Enterprise Web Taxonomy Design Best Practices

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Strategies
LLC

Taxonomy

November 13, 2008

Copyright 2008 Taxonomy Strategies LLC. All rights reserved.

Enterprise Web Taxonomy Design
Best Practices

Joseph A Busch, Founder & Principal

2

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Taxonomy Strategies LLC:
http://www.taxonomystrategies.com/html/aboutus.htm




Business consultants who specialize in applying taxonomies, metadata,
automatic classification, and other information retrieval technologies to
the needs of business.


Spin
-
off from Metacode Technologies, developer of XML metadata
repository, automated categorization methods stack and taxonomy editor
acquired by Interwoven as MetaTagger product line.


More than 50 years experience among our members.


Metadata and taxonomy community leadership.


President, American Society for Information Science & Technology


Dublin Core Metadata Initiative Board Member


Chair, PRISM (Publishers Requirements for Industry Standard Metadata)
working group


Co
-
editor, PRISM, XPointer, 3 IETF RFCs, and Dublin Core 1 & 2 reports.

Founded: 2002


Location: San Francisco, CA

Members
:

3

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Recent & current projects:
http://www.taxonomystrategies.com/html/clients.htm

Commercial

Government

Not
-
for
-
Profit

4

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Agenda


Taxonomy business case and use scenarios.


Taxonomy project start
-
up tasks.


Taxonomy tasks and deliverables.

5

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

What is a Taxonomy?


A categorization framework agreed upon by business and
content owners (with the help of subject matter experts) that
will be used to tag content.


6 broad, discrete divisions (called facets)


2
-
3 levels deep.


Up to 15 terms at each level.


1200 terms total.


With some logic

hierarchical, equivalent and associative relationships
between terms.

6

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Effectiveness of taxonomies


Categorize in multiple,
independent, categories.


Allow combinations of categories
to narrow the choice of items.


4 independent categories of 10
nodes each have the same
discriminatory power as one
hierarchy of 10,000 nodes (10
4
)


Easier to maintain.


Easier to reuse existing material.


Can be easier to navigate, if
software supports it.

42 values to maintain (10+6+11+15)

9900 combinations (10x6x11x15)

Main
Ingredients

Cooking
Methods

Meal Type

Cuisines


Chocolate


Dairy


Fruits


Grains


Meat &
Seafood


Nuts


Olives


Pasta


Spices &
Seasonings


Vegetables


Breakfast


Brunch


Lunch


Supper


Dinner


Snack


African


American


Asian


Caribbean


Continental


Eclectic/
Fusion/
International


Jewish


Latin American


Mediterranean


Middle Eastern


Vegetarian



Advanced


Bake


Broil


Fry


Grill


Marinade


Microwave


No Cooking


Poach


Quick


Roast


Sauté


Slow
Cooking


Steam


Stir
-
fry

7

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

What technology analysts have said


“Better structure equals better access: Taxonomy serves as a framework
for organizing the ever
-
growing and changing information within a
company. The many dimensions of taxonomy can greatly facilitate Web
site design, content management, and search engineering. If well done,
taxonomy will allow for structured Web content, leading to improved
information access.”



“Adding metadata to unstructured content allows it to be managed like
structured content. Applications that use structured content work better.”



“Enriching content with structured metadata is critical for supporting
search and personalized content delivery.”



“Content that has been adequately tagged with metadata can be leveraged
in usage tracking, personalization and improved searching.”


8

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Potentially quantifiable taxonomy benefits


Reduce customer service call center/associate support requests.


Improve call center efficiency and effectiveness.


Increase telemarketing conversions.


Reduce cost per unique user (UU)


Improve search engine optimization (SEO)


Decrease searches with zero hits (on website enterprise search).


Increase number of links (internal cross
-
cutting links)


Reduce time/cost to build new web sites, implement web services
and develop applications.


Increase number of web pages with metatags.


Comply with regulations.

9

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

What uses must a Taxonomy support?


Tagging


Content Management


Dynamic Publishing


Search


Navigation

“ When we talk about a taxonomy, we are not only talking about a
website navigation scheme. Websites change frequently, we are
looking at a more durable way to deal with content so that different
navigation schemes can be used over time.”



R. Daniel “
Taxonomy FAQs


10

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Why build and apply a Taxonomy?
Taxonomy enables
usability and re
-
usability

Content users

… as well as what’s going on in front of the screen.

