Web Standards

Hi All,
I recently stired up quite the discussion about website standards. Web standards and writing valid HTML code has always been important to me. I think that’s due to my programming background.

Does anyone else take the time to make sure that their website follows the rules? You can check this by visiting the W3C’s website validator. http://validator.w3.org/ just type in the address of your website into the first box and click check.

I look at it as a mark of quality. Especially if you’ve hired someone to build your website for you. It’s just like hiring a writer who makes spelling and gramatical mistakes. Your website is the image you present to the Internet. Having a correct site just makes you look that much better.

“Correct HTML” aka following the standards is listed in the Google Webmaster Guidelines.
The Bed and Breakfast Connector

2 thoughts on “Web Standards”

  1. Hi Shawn,
    I agree. People should double check their website code and the validator is a quick way to do it. I run across lots of sites done by designers working for big firms and they are missing required elements like doctypes or they have badly nested tags which keeps their pages from getting indexed properly, or using an actual “&” for B&B instead of “B&B” which is how ampersands get written in html.
    The problem is that there are lots of errors that the validator will flag that aren’t actually errors and I have seen people spend days trying to get a page to validate and correct errors that aren’t actually errors. See what isn’t clear to many people looking at a validator report, is that one error may cause lots of other errors to be identified that aren’t actually errors. So a page with only one error early in the code, can and often does, cause a list of hundreds or thousands of errors to be identified that all go away when the first error is fixed.
    The trick is in knowing what are serious errors, what are minor errors, and what aren’t errors at all. Of course the only way to do that is to learn html and also learn what impact each may have on your website or your search engine position.
    My recommendations are that innkeepers validate their pages using the validator and then contact their designer if errors are found (and 95% of the time, errors will be found) contact them calmly and rationally to discuss the errors. Contacting a webdesigner with hostility over this is not usually warranted, but more importantly, it may not end well. It is better to say something like, “I have found that our site has some errors and I want to make sure the true errors are examined and if needed, corrected.” If it is a serious error, like there is no doctype, that speaks directly competence and it may be time to look for another designer. Other errors may not be so serious, but should be examined and repaired or identified as a non-serious error or non-error.
    Steve Wirt
    Wine Country Cabins Bed and Breakfast in the Finger Lakes
    and Inngenious Bed and Breakfast Website Promotion

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