Never Stop Learning
American Graphics Institute
AGI (American Graphics Institute) has delivered training programs to more than 50,000 clients including ninety of the Fortune 100 companies, since it was founded in 1995. They have published more than fifty books, including official training titles for Adobe Systems and Microsoft…
...and they had just moved into Drupal 7.
What AGI needed was a company which could handle the massive amounts of data relationships which were being constantly created as their hard-coded site grew from a beginning of 67 pages to a Drupal site of 9,000+ pages! Atlas ID came aboard to help with everything from site design and SEO to ecommerce integration and UX improvements.
The search engine optimization techniques employed were extensive, including properly siloing information, establishing patterns for URL creation, HTML page structuring and the use of “rich snippets”. If you’re not familiar with rich snippets then let’s get you filled in. Rich snippets are what Google uses for its SERPs (search engine results pages) to help users better determine the content on a page and why it might be relevant to the query. Of course, having more information about your website appear in the SERPs gives you more of that all-important and highly desirable screen real estate.
Basically, it’s specific markup language which allows certain elements in the HTML to be recognized by the search engines and extracted for use in the description following the basic info which would normally be displayed in the search results. In order to make use of rich snippets, specific items in the HTML need to be wrapped in microdata (microformats and RDFa may also be used). In this case, we wrapped certain PHP functions in microdata allowing for dynamic data sets to be pulled into the HTML and then extracted by search engines. The result was an increase in SERP real estate with information relating to relevant class offerings being displayed along with the organic results.
Another major stage in the development process of the site was the integration of an ecommerce solution. You can’t have much of an online training business without allowing your customers to purchase and register for classes online, now can you? The Drupal Commerce module was the best way to go in this case - with some modifications, of course. A login area and members portal was required. Also, user profiles needed to be generated so as to allow for recommendations of related class offerings and the like. Of particular interest was the implementation of a “wish list”. AGI wanted to allow potential clients the ability to add courses to a “wish list” so they could choose to take those courses when they had time at a later date.
Here’s the thing, if a client had an account then adding courses to a wish list was not a problem. What if someone was just browsing the site and didn’t yet have an account? Well, that’s where we applied our handiwork. We wrote a custom Drupal module with hooks to the existing Flag Module which allowed for two things to happen simultaneously: The potential new client was brought to a page where, with a single click, he/she could register and have the chosen course immediately added to the newly-created wish list. Talk about making things easy for the visitors to a site!
- Responsive Web Design
- Powerful CMS
- Search Engine Optimization
- Custom Module Development