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Webmaster Basics

WayNet offers webmasters:

Getting Started:

Your URL is your web address:  usually either www.yourisp.com/~your_name OR www.yourdomainname.com

It is important to know where your folder is located (the actual address) on your ISP's server, so you can FTP (File Transfer Protocol) to your folder. 

Find out from your ISP what your "start" page is called.  Can be index.htm/welcome.htm/default.htm or many other variations.

Plan you web site:

!!! SURF!!! - What do you like or not like when you are surfing? 

Notice:

To figure out how a particular effect was created:

This will allow you to view the actual HTML for the page.

If you are using Front Page Editor, you can usually open any page on the Internet and see how they set it up if the site is doing so with HTML.  Scripts often will not show up correctly.

Plan:

Hint:

File names do need to follow UNIX standards which or similar to DOS.

While some programs will "fix" your files when they upload to the server - it's best to stick with conventional naming systems to save yourself trouble down the road if you switch editors.

Don't forget to give the page a useful title.  Remember that this is the name that is saved in bookmarks.  Search engines will also use this to determine the ranking of your page when compared with others.  Recommendation - use your business name - not "welcome to my business".  The bookmarks store the title alphabetically.

CHECK YOUR SPELLING!!  If possible have someone else proof read when you are done.

Organize:

Include:

Be aware that your are now in the publishing business and all copyright laws apply to web sites.  Do not post other's information without their permission - and even with their permission - note the original author.

I aim for an acceptable look in 640 X 480 as many monitors still use that standard.   800 x 600 is up and coming - you must decide if you are willing to forgo backwards compatibility.

Use navigation on your site to give visitors "a way out" that doesn't include the use of their "back" button.

For a truly eye opening experience - watch someone navigate your site...while you sit on your hands with your mouth taped!  Notice where they get bogged down.

Shareware Essentials;

Tricks

REMEMBER - Test in different browsers and different versions of browsers

Be careful when using a full featured editor like Front Page or Dreamweaver.  Even though the editor makes it look easy - it's not necessarily a good idea.  For example - the marquee function in Front Page can only be seen in Internet Explorer - not Netscape.   Several of the other features do not have backwards capability or can even lock-up a visitors browser.  TEST - TEST - TEST!

GETTING LISTED IN SEARCH ENGINES:

Register Your Site:

You can use a service like Submit It! or other similar services.  These services often use many industry specific search engines that may not be applicable to your industry. 

Remember to use META Tags!

For details on Meta Tag use and details, visit Web Monkey or Web Reference.  The most important Meta Tags are <DESCRIPTION> and <KEYWORDS>.

Request Reciprocal Links

One of the most productive methods for increasing your hit count is to request a reciprocal link from like minded web designers.  If yours is a business site, you might request that your vendors and/or customers link to your site.  If you have a informational/content site, it is helpful to do a search of others who may have similar sites and notify them of your site and give them a short description.  There's no need to be effusive - but a small compliment to the webmaster goes a long way when requesting a link back to your site.

Of course, the BEST way to be recognized in Wayne County is to become a WayNet member!


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