Thursday, 29 June 2017
 
 
Options For Website Development PDF Print E-mail
Countless people are trying to figure out how to build their website. They know they need one. They have an idea what they want it to look like. They know what they want the website to do. In many cases, they even know the domain name they want to use. But the real question is: where do I start? Who can build it for me? What’s it going to cost?

As it turns out, there are many different options available. In fact, there are as many options available as there are websites on the net. But a few stick out as particularly good approached for you to consider. This article will review three strategies for getting your website up and running. In reality, there are countless subcategories within each strategy but this overview should give you a good start to begin your planning.

The first strategy is also the cheapest. You can use the Joomla CMS Web Application Framework to build your website. Joomla is an open source project, meaning it was developed by loosely affiliated developers around the world and it’s free to use. Yes, you read it correctly. It’s absolutely free for anyone to use. You simply download the platform and install it on your server and you’re good to go. There are also countless extensions you can download and install, enhancing the functionality of your website. The beauty of the platform is that you can log on at any time and make changes or adjustments to your website, all by yourself. Joomla is a powerful content management system and you can quickly put up a feature-rich website without paying a penny.

The second strategy is to host your website with a company that offers a template-driven web application framework of their own. More and more hosting companies are offering platforms like this and they’re a great option for non-tech-savvy people who want to get a website up quickly and be able to modify it whenever they like. These platforms offer similar functionality to Joomla but they tend to be more intuitive and easier to use. They are also being upgraded regularly and usually have some sort of user support line as well. While basic hosting might cost $10 per month, the inclusion of these platforms might increase your cost to $20 or $30 per month.

The last strategy we’ll discuss in this article is the actual hiring of a web developer to put your site together. This is obviously the most expensive option but it does come with some distinct advantages. For starters, you can design the website any way you like. You’re not limited to templates or layout options. You can do whatever you like. You can also incorporate custom functionality Joomla or the template-driven platforms don’t offer. And in many cases, today’s developers can incorporate administrative back-ends so you can change content whenever you like. There’s no question you can get the Cadillac treatment with a custom web developer. The only downside is that it’ll cost you a lot more money.

There are dozens of options I have not even mentioned. This article is intended to get you started; give you some basic categories to consider. Look around and do your research. I only request that you take a look at the inexpensive options before making your final decision. You might be surprised at the functionality available through Joomla or the platforms offered by hosting companies. They can do a really nice job and will save you tons of money at the same time.

 
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Latest Fat Cow Coupon for June 2011
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Web Development With Seo In Mind
When a business owner decides to bring their business to the web, generally the last thing that they think about is search engine optimization. They assume that whomever they hire to do their web design will put up a site and then submit it to the search engines and the traffic will magically pour in. Unfortunately it takes more than that to drive search engine traffic to your site, and even more unfortunately most developers don't program with SEO in mind, nor do they educate the client about the process involved in gaining traffic from search engines.

Whether it's carelessness or a lack of knowledge, or a combination of the two, this often leads to a client that several months down the road doesn't understand why their site doesn't get any traffic and isn't helping their business. A good designer will not only program with SEO in mind, but will also educate the client about the basic principles of SEO, whether they are the one who executes it or not.

Many times the clients I inherit have gone through this scenario and then face drastic on-site changes to get their site search engine friendly before we are even able to begin the arduous process of link building. Whether you are designing a site for yourself or for a client, following the simple steps below when programming will ultimately save the business time and money and result in a search engine friendly site that truly maximizes the online potential of the business.

Use proper tags for headings, bold text, italic text, and lists – HTML has heading tags, bold tags, italic tags, and ordered and unordered lists for a reason and you should use them. Using CSS you can practically style them however you like, but actually using a heading tag for your headings, and bold tags for important text, will help allow search engines understand what text on a page is a heading or what is more important than the surrounding text. Simply applying a CSS style that makes text larger or bold doesn't do that.

Optimize your images – search engine spiders can't read text within an image. Adding ALT text to your image tag helps, but ideally you should remove all wording from the image and style it using CSS, adding the remaining portion of the image as a background image to the text. Here is a side-by-side comparison (http://www.seo-playbook.com/image_example.php) of two images that look the same in your browser, but much different to a search engine spider.

Avoid canonical problems – believe it or not, search engines can see http://yoursite.com, http://www.yoursite.com, and http://www.yoursite.com/index.html as three different pages. A simple solution is to use a 301 redirect to point all of your pages to their “www” counterpart. You can also select the preferred domain that Google shows in the new Google Webmaster Tools console.

Get rid of Session IDs if you have a PHP site – have you ever seen a PHPSESSID variable added to the end a URL on a PHP page (it looks something like PHPSESSID=34908908)? This happens because PHP will add a unique PHPSESSID to URLs within your site if cookies aren't available. This can be extremely problematic for your site's search engine ranking. Google and Yahoo will see a unique PHPSESSID in the URL every time they visit a page on your site, and in turn think that said page is a different page each time. At worst, this could be viewed as duplicate content and get your site banned, and at best it will reduce the perceived value of each page. One solution that I've used successfully is to utilize url_rewriter.tags.

Put CSS and JavaScript in external files – nearly every site nowadays uses CSS and JavaScript for something. While both are great for enhancing user experience, neither will help your search engine ranking if left on your page. One of the factors that search engines consider when ranking your site is the percentage of code relevant to the search term. CSS and JavaScript can take up hundreds of lines of code, minimizing the importance of your text and in turn hurting your ranking. By putting them in separate files and simply including them in your page by reference, you can reduce hundreds of lines down to one and increase the amount of code in the file that is relevant content.

Minimize the use of tables in layouts – the debate about whether or not tables should be used in site design has been going on for years and there's no end in site. I fall somewhere in the middle – there are certain circumstances (like organizing tabular data) where I think tables still make the most sense, but I also appreciate the SEO benefits of using CSS layouts. CSS layouts drastically reduce the amount of code in your site that isn't content that the user sees. Just like moving CSS and JavaScript to an external file, the less on-page code that isn't content, the better. Check out www.searchenginefriendlylayouts.com for some free example layouts.

Validate your site – a site doesn't have to be perfectly coded to rank high in the search engines (there are many, many other factors), but valid HTML will help ensure that search engines and browsers alike will accurately see your page. Try using the official W3C Validator (http://validator.w3.org/) or install this handy Firefox extension (https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/249/). Validating generally identifies areas of code that are redundant, unnecessary, or not accepted across all browsers. All of which will help make your site more search engine friendly.