Firefox tries to edge out Microsoft in Windows 10 browser battle

Firefox-windows-battle The latest version of Mozilla's web browser is looking to unseat Microsoft Edge as the default browser in Windows 10. Watch out, Microsoft. Firefox is gunning for its own chunk of the browser space in Windows 10. Released on Tuesday, Firefox 40 is the latest version of Mozilla's browser and the first designed with Windows 10 in mind yet with its own look and feel. The icons sport greater contrast to better stand out. The screen opens up more real estate for the actual web pages. And a minor renovation paints the top and bottom areas of the browser a more user-friendly gray instead of the standard white. But it's Firefox's move to assert itself as the default browser that stands out the most in an attempt to challenge Microsoft. In July, Mozilla CEO Chris Beard lashed out at Microsoft for not only making its new Edge browser the default in Windows 10 but also for making it difficult to switch the default to a different browser. In an open letter to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Beard called the software giant's action an "aggressive move to override user choice." Mozilla needs all the help in can get in rounding up more users. Firefox is stuck at a distant third in terms of browser market share, according to Web tracker Net Applications. In July, Microsoft's Internet Explorer was top dog with a browser traffic share of 53 percent, followed by Google Chome with 27 percent. Firefox, which at one point was ahead of Chrome, came in third at just 12 percent, Net Applications reported. Now with its new version of Firefox, Mozilla is fighting Microsoft for a slice of Windows 10 territory. As usual, Firefox asks if you want to set it as the default browser the first time you launch it. You can say 'yes,' 'no,' or tell Firefox to ask you the same question each time. No matter how you answer that question, you can change the default any time you want, but the process is more cumbersome in Windows 10 than it was in previous versions of Windows. Normally, you would open Firefox, click the toolbar icon with the three horizonal lines (known as a hamburger menu). From there, you'd click on the Options icon and under Startup, click the button to make Firefox your default browser. In Windows 8.1 and previous versions, that would do the trick. But in Windows 10, you have to go a step further. In the new OS, Microsoft now takes you to a system setting that still shows Edge as the default browser. You have to click on that setting and change it to Firefox. You can also just bypass the steps in Firefox and go directly to the Windows 10 Settings page, as described in this CNET how-to article. Still, the whole procedure is unnecessarily confusing, mostly because it's different than in prior versions of Windows. That's why Mozilla made sure to post a support blog page to tell you just how to switch the default to Firefox. With version 40, Firefox also now wants to be the goto browser for your web searches. Normally, when you run a Web search from the Windows 10 taskbar search field, Microsoft Edge pops up to reveal the results using Microsoft Bing. But now if you set Firefox as the default, Firefox takes over to show you your search results using the search engine of your choice. The first time you try this, Windows 10 will ask if you want to use Firefox every time. Just answer yes, and it will become your default browser for all web searches from the taskbar search field. There's one more change in the new version of Firefox aimed toward beefing up security. Browser add-ons can sometimes be a source of malware, most notably those that aren't certified. An add-on can be a colorful theme, an extension such as an ad blocker, or another piece of software that enhances the browser in some way. To make sure an add-on is secure, a team of people at Mozilla check each add-on and approve, or certify, the ones that are safe to install. Starting with Firefox 40, Mozilla will now certify all add-ons that you attempt to install. For now, the browser will simply warn you if the add-on is uncertified, or unsigned. But in future releases, Firefox will actually disable any add-ons that are not signed. The move to disable unsigned add-ons may trigger some complaints from Firefox users who like to beef up their browser with add-ons. Mozilla said it's working with add-on developers to help them meet the new standards. But that process is likely to take time. So users of future Firefox versions may find themselves unable to install a favorite add-on until and unless it's been certified by Mozilla.

