Bugs Bugging You?
What to look for on your new website that could be causing technical difficulties.
You’ve worked hard on designing a new website and now that it’s live out there on the World Wide Web, you want it to look and act its best. Sometimes though, you’ll run into a few roadblocks in the form of new-website-technical-difficulties. However, there’s no need to worry or get hung up on them for too long. Being prepared and knowing what to expect can help you work through them, and if you have the right agency working on your website, you’ll be up and over those roadblocks in no time. You won’t even remember them as roadblocks. In your rear-view mirror, they’ll just look like tiny bumps in the road.
The most common sources of technical difficulties that you’ll run into during your extreme website redesign are a lack of responsiveness, cross-browser incompatibility, cached content and propagation delays.
Lack of responsiveness
Web browsing through a mobile device (like a cellphone or tablet) has become more of the rule than the exception. And no matter which variety of mobile devices you are using, phones or tablets, your website should be able to fit onto every screen. Responsive websites automatically move, resize and reshuffle the content and images to fit the smaller width and height of a mobile device. Having a responsive website will ensure your shop is always present and accounted for – and easy to access – when your customer searches for you on a mobile device. This is especially important if they are looking for a new place for auto repair. Nonresponsive websites will have a negative impact on the look of the website on a cellphone (they look bad and are hard to read), functionality and user experience (it’s hard to zoom in to see if the shop is a right fit).
Your website should be easy-to-navigate on any size device and screen. You can’t easily find the phone number or schedule service button on a nonresponsive website. Responsive websites allow you to provide a better user experience by clearly displaying the most important information and providing clear instructions for the next steps that your customer should take.
A website browser is where you input the name of the website, or URL. Common website browsers are Google Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer. All website browsers interpret your website’s code differently. So, if you notice a problem when visiting your website, like misaligned text or missing borders, the issue could be that your website is not communicating correctly with the web browser – or the particular version of the browser – you’re using. When a web browser updates itself, the new version may no longer support your website’s code. Be aware of all of the updates for your specific web browser and stay up to date. For example: In March 2015, the creators of Internet Explorer announced that they would no longer be creating and supporting Internet Explorer.
When testing your website, be aware of which web browser you are using. The most used desktop and mobile web browsers are: Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer and Opera.
Your website analytics will help you optimize your website for certain browsers by telling you which browsers are most commonly used by visitors.
Your computer’s cache is the storage place that the web browsers use to automatically save copies (this includes content pages and images) of websites they’ve visited. They save this information to make it quicker and easier to pull up the next time you visit the site. So while the cache is designed to improve the Internet experience by making surfing the Web quicker, it can also be a cause for poor website performance if it’s pulling from an older, saved version of your website instead of your new, made-over one.
Yep, that’s right. Even after caches sometimes hold onto older copies of Web pages even after updates have been made, this can lead to confusion or delays. Being prepared for it, and knowing what to do, can help. Usually, it just takes a little time for the browser to re-cache new files. Sometimes, you’ll need to do a simple refresh to reload the new site. You can also manually clear the cache by going into your browser’s settings – just be aware that doing that will clear the saved cache of all your browser’s websites.
Just like the White House address is 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, each website has a specific address, called an Internet Protocol (IP) address. When your website is updated or changed, the new IP address needs to be updated with the website’s URL. This is done by a Domain Name System server (DNS), whose sole purpose is to associate your website’s URL with the correct IP address.
Once your new website goes live, DNS servers around the world have to update their systems. This is why it can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days for your new information to completely update. This time period is called propagation. When a customer goes to your website, a DNS server associates that URL with your IP address.
While propagating can be time consuming, it is important to make sure that all of the DNS servers are properly updated with your new website’s information. Keeping the information highway as current and accurate as possible means making sure everyone in the world is updated.
By redesigning your website and understanding the latest technology, you’ll be able to ensure that all of these potential technical difficulties are just a minor bump in the road and that the road still leads to an engaging customer experience.