The Stranger's Long Neck : How to Deliver What Your Customers Really Want Online, Paperback Book

The Stranger's Long Neck : How to Deliver What Your Customers Really Want Online Paperback

4 out of 5 (1 rating)


The Stranger's Long Neck is a practical guide for any manager wishing to improve their organisation's online performance.

Web content specialist, Gerry McGovern, explains that all websites have a small set of tasks, or 'long necks', that are important to its customers and that must be easy to complete or customers will go elsewhere.

The Stranger's Long Neck shows how to tune in effectively to what your customers want - and then deliver it with aplomb.

Understanding customer needs can be a difficult task when customers are 'strangers', in that he or she is always 'on the outside', particularly so in an online environment.

Using case studies including Tetra Pak, Microsoft and the NHS, and illustrated with web shots throughout, The Stranger's Long Neck shows how organisations can use the 'long neck' theory to create and manage efficient and user-friendly websites.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 224 pages, Screen shots
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Sales & marketing
  • ISBN: 9781408114421

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This book is excellent company for Steve Krug's 'Don't make me think'. McGovern's issue is that customers must be able to easily fullfill their tasks on websites. The less effort it costs for customers the better the website. The Long Neck refers to the 5% of the content that accounts for 25% of the demand. These top tasks are most important for the success rate of the website. Content must be designed for the (top) tasks that customers need to fullfill.The other end of the graph, the 60% of the content that accounts for 20% of the demand, is called the Long Tail. Content in the Long Tail tends to disturb the effectiveness of the Long Neck content, because the menu's and links get cluttered.The method of Gerry McGovern has been used by large companies as IKEA, Tetra Pak, Cisco and Microsoft. It is based upon testing and measuring and improving success, not on opinions from managers, webmasters, website users etcetera. Opinions are mostly useless. Everything ought to be based upon facts and the way unknown website customers behave.The only pitfall I can think of is that a website focuses so strongly at tasks in a way that look and feel gets disregarded. The overall design is still a factor in website success, although not as strong as usually believed.