validation

The structure, code and layout of your website

We’re getting a bit technical here (not too much though) so bear with us.  Just because your website looks OK, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it actually is.   How do we define “OK”?  And what does “validation” mean?

Validation is the way in which your website has been put together.  Web developers use a coding language called HTML to create websites so that browsers (Chrome, Firefox etc)  “read” and recognise them as such.

The challenge here is that errors creep in if time is short or if a web designer is very busy.  If validation is overlooked, the site will be readable and usable within browsers but search engines WILL penalise it because of errors.

Search engines (think: ultimately, future customers here) want to whizz through your website unhindered by coding errors.  A site littered with mistakes will make it hard to find, index and assess its content.  Search engine crawlers will however, approve of your competitors’ websites if they have fewer mistakes.  Now we bet you never knew that, did you?

Now I’m Worried.  No need, we’ve thought of everything.

The World Wide Web Consortium (shortened to w3.org), founded by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, are in effect the governing body of the internet.  They set and write website standards, therefore search engines use these strict criteria in their ranking assessments.

Check out their free Markup Validation Service at:

http://validator.w3.org/

Simply enter the website address (URL) of any of your website’s pages and press the “”Check” button.  Like this:

W3.org validator tests your website pages for mark up errors

W3.org’s site will assess your web pages for coding errors and give you an immediate result.  Like this:

Enter the address of the page you wish to validate

What Does it All Mean?

Your website is being marked on how “usable” it is, how compatible it is within various browsers, how easy it is to find by search engines and whether it meets W3. org’s high standards.

Importantly, it’s also being assessed on how easily blind and disabled people can access your site.  If you don’t have screen reader functionality, for example, you WILL be penalised.  You can read much more about this issue here.

What Do I Do with this Information?

That’s where we come in.  Website validation errors will impede your site, so before we even apply “classic” SEO techniques, we’ll remove as many coding mistakes as possible – the difference will amaze you.

Think: Constructing a building on solid foundations.  Safe, findable, secure, usable.

A vastly overlooked issue?  Yes indeed.  Contact us to find out more