“On The Web” Tips – Add yours!

(Sorry, due to spammers, WebTips has been taken offline…)

From: Michael Hamilton E-Mail: Date: 12/17/03, 1:29 PM

Try selfpromotion.com for excellent search engine optimization for your website. It’s worth it to donate, say, $20, for access to the extras information…

From: Karen Kinser E-Mail: Date: 9/1/02, 12:56 AM

About registering a domain name . . .
I went with someone’s advice and used Register.Com. At the time, the going rate was $70 for two years to secure the name. No biggy . . .
But when I finally had the site uploaded . . . low and behold – there was this disgusting commercially-screaming ad banner for . . .
guess who? Register.com. All the way across the bottom of my ever-so-anally designed website! YUCK!
They scam you into the $35/year bracket, without mentioning that you have to sport their atrocious PR campaign. Quite a scam.
Then to get them to remove the damn thing,
you have to cough up another $49/year.
I stalled for one year, for the 49 bucks . . . until my registration with them runs out and by then I’ll find another solution.

From: Karen Kinser E-Mail: Date: 9/1/02, 1:07 AM

I couldn’t resist my own query in my post about Freeway 3.5.
I looked around to see what kind of pricing I could find on it . . . and a company called DEV
Depo is running a special. Freeway lists at $229 for the download . . . and at www.devdepo.com you can get it for $149 on CD.
So, I’m going to give it a shot . . .
and I’ll let you all know how it shakes out!
Some pretty impressive sites have been designed with it . . . check out their webpage gallery . . . www.softpress.com

From: Karen Kinser E-Mail: Date: 8/31/02, 10:51 PM

I recently got my website up and running.
As a frustrated ex-designer who never learned to design on the computer . . . I couldn’t resist doing the layout of the website, myself, on paper. But, without the time to get a real grip on Dreamweaver or GoLive . . . I had a graphics buddy put it together. Now, I want to take over and maintain the site myself, rather than wait for him to have the spare time to make my updates. (I am determined to keep it current and vibrant!)
Today, I received my copy of MacHome, and there was an interesting new webdesign program reviewed . . . SoftPress Systems “Freeway”.
Has anyone had any experience with this software? It is significantly more affordable than Dreamweaver . . . and looks easier to use. Check it out and please let us all know if it’s worth a try. Thanks!

From: Paula K. Wirth E-Mail: Date: 7/13/01, 2:28 PM

Take a look at my recent exhibit site for possible ideas (not to copy 😉 of what to include in your site, ways to navigate, move through an exhibit. You can view the source to see which meta tags I used and how you might use these tags to better identify your site.

Behind the Cup: Coffeehouse Portraits by Paula Wirth

From: Paula K. Wirth E-Mail: Date: 7/13/01, 2:19 PM

As an artist who has worked as a web designer (for as long as the web has existed with graphics) for IBM and other organizations, I’ve watched as artists gradually moved to the web to exhibit and market their work. The url I’ve given is for my most recent gallery and online exhibit. I’ll gladly answer individual questions artists have about what works and doesn’t on the web, and how to work with a web designer to get the results you want.

The biggest issues I see when I view portfolio and exhibit sites are:
-Inconsistent, hard to navigate structure, organization
-Long download times
-Tested on only one browser, one platform (usually Mac), and the artist has no idea that it doesn’t look/work the same for everyone else
-The urge to follow the trend in fancy new technology, whether or not it adds to the goal or experience of the site – for instance, javascript, shockwave, flash… these are tools that used correctly and for the right reasons can add to a site… but not if they disable navigation for certain users who don’t have the plugin, or if they overpower the work behind the “bells and whistles” – often these technologies don’t work the same for everyone, and you are keeping people from seeing your work reliably
-Poor quality gifs, jpgs – it is possible to have small file sizes while maintaining quality
-No easy to find contact info – you should have a mailto link easy accessible from every page. A way to email the person who maintains the web site, a way to contact the artist.
-Need Alt tags on images, meta tags in the header, as well as a title. You can notate the author, date, meaningful description and keywords, all which help certain search engines to know how to file/access your site.

Tip1: Test, test, test – on as many browsers and computers and types of internet connection you can (DSL, modem, etc.)
Tip2: Look at your overall goal for a site. Does it meet all your goals? The goals of the user/client? Did they find what they were looking for easily and quickly?
Tip3: Choose your tool for the job at hand, don’t overdo it. Part of looking at your overall goal.
Tip4: Think clean, consistent, professional.

On another note:
I was just discussing the idea of building a cgi script driven tool for non-web ready artists to be able to build a portfolio that is consistent, clean and professional, with a selection of styles of buttons, text to fit different types of artwork. This is a hard problem, since the best sites are hand crafted, at least partly. But certainly a project I plan to investigate.

From: M.L.Brorby E-Mail: Date: 2/20/01, 5:33 PM

If any of you have any comments regarding the contributions that were solicited by the Salem (OREGON) Art Association for the “auction” please forward them to me as I may participate in a meeting reviewing this situation.

