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HTC Screen Protector: Features and Types
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Organizations like the National Retail Federation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association have provided statistics on consumer shopping behaviors, major holiday shopping season predictions and the total revenues retailers generated over certain periods of time. For example, the National Retail Federation has predicted that, “Retailers would see a 3.9 percent increase in sales, and hire an additional 720,000 to 780,000 employees this holiday season.”
These statistics are made possible because retailers use cash management systems like complete pos system retail tools. Complete pos system retail tools operate with traditional, digital and elaborate tracking tools. For example, retailers use traditional cash registers and point of sale systems to record the date and time customers purchase items from them.
Complete pos system retail and traditional cash registers also record and track how many quantities of each item was purchased. WalMart may have one of the most elaborate point of sale systems in the retail industry. The retailer has one of the best systems because it spent millions on the system, linking each of its stores and regional warehouses, so managers would know when (and how many) of each product to order.
This kept WalMart from overstocking products. Smaller businesses may not have enough expendable income to build or install as elaborate or as complete pos system retail network throughout their stores and warehouses. However, there are cash management systems they could use to record and track customer purchasing behaviors.
For example, NCR Counterpoint offers a complete pos retail system that can be used to manage customer loyalty programs, automate purchasing and make it possible for cashiers to check out customer purchases using a touch screen. Reporting capabilities the systems are built with include detailing which store locations experience sales increases and when and which products perform best during summer sales.
Retailers rely on complete pos system retail tools to password protect ticket entries, secure gift card solution programs, manage customer sales and track special orders. They also use the systems to manage layaway programs and transfer products from overly stocked warehouses to warehouses near stores that are low on stock or that have completely run out of stock.
However, as with other forms of technology like websites, social media networks and call center services, depending on point of sale systems too much could produce negative results. For example, retailers who rely on point of sale systems too much could start to reduce their marketing and advertising efforts.
A similar practice happened a few years ago with businesses that relied too heavily on the fact that they had built a robust website. These companies assumed that by having a website they would attract new customers and keep the attention of current customers.
By the time some of these businesses realized the error of their ways, they’d already lost 10% or more of their customers. The bottom line is that even the best technological tools, including elaborate point of sale systems, don’t eliminate the need for retailers to contact current and prospective customers, alerting them to sales, discounts, mergers, acquisitions and other business changes.
It’s always fun to engage in a bit of retro-futurism. Looking back, many of the speculations for how we’d be living today have been wildly off the mark. However, that only applies when the speculation was energy-based. Thanks to Moore’s law, just about anyone who incorporated information technology when they speculated on the future has been more or less on the money.
We expect to see a lot of cool new tech innovations unveiled at the upcoming CES® 2014 in Las Vegas. This helpful tradeshow guide is a solid resource for staying in the loop of what’s to come. But with all of the cool gadgets that hit the shelves so far this year, here are some of tech’s greatest accomplishments that merely hint at what’s to come.
Today’s manufacturers face a challenge. They must look into the corners of existing technology to find areas of improvement. They must explore the edges of the idea, not just the idea itself. Sony’s Xperia Z does just that, figuring out a way to work innovation into an area – smart phones – where Apple has rendered it almost commonplace by now. Just how did they do it, you ask? They’ve made their phone shatterproof and water resistant. Just to keep things holding up on the technical end, the 4G LTE high-speed connectivity, Snapdragon quad-core processor, and 13MP camera all but guarantee a powerhouse operation.
It seems we can’t get enough of Jetson’s-style smart appliances. They may not have feelings – yet, but products like the Samsung T9000 refrigerator are paving the way for smart appliance innovation nonetheless. The oversized LCD screen, located just above the icemaker, features an Evernote app that allows users to share videos, pictures, and yes, recipes. Calendar and weather apps are also included along with a variety of others. The innovation isn’t just on the outside. Three evaporators, two compressor units, and multiple sensors help maintain optimum food-grade humidity and cooling levels.