What’s going on behind the screen …

Content managers

11

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

11

Taxonomy benefits

In front of the screen: Web property publishing and use


Standard categorization enabling dynamic content delivery.


Content re
-
use in multiple distribution channels


internal web, external web and
print.


Content re
-
use in customer facing FAQ s on specific topics and products.


Orienting Googlers

even when they land on a page fifteen layers deep.


Ensuring consistent values for analytics
across channels

(website analytics)


Reduce time to on
-
board new web properties.

Behind the screen: Content retrieval for authors and web managers


Finding a piece of content that exists.


Determining ownership of the content and if can it be re
-
utilized.


Enabling alerts


if new, by subscription, by interest, by individual, etc.


Keeping content fresh, accurate and in compliance with regulations.

12

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Alignment with enterprise applications


Data analytics and web analytics count attributes.


You can’t count document
-
like content unless it is categorized.


You can’t compare document
-
like content categories to
structured data values unless they use the same (or similar)
frameworks.

13

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Aligning with enterprise applications


Dublin Core is a de
-
facto standard
across many other systems and
standards


RSS (1.0), OAI (Open Archives
Initiative)


Inside organization


CMS
(content management system)
e.g., MOSS, portals, etc.


Mapping to DC elements from
most existing schemes is simple


Metadata already exists in
enterprise applications


SAP, EMC Documentum, MS
Office, etc.

Source: Todd Stephens, BellSouth

Per
-
Source Data Types, Access
Controls, etc.

Dublin Core

Taxonomies, Vocabularies,
Ontologies

14

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Agenda


Taxonomy business case and use scenarios.


Taxonomy project start
-
up tasks.


Taxonomy tasks and deliverables.

15

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Taxonomy start
-
up tasks


Identify target content to be focused on.


Provide a list of websites (and/or other target content file stores)


Prioritize this list for the purposes of the taxonomy project.


Gather any query logs, usage statistics and usability surveys.


Collect any existing documentation related to audience
personas, content organization, metadata, keywords, and any
other guidelines or standards.

16

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Taxonomy start
-
up tasks (2)


Designate who will be the project manager / single
-
point of
contact.


Develop a list of stakeholders and interview candidates


Minimum of 6 and usually less than 12 interview sessions.


One
-
on one interviews, or focus groups.


Schedule stakeholders briefing


Schedule interviews to start immediately after the briefing.

17

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Agenda


Taxonomy business case and use scenarios.


Taxonomy project start
-
up tasks.


Taxonomy tasks and deliverables.

18

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Define and quantify business benefits



Potential Benefits


Cost per

%
Reduce

Current
No

%
Increase

Annual
Benefit

1

Reduce call center customer service/support
requests


$ 20

1%

10,000,000




$ 2,000,000

According to HDI 2007 Practices & Salary Survey, median cost per incident reported via phone, e
-
mail and self
-
service was $20, $
16 and
$5 respectively. In phone interview, John M said there were 10M calls in 2007.

2

Improve call center efficiency & effectiveness


$ 44,014

3%


300




$ 330,105

According to PayScale, median call center salary for company is $44,014. In phone interview, John M said there were 300 agent
s.

3

Reduce cost per UU (unique user)


$ 0.10

10%

19,196,774




$ 191,968

2007.com+ Inet visitors from web summary report. What are the total estimated costs attributed to .com + Inet?

5

Decrease searches with zero hits


$ 15

10%


100,000




$ 150,000

Cost per is difference between self
-
service and phone call. How many zero result searches? Can this be inferred to be a customer

service
call?

6

Increase number of links (internal cross
-
cutting links)


$ 20




200,000

100%


$ 4,000,000

Specifically counting links to related content. Usually, this is in right column box, but could be embedded in text. Not incl
ude
d are top, left
or bottom nav which are usually part of the template. How many links of this type are there currently? How much does it cost
to
create
such a link? How much of an increase should be considered a target benefit?

7

Reduce time/cost to build new website


$ 100,000

50%


5




$ 250,000

How much does it cost to build a new website, or re
-
design an existing one? How much could reasonably be saved by improving cont
ent
re
-
usability?

8

Increase no. of web pages with metatags


$ 3




50,000

100%


$ 150,240

How many pages have metatags? How many metatag values total? How much does it cost to add metatags to a page? How much
increased metatagging should be considered a benefit?



Total










$ 7,072,313

19

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Develop use cases and use scenarios:
Intranet examples


Content related to business areas or facilities


By geographic location, by type, by specific facility, by access
restrictions, by audience, etc.






