactional fee.
Simplify payment and keep more of the revenue by collecting payments through your website.
Your website can act as the sole address your members need to use to enjoy perks and engage with others in your community. This avoids them having to sign up for many platforms and keep track of different logins to access benefits.
StudyHall.xyz‘s choice to offer access to all membership perks right from their website means they avoid conforming membership offerings to a membership platform layout. They house all content, member resources, and access to groups right on their website by using a single member login. Members only need to type StudyHall.xyz into their browser to connect with the rest of the community. Then, they can interact with all of the features of the website as well as find links to social media accounts, email, and all other platforms where their community has a presence.
Make it easy for your members to enjoy being in your community by offering them one single hub to access all benefits and places to interact with your business via your website.
Tracking the performance and popularity of member perks is a key part of growing your community and attracting new members. Using data-driven strategies to set revenue goals is crucial to your community’s long-term success. You can track these important statistics by collecting data from your website.
StudyHall.xyz can track website data to see what their most popular content is, how long users view certain articles, and how many times content is downloaded from the website.
They can then use this data to improve membership offerings and provide more content their members want to see. In fact, thanks to their independent website, they can collect and track data in as many different ways as they choose. Then, they can utilize that data to find out how to best serve their customers.
Use analytics from your website to learn what your members like, shape future content, and improve benefits.
Using your website as the central hub for your community gives you more freedom to customize offerings and reach a global audience. It can also act as one memorable URL for members and lets you control your brand and have complete ownership of everything you create and offer. Using data tracking on your website can help you improve membership benefits through better data access. Your website is yours as long as you want to keep it, lets you cut out middleman fees, and hands you creative freedom.
StudyHall.xyz is a strong example to follow for how to build a successful independent website for your community. To learn more about StudyHall.xyz’s community or join yourself, visit their central hub on StudyHall.xyz.
Today is a big day for XYZ. Eight of our TLDs joined .xyz in achieving MIIT accreditation in China! You may remember .xyz’s accreditation in China in 2016, which allowed .xyz community members there to publish their sites live to the world. We’ve focused our efforts on continually pursuing accreditation for our whole family of TLDs as it expands, with the same perseverance that helped .xyz become one of the first new domains in the world to receive MIIT accreditation. We’re now proud to say that any owner of a .Rent, .College, .Monster, .Baby, .Security, .Protection, .Storage, or .Theatre domain in China can publish their site live to a global audience.
.XYZ continues to enjoy its position as one of the most popular domains in China. We’ve seen many beautifully designed websites launch on their .xyz domains; from startups, individuals, and organizations. You can get to know some of our favorite Chinese .xyz users yourself, as we have featured many of them on gen.xyz/live. Read our blog to hear first hand from .xyz adopters and discover their impressive websites for yourself.
The diversity of innovation shown by .xyz adopters in China is truly remarkable. From inspiring companies and makers to unique apps and communities, .xyz community members in China exemplify the spirit shared by .xyz owners around the world. Some of our team’s favorite .xyz adopters in China include $20 million manufacturing giant ForeSee.xyz, 3D camera and A.I. company Percipio.xyz, and Yours.xyz, creators of China’s first autonomous delivery vehicle.
XYZ is committed to offering choice and innovation to internet users around the world. As the registry continues to expand its domain portfolio, customers can trust that XYZ will pursue MIIT accreditation for future domain extensions. We are looking forward to pursuing further accreditation for the 10 new domains we welcomed to the XYZ family of TLDs in 2020: .Beauty, .Hair, .Skin, .Makeup, .Quest, .Homes, .Motorcycles, .Yachts, .Boats, and .Autos.
We can’t wait to see what our XYZ TLD adopters in China have in store for their websites! Get inspiration for your site from .xyz users in China and around the world at gen.xyz/live, or register the XYZ domain that’s perfect for you from anywhere in the world!
Cryptocurrency and Decentralized Finance (DeFi) are two of the hottest buzzwords in tech. Countless new services are entering these spaces every day, making them a hub for innovation and progressive ideas. But, even some hardcore techies might tell you they’re not 100% sure how blockchains work, let alone what a DeFi aggregator service does. This week’s #WebsiteWednesday uses their website’s straightforward User Interface (UI) to clear the confusion and show the benefits of their service: Frontier.xyz.
Frontier.xyz is a DeFi aggregation layer. Their service works by connecting or “layering onto” other DeFi services. In practice, Frontier.xyz says their service aggregates key cryptocurrency management actions like lending, borrowing, and asset swapping. One main feature that sets Frontier.xyz’s tool apart from competitors is that it’s “chain-agnostic.” In other words, it is able to work with many different cryptocurrency exchanges. Their short homepage description explains this information to visitors in detail under the heading “What is Frontier?” They use the first two paragraphs to give an in-depth description of their service, but conclude with a much simpler mission statement so all website visitors can understand what they do.
“In short, Frontierʼs core mission is to bring the essential pieces of DeFi to users across whichever platforms they prefer.” – Frontier.xyz homepage
But that’s just the start of where they take their complex service and break it down into digestible information.
For those not familiar with DeFi services, Frontier.xyz’s single page website layout features multiple sections that aim to answer all their questions. To illustrate the benefits of their tool, Frontier.xyz outlines problems facing DeFi and crypto vs. how their service provides a solution.
Each problem is detailed so readers can understand the pain point, even if they do not fully grasp the tech behind what’s causing it. Then, they explain how each Frontier.xyz solution uniquely provides a fix, backed up with evidence and examples.
As an example, Frontier.xyz say their tool solves the fragmented nature of crypto management by aggregating management services. This pitches the Frontier.xyz service to potential users by selling them on a one-stop solution for asset management. They showed the pain point first, then clearly explained how their service directly solves the problem. Using a problem and solution setup on your website helps you explain what’s great about your product or service while also giving potential customers reasons to buy.
When talking about any topic, you want your website copy to be short, simple, and readable.
This can prevent your visitors from getting lost in the weeds trying to learn what you do. It’s also a basic best practice for increasing your website’s SEO, as search engines use readability of content as a factor for ranking pages.
Frontier.xyz’s website uses short, simple sentences that are on an accessible reading level. This helps them boil down their complex services and industry terms into understandable language.
It also helps keep those who might not know much about crypto and DeFi reading by explaining their tool in an engaging way.
They use images to show what the product looks like when in use, as well. This takes their service from an abstract concept to a visible platform that visitors can picture themselves using. It’s also an opportunity for Frontier.xyz to highlight their clean UI, which is a one of the key selling points of their service.
Frontier.xyz shows what sets them apart as a company and a tool by sharing their history through major milestones. This follows their journey from foundational brainstorming up through the building phase and to their current activity launching their own coins.
Each milestone is explained with the same short, readable copy and builds on the milestone before it to show the company’s journey toward disrupting their industry and solving big problems for DeFi. This also helps site visitors connect with Frontier.xyz on a more human level by seeing them as a growing business and not just a DeFi aggregator tool.
No matter what your company does, you can use your website’s UI to communicate it to users in a way they will understand. Keep your copy short and easy to read while using images to illustrate. Outline the problems your service or product solves to convey value without losing readers in the minute details. Give visitors an insight into your company journey to show the humans behind the work and create more relatability.