We can’t seem to get enough of tablet improvements. From its inception, the design seemed ripe for improvement speculations. Now, those speculations are coming true, and Lenovo’s IdeaCentre Horizon is proof. The 27-inch screen can either stand tall or lie flat. While this mini coffee table-sized screen is somewhat of a novelty for everyday computing, it is positively ideal for gaming. The tabletop screen is designed for multiple fingers – making it perfect for family game nights and physical interaction – and uses an Aura interface as well as Windows 8.
The Monster ClarityHD Katana wireless speaker features Bluetooth that uses apt-X codecs and AAC for lossless audio compression, which automatically catapults it into the realm of futuristic sophistication. The speaker utilizes an array of speakers as well as three, count ’em, three amplifiers that are sure to rattle the teeth out of the most hardened heavy metal fan.
We can’t forget that innovation always was and always will be about size. LG’s 55EM9700 TV is a 55-inch OLED screen that’s only 4mm thick. True to futuristic expectations, the picture is clearer than ever. LG’s resolution is about as best as it can get these days, with no competition. Black levels have never been deeper, and the finest details absolutely pop from the backgrounds.
This past year saw the rise of the smart appliances. It seemed if it was solid and you used it at least once a day, you could make it smart. In 2014, it seems cloud computing is the new smart.
It goes without saying that the increased reliance on cloud storage will maximize system speeds and efficiencies, not to mention memory.
As the vanguards of technology roll out inventions and improvements that propel us ever forward into the future, we can be sure to expect innovation that takes our breath away.
The last thing employees want is another boring training as they struggle to stay awake causing them to tune out new regulations, updated information and key factors that resulted in the training in the first place. Did you know, many employees are challenged in maintaining attention and being able to retain vital information when it is delivered ineffectively? “Not another boring training” is oftentimes the first thing that crosses an employee’s mind when their employer requires mandatory training. As a result, employers are challenged in developing more motivating, creative, appealing, interesting and enjoyable training and development programs that can change their employee’s outlook on mandatory trainings and other training opportunities within an organization.
How Businesses Use Technology in Training Today’s Workforce
To remove the boredom from training, more employers are incorporating more engaging and effective approaches in their training and development programs. In 2011, the American Society for Training and Development reported U.S. businesses spent approximately $156 billion on employee training. From online tutorials, web tools, teleconferences and virtual programs, employers are able to tap into diverse learning styles to enhance learning. Keep in mind, there are many ways in which technology can be used in training and development programs. First and foremost, organizations are able to use technology within training to connect employees across the organization. Regardless if the training is conducted at the corporate headquarters or an employee at another location in a different state needs to participate in the training, employees are able to participate in the training through the capabilities of telephones and computers. In addition to this, the capabilities of various technology, allows employers to record a training session so employees are able to access the training at a later date if they are unavailable to attend the live session. This is often done through a webinar feature on the computer or recording capabilities available on phone systems. However, for many employers, conducting trainings in a classroom setting remains to be popular. This form of training has proven to be very effective over the years. Needless to say, to engage employees, technology has been incorporated within the traditional classroom environment. Rather it’s through the use of slideshow presentations presented on large screens and also videos. It is not uncommon to see this form of technology implemented within the traditional classroom as a teaching aid.
Benefits of Incorporating Technology in Training
Although there are many benefits in implementing technology in training programs, the ultimate objective is to ensure information is delivered to employees in a way that equips employees to be more effective, enhances skill sets, improves job performance, creates a safe working environment, and educates employees on policies and procedures that are needed to be most successful within their job. Here are some other benefits technology can offer when incorporated within company training programs:
- Offers flexibility and convenience
- Facilitates collaboration across the organization
- Easily accessible through the use of wireless phones and tablets
- Employees are able to work at their own pace
- Encourages team building among employees at different levels within the company
- Connects employees throughout the organization regardless of location
- Can prove to be cost-effective for organizations
Technology within training programs is essential for employers today. Due to the rising demand of organizations revamping their training and development programs, there will continue to be a need for individuals that possess the skills to assist organizations in achieving this goal. As a result, individuals possessing a background in instructional design and technology will have a competitive edge in aiding organizations in implementing technology within corporate training and development initiatives.
