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Media queries are used to allow the layout and content to be targeted at specific media and displays:
- The content can be simplified for small-screen mobiles.
- Small to medium sized graphics may be scaled to suit the screen sizes.
- Larger graphics may display only on suitable devices.
- Options can be suppressed for devices that do not support the functionality. E.g. Handheld devices may lack the facility to display PDF files.
Navigation and Linkage
- The web pages are linked in such a manner that, on smaller windows and displays, the top navigation menu (if present) scrolls out of view. So it is still available, but does not, by default, occupy valuable screen space.
- Navigation menus at the side and foot of the page may be omitted entirely on small-screen mobiles.
- "Home" and "continue" links at the foot of the page provide simplified navigation.
Search Engine Optimisation
We take a simple, but highly effective, approach to SEO which is to get the basics right and let the quality of the content speak for itself:
- Interesting, informative and well written original content is paramount, and is always at the forefront of our design of a site.
- Next in importance is small and simple code. Pre-written libraries of code (e.g. frameworks and content management systems) are often used to save development time and cost. However, using them can add significantly to the initial delay when accessing a site, which can be penalised by search engines and can detimentally affect the bounce rate. So instead we meticulously hand craft each site.
- Then comes the correct use of the title, description and keywords in the web page's head section and, optionally, a site map and/or robots.txt file. These provide the core of the optimisation of a site, but often seem to be poorly implemented. E.g. It is commonplace to use automated site maps, which tell the search bots nothing that the bots cannot determine for themselves! Arguably, a well structured site should not need a sitemap anyway, but in the exceptions where one is needed it must be manually amended to add value.
All our sites are tested on Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Internet Explorer (IE8 and current), and mobile devices to ensure consistent performance across a range of browsers and devices. We also use broadband, wifi, 3G and 2G links to check the responsiveness of the sites under realistic conditions.