HTML5 and SEO Myths

html5-seo-myth HTML5 is the latest iteration of the W3C's markup language, and as more and more webmasters and companies take advantage of its capabilities, it is only natural that certain myths and fallacies will pop-up regarding its benefits and pitfalls. One area, in particular, that we see this happening is in the SEO arena. To help clear this matter up, today's blog post will look at some common HTML5 search engine optimization myths. Search Engine Optimization Myths It is hard to understand the myths behind HTML5 and search engine optimization without knowing some common SEO myths themselves. To further complicate matters, the major search engines (Google, Bing, etc) are not very forthcoming with the various parts of their ranking algorithms. This leads to more confusion, as SEOs and Internet Marketers debate what works and what doesn't. Add in a new or updated "version" of HTML, and you can see why these myths begin to become part of the popular web development lexicon. SEO Myth: HTML5 Does Not Help Ranking I have seen the claim on many websites that HTML5 does not have any effect on your position in the search engine page results (SERPs) at all - and even some who claim it has a negative effect on your digital marketing efforts. To answer the question in simple terms: yes, when used properly, HTML5 can help with your SEO efforts - just as previous HTML specifications could. HTML5 has some special elements to it, however, that make it far easier for search engines and bots to truly understand not just the words within the various elements, but the intent of the elements themselves. Known as Semantic elements, these new tags are meant to better define the layout of pages and better describe their contents. SEO Myth: HTML5 Is Bad For Video While they are coming around, some webmasters preferred (and still prefer) to use Flash for embedding video content on web pages. Those that still opt for this route are missing out on some key HTML5 features that allow you to make videos more SEO-friendly. Using the tag, you can add additional information about the content in your videos. HTML5 allows for the use of labels, captions, and subtitles on video content, giving you an extra opportunity to define your media. As an aside, the same type of parameters exist for static image content as well. Instead of relying on img tags and "alt" text, HTML5 gives you the tag and to define "captions" - just like you would see in old printed newspapers. SEO Myth: You Can Only Use One h1 Tag Even prior to the invention of HTML5, the proper use of the h1 tag (and heading tags in general) lead to much confusion for web developers and SEOs alike. Now that the newest iteration of our favorite markup language is in full steam, the mystery around h1 tags has become even cloudier, as new rules are in place that dictate the proper - or better put, "best" - use of the tags within a document. For starters, you can absolutely use more than one h1 tag on your page. In fact, if your content calls for it, you should use multiple h1 tags. The general rule of thumb is this: for each new "content section", you can use an h1 to label your section. Note that you do not have to use an h1 - you can use any header tag you deem necessary. However, as a best practice, I advise that you do. If you need more than one label or header in an article section, you should use the traditional h tag heirarchy (for example, h2, h3, and so forth). Other Reasons HTML5 Is Good For SEO While there are plenty of myths floating around about the overall negative effects of HTML5 on SEO, the truth of the matter is that the markup has many great benefits that will help your site rank better than previous iterations or specifications. From helping with code validation to speeding up web page load times (a factor Google uses for its ranking algorithm), HTML5 truly was designed to help webmasters better define their layouts, content, and indeed their entire websites in a way that makes sense not only to humans, but to search engines as well. So do not buy into the negative hype around HTML5 from an Internet marketing standpoint. Many, many hours of research and planning went into developing it and ensuring it made the work of Google and Bing much easier. Take advantage of that hard work and consider updating your old site to current standards!

