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Common mistakes you should avoid on your website

March 4th, 2014

People who are closely attached to their website often end up applying their preferences, forgetting about the target audience. Unfortunately most of them end up making mistakes which are common amongst a lot of websites out there and in turn suffer a lack of audience.

But we think you should know about these mistakes and avoid or correct them right away. So here they are:

Complex Navigation: Have you ever visited a website and were not able to get to a certain page. Well if you have, then that website has complex or non structured navigation. The only way to get this right is to plan your navigation well in advance, even before actually starting to build your website. You could also use Breadcrumbs to further simplify the navigation on your website. Breadcrumbs provide a trail for the user to follow back to the starting or entry point. You will typically find it placed horizontally on top of a web page.

Too much clutter on page: We all know how it feels to get into a crowded bus; well a heavily cluttered page on your website makes a user feel the same way. There are many websites out there who are trying to put too much on one page itself. This makes it very distracting and uncomfortable for the user to look beyond the clutter and appreciate your work. Spread out your content appropriately and link them to another page if they are interrelated. This will increase your viewership if done right.

Color mismatch: There must have been at least once that you might have reached a website where it is extremely difficult to read the content. This is because of the color of the text and the color of the background being very similar. Take a look at the below image. You will find that the darker font is more readable than the lighter font when used on a light background. Though this seems like a small issue but difficulty in reading can cause your website visitors to look somewhere else for their information.

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Annoying pop ups: Pop ups on WebPages can be really frustrating for your users. Most of these pop ups are placed as a call to action but there are much better ways to get people to like your page or subscribe to your website. Bombarding them with pop ups is going to drive them away.

Lack of social buttons to share your content: The age of social networking has taken information sharing to an all new level. You can get more eyeballs to your content if people share your content on social networking platforms. If you have still not installed social buttons on your website for easy sharing of your work then you are losing out on a lot of potential audience. Check out AddThis to get easy sharing buttons on your website.

Music on Website: This feature is the thing of the past. Music on the website can get really annoying and distracts your users from the primary content. A must avoid at all costs.

So if you are just starting out to get a new website or already have one, then these are some mistakes you should keep a distance from. Do share your opinion about these points with a comment below.

Why backing up your website is a good idea

January 24th, 2014

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Have you ever come across a situation where you have lost all the files from your computer? We know how painful it can get especially when you don’t have any backup of your precious files. This situation is true even for websites. If you feel that your data is safe online then we are sorry to break your bubble.

Websites have been the most vulnerable to hacker attacks and we get to hear a lot of high-profile brands being a victim almost every day. Even the best security measures have failed to assure that your website is safe. The only way that you can save the hassle of starting your website all over again is by backing up your website regularly.

But before you actually get busy backing up your website; it would be great if you knew a little bit about the predators:

1] Hackers: We all are aware that hackers attack website to get user sensitive information. But of late simple sites have also become a target of their activities simply to cause trouble or prove their identity. In simple words, no one is safe from their attacks.

2] Malicious code: A lot of times, you might rely on third-party templates or plugins for your website. If they are not downloaded from a trusted source, chances are they are rigged with malicious code capable enough to make your website go off the hook.

3] Updates gone wrong: Content management systems are updated quite often for added functionality. Sometimes, due to some manual changes made on your website the update might not compile well. This can cause some of the features on the website to run incorrectly or crash the whole website altogether.

4] Delayed Updates: If your website is dependent on a lot of plugins, then you probably know that there are regular updates that are released for them. These updates are not only to improve functionality but to block loop holes through which hackers can get easy access into your website. Avoid an update and there are chances that your website might get attacked by a hacker. The attack would primarily be for stealing data but it could also be possible that it is an attempt to crash your website completely. If you don’t have a backup at this point then you would probably be pulling your hair out.

5] Unreliable Hosting Company: This is rare but if a hosting company does not meet compliance then they stand a chance to be shut down completely, taking your precious website off the internet too. Your only option would be to switch to a different more reliable hosting company.

6] Human error: “You ain’t human if you don’t make mistakes” There are Chances that you are having a bad day at office and unintentionally clicked on the wrong button and ended up getting your website all messed up.