From: Lindsey Chester E-Mail: Date: 1/24/01, 5:05 PM

I have recently started working as Jay’s art rep and have taken onboard all the errors of his previous staff. Jay’s site was relatively poorly designed and he was definately overcharged. His site did not even have a titled (so showed as untitled document). He then paid several hundred dollars to promote the site which COULD NOT help as the search engines were looking at the title: so with no title, Jay didn’t stand a chance. EACH PAGE of your site should be given a title (web-designers should do this!) or you will not get noticed !!!

From: Bruce Meyer E-Mail: Date: 10/30/00, 9:45 AM

I think the importance of having the ‘perfect’ name for ones web site is way overrated. Short and easily remembered is optimum, but in practice most will copy the addy from a card and then, if interested, bookmark or add to their favorites. In future correspondence always add a link if in an e-mail or type it on the paper correspondence. And I agree that it is important to add the address on all cards, etc. if you want anyone to find you, much like adding your phone number was important in “the old days”.

From: Maija Baynes E-Mail: Date: 10/27/00, 8:38 AM

I met a “friend” who designs WebSites. She asked if I had a site. I said “no”, but more and more people are asking “Do you have a website?” That I was interested, and would like to think about it. I gave her my business card. She scanned the image on it. Posted it on her website, along with “coming soon”. I saw it, and told her I had not committed to her. She said I owed her $45. It took her 3 hours to do that. So be careful as to who you give your cards to. I felt betrayed. Maija

From: Ali Pearson E-Mail: Date: 10/23/00, 7:06 AM

We bought our domain name for $13.99 per year if you buy 2 years at once… didn’t notice any additional fees in the legal jargon. We finally got my web page up & running.

From: Elin Pen E-Mail: Date: 8/24/00, 10:13 PM

Just another note, put your web site on everything you hand to anyone! Use it in advertising, use it on your business cards, use it on your flyers and even on the price tags for your work.
I had a stamper made with my logo (name), and “Original art by Elin” and my web site on it. I use it everywhere, even on the outside of envelopes I am mailing to people.
My art is fine art oil and acrylic paintings, all originals, and I do occasional street shows.
I also understand the need to diversify, so I have galleries and sell through the site.

From: Charles E. Roberts E-Mail: Date: 7/29/00, 9:57 PM

I read the posted tip about getting a domain name registered for only $15.00 per year and went to the mentioned site: jumpdomain.com and read the disclaimer. I suggest anyone interested in that site also read that disclaimer; especially the part about the $75.00 charge for disputing any charge they make against your credit card! Also, the $14.99/yr is only for the first year, they don’t tell you what it is thereafter – gotcha! Another thing, no warranty. If their system is down and your web site is off the air, tough luck.

From: Suzanne Crane E-Mail: Date: 6/23/00, 9:32 PM

After showing at the Saint Louis Art Fair last year, I tried to sign up for two domain names–one, the name of my pottery studio, the other, my own full name. Both were taken. My husband and I looked up “who is” to find out who had taken each of the names and discovered that it was the same guy. We e-mailed him and asked what was up. He said he’d seen my work at the Saint Louis show and was “impressed,” and that he wanted to create a web site for us. He was then a college student who needed “experience” creating sites. We checked out his own site and were appalled–full of spelling errors and lousy grammar. We e-mailed back to tell him that we’d prefer to create our own web-site and he then asked for “fair compensation” for the domain names he’d bought, above and beyond the price he’d paid to register them by quite a bit. My husband told him that we’re just potters, not Exxon, but to no avail. We’ll wait until his claim on my names expires and use something else in the meantime. Two tips: purchase your domain name NOW. And, don’t be as ready as we were to tell any old Joe-customer that “no, we don’t have a web-site yet, but we hope to soon.”

From: Michael Hamilton E-Mail: Date: 5/4/00, 8:37 PM

Once you do have your website, change your email address to reflect that. There is no reason to keep your [email protected] (or whatever your ISP is) as your public email. Once you have [email protected] established you are free to change ISPs (where you receive email and connect to the Internet) at anytime and it will be transparent. Your webmaster must set up this fairly easy transferring process. This also allows you to have several addresses, i.e. [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], etc. Never again will you face notifying everybody on the planet that your email adress has changed because it will never have to. That’s good enough reason right there to establish your own domain!

From: Michael Hamilton E-Mail: Date: 5/1/00, 10:39 PM

Not sure when/if you will be getting a web site? Go ahead and register your name now. Prices have dropped considerably – go to jumpdomain.com (for one). Domain names are $15/yr now. You don’t need to have a website…just get that name for now! Try to pick a name you think people who have seen you and your work might remember if they were trying to remember you.

From: Michael Hamilton E-Mail: Date: 4/30/00, 9:58 PM

Thanks for being the first to post your tip!


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