5 Best Practices to Improve SEO for Your Firm’s Website

5-best-practices-seo Editor’s Note: The author of this post is the head of a company that advises law firms in marketing technology. By Jaron Rubenstein, Founder and President, Rubenstein Technology Group Effective search engine optimization is crucial to the success of your law firm. With more and more clients turning to the web to learn more about referred lawyers and to find legal services, an effective firm website optimized with SEO isn’t optional anymore; it’s a necessity. For many law firm websites, SEO is the foundation of their online presence. Without it, searches for attorneys in your firm might direct potential clients to other sites, such as LinkedIn or a local periodical, instead of your own site. This type of misdirection could result in lost business opportunities, which benefits neither your firm nor the people seeking your firm’s expertise. The reality is that if people can’t easily find your firm and your attorneys online, they won’t — and will instead turn to a competitor with better digital accessibility. SEO and Web Design: Then and Now As search engine algorithms continue to evolve, so do modern standards for SEO. Today, SEO is largely focused on targeted website content and its implementation in HTML code. External search engine advertising or the use of PR campaigns to drive clickable links might also help give your firm a higher search engine ranking, but these are more costly and only effective if your baseline SEO is done correctly. However, for law firm websites designed three or more years ago, this higher ranking might not be possible. Sites created using older web development technologies often don’t align with today’s SEO requirements. Site attributes, such as invalid website coding, missing mobile support, or a lack of SEO-friendly URLs, prevent these websites from maximizing the strong online search presence they need in today’s market. Boosting Your SEO With continued search engine progression and development, a pretty website design isn’t enough to draw in potential clients and drive revenue. Firms today need websites that encapsulate both an engaging design and effective, high-ranking SEO strategies. Here are five tips to ensure your firm’s website is optimized for success: 1. Use meaningful URLs. User-friendly, or human-readable, web addresses are helpful to both search engines and potential clients trying to navigate your firm’s website. Content management systems like RubyLaw and WordPress automatically generate these meaningful URLs based on page titles and offer the option of manually defining each URL. You can further manage these to ensure they contain keywords pertinent to your topic and your target audience. 2. Make content easy for search engines to index. Ensure your development firm builds web pages using standards-compliant HTML5, which enables search engines to properly parse your content. Use semantic coding techniques and microformats to help develop meaningful page structures, and ensure the proper hierarchy of headings and page content is in place. When possible, create web pages to house full content or abstracts on your site rather than upload PDFs or link to external resources. Make sure search engines can easily itemize the topics your site is addressing through SEO-friendly site navigation, optimized page titles, meta descriptions, and keyword tags. Helping search engines crawl through your content from page to page allows algorithms to better index it, which means better SEO. 3. Focus on specific keywords. It’s important to use appropriate keywords within your content so search engines can properly index your site for common terms that your audience might use when searching, but be careful not to overdo it. Search engines’ complex algorithms are now sensitive to “keyword stuffing,” or inserting any relevant terms for the sake of indexing, which means using the same keywords over and over again will no longer push you to the top of a Google search result. Use enough of the words or phrases that are important to your firm so the algorithms take notice — but not so much that they will ignore it. This tends to be easy for law firms, as key content phrases are often already a part of your content. When appropriate, tie website content into trending topics online to attract attention to the firm for these related matters. 4. Go mobile. With increasingly large numbers of the world’s web traffic coming from mobile devices, some search engines, such as Google, have already started penalizing sites that aren’t mobile-optimized. While this might not affect your firm’s search engine ranking on traditional desktop computers, this means users searching for your expertise on their phones and tablets are less likely to see your firm listed on the first page of search results. Reduced visibility diminishes the number of chances to improve page ranking due to a corresponding decreased likelihood of getting hits on that link. Making your site more mobile-friendly by making text more readable or spacing out tap targets can help eliminate this issue. 5. Keep your content fresh. The most effective way to ensure the right audiences find your site is to continually publish rich, relevant content. When you publish valuable content regularly, it not only keeps your firm’s site up-to-date, but also allows search engines to accurately index your content. Provide a site map (via the Sitemaps protocol) to ensure search engines discover all of the content on your website and can prioritize their crawling accordingly. It’s no secret that web development and SEO standards have changed over the years, but following these best practices for your website can be the difference between bringing in a new client and losing an opportunity.