Company
-
wide content


By business function, by topic, by access rights, etc.




Use Case:

Create a safety policies and procedures website for facilities
organized by State.


Use Scenario:

Find all safety policies and procedures related to a facilities
located in Oregon.


Use Case:
Locate any content that has policies and procedures around a
particular topic.


Use Scenario:
A policy regarding smoking company
-
wide has changed and
references to outdated policies should be removed. Find official policies, as
well as newsletters related to the smoking policy company
-
wide.

20

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Develop use cases and use scenarios:
.com examples


Web content managers


By content type, by topic, by location, etc.






Public users seeking information


by topic, by location, etc.


Use Case:

Provide search for dividend schedules, earnings statements and
stock splits; and the corresponding press releases for a specific time period.


Use Scenario:

An investor who recently sold stock is preparing taxes and
would like to do a concise .com search so that they can find historical
information about their holdings.


Use Case:

Find and recall all public
-
facing pages that describe a specific
safety tip.


Use Scenario:

Find and recall all public
-
facing pages that discuss child safety.

21

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Create a typology of use cases

Intranet

Ac
-
cess
Right

Audi
-
ence

Bus
Func
-
tion

Content
Type

Pro
-
duct

Geog
Loc

Job
Type

Org

Topic

Find content related to a
specific location by …



















Find company
-
wide content
by …



















.com



















For web content managers,
find content by …



















For public users, find
content by …



















Primary

Secondary

22

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Audience

Products

Location

Organization

Content Type

Product Line

Application

Technology

Industry Solution

Person

“Is a” groups
of Products

Draft the high
-
level taxonomy:
Oracle.com example

23

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Illustrate with tagging examples:
Travel approval

form

Facet

Value

Content Type

Form

Organization

Business Function

Travel

Product

Geo Location

Topic

Approval

Job Type

Audience

Employees

Access Right

All Employees

24

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Build detailed taxonomy:
NASA Taxonomy website

http://nasataxonomy.jpl.nasa.gov/


25

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Validate the taxonomy:
Analysis example

26

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Form the taxonomy governance team

Corporate

Communications

Taxonomy Editor

Content Sponsors

IT Implementers

Other Staff

27

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Develop taxonomy integration roadmap

28

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Develop communication model

29

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Key components to a successful taxonomy project:
Project
best practices


Incremental, extensible process that identifies and enables users, and
engages stakeholders.


Engage stakeholders from the start and throughout the process.


Talk with implementers as early as possible.


Keep your audience in mind.


Strive for subject
-
based categorization.


Be consistent.


Control depth and breadth.


Make a long
-
term investment.


Develop and carry out a communication plan.


A means to an end, and not the end in itself .


Not perfect, but it does the job it is supposed to do

such as improving
search and navigation.


Improved over time, and maintained.

Strategies
LLC

Taxonomy

November 13, 2008

Copyright 2008 Taxonomy Strategies LLC. All rights reserved.

Questions?

Joseph A. Busch, +1
-
415
-
377
-
7912,
jbusch@taxonomystrategies.com

www.taxonomystrategies.com

31

Taxonomy
Strategies LLC
The business of organized information

Enterprise Web Taxonomy Design Best Practices

The message has finally gotten through

to build an effective portal and web framework you need
an enterprise taxonomy strategy. This enterprise interest and focus is one of the key differences we
see in recent taxonomy projects. Developing the business case, getting stakeholders on board,
engaging in a collaborative process, validation, education, training and developing an
implementation roadmap are more important than ever before. Business managers now expect
that information on an organization’s public websites and intranets be findable, and that web
services such as RSS feeds and alerts, guided navigation and search result filtering,
mashups

and
visualization, and others be available. This talk will discuss what an enterprise web taxonomy is and
then describe the key tasks and outcomes in a typical enterprise
-
wide taxonomy project. Examples
will be provided from many large public and commercial organizations will be used to illustrate best
practices.


What are the most the typical and most compelling use cases and use scenarios for developing a
taxonomy?


What are the critical start
-
up tasks in a taxonomy project?


What are the best criteria for identifying business stakeholders to participate in the project, how do you get
them involved, and what should be their role in the taxonomy development process?


What do business managers need to know about taxonomy and why it’s important?


What are the best practices for taxonomy development tasks and deliverables such as the high
-
level
taxonomy design?


How does an enterprise web taxonomy align with other enterprise information and data management
applications?