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Web Development – 10 Essential Keys

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http://linux.bihlman.com – Web Development – 10 Essential Keys By Henrik Blunck In webdesign there are certain key elements you need to employ in your web development to assure maximum visibility and best impact upon your niche. I have assembled these ten keys so you can have your own personal checklist next time you need to create a website, a sales letter online or when you need to edit a template for your own blog. Make sure you are unique Separate your HTML from your CSS Make sure your site validates Check your site in several browsers Use proper code for headings, subheadings etc Avoid bad color combinations Implement presentations with care – avoid Flash Implement banners and ads with care Get others to proofread your texts Use manual additions to indexes, and avoid automatic systems I will elaborate on each of these to help you achieve the best results with your projects. You might be surprised of how well your page will perform once you implement these keys in your webdesign, and I ask you to read very attentively so you can gain the full benefit from these ten keys. 1. Make sure you are unique You need to make sure your design is unique. Nothing is as big a turn-off as arriving to a site that looks like a boring old template just revamped with a few keywords and some graphics from a public domain folder. People leave such sites before you know it. They won’t come back to you at any time, and first impressions stick with people. I remember some names in Internet Marketing just because they market a product I didn’t like. When I reinstalled my system I quickly added new filters in my Thunderbird e-mail client to send it directly to the waste bin. If such people were decent, you could have unsubscribed, but with some of these people even that isn’t followed because spam penalty fines are too low. Don’t let the same bad impression come from bad design. 2. Separate your HTML from your CSS Some people use web design programs very erroneously. They embed their styles into the same file as their separate webpages. That will make it far more difficult to change details and get them to match other pages at a later date. If you use proper etiquette and run external stylesheets, editing becomes far easier. It was actually the entire idea behind webdesign, originally. But at a time when coding by hand became less popular many of these ideals were thrown out with the bathwater. If you want to be a decent webdesigner you will want your coding to be pure and the idea behind it to be easy to edit in the future. You’re actually helping yourself since you can edit details in design in one file and see the changes straight away. 3. Make sure your site validates You need to check your HTML with a HTML validator since it will give you hints as to whether your coding obeys the rules set up by the World Wide Web Consortium. It will help you find errors that, if overlooked, could make your site look wrong in some browsers. If you are running Windows, it can be quite difficult to know how a site appears in Konqueror under Linux or in Safari for Macs. You can test the Windows version of Safari but there might still be differences in appearance if you have an error in your coding. This brings me to the next point. 4. Check your site in several browsers You need to have several different browsers. For Windows users Internet Explorer is usually available by standard, but you need Opera, Safari and Mozilla Firefox also to be sure your site is seen well in all browsers. 5. Use proper code for headings, subheadings etc You need to use the right codes to separate headings from subheadings, and that is the main reason we operate with codes such as H1 (headings), H2 (subheadings), H3 (subheadings to subheadings) etc. If you use that type of coding, you will put better emphasis on your content, and the strategy becomes readable by search engines also. When you define the appearance of your codes correctly in your external CSS file, everything becomes better styled. 6. Avoid bad color combinations You want to have good contrast between backgrounds and content so your design is easy to read in browsers. When you use a dark grey text color with a light grey background things will be difficult to read. Just as yellow and black send signals of being somewhat “discount”. Red text color on a blue background will make text appear as though it’s jumping around. You will no doubt appreciate checking out this site: http://www.colorschemer.com/online.html to get a better understanding of design colors. 7. Implement presentations with care – avoid Flash I know some will be offended by this, but Flash requires a Flash player at the receiving end. You probably don’t want your customers to leave your site because they don’t want to install a plugin. You have other opportunities. If you need to show a video, upload it to YouTube, and link to it on your website. No need to use Flash, if you think creatively, and you avoid losing visitors who don’t want to install the Flash player plugin. 8. Implement banners and ads with care Jumping banners all over the place will take away from your content. It will distract people, and you don’t want that to happen. Use banners with care and concern for your visitors. You will actually get more clicks by doing it in a professional way. Furthermore, it’s very important that banners are relevant for the content on your page. When your site deals with dogs an ad for cat food is hardly the right thing – although some might have both a cat and a dog. It is something you should test to get your own best results. Niches are all different and what works well on one site might not work on another. 9. Get others to proofread your texts When you write texts, make sure you remove spelling errors. It makes your site look less professional when it’s filled with lots of spelling errors. You might not see it yourself, but visitors get ticked off when they spot tons of mistakes. Be professional and check your material. It makes it far more credible. 10. Use manual additions to indexes, and avoid automatic systems When you have options to add your sites to search indexes, you should avoid automatic systems. It works far better when you add these places manually. Search engines can spot automatic additions due to timestamps, and it would be far more effective to write comments referring back to your site than ever relying upon automatic systems. Concluding Words If you use all 10 keys in your webdesign, you will see that you can create some very good sites using proper coding, and following all aspects of professional webdesign. If HTML and CSS is new to you, I would recommend you check out Sitepoint’s website because they have some very good books on this subject. Good luck with your webdesign. Henrik Blunck administers numerous blogs. He has lectured people about communication through distance learning, and enjoys social networks. “Mingling gives new ideas, and I like that. Even disagreements can teach us something new when we are willing to listen and learn from one another” he says. (General)