HTML5 Tips for Optimizing Speed

html5-optimzation HTML5 brings many great features and benefits to the table, but one of the most often overlooked features is one that has become increasingly important from a visitor usability standpoint and, as Google recently stated, from a search engine optimization (SEO) perspective. This ability to increase page load times and decrease server loads is the very subject of today's HTML5 development article. HTML5 Best Practices for Speed Optimization We live in a fast food world. The lumbering beast once known as "Patience" has steadily been defeated by the hand of almighty technology. Gone are the days of slow and steady wins the race. Today, more than ever, speed is everything. This applies to everything - whether that be cooking a delicious corn dog or surfing the web for the latest celebrity gossip. The world no longer wants a story - they want sound bites. The faster the better. If you are like me, you may remember logging onto the Internet before "The Internet" - the old bulletin board systems (BBS). You would dial-up with your old 1200kbs modem and wait patiently for the screech and clang symphony of sweet connected bliss. Your reward for this patience? A bunch of text with no real images (maybe some ascii characters arranged to look like a picture) and certainly no videos. Ah, those were the days. Today, however, websites must be more than mere text. They must be media rich and tech savvy. At the same time, they cannot sacrifice function or speed. We Internet users want our cake and want to eat it too. Factor in the dawn of the mobilization of the Internet, and it is more important than ever to adhere to web development best practices, particularly when it comes to speed optimization and server load times. To help you in this endeavor, below are some tips for optimizing HTML5 websites for mobile and desktop users. Prioritize Assets When a user visits a web page - be it via a desktop computer, tablet, or mobile device, all of the content a user sees without having to scroll down at all, is known as above-the-fold content. Any part of the page that requires the user to scroll down is known as below-the-fold. Best web practices dictate that any content (text, image, media, etc) that are above the fold should render (ideally) without requiring numerous trips back to the server and the user's computer. This is especially true for visitors with mobile browsers, as their network speed and browser speed is likely less than that of their desktop and home networks. There are several steps you can take to prioritize any above-the-fold content. For starters, you can reduce the amount of assets that are resource intensive, such as large, high resolution images. Another way to reduce the amount of resources needed is to structure your HTML5 code in such a way that it loads all of your important, above-the-fold assets and content first, then load up everything below-the-fold. Minify Your Resources As seasoned coders, sometimes we like to experiment with page elements, sometimes on-the-fly. Maybe we implement a new portion of code and comment out older, less efficient code, opting to "hide" the code rather than remove it completely, just in case we need it in the future, or your new fix causes problems you did not foresee. Nothing wrong with that. What tends to happen to the best of us, more often than not, is that we forget to go back and remove all of that unused code. This pads up our files and is sloppy coding practice. When we talk about minifying resources, we are specifically discussing the art of minification. That is, remove any and all code or data that is either a duplicate of existing code, or is (for all intents and purposes) unused. It also includes removing extraneous comments in our code, whitespace, unnecessary formats, and even creating variable and function names that are shorter. Essentially, whatever you can do to shorten your code and ease the burden on the web browser. Minifying code includes HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript as well. Enable Compression on Your Web Server Finally, setup gzip compression on your web server to help reduce the page load time (sometimes you can actually increase your site's speed by upwards of 90%). There are many resources available on the web that can show you how to enable compression - no matter what type of server you use - and that discuss the benefits of gzip compression. A quick Google search should have you up and running in no time!

