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Web 1.0 and Web 2.0: What’s the Difference?

By Virginia Lawrence

If you’re noticing various web pundits mentioning Web 2.0, don’t worry that everything we’ve learned about the web until now is being thrown away. Actually, Web 2.0 is just a way of categorizing some of the latest developments in the web. Here’s a quick summary of the difference between Web 1.0 and Web 2.0.

Web 1.0

Web 1.0 is the original web with html, some dynamic aspects, shopping carts. Web 1.0 has to do with well-developed web sites and our original high quality online marketing. Such web sites should be:

  1. Simple to understand and navigate.
  2. Able to load quickly.
  3. Offering interesting content and value to visitors.
  4. Making it easy for customers to contact the owner.
  5. Fresh and alive.
  6. Well optimized and marketed.
  7. Easy to find in the search engines, either in natural listings or in paid ads.

Web 2.0

New capabilities: Web 2.0 offers an additional layer of capability, which we can add to our Web 1.0 web sites. Web 2.0 has to do with the latest in content and information sharing. That is, it’s about getting the word out and making connections. As the web has matured, it has become much easier to connect with other people and to get our information spread out across the web.

Expanding needs: Google has made the number of incoming links (number of sites linking to a site) vitally important to every site owner. In Google, if two sites are about equal in terms of information offered on a specific topic, the site with more incoming links will rank higher than the site with fewer.

Because of Google’s emphasis on number of incoming links in determining where any site ranks in a search, all web marketers are working to increase their number of incoming links. Web 2.0 gives us a few more ways to do that.

Here are the four main aspects of Web 2.0 for a small publisher:

1. Blogs

Blogs are simply ways to easily place text online, called posting or submitting a blog post. The blog software can be installed inexpensively on the private site, or anyone can use the free software at or at

After a blog has been created, the blog can be set up to notify other sites every time the owner submits a post. The blog RSS feed will be automatically submitted to the most important blog catalogs. A submission occurs as soon as the site owner has submitted a post to his blog, and other sites automatically display the blog posts. Writing regularly in a blog can be a fabulous way to get your information out to other web sites and people. Blogs work really well for site owners who have a lot to say about their topic (e.g. Patricia Fry’s Publishing blog at, or site owners who constantly add new products, or site owners who are willing to offer special deals and discounts to blog readers.

2. Podcasts

Podcasts are verbal blogs made possible by the inexpensive software for recording our voices digitally. Like text blogs, podcasts can be set up with automatic RSS feeds submitted to the most important podcast catalogs.

The next two Web 2.0 options require much more interaction with other people.

3. Bookmarking Sites

At bookmarking sites, site owners download a bookmarking toolbar to make it easy to share bookmarks with other people using the same bookmarking site. People review the bookmarks of others and add some reviewed bookmarks to their own collection. With effective sharing over time, more and more people start linking to the bookmarked sites.

A few bookmarking sites are:,,, and

4. Social Networking Sites

At social networking sites, site owners visit each other’s pages in the social networking sites, getting to know each other. They discuss common topics and link to each other’s sites. LinkedIn is a professional social networking site, while FaceBook, MySpace, Meetup, and Friendster include a lot of non-business members who are interested only in discussing non-commercial topics. Nevertheless, many businesses are finding the non-commercial social networking web sites to be extremely helpful in developing interest in a web site.

Any small publisher who starts incorporating Web 2.0 features into the company web site will develop additional incoming links and find the web site appearing higher in a Google search.

–© 2008 Virginia Lawrence, Ph.D. is a professional Web Developer and Online Marketing Consultant. She routinely places client sites on the first page of Google and Yahoo search. Contact her at or visit her web site at



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