Fix My Website: Practical Graphics

Written by Stefene Russell

Despite my lousy eyesight, I'm a hopelessly visual person. When I dink around withrepparttar site I co-edit with my friend Mary, I scan large stacks of photos and pictures from old pamphlets, and use them liberally. I admit it: I'm a graphics abuser, though sometimes I can't help myself.

This week, I stumbled on two separate articles (one online, one in print) that reminded me lots of people turn off graphics when they surf. I was humbled, and thought about going home to boot some of those images off our site (I'll get back to you on that one). The point is this: if you're aiming to get your site in front of as many eyes as possible, you need to build your site as if everyone onrepparttar 134751 planet was still pulling up pages with a pokey 24k modem-or a Palm Pilot, for that matter.

*If they can't see it-tell them what it is. You've probably run your mouse over an image (perhaps you could see it, perhaps it did not load) to see a yellow window pop up, with a descriptive phrase inside, e.g., "Stuffed Quetl Bird, circa 1917." If they can't seerepparttar 134752 pictures, tell them what's there. You can do this by adding a scrap of code into your image tag: alt="Stuffed Quetl Bird, circa 1917"

and insert it so: Stuffed Quetl Bird, circa 1917 If you don't like to mess with HTML code, go torepparttar 134753 help files for your particular HTML editor and see how to insert this coding. *Text Links. Those who cannot see your links cannot navigate your pages (or atrepparttar 134754 very least, they'll have a heck of a time). Search engines won't be able to detect a title or a phrase if it's inside a GIF - after all, it's not a word, it's a picture of a word. You don't have to do away with your cool buttons entirely, but be sure to add text links atrepparttar 134755 bottom ofrepparttar 134756 page. This is usually a good idea anyway, images or no; orienting your user at every turn assures that they won't get lost.


Written by Laraine Anne Barker

Part 2: IMAGES: make every one count

Don't load your page with graphics, especially those "under construction" things. Ifrepparttar graphic has nothing to do withrepparttar 134750 content of your page it is best left out. "Why," I hear you ask, "shouldn't I have as many pictures as I want?" Well:

1 Visitors who still have very slow modems will simply get tired of waiting for your page to download and go somewhere else. 2 About 30% of Internet users with browsers that support images disable this feature, and some older browsers are text-only, so your page can look messy if, for instance, it's full of empty boxes. 3 Unless your home page is devoted to, say, your artwork or your prize-winning photographs, graphics can distract fromrepparttar 134751 content of your site. 4 A large number of graphics, especially animated and other gimmicky ones, often indicate a site lacking in real substance.

By all means use graphics on your home page as links to other pages, but make sure you supply words as well. A line or row of little empty boxes means text-only visitors have to wave their mouse pointers over each box to see ifrepparttar 134752 link contains something of interest--and URLs can sometimes be so long and complicated that this information might be hard to extract. The first time I was put in this position was onrepparttar 134753 home page of a supposedly professional site (a publisher's site in fact) where I found nothing BUT empty boxes--no welcome, not evenrepparttar 134754 publisher's name. My thoughts were NOT kind ones! I recently visited a page where, becauserepparttar 134755 webmaster had used JavaScript for navigation, waving my mouse overrepparttar 134756 link did nothing but tell me that there WAS a link there!

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