Saturday, 10 May 2014

County Web Sites

A week after the first matches of the season, I thought I'd see whether some of the top county web sites had been updated with the latest news.

Berkshire - my local team - are the only Division 1 side not to be part of a professional men's setup, so we can cut them a bit of slack; but even so, their web site has not been updated since August last year.

Kent have updated their site for 2014, and they list the fixtures; but there is no news from last week's games. To be fair, Kent do have a very active Twitter account for the women's team, so there's a bonus brownie-point for that! (Update: There is also a write-up in the news section of the web site - so more bonus brownie-points there too! HT @stumpedblog.)

Yorkshire have similarly updated their site for 2014, but it contains only a very general overview and no news. (There was no news of the women's team in the main 'News' section either.)

Sussex have a very professional setup for their women's team. (I think they are the only team with a fully-professional women's coach???) And like Kent, they do "do" Twitter quite well; but their web site hasn't been updated since prior to last summer's finals days, even though they won the championship!

As we can see, the results of my survey show that several counties are a bit "all out for 80" on this one!

Without wishing to sound like a broken record, I can't help feeling that part of the problem is our 'small fish in a big pond' status. All of these web sites are 'sub-sites' of the corresponding men's team; so they are managed by people for whom women's cricket is a pretty low priority. For example, neither Sussex nor Yorkshire appear (?) to have a link off the main "men's" home page; and I had to resort to Google to find them!

But if we are serious about trying to promote the women's domestic game... and Lottie seems to think that we are... then we need to do better!

2 comments:

  1. I don't think the pages you're discussing are really intended to be "sub-sites". They're essentially landing pages for anyone searching for "Kent/Sussex/Yorkshire women's cricket". They are certainly far from ideal from that point of view, but news, fixtures, results, player information etc. is meant to be accessed via the sections of the main site.

    Personally I think that is a more intuitive and positive approach. It is much better to have women's cricket news visible alongside men's cricket news, where many more people will see it than if you have to specifically look for women's news. Of course this is dependent on execution - Kent and Sussex both have a reasonable amount of women's news, but Yorkshire don't seem to have much at all.

    There's obviously a lot of room for improvement. Yorkshire don't have any profiles of women players, while Kent's and Sussex's are both several years out of date. This is particularly annoying because of how difficult to work out which player is which when you go to watch a match.

    The landing pages you complain about are pretty uninformative and out of date, and in Sussex's case seemingly not the correct version - you actually can find a Sussex women's page from the main site (SCB->Women & Girls Cricket), and it's a different (slightly more up-to-date) page to the one you get to via google.

    Arguably worse still is the Yorkshire one, which can be found by going to "The Club" and then scrolling down to "Recreational Cricket". The less said about that the better. Other than that, it is comfortably the best landing page of the three.

    The Kent and Sussex twitter accounts are both very good. I think Kent wins though on the basis that their men's account retweets the women's account more often than the Sussex equivalent.

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    1. Totally agree about Sussex and Kent Twitter accounts - GREAT work, whoever is doing them!

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