Easy Ways To Speed up Your WordPress Site

easy-ways-speed-wordpress Let’s face it, no matter how clever your website, and how amazing your content is, if your pages load at a snail’s pace then you can’t help but provide a bad user experience. This will not only affect your search engine ranking (as Google factors site speed into its algorithm), but also the retention rate of existing customers, and level of acquisition of new customers. Fortunately for us, there are many ways to improve the speed of a WordPress website. With nearly every prolific blogger and WordPress user offering quick tips for speeding up your site, it’s easy to get bogged down in information. We aim to provide a quick run down of the most effective steps you can take to improving your website’s speed—starting at the very beginning with your hosting provider. Before you make any changes you may want to measure your current speed so you can track your progress. You can do this by using Pingdom Tool’s site speed test and measuring the results against Moz’s speed guide.. Behind every good website is a good hosting provider. And if you want to ensure a high baseline speed, along with minimum down time—particularly in high traffic periods—it is best to steer clear of shared hosting. The problem is that a renting a full, dedicated server of your own can be quite pricey, and it is not really necessary unless you have very high traffic. However, there is a way to attain the power and control of a dedicated server with the affordability of a shared server: its called a VPS (virtual private server). Image Compression When visiting your site, images are quite likely the largest source of data that your users will download. If the size of your homepage is 1MB, a visitor with a 10Mbit connection will load it in 800 milliseconds. Reduce your images by 500kb, and it will take less than half a second for that page to load. To compress your images while avoiding clogging your site with additional plugins, try the JPEGmini application—available for both windows and mac. It uses an intelligent and ‘lossy’ optimisation algorithm to reduce image size by up to 30%, without losing quality. Client-side Caching When searching the web our browsers cache some data from websites automatically to improve page load speed. We can improve the caching process by specifying a longer duration of time for our static content (JavaScript, CSS, images etc.) to be stored. Do this by adding the ‘Expires’ header into your .htaccess files. It may sound a little bit tricky, but it couldn’t be simpler; You can find the code for the Expires header everywhere online, but we recommend using the HTML5 Boilerplate which can be found here. Server-side Caching You can also optimise caching at a server level so that whenever a user visits your site, they will be served with a static html file instead of having to load the comparatively heavier WordPress PHP scripts. A great way of doing this is with the WP Super Cache plugin. With over 6 million downloads it is the most popular caching plugin for WordPress, largely due to its usability and ease of adjusting the rate at which static html files on your pages refresh. Optimising Your Database Databases are where all the valuable data shown on your pages is stored. Every so often, it is advisable to check your ‘database overhead’ and remove any stale data that may be slowing down your site. Another plugin that outweighs itself in value is the WP-Optimise plugin. Rather than precariously sifting through your database, WP-Optimise can quickly identify spam, post revisions, and drafts, and reduce their overheads. Using a Content Delivery Network (CDN) The idea behind using a CDN is very simple: Delivering your content through ‘edge servers’ placed around the world, so users can download content locally and therefore more efficiently. It’s very likely your favourite blog is using a CDN, and you can easily set up your own with plugins such as Jetpack’s Photon—one of the most popular WordPress plugins available. Follow these simple steps and your WordPress website will be operating at a faster speed than the majority of other sites on the web.

Amazon kills off Flash ads amid industry push towards HTML5

amazon-kill-flash-ads As of September 1, Amazon will stop serving Flash ads on amazon.com. According to Amazon, the move is a response to the decision by many desktop browsers to block Flash, and follows calls by security experts for Adobe to kill off the browser plugin. "This is driven by recent browser setting updates from Google Chrome, and existing browser settings from Mozilla Firefox and Apple Safari, that limits Flash content displayed on web pages," Amazon said last week in an update to its advertising policy. "This change ensures customers continue to have a positive, consistent experience on Amazon, and that ads displayed across the site function properly for optimal performance," it added. While Chrome ships with Flash pre-installed, Google announced in June that the browser would soon "intelligently pause" Flash animations that aren't central to the webpage while keeping video running. While most of the recent worries over Flash have centred on security, this change was intended to save power. Google and Mozilla last month temporarily blocked Flash Player in their browsers after three zero-day flaws were leaked, some of which were later used in malvertising attacks that targeted visitors to Yahoo. At the time, Facebook's security chief Alex Stamos called on Adobe to phase out Flash Player. Mozilla earlier this year also made progress on its would-be Flash replacement Shumway. Shumway has been available in the Nightly channel of Firefox since 2013 but in February it was enabled to play videos on amazon.com and IMDb videos by default. As Digiday noted, Amazon isn't the biggest player in the digital display market, but the online ad industry in general is looking to move away from Flash and towards HTML5. The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) released a new draft specification for ad formats that encourages publishers and advertisers to use the standard for desktop and mobile advertising. "As the industry develops, being nimble is increasingly important in technology," said Aaron Wood, director of production services, AOL Premium Experiences at AOL Platforms, and co-chair of the IAB Display Creative Working Group. "HTML5 is rapidly becoming the go-to for creating captivating ads that work across multiple screens. In response, the IAB Tech Lab brought together a group of tech leaders to establish global guidelines that describe the path to integrate HTML5 and, ultimately, drive toward success at scale."