Business owners in the process of building a new facility or updating their current buildings would do very well to start looking into important safety components such as fire pumps in order to power their emergency sprinkler system. One of the most important aspects of any public building is fire safety. In fact, there are several government regulations in place requiring that public facilities meet certain standards in terms of safety and fire preparedness.
First, it may be helpful for you to understand exactly what a fire pump is. A fire pump is a component within a fire sprinkler system and is responsible for feeding potentially large amounts of pressurized water through that sprinkler system in the event of a fire emergency. Due to the size of many public and commercial buildings, specialized fire pumps are often required in order to provide the necessary amount of water throughout the fire system.
A fire pump can be powered in a variety of ways including electricity, diesel fuel, and steam power. The fire pump is usually connected either to the public water line or a storage tank with a large enough capacity to supply the appropriate amount of water to the system in the event that it is needed.
Now that you understand a little bit about what a fire pump does, it is important to gain an understanding as to why they are so important in the construction of a commercial building. The easy answer is to contribute to public safety. In the event of a fire emergency, it is vital to have an effective fire suppression system in place that can help to either put the fire out quickly or contain the flames long enough for the building’s occupants to evacuate to safety.
The key component in a good fire system is ensuring that you have sufficient fire pumps incorporated into the system and that they are able to meet the water capacity required for your specific building. It is extremely important to incorporate pumps that not only meet your building and fire suppression system’s capacity requirements, but also that meet up with government requirements.
The best way to go about this is to purchase your pumps from a company such as Aline Fire Pumps, which specializes in building commercial grade pumps that are designed to meet your specific needs as well as meeting up with Australian government standards. Failure to adhere to these important government regulations can result in serious fire safety hazards, not to mention stiff financial penalties should your system fail to pass an inspection.
Due to the unique nature and location of your facility, it is also very important to consider the power source that will be incorporated into your fire pumps. This may seem like a trivial decision, but if you are in an area that experiences frequent or even occasional power outages for example, a diesel or steam powered pump may be a better option for you than electric. Consider what may offer the easiest installation without sacrificing the overall safety and effectiveness of your system when making this decision.
The Internet, or rather the “Web 2.0″ or the “social web”, is the single most important communication invention of our time. Still, considering its seminal importance in all aspects of our lives, it is very important to consider its unintended effects and consequences. While there are many new books coming out now that do just that, from “The Net Delusion” to “The Shallows” to “The Information”, you may find it surprising that an academic, writing pre-1970, discussed the effects of the Internet ad nauseam, basically paving the way for Internet media analysis later down the line. Here are some of McLuhan’s basic ideas:
1. “The medium is the message.”
This is perhaps one of the best known of McLuhan’s sayings, one that catapulted him to fame after the publication of his book “Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man”. What McLuhan essentially means here is that the “content” of a message is the least important thing to analyze, even though it is the most apparent. When thinking of the Internet, something that McLuhan conceptualized as “the global village,” we should look at how messages are transmitted in order to gauge how they affect our perceptions and behaviors.
2. “Anyone who tries to make a distinction between education and entertainment doesn’t know the first thing about either.”
This is an especially salient quote when we are talking about the Web as it exists today. While online schools are still in their infancy, the learning potential of the Internet is already being exploited through educational games for children, OpenCourseWare initiatives, and more.
3. “As technology advances, it reverses the characteristics of every situation again and again. The age of automation is going to be the age of ‘do it yourself.”