Well our point here is that even if your website loses an arm to these predators, you can grow it right back again, only and only if you have a back up of your website. There are many back up tools available online that can help get your website backed up and even save a copy on cloud storage platforms like Dropbox. Here is simple way that you can backup your website through the cPanel.

How many times should you back up your website?

If you have a static website then one backup is all you need. It’s always great to take a backup of your website even after a smallest update is made to it. We have heard of websites with constant data traffic to have backed up their website every second.

You can restore your entire website in a matter of minutes, only if you have a backup of your website. So if you have not taken measures to back up your website, its time you gave it the attention it needs.

Do share how you are backing up your website. We would love to hear from you :-)

Top 10 Joomla extensions to Easily Build your Website

January 9th, 2014

When it comes to Joomla, we all know that it is not one of the easiest Content Management Systems to work with. But thanks to a large number of Extensions, creating your website with Joomla is much easier now. We went through a large number of available extensions and would like to share with you our list of the top 10. All the extensions mentioned below are free to use except for the Jsitemap. Do remember that the below list is not in any order of ranking and each extension has its own capabilities.

1. Content Builder
This has been considered to be one of the best Content Construction Kit for Joomla today. Very easy to install and get started. The primary role of Content Builder is to structure Joomla content while preserving the Layouts. You could do a lot more with this extension including image galleries, classified ads, contact forms, paid content etc. Content Builder also offers an easy to use form builder which can be linked to any database of your choice.
2. SH404SEF
SH404SEF is the best Search Engine Optimization extension for Joomla. There aren’t too many extensions for SEO building but we think SH404SEF fills this gap. The most important element of this extension is to convert long obscure URLs to keyword rich SEO friendly URLs. Google Analytics support is also included in the extension.
3. K2
Joomla is a great CMS with many advantages but content editing has always been its downfall. But thanks to the K2 extension, article and page creation is now an easier task. Other notable features of K2 are video management, comments, tags, drag and drop media manager etc, which makes it a must have extension for your projects.
4. JCE
This is the Joomla community’s favorite WYSIWYG editor. You don’t need to know complicated coding to edit the pages, thanks to JCE. If you’re very new to the Joomla CMS, then this is a must have extension, for your projects.
5. Jtouch
This extension allows Joomla Website owners to add responsive web design template for mobile devices. It is light weight and compatible with most mobile platforms like Android, iOS, Windows etc. It is extremely easy to get started, thanks to the extensive documentation. So if you are looking to make your website mobile friendly, then this is the extension for you.
6. Akeeba Backup Core
Akeeba has introduced a host of extensions for Joomla, but the one that stands out is the Akeeba Backup Core. Its primary functionality is to take a backup of the site that can be restored on any Joomla capable server. It also supports backing up of the website to popular cloud storage platforms like Dropbox.
7. Component Creator
This Joomla extension was built with a purpose of allowing you to easily develop components. A component is a kind of Joomla extension or you could simply call them mini applications. The Component creator is a builder that allows you to generate a Joomla component in minutes, which is ready to use and fully functional. If you want to save time building those complex components, then this is the right extension.
8. AllVideos
This is an all in one multimedia management solution that you would need when you are using Joomla to build your website. Embedding of videos and even sound clips from some of the popular services like YouTube, SoundCloud, Vimeo etc have become very simple, thanks to this extension. AllVideos also has fully responsive video players, thus making it suitable for the content to be displayed on mobile devices as well.
9. Jsitemap
This extension is a one stop shop for all sitemaps (Video, Image, News and Mobile). You can customize your site maps and once set up; you can automatically make them available to be indexed with popular search engines. It deserves a 5 star rating, for the ease of use and prompt support. This extension is definitely worth your money.
10. Kunena – forum solution for Joomla
If you’re looking for a good forum for you website then, Kunena is the ideal solution for you. Kunena is an open source solution and may not be perfect as other forum extensions like phpBB, but it’s the only one that provides a fully native integration.

There are so many others that are worth a mention, but these 10 extensions truly deserve to be in our top list for the kind of functionality, ease of use, support system and regular updates. If you have not used any of these extensions, then you should definitely try them out and see if it will be handy for your projects.
Do share with us any Joomla extensions that you have tried and deserve a mention here.