24 Aug 2008

10 Top Tips for iWeb users

9 Comments Tips and Tricks, Tutorials

Although I haven’t been using iWeb for that long I have come up with the following 10 top tips that have made my life easier when it comes to designing a good looking site. If you can think of anymore why not share them with us, add a comment! 

1. Download MassReplaceIt.  This little app is a godsend when it comes to replacing HTML anywhere on your iWeb site and the ability to save your searches makes repeating the process quick and easy.

2. Save all the HTML you use for snippets in a seperate text documents. It’s always handy because you never know when you might need them again and can you find that web-site…….?

3. Create a blank page in your iWeb site to store all your repetative HTML snippets.  Copy/paste is so easy to do when you want add that all important bit of code and it gives you somewhere to try things out too.  Just remember not to include it in your site navigation!

4. Get yourself a Google webmaster account. The tools you can find that Google has built for webmasters are priceless and if you want to get higher in the search engines you should be using them. They know what they are talking about when it comes to SEO.

5. Get yourself a decent text/HTML editor. Okay TextEditor can do the job but there are apps available that do the job so much better and for free. Try Taco HTML, TextMate or Text Wrangler 2..you have NO excuse.

6. Search engines trawl sites for keywords. If you want your page heading or title read by Google or Yahoo (for example) keep it as plain text.  If you apply effects such as shadow iWeb will turn it into an image (and won’t give it alt tags). It’s better for accessibility too.

7. Add ‘alt’ and ‘title’ tags to your images. Following on from number 6, adding relevant tags to your images improves your SEO as well as improving accessiblity for visually impaired users and those with images switched off in their browser.

8. Make sure you use ‘web-safe’ fonts.  So you spend hours getting your iWeb site looking just the way you want it only to find that it looks completely different when a user views it in Internet Explorer. If you use your site to promote a business do you really want it mucked up? Stick to one of the fonts that is common to both Mac and Windows, you can find a list here.

9. Test your site in other browsers. Continuing from number 8, if your sites design is critical to how you are perceived by the world (ie a business based site) can you really afford to have it fall apart as soon as someone views it in another browser?  You may not be able to install all the others on your Mac or don’t have access to a PC so try BrowserShots. It does all the testing for you and then e-mails you back the results…and it’s FREE.

10. Check out the Apple iWeb discussion site regularly. If you have a question on iWeb you can almost guarentee that it has been asked before and someone will have ansered it.

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AllAboutiWeb (AAi) is your one stop shop for everything iWeb. We provide tips, tricks and more to get the most out of your iWeb website. Follow us in twitter at @allaboutiweb
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9 Responses to “10 Top Tips for iWeb users”

  1. Reply Jiri says:

    Hi Tim, liked your website, wondered if you’ve managed to make it in iWeb at first 🙂 I look forward to your next posts, tips and experience. Been using iWeb for couple of years and like it. Jiri

  2. Reply All About iWeb says:

    Jiri, thanks for leaving the very first comment on this web-site!!! In answer to your question, I did think about doing this site in iWeb at first, but at the time I knew more about WordPress. I did start building it in iWeb but found it initially too restrictive. Obviously, as I learn more about iWeb I can see that isn’t the case.

    I am building an iWeb site at the moment in order to show off the tutorials I have written/am writing and that should be published soon…watch this space!!

  3. Reply JS says:

    I didn’t quite realize how young this whole iWeb thing was until I read the last posts and noticed that they were from earlier this morning. I see a ton of potential in the program and am excited to see what people do with it. Who needs to know how to write code anymore? I’ve been waiting a long time for this kind of break-through.

    Thanks a bunch for all the tips and tricks. I’m rebuilding my crusty old site as we speak!

  4. Reply mack1time says:

    IAgree with 8 and 9 as my blog looks way differant on anyone elses PC
    Can I see that list of avvailable fonts?

  5. Reply All About iWeb says:

    mack1time,

    Can be a real pain that can’t it!!

    http://allaboutiweb.com/index.php/2008/08/getting_fonts_right/

  6. Reply titou says:

    I find it offensive that you do not use iweb to promote a website that talks about iweb exclusively. It seems to say I will teach you to use iweb but I think it is not worth using it.

  7. Reply All About iWeb says:

    titou,

    Thank you for your harsh words, and I completely agree with everything you said. That is why I am working on an iWeb site as we speak. With any luck you should be able to visit it later this coming week. The reason for the delay has been down to several things:
    a. I wanted to get allaboutiweb.com up and running,
    b. I couldn’t decide on a good enough subject for the iWeb site (in the end I have decided to make a copy of this site, but in iWeb 08)
    c. I couldn’t decide on a theme to use and so have been investigating making my own. I will be using a default theme on the iWeb site and then switching to my own custom one as and when it is complete.

    As an aside, I do think iWeb is worth using, totally it just needs tweaking here and there, and perhaps a hand or two to make it perfect, hence this site.

  8. Reply Double says:

    Great tips. When do you expect to go live with your iWeb site. It would be great to see an iWeb site with the tips used that you post about.

  9. Reply All About iWeb says:

    Double,

    Thanks for your comments. It’s true, I have been a little slow in publishing an iWeb site, but I do have one in the making. The reason for my slowness…I am working on a new theme for it and learning how to edit/create new themes is a huge learning curve. Watch this space.

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