Can any one phrase apply to the Internet of the 21st century better than “do it yourself?” McLuhan suggested in many of his books that media could be grouped into two types
Incoming search terms:
- www behaviourchangeandtechnology org
Exposure is the basic premise that must be satisfied for an intervention to induce behaviour change. Generally, exposure to Internet-interventions is low. Thus, we need to develop exposure theories and strategies that are linked to effectiveness. Rik Crutzen et al. (2011) reviewed strategies that facilitate exposure to Internet-delivered health behavior change interventions among adolescents and young adults (age 12-25), where they examined what strategies that are used to facilitate exposure, on which theories these strategies are based, and what potential effects these strategies have.
Methods and Strategies
It is clear from the article that nine out of 17 studies reviewed utilized either targeted (i.e. specified audience) or tailored (i.e. personal) communication. Nine interventions utilized support facilities (e.g. discussion boards, peer support or professional support), five utilized interactive content, some utilized use of reminders and incentives, and a few interventions were embedded in a social context (e.g. implemented in school).
All in all, it is clear that we have only begun to utilize the inherent possbilities in this rich medium called the Internet. As seen from the results, only six different strategies were used in the studies that were reviewed. Although a lot of variation can be found within each strategy and many strategies can be combined, we have yet to utilize the medium to its full extent with regard to designing health and behaviour change interventions.
Theory and Empirical Data
It appears that a wide variety of theories were applied to design the interventions. The basis for the selection of strategies was social learning theory, self-regulation theory, social norms, the transtheoretical model, information-motivation-behavioural skills model, and different theories of social support.
As Crutzen et al. (2011) point out, these theories are descriptive in nature where the aim is to describe behaviours or behaviour change. None of these theories are actually prescriptive. That is, inform the intervention designer exactly about how to design the intervention in order to induce behaviour change.
Of course, it is not difficult to imagine and design e.g. exercises, tasks, games, etc. that are based on these theories and that intend on inducing behaviour change, but it is not given that it will work in practice.
Furthermore, none of the interventions applied any specific theories of exposure facilitation or theories of dissemination and implementation which makes it even more difficult to study and improve exposure in future interventions.
Effectiveness of Strategies
It seems that support strategies are rarely used by participants. This effect may reflect that adolescents and young adults are rarely confronted with negative consequences of the target behaviours which Internet-interventions are designed for, resulting in low involvement and low motivation to comply.
Providing interactive content may thus be a great way of enforcing involvement in one’s behaviour change process. The results from the article showed that providing content in a more interactive way resulted in higher exposure.
Asking and answering questions, interactive quizzes and games, listening to audio, watching videos, etc. breaks the monotony of reading and requires a different kind of cognitive processing of content which may result in greater involvement.
Also, the use of reminders seems to increase exposure. Text messages, email reminders, proactive IVRs (interactive voice response), etc. may increase exposure by “pulling in” users and making interventions more attractive. However, the use of incentives to make people use the intervention may be feasible for studies, but would increase costs extremely in real-life.
Thus, finding new ways of providing incentives is important. It could for instance be to apply gaming principles to make interventions self-rewarding, but it may also be a matter of finding an appropriate business model and commercialize interventions.
The authors of the article concluded that there seems to be a few strategies that can be used to facilitate exposure more successfully. However, they were not able to link specific strategies to effectiveness. So far, I think the Internet is a rich medium which we believe has not been fully utilized in Internet-delivered interventions and that research on Internet-delivered interventions has yet to improve beyond conducting mere studies of program effectiveness. More experimental evidence is needed, more optimization and process research is needed, and exposure/dissemination/implementation research that is linked to effectiveness data.
Crutzen, R., de Nooijer, J., Brouwer, W., Oenema, A., Brug, J. & de Vries, N. K. (2011). Strategies to factilitate exposure to Internet-delivered health behavior change interventions aimed at adolescents or young adults: A systematic review. Health Education & Behaviour, 38, 49-62.
There is not one national healthcare system in the world that has the capacity or resources to follow up every nation’s person in need of help and support changing lifestyle behaviours. Thus, eating and physical activity behaviours requires that people take personal responsibility for their health and well-being. However, changing lifestyle behaviours is extremely difficult. There are two major reasons why it is so difficult.
