D B K Web Builders

Donna – lead developer at DBK Web Builder

Specializing in helping small businesses, churches and ministries have a web presence at an affordable price. We will guide you through the whole process from picking a domain name and hosting to setting up your site.
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Based in Mercer County, New Jersey

Why is my designer bugging me for content for my website?

I came across it again just a few days ago. Watching a software tutorial — actually, an evaluation of some WordPress plugins — the presenter joked about waiting upon web design clients for content. Everyone chuckled. It’s an acknowledged perennial issue — a headache for many web designers.

But what’s the big deal? Why the push for content? And by content, I mean any flavor: whether text, image, or video.

To explain, one can come at it from a few different angles.

“The sofa won’t fit”

If you wish, you can consider a house a metaphor for a website. After all, there must be plans (flowchart), blueprints (page structure), and elevations (design template). You have different rooms (types of page purposes). You get the idea.

So, in this case, perhaps you’ve indicated to your designer that you’ll have a couple of product photos for each item. So they build accordingly. Then it turns out that the photo count is more like a couple of dozen shots for each product, and even though about half of them are redundant or poor shots, there’s still too many snaps to effectively fit the framework your designer created. If she’d known, she would’ve built the product display pages entirely differently, and it would’ve worked out much better. Instead she built a room without seeing the size of your sofa, and either she tears down the walls or you get a different sofa. Not optimal.

“The walls are too pink”

When a designer doesn’t have your content, she may build with dummy content — whether “lorem ispum” text or generic blocks in place of images — and this may give a misleading impression of what your pages will look like, much the way an empty room looks so different than that same room with its furniture.

A closely related issue can arise when the web designer doesn’t know the range of data you’ll be presenting. Discrete displays (whether it be a news post, article, product listing, or profile) are greatly enhanced by the inclusion of “meta data” — that is, the little bits of information related to an item. If your designer has this information, she can use her skills to present it in an appropriate and appealing manner, much like how a creative and colorful garnish enhances your entree plate, piquing interest.

What about you?

Whether website owner or web designer/developer, what is your take on this? What have I missed or do I not understand?

Join the discussion at our Google+ page.

RB Design Studio, LLC

This Kentucky web developer has clients all over the US. Creating &/or enhancing your online presence is a key factor in your overall marketing strategy to enhance the growth of your business!
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Based in Lexington, KY, USA

Be safer online, browse faster

Frustrated now? Choose to change!

I know. You don’t want to hear it. Life is complicated enough. Why must there be yet one more decision to make? But the choice of which web browser software to use is worth consideration: from the point of view of safety, of speed, and of aesthetics.

Safety

You know what many old-version browsers have in common — especially the more widely used ones? Some malcontent with a warped values system has figured a hack that compromises security and allows a loophole for evil scripts to pick up information you don’t want shared.

Think about it. Browsers don’t cost anything (any more). So it’s not like Firefox or Microsoft is going to make a couple of bucks off you when you follow their prompt to upgrade to the current version. Often it’s because some security breach has been identified and is dealt with in the upgrade.

Speed and aesthetics

I’m lumping these together because often they go hand in hand. The unescapable trend is for websites to be periodically enhanced to entrance the visitors and get them to stay longer on the site, interact more, and/or buy more products. (And come back again and again!)

Since one can’t think one-dimensionally any longer, companies have web developers craft sites that can be easily deployed on a variety of browsers and devices. From smart phones to iPads and beyond, the push is to make things ever more easy, for both the technically adept as well as the regular Joe, and this means utilizing markup and programming that old browsers couldn’t even dream about. No glimmer of an idea about, and don’t know how to handle.

And since programming for all the limitations of older browsers puts a hefty surcharge on a company’s web development budget, you might just be missing out.

So choose one of these modern browsers. Make your life a little simpler.