XHTML, CSS, PHP, ASP, MYSQL, CMS, … accessible, cross-platform, static, data driven. These are all terms you’re likely to hear when you start to talk to people about building a website for your business.
Skip forward in time … your new business website is online. What now? Well, you’ve probably heard the term ‘search engine optimisation (SEO)’ so you’ve searched for an SEO company or had one recommended to you.
So, you know your own business back to front and upside down but how much do you know about building and running a website? Well, they’re on the Internet, you access them via a web browser (such as Firefox, Safari, Chrome, Internet Explorer); that’s all you need to know to use it, right? When someone buys a product from you or uses one of your services, do you expect them to understand all the processes that are required to get the product to market or the service working effectively and efficiently? And so it is with web designers and developers. We don’t expect you to know all the technical stuff that goes on behind the scenes to get a website designed, built, and launched.
But then how do you know you’re getting what you paid for?
Our website health check will determine whether you’ve hired a great web developer and SEO team or one who’s slightly behind the times and not quite as experienced in the subject as they led you to believe.
Let’s take a look at the three areas we look at in our website health check and why they should concern you.
1. Is Your Website Built on a Solid Foundation?
Everything goes very fast on the Web, and maintaining a Web site can imply fairly big operational costs. Without a compliant Web site, migrating to new platforms and adding functionalities to your applications can be expensive.” — Dominique Hazaël-Massieux, Buy standards compliant Web sites
A professional website designer/ developer will ensure your site is built with W3C standards HTML and CSS, the two core technologies for building websites. Building a site using valid HTML and CSS will go a long way to supporting as wide a range of technologies (desktops, netbooks, PDAs, smartphones) and web browsers as possible without compromising the structure or design of the website.
2. Is Your Business Website Accessible?
A professional web services provider will keep up-to-date with the legal, ethical, and practical issues involved in owning and running a website. Think of accessibility as ‘usability’; you want your site to be accessed by as many potential customers as possible…don’t you? And if you aren’t already concerned, how about the growing ‘silver economy’ (aka ‘silver surfers‘).
NB: The written content on your site is not the responsibility of the website designer or developer. It is the responsiblity of the owner of the website to check the text before publishing it. Hiring a freelance copy-editor may be required to check the text for slanderous, libelous, sexist, or racist content. [At the very least you should have your web content proofread for spelling and grammatical errors before going live.]
3. Does Your Website Include In-page SEO?
SEO is a mixed bag of marketing techniques (link building, establishing web presence through press releases, blogs, forums, etc) backed up by sound in-page search engine optimisation—(responsibly) optimising the use of keywords in appropriate tags and attributes in the HTML code. Being overzealous with your SEO and trying to trick Google and others is just not going to work and can be detrimental to your web site’s ranking.
We’re not saying that these are the only issues to be concerned about when thinking about your website, but they are three major considerations to ensuring that once your beautiful website is launched, people will be able to a) find it; and b) read it on whatever platform they choose.
Freelancealot.co.uk are offering small business owners—sole traders, entrepreneurs, freelancers, virtual assistants—the chance to book their website (new or old) in for a health check. Problems identified in your Website Wellness Report™ can be easily drawn to the attention of your web designer/developer and SEO company for them to attend to.
ARE YOU GETTING WHAT YOU PAID FOR?
BOOK A HEALTH CHECK FOR YOUR WEBSITE TODAY