First, approximately 70% of your body weight and size is determined by your genes which your body will attempt to maintain. This is not anything you can do much about. Second, the remaining 30% are largely determined by environmental factors that influence our eating behaviours outside our conscious awareness. The good news is that you can change the evironmental factors to work for us instead of against us. Here I show you 10 practical and scientifically proven ways of changing your environment so that you can eat more healthy without thinking about it.
1. Use tall and narrow (highball) glasses.
People tend to pour and drink a lot more juice, soda, liquors, etc. when using short and wide glasses. When people evaluate the volume of cylindrical shapes such as glasses, they tend to focus on height at the expense of width (i.e. the vertical-horizontal illusion). Consequently, we underestimate how much we think we pour onto our glasses. Short and wide glasses should only be used for drinking water. So, replace your shortest and widest glasses with taller and narrower and put them in front in your cupboard.
2. Use small serving aids.
Research has demonstrated how easily we are fooled by the size of serving aids. Put four spoons full of mashed potatoes on a large plate (e.g. 12 inches) and you will most likely underestimate the amount of food on that plate. Put the same amount of mashed potatoes on a small plate (e.g. 8 inches) and you will most likely overestimate the amount of food on that plate. This is the size-contrast illusion in practice. The same amount of food can seem a lot or little depending on the size of serving aids you use. The principle applies not only to plates, but all sorts of serving aids such as spoons, bowls, forks, etc. So, go back in to your cupboards and find the smallest serving aids you have and make them easily available for use.
3. Turn on the lights while eating.
Candlelit dinners and dimmed lights increases our consumption by increasing comfort and decreasing self-consciousness. The more we enjoy a meal, the longer the meal lasts. And the more time you spend eating your meal, the more often you end up eating a second portion, an unplanned dessert or having an extra drink. Also, soft or dimmed lights makes us less self-conscious which makes it harder for us to monitor and inhibit our consumption.
4. Turn of music and remove noise.
Listening to music we enjoy increases comfort just like dimmed lights. The same is true for slow and soft music. We stay longer, we feel more comfortable, we become less self-conscious, and we become more likely to eat more. More research is needed on noises and loud and up-tempo music, but it appears this too can lead us to overeat because we hurry to clean our plates and ignore signals of satiety.
5. Always eat at a table with no disturbances.
Very often we find ourselves eating at sports events, in movie theaters, grab a hot dog on the go, etc. One major problem with eating in such situations where there usually is no table, is that our attention is directed on something else than eating. Disturbances such as watching television, reading a book, talking on the phone, etc. while eating makes us less aware of how much we eat.
6. Always leave leftover food on the table until you are finished eating.
A group of researchers conducted a study in restaurants where some waiters cleaned their customers’ tables during the meal. Other waiters were instructed to let the leftover food stay on the table until their customers’ were completely finished with the meal. The result were that those customers who could see all the leftovers ate less. The results could be explained by the fact that those customers with leftovers on their tables did not have to rely on their memory – they could easily see how much they had eaten.
7. Consider how often you should eat with others.
Eating is very much a shared or social activity with friends and family. Friends and family are good for you, however, eating with others also increases our consumption. The duration of meals are extended and simply observing others can set consumption norms on what is eaten and how much. The effects can be dramatic. Meals eaten with only one other person present increases intake by appr. 30%. Consumption is incremental with increases in the number of people we eat with. Eat with 7 persons around the dining table and it is not unlikely that you will eat twice the amount of food that you would have eaten if you were to eat alone. Consider suggesting social activities with friends and family that do not necessarily involve eating.
