As a web consultant and educator, I’m often hired to review and critique a lot of websites and blogs, making recommendations on what works and doesn’t work, then working together to make it work better.
I recently ran across a website-that-wanted-to-become-a-blog hosted on a very limited web host published with HTML styles long abandoned in 1999. The web pages were written and “published” in Word, FrontPage, Microsoft Publisher, and other old WYSIWYG-but-not-really early web publishing programs, but not consistently. It was as if the site owner or administrator kept changing programs over the life of the site without ever stopping to consider that the site would work better if it met web standards established in 1999 rather than perpetuating the old.
As you can imagine, I had a lot to say about the old, over-coded, error-filled, and table structured site.
Over the years, I’ve heard myself repeating the same points over and over again with clients who didn’t want to learn about web publishing but went ahead anyway, using whatever tool they ran across – and are still using when there are better and more flexible programs around. Now that they want to move into WordPress, they are trapped by their own lack of foresight, ability and knowledge, but also the changing times of technology.
Over the next week or so, I’ll be covering some of the redundant points I make with these clients on improving their blog, as well as some tips and insights into web and blog design. I believe that if people listen, web reviewers and consultants might be able to stop being redundant on these points. Or at least have something they can point to and say “I told you so.”
My first point is on clarity.