Website Maintenance – Developer’s Liability For Ever

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“Just making a website ‘live’ is not enough.”
Unless you are a beginner and you were on a deserted island for the 6 years, you must be unaware of this fact. A clean, semantic and cross browser compatibility form an important key for the front-end-developers, or in other words, website maintenance. Maintenance is essential, whether it applies to your car, your garden, or your website.

What is Website Maintenance?

Website maintenance  is an activity which is purely designed to keep a website running smoothly. It can include everything, ranging from changing content management system to installing new tools on the site. Besides, validating markups and implementing basic SEO practices, ensured unobtrusive Javascript, and minimizing the use of Flash, What next… ?

Do we have any other alternatives to an effective website which could have taken place amongst few tips to an effective website maintenance? Here, we load you with some of the best website maintenance tips—

  • Old and outdated content is a liability— Content maintenance is a vital part to your routine and you actually cannot afford to accumulate hundreds of pages filled with old and outdated data. Of course, it would prove to be a liability. On-going reviews of a static content, updated information, and regular and till now, by far the most important of all, reviewing the policy pages, terms and conditions and terms of service to avoid any legal issue should be a part of your timely maintenance.
  • Updated documentation and contracts— A legal contract and also the documentation associated with a product or service are likely to become outdated with new releases or bug fixes. Is your website updated? Or you unintentionally planning for a legal issue to crop up? Ignoring this, may cause you pay for it. all the legal issues, terms and conditions, any offers/discounts are liable to be updated whenever subjected to a change. Otherwise this would be said to be misrepresentation on your part!!
  • Its not just about URLs— Making use of Dead Links, which is a web-based link checker, check links from enter tags in your markup and others, such as Xenu’s link sleuth, which checks broken links, image paths, backgrounds, external CSS, external JavaScript, and more is an effective task. Its actually beyond URLs, thereby, checking if all the images and external files are referenced properly.
  • Ensure Optimal Compatibility— Browser compatibility testing is an ongoing part of the maintenance routine. Valid semantic coding, manually doing it, and automated checks as well form the essentials to ensure optimal compatibility.

    With some of the lesser-used browsers like Opera, Chrome, and Safari, it is advisable to check the compatibility and Firefox, Opera, and Safari should also be checked, if possible, on a Macintosh, because there is a potential for variations.

    For an automated application testing, Selenium is specifically for testing web applications, which includes Selenium IDE— a Firefox plug-in, Selenium Remote control and Selenium grids.
    Browsershots is one amongst the most popular for website viewing in multiple browsers and on multiple platforms.

  • Plugins and CMS requires updations— Some security problems, inefficient codes or may be any technical problem can be really annoying and can drive your readers away. There are thousands of plugins available and there are thousands of plugins that are no longer supported. As a part of your maintenance routine, make sure you find newer versions of plug-ins or else replace them with reasonable alternatives before upgrading your CMS. Older , unsupported plug-ins that have not been updated with the most recent version, makes your website vulnerable to web attacks.
  • Don’t equate valid codes to good codes— However, beyond just simple validation of pages, there are some other things that necessarily correspond to good code. There are tags in your code that could easily be removed because they don’t serve a purpose. Around a navigation section, the element is unnecessary. If a CSS enhancement is needed on the entire navigation section, this can be done on the element, since it too is a block-level element. HTML code clean, semantic, and (somewhat) attribute-free can trim your code down to a more manageable level.
    Since Javascript cove add as a booster to lot of performance issues, JSLint , the quality code tool can be used to test the quality of your Javascript code.
    Cleaning CSS is as important as optimising the CSS files. Otherwise, CSS files can become over-float, hard to maintain, and unreadable and would hinder speed.
  • Testing Accessibility— Accessibility testing should be an ongoing process.
    Testing determine the conformance of websites to accessibility checks which can be executed automatically and effectively assist reviewers in performing accessibility checks which need to be evaluated manually.

    WAVE, A-Prompt, are some of the accessibility evaluation tool. A simple way to perform ongoing accessibility tests on your web pages is to view them with styles and Javascript disabled. Mobile accessibility is the most evolving feature and there are a number of books and online resources that can help you in this respect.
  • CSS3 and HTML5 with an enhanced touch— The better the technique, based upon CSS3 and HTML5, the best it may help you to get rid of the old code and all JS/(X)HTML/CSS-hacks.
  • The higher the Speed, the better it is— Gone are those days when optimising pages for speed was bizarre. These days, in spite of the continued rise in internet connection speeds worldwide, there is an ongoing demand for optimisation, that is the speed at which their pages load. Yahoo! Yslow, Google Page Speed, Pagetest (IE specific tool), HTTP Server Benchmarking Tool, Full Page Test, Unix wget or Fedge Utility are some of the tools that can help you make your site faster, debug site problem, especially client side and server side stuff. Better user experience and improvement in the web are some of the additional features that these tools provide you with.
  • Feedback is the Key— The contact form or email address on the contact page forms the basic of any feedback. With the newest and ongoing trend of social networking, polls, surveys, and blog post comments, you can receive inputs.Whatever the case may be, obtaining and acting on feedback from users allows your website to grow and will act as a booster in building up trust for your customers.

For instance, buying a car and never changing the oil after that might run fine for a while, but eventually it will slow down and come to a complete halt. Similarly, website also does the same.  Scheduled analysis and maintenance using many of the tips that have been mentioned above can really add a fantastic touch to your site.

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