Smartphone Batteries Can Now Be Tracked Through HTML5

Many-Smartphones-KK We hope you’re not strict on privacy as a new finding shows that even your smartphone battery could be used to track you. Thanks to a group of researchers, we’re now learning about HTML5 and what it could potentially do when it connects to your battery. According to these researchers, your battery could almost act like a GPS in a small scale sense and only for about 30 seconds but still, this information comes alarmingly as there are no permissions being asked when a website happens to tap into your battery. Find out how your smartphone and laptop battery could be used to track you on the internet. First of all this information comes from The Guardian as they reported a new finding through a feature within HTML5. A group of researchers found that with HTML5, websites could tap into your battery status API to determine a few elements such as how long ago a user charged their smartphone and how much battery life may be left within the battery at that given time. With this information in mind, it’s possible to track and label a unique ID out of about 14 million combinations but only for about 30 seconds as the values will in fact change. Now I’m sure you’re already concerned as to why HTML5 websites and applications would be tapping into your smartphone to gather information about your particular device’s battery. Through HTML5, a website can determine if your smartphone or laptop is low in the battery thus it can make arrangements with their website and application to avoid draining more battery. Additionally, HTML5 doesn’t have any indicator that will be looking into your battery so consumers are not necessarily allowing website or applications permission to do so. This shouldn’t be a massive deal in privacy as no personal information is ever taken. No details with your name or location are received but instead details on battery life. Furthermore, the information and personal ID that could be tracked when a website or application looks into your battery will not even last a full minute. Nevertheless, if you’re particular about privacy, this could still be a bit concerning.

QuarkXPress 2015 review: Chock full of new features requested by you

quarkXPress The past several versions of QuarkXPress added features that were most requested in Quark’s user surveys, and QuarkXPress 2015 continues this strategy. For example, they changed its version numbering scheme to indicate the year of release (otherwise this would be QuarkXPress 11), and the product is still offered with a traditional perpetual license rather than requiring an ongoing rental fee. QuarkXPress 2015’s big new features include fixed-layout eBooks, text variables that automatically populate content such as running headers, a new table feature with Excel integration, automatic footnotes and endnotes, and PDF/X-4 output. ePub enhancements A large portion of Quark’s user base produces corporate communications, financial reports, books, and other publications. QuarkXPress 2015 enhances these kinds of workflows. (In many companies, QuarkXPress is just one part of a multi-stage automated system that produces electronic, printed, and web documents.) The ePub format has two variants: Reflowable, commonly used for novels, textbooks, and other simple text-and-pictures publications; and the newer Fixed Layout ePub, the preferred format for publications whose layout is as important as its text and pictures—for example, children’s books, travel guides and cookbooks. QuarkXPress 2015 new layout ipad To assist in creating a Fixed Layout ePub, QuarkXPress 2015 provides standard device page sizes, such as iPad and Kindle Fire. The eBook layout space in QuarkXPress 2015 supports both Fixed and Reflowable ePubs. (While you cannot export a Fixed Layout ePub from an existing Print layout, you can still build a Reflowable ePub from an existing Print layout.) There are benefits and drawbacks to this forked approach, and its value depends on your existing content and future plans. The main benefit to Quark’s approach is that you can design one layout for your eBook and let QuarkXPress optimize its page size and special features for each output format. Once inside your new eBook document, you can use all the rich layout tools in QuarkXPress, including sharing Style Sheets, Colors, Item Styles, Footnote Styles and other attributes across Print, App Studio and eBook layouts. This makes it much easier to keep an identity consistent across multiple layouts.