8. Buy food in medium or normal sized packages and portions.
Both large- and small-sized packages and portions makes us eat more. Large-sized packages and portions increases consumption with about 20% for meal-related foods and about 30-45% for snacks. The more food we stockpile and have available, the more we eat. We also have a cultural tendency to “clean our plates” although we are far beyond the point of satiety. Ironically, small-sized packages and portions also make us eat more because we tend to think of small sizes as diet food(!). The problem is that the food that often comes in small packages and sizes is exactly the energy dense and unhealthy food we really should eat less of.
9. Organize and re-structure your food.
Cleverly designed research demonstrated how a bowl of assorted M&Ms can increase how many you eat. People who were given a bowl of M&Ms with 10 different colours ate about 40% more than people who were given only 7 different colours. Taste could not explain these findings as all M&Ms tasted exactly the same. The lesson to be learned here is that perceived variety suggests consumption norms. This means that you should try to separate and organize foods on your plate in clearly visible patterns, never buy assorted candy, avoid having more than two kinds of food on your plate at buffets and receptions, etc.
These practical tips mainly help you eating more healthy by eating lesser portions or less food that is bad for you. Try reversing these practical tips to eat more healthy foods. For example, if you want to eat more fruits and vegetables: cut them in small pieces, serve them in a large bowl, put the bowl easily available on the table in your living room and eat it in front of the TV. You can find references to the research mentioned in this post and read more about these practical tips in Brian Wansink’s (2004) great review of environmental factors that influence your food consumption.
Wansink, B. (2004). Environmental factors that increase the food intake and consumption volume of unknowing consumers. Annual Review of Nutrition, 24, 455-479.
There are many ways of making people say “Yes”. Yes to buy a book, yes to vote for a political candidate, yes to do things to preserve the climate, and all the other yes’s in the world. According to Goldstein et al. (2009) latest book, there are at least 50 scientifically proven ways to make people say that one word. While some ways of making people say “yes” are well known and widely applied, others are less known. Here we present a few of the less known and perhaps surprising strategies of persuasion:
1. Sometimes all you have to do is just to ask.
We often underestimate the likelihood that the recipient will comply with our requests (Flynn & Lake, 2008). It is important to recognize this because it can potentially lead to productivity losses and prevent accomplishing your goals. Moreover, holding a correct impression of how many say “Yes!” may not only increase staff motivation, but by applying the simple principle of requesting what you want, you appear open and honest. If openness and honesty does not persuade people into doing whatever you want them to do, at least it does not create much resistance.
2. More options promote indecisiveness.
Startup and small businesses often offer only few options and products. If successfully managed, the business will grow and attract new customers which open up the possibility for expanding the product portfolio. Most people usually consider having more choices to be a good thing. However, as research shows, and as many businesses often painfully have experienced, this is not always a good business idea. An abundance of choices most often overwhelms customers and leads to indecisiveness (i.e. fewer purchases).
3. Be the first to throw out the anchor.
During negotiations, the first meetings or first few minutes in a meeting, the parties often dance around the table reluctant to be the first to present their offer. Is this the right strategy for achieving the highest bid? No. Research shows that the one that first puts the bid out on the table achieves superior outcomes (Galinsky & Mussweiler, 2001). Why? The first offer “anchors” the negotiation and the parties tend not to move that far away from the anchor. Remember, though, that the first offer should be realistic!
4. Humor people.
Humor brings people closer together and helps establish relationships (Kurtzberg et al., 2009). Moreover, humor seems to make people put down their guard in negotiations by proposing less extreme offers. In business, the possibility for using humor is very limited and not all people find all jokes, cartoons, and other fun stuff equally humoring. So attempts at making people laugh and come in good mood should be made with caution, however, there is no doubt that interaction with users and business outcomes can become more effective when using humor.
5. “I don’t mean to sound rude, but…”.
Have you ever found it difficult to say something and tried to get ahead of the situation by saying things like “I trust you will manage this situation, but don’t forget to…”? Well, guess what? Research shows that if you do say such things, you are going to be perceived as someone who doesn’t trust his co-workers or rude (see El-Alayli et al. 2008). In fact, it is better just to say things as they are: “Manage the situation and remember to …” or even better “I trust you will manage this situation.”
