Webmasters deal with a myriad of complex design challenges every day. This article will discuss the top ten challenges and provide solutions and tips for solving each problem.
1. Browser Compatibility You must design your Web site so that it is viewable on both browsers: Netscape Navigator and Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE). Netscape Navigator is very strict when it comes to HTML tag completion, but IE isn’t. You need to view your site first using Macromedia Dreamweaver before publishing to the Web. Make sure you’ve run the command convert to ensure your justmyfitness site is version 3.0 browser compatible. If you’re using Netobjects Fusion to create the layout of your site, make sure that all layer objects are converted into tables. This is highly recommended if you want to reach a broader and wider audience.
A) Dr. HTML, located at www2.imagiware.com/RxHTML/
B) Web Site Garage to check your links, located at websitegarage.com
2. Graphics Optimization
Web graphics play an essential part in your Web design, because it conveys the emotion and impact of your site. Always make sure that all of your graphics are in .gif and .jpg format. Unless your site deals with photography, minimize the use of the .jpg format. You can use Macromedia Fireworks to minimize the file size, especially the slicer feature if you need to place a large photo on your site. Another option is the export preview of Macromedia Fireworks. This allows you to remove unwanted colors in your graphics, thus decreasing file size.
You can also do this online by using one of these online utilities:
A) GIF Optimizer by Media Builder, http://www.gifoptimizer.com
B) JPEG Cruncher and GIF Cruncher, [http://www.spinwave.com/crunchers.html]
C) Windows-based graphics optimizer, CyberView Image Lite (JPEG Compressor), [http://www.cyberviewcd.com/cvimage/index.html]
D) Advanced GIF Optimizer, http://www.gold-software.com/ago.html
E) Photo Crunch (JPEG Compressor), http://www.imroncorp.com/photo.htm
F) JPEG image compression FAQ, http://www.faqs.org/faqs/jpeg-faq/part1/
3. Keeping the Site Fresh
I think this is the bulk of a webmaster’s work, if you want your site frequently visited. You can keep your site fresh by really working on new content on a daily or regular basis and by making it interactive. As with content, you can make use of http://www.moreover.com, [http://www.subportal.com], [http://www.newshub.com], and other content syndication sites to provide the content for your site automatically. Let them do the hard work for you! If you place a tag, they will email you with new content. As for the interactivity, offer your visitors web-based email accounts, a message board with a chat room, a search engine crawler, and banner ad rotation. This is easy, and provided by Everyone.net. Searching your site is another way to easily provide information to your visitors. You can get a site search engine from http://www.picosearch.com and http://www.atomz.com.
4. Pushing Information to Your Visitors
A Web site is a “pull” promotion, but as a webmaster, you also need to be thinking about how you can “push” information to your visitors, users, or subscribers. You can publish an ezine on a weekly or monthly basis just to let your users be informed about the latest technology you’ve added to your site. As for the mailing list, you can get a free mailing list from http://www.egroups.com, http://www.topica.com, or you can choose a paid service such as http://www.aweber.com or http://www.getresponse.com. As for the content, you can get lots of articles from bbs.weblord2000.com, or try one or more of my articles that can be found on the same Web site.
5. Driving Traffic
Webmasters shouldn’t forget to announce your Web site. Accomplishing this is easy for Web sites that already have a lot of traffic, but even sites that are starting out with 5 or 10 members can benefit from the viral marketing of online recommendation software. Services include http://www.Nabaza.com/refer.htm, http://www.evite.com, and [http://www.ewomp.com].
6. Dealing with Spammers Unfortunately, the reality of the Internet is that people will spam and flame on a daily basis. Web-based email addresses like the ones set up by http://www.everyone.net are spam-proof. You can set up your account so that any emails sent without your address in the “to” box can be directed automatically to the trash or spam folder. However, flames and hate emails are a different field. You shouldn’t try to get even or retaliate. These people are not a joke. It might cost you your ISP or your e-life. Instead, check out http://www.spamcop.net. It does the nitty-gritty work of automatically reporting misbehaving people to their postmasters. Usually, it’s helpful to get the ISP, or at least the IP address of the suspected person.