A Developer’s Dozen Web Upgrades You Can Do Yourself!

If you can answer, “Yes” to all or most of the questions in my Web Development Needs Survey, try the following more than dozen simple tips to empower your business to create an interactive Web presence that is easy to manage, saves you time and money, and helps you to harness and leverage the power of the Internet by increasing efficiency in your existing work processes.

My Web development tips are both impactful and simple. In fact, even if your organization has minimal Web development experience, I believe that you can implement these important tips without my help beyond sharing this powerful information. Still need my skills?


Implement the following tips to upgrade your Website

  1. Migrate your website to a content management system (CMS) that offers everything on this list without your needing knowledge of coding or programming. (WordPress is required for HM Media clients and includes all recommended options in this site upgrade list and more!)
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  2. Add security features to your site to block email spam and malicious code.
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  3. Add social media connections to your site (at minimum, you should have Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
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  4. Use appropriate tags and categories when posting online content.
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  5. Post relevant images with your content.
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  6. Post relevant video with your content.
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  7. Unless you have HTML and CSS design skills, save creative time with Website templates that fit your industry and services. (WordPress developers literally make thousands of templates to choose from.) Customize your template or hire a WordPress Designer to make changes. Note that WordPress Developers deal primarily in coding processes and may also have artistic design skills. A developer with no artistry can produce a functioning site, but will need to work with a designer for visual aesthetics. WordPress Designers deal primarily in visual elements, making a site templates and customizing them for visual impact. Designers may or may not also know coding languages. I am a WordPress Designer who knows CSS, HTML, and some PHP – which is the foundation of WordPress functioning.
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  8. Update your site regularly to avoid stale content.
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  9. Integrate a Web based calendar. If your organization hosts events, utilize an automatic updating, web-based calendar to include your event dates and details in your site. This way, when you enter new events in your organization’s calendar, the information will be automatically posted to your Website events page.
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  10. Include a blog in your Website. A visually appealing Website can attract new customers. However, dynamic content keeps visitors coming back and referring their friends, too.
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  11. Use an e-commerce plug-in that integrates seamlessly with your website to manage your cart and payment system, or implement a customization for invoicing service.
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  12. Avoid busy background images unless content bearing sections have their own, neutral background; otherwise, your text can be difficult to read.
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  13. Logos should be very clearly defined (high dpi images), then scaled down to create a logo in an appropriate size. Very large logos decrease professional appearance.
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  14. Avoid page headers or backgrounds in colors that are very similar to overlying text colors, which can make text and text links difficult to see and locate on the page.
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  15. Avoid themes with predominantly green or red text or backgrounds. Color-blindness is common compilation that interferes with Website image and text viewing when red and green are used.
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  16. Choose a CMS with small or text-link navigation menus that allow nesting of menus. Avoid large button based navigation bars that can distract from page content. These navigation bars are outdated by Internet standards and make sites seem that have not been updated in this decade.

NOTE: Designers and developers have “toolboxes” that make a dozen helps worth so much more; hence the more than 12-point list. Enjoy!


One More Suggestion…

Now that you have some ideas of how to make things better, here is a final word of advice: “Choose WordPress for your CMS.” In the words of Smashing Magazine – one of the foremost Web Developer news and resource sites online, “There is no doubt that WordPress is the best content management system (CMS) for your website….” And no other CMS can “…hold a candle to WordPress for its ease of use, security and reliability” (Since I celebrated my thirteenth year of developing with WordPress on September 18, 2020, I tend to agree with that quote.).

For new projects owners with little WordPress experience, I recommend launching a free site with WordPress.com until you get up to speed. There are dozens of theme templates you can use without incurring a bill. When you are ready and having a paid subscription is economical, I recommend upgrading to a paid WordPress subscription which includes a free domain name for the first year. For more tips on hosting your own WordPress site with a third-party site host, check out the Smashing article I referred to above. Read My WordPress Quick Start Guide. Now, go forth and create!


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