What are some of the practical implications of these principles?
First of all, if you want someone to participate in online projects, it can be more cost-effective just to ask people politely if they would like to join than spending a lot of time and effort finding clever ways to persuade them. No one really likes to be persuaded – they like to think it was a self-determined choice. Second, if you want users to start using or buying your online product, be selective about which products you wish to push. It is much easier for users to make a decision to buy or use products from a small sample than the entire range of your products. Third, as long as you are sensitive to what price people are willing to pay, you should not have to be afraid of displaying the price of your products. Most e-commerce sites already do this, however, a few do not. There is nothing that turns a buyer off more than seeing a price tag that is way beyond imagination at checkout. Do not quite know what people want to pay? Well, talk to them and find out what they are willing to pay – sometimes you will be happily surprised. Fourth, try using a bit of humor. Consider e.g. including a non-offensive and appropriate cartoon in your electronic meeting notice. Humor gives people something to talk about, loosens up the atmosphere, and brings people closer together. Fifth, avoid startups like “I don’t mean to sound rude, but…” when chatting with people regardless whether they are close and personal friends or professional relationships. It is very likely that you end up being perceived exactly the way you want to avoid being perceived. The same rule applies online as offline.
El-Alayli, A., Myers, C. J., Petersen, T. L., Lystad, A. L. (2008). “I don’t mean to sound arrogant, but…” The effects of using disclaimers on person perception. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 34, 130-143.
Flynn, F. J., & Lake, V. K. B. (2008). If you need help, just ask: Underestimating compliance with direct requests for help. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 95, 128-143.
Galinsky, A. D., & Mussweiler, T. (2001). First offers as anchors: The role of perspective-taking and negotiator focus. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 81, 657-669.
Goldstein, N. J., Martin, S. J. & Cialdini, R. B. (2009). Yes! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive . New York: Free Press.
Kurtzberg, T. R., Naquin, C. E. & Belkin, L. Y. (2009). Humor as a relationship-building tool in online negotiations. International Journal of Conflict Management, 20, 377-397.
It is recommended (Crutzen, De Nooijer, Brouwer, Oenema, Brug, & De Vries, submitted) to conduct experimental research in more controlled settings to increase evidence-based insight into effectiveness of strategies regarding dissemination of and exposure to Internet-delivered interventions, before applying these strategies in practice. Advantage of such a controlled setting is the minimisation of possible confounding effects. Disadvantage of these experimental settings, however, is the isolated way in which strategies are tested on effectiveness, which is less comparable with real-life implementation.
Even if strategies are immediately applied in practice, there are appropriate designs, such as a time series design (Chen et al., 2005; Murry, Stam, & Lastovicka, 1993), to test effectiveness of these strategies. In such a design, strategies are first applied separately. Subsequently, combinations of several strategies are applied. Intervention use is monitored during the whole period to determine which strategy or combination between them is most effective. Although this design is more sensitive to confounding effects (e.g. changing environment), strategies are tested in a less isolated way and this could give more insight into effectiveness regarding dissemination and exposure in real life.
If all methods described above are inapplicable due to limited resources, one could test the effectiveness of dissemination strategies by simply asking visitors where they came from and how they heard about the intervention (Gordon, Akers, Severson, Danaher, & Boles, 2006). Although this method is based on self-report and therefore less objective, it is easily applicable and less time consuming. Yet, this method remains a last resort (when all else fails).
Dissemination and exposure do not only depend on the intervention itself, however, but also on its users. There is evidence that the acquisition of skills to use a website may influence its adoption (Paswan & Ganesh, 2003). It has also been shown, however, that Internet self-efficacy is not a significant predictor of exposure (Steele, Mummery, & Dwyer, 2007). If familiarity with a website increases, then perceived usability influences loyalty to the website (Casal