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Author Archives: Staff Author

What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the amount of traffic to a website and/or improving the quality of traffic to a website (or specific web pages) which comes from search engines via “natural” (i.e., un-paid, “organic” or “algorithmic”) search results – this does not also include, and is many times confused with also including, other forms of Search Engine Marketing (SEM).

The activity of SEM usually means paid inclusions into search engines, directories or other placements on other sites of a paid nature, and this is not SEO, but can boost the effectiveness of SEO activities.

The theory behind SEO is that the higher to the top of a search engine results page your link appears, the more visitors your site will receive from the various search engine users.

SEO may target different kinds of search, including local search, video search, image search and/or industry-specific vertical search engines. Also as an Internet marketing tactic, SEO considers what people search for and how search engines work.

SEO involves what is called on-page and off-page methods.

The optimization of a website for on-page primarily involves editing the sites content (i.e., HTML outputs) and associated META coding to both increase the sites relevance to specific keywords or phrases and to remove barriers to the indexing behavior of search engines.

Off-page SEO involves performing actives that are not of a paid-for nature on other sites, such as posting to forums, in the hopes of making a site seem more relevant to the search engines.

Staff Author

What is the advantage of an Advanced Contact Form?

At least 4 things we can provide for your business in an 
Advanced Contact Form that most other website development 
companies do not.

At Seattle New Media we can provide a default website installation, where our Content Management System (CMS) by default is already configured to provide a contact form that goes far beyond what most other companies provide.

What can our Contact Form installation do that other’s do not?

Most other site contact forms that other website development companies provide *only* provide the first 2 below, and not all the other features.

  1. STANDARD – All of the standard (name, email, and other details) are recorded
  2. STANDARD – A copy of this contact is sent to the user and the owner of the site
  3. User’s IP Address is recorded.  This is very important in that you can tell some details about who/where this user is.
  4. If the contact form is placed on more than just a “Contact Us” page, as on the bottom of most of our site pages, then the page the form is filled out at can be recorded as the referring page.  This is very important in that you can then tell exactly what page provided interest enough for the user to actually contact you.  You can then alter your site to have more pages like that one or alter your site in other ways to make more relevant for users.
  5. We can also custom build other values that you may wish to capture, where as with most website development contact forms there is not the ability to capture user details.  One example of something that could be added is capturing the user’s Web browser and OS details.
  6. There is a record of all of the above kept on the server, where the site owner can access all records of contacts from the past.  This is very important in that you can at any time access old contacts.  Every 6 months or other time period you can go through these contacts and see if there is anyone you wish to reach back out to.  You can see also in these pages all of the details from the above in a list format that links to individual page records for each contact.

 

 

Staff Author

What is website cross-browser compatibility?

cross browser compatibility testing

Have you ever visited a site that seems to have issues, such as content that is out of alignment?

Have you ever wondered exactly why, and if the site owner knows?

Sites that do not display perfectly are probably not “cross-browser compatible.” And, no, the developer probably was not aware. A good website developer will use standards that should not lead to web browser display issues, and use tools to determine how sites show in other browser/OS versions; and then additionally, if the source coding that is used seems to need to remain for certain browser versions, then using browser-detects to give different pages to different users based on if there are known issues with a particular browser/OS configuration is the last option.

Here are some things to consider: http://seattlenewmedia.com/faq/why-does-my-website-look-different-on-one-computer-verses-another

So, for example, if you know that you use a technology that does not display well to users of Safari or Internet Explorer or other browser and/or particular OS, then you can decide to either update code to fix issues, or show different pages to those visitors. We do that at Seattle New Media.

But no one is perfect. Because no developer can ever know for sure, it is always recommended to utilize tools to test browser compatibility issues, and then if issues are detected to loop back and make updates.

Methods that can be used to deal with browser compatibility issues:
1. a site feedback form can gain data from users
2. viewing site statistics can give hints as to what happens on some pages and for users of certain browsers/OSs
3. there are websites or applications that can display a website as it will on other systems

Note: there is not really such a thing as developing sites that are always 100% cross-browser compatible, but best practices can get one close most of the time.

The reason that even if perfect standards are used that a user can see issues is that this user could have installed on his/her computer new applications, or performs other updates, then the browser/OS or other environments change from the factory default. For example, if a user installs some third-party toolbar, then there is also the potential of pages displaying incorrectly for no reason of the developer or the browser used.

Basically, the short of this subject is that those looking to have sites developed should heed the advice to always use the more simple, old-school HTML, rather than the newer technologies *IF* one is concerned; and from a developer’s perspective, if we see a particular configuration that browsers do not support well, then we can only troubleshoot that, learn from it, and implement fixes or workarounds for that site.

The latest version of browsers can be found to download for FREE here (in order of popularity):
•microsoft.com/ie (64.64% of users use this browser)
•mozilla.com/firefox (25.30%)
•apple.com/safari (4.30%)
•google.com/chrome (3.19%)
•opera.com/download (1.50%)
• Other (1.12%)

IE for example is also broken down even further into:
(1) IE 8 12.8%, (2) IE 7 14.1%, and (3) IE 6 10.6%
-these numbers are a little out of date now.
Sources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Usage_share_of_web_browsers,
http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/browsers_stats.asp

check cross browser compatibility

Staff Author
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