HTML5 and SEO Myths

SEO-HTML5-595x350-595x350 HTML5 is the latest iteration of the W3C's markup language, and as more and more webmasters and companies take advantage of its capabilities, it is only natural that certain myths and fallacies will pop-up regarding its benefits and pitfalls. One area, in particular, that we see this happening is in the SEO arena. To help clear this matter up, today's blog post will look at some common HTML5 search engine optimization myths. Search Engine Optimization Myths It is hard to understand the myths behind HTML5 and search engine optimization without knowing some common SEO myths themselves. To further complicate matters, the major search engines (Google, Bing, etc) are not very forthcoming with the various parts of their ranking algorithms. This leads to more confusion, as SEOs and Internet Marketers debate what works and what doesn't. Add in a new or updated "version" of HTML, and you can see why these myths begin to become part of the popular web development lexicon. SEO Myth: HTML5 Does Not Help Ranking I have seen the claim on many websites that HTML5 does not have any effect on your position in the search engine page results (SERPs) at all - and even some who claim it has a negative effect on your digital marketing efforts. To answer the question in simple terms: yes, when used properly, HTML5 can help with your SEO efforts - just as previous HTML specifications could. HTML5 has some special elements to it, however, that make it far easier for search engines and bots to truly understand not just the words within the various elements, but the intent of the elements themselves. Known as Semantic elements, these new tags are meant to better define the layout of pages and better describe their contents. SEO Myth: HTML5 Is Bad For Video While they are coming around, some webmasters preferred (and still prefer) to use Flash for embedding video content on web pages. Those that still opt for this route are missing out on some key HTML5 features that allow you to make videos more SEO-friendly. Using the tag, you can add additional information about the content in your videos. HTML5 allows for the use of labels, captions, and subtitles on video content, giving you an extra opportunity to define your media. As an aside, the same type of parameters exist for static image content as well. Instead of relying on img tags and "alt" text, HTML5 gives you the tag and to define "captions" - just like you would see in old printed newspapers. SEO Myth: You Can Only Use One h1 Tag Even prior to the invention of HTML5, the proper use of the h1 tag (and heading tags in general) lead to much confusion for web developers and SEOs alike. Now that the newest iteration of our favorite markup language is in full steam, the mystery around h1 tags has become even cloudier, as new rules are in place that dictate the proper - or better put, "best" - use of the tags within a document. For starters, you can absolutely use more than one h1 tag on your page. In fact, if your content calls for it, you should use multiple h1 tags. The general rule of thumb is this: for each new "content section", you can use an h1 to label your section. Note that you do not have to use an h1 - you can use any header tag you deem necessary. However, as a best practice, I advise that you do. If you need more than one label or header in an article section, you should use the traditional h tag heirarchy (for example, h2, h3, and so forth). Other Reasons HTML5 Is Good For SEO While there are plenty of myths floating around about the overall negative effects of HTML5 on SEO, the truth of the matter is that the markup has many great benefits that will help your site rank better than previous iterations or specifications. From helping with code validation to speeding up web page load times (a factor Google uses for its ranking algorithm), HTML5 truly was designed to help webmasters better define their layouts, content, and indeed their entire websites in a way that makes sense not only to humans, but to search engines as well. So do not buy into the negative hype around HTML5 from an Internet marketing standpoint. Many, many hours of research and planning went into developing it and ensuring it made the work of Google and Bing much easier. Take advantage of that hard work and consider updating your old site to current standards!

HTML5 Tips for Optimizing Speed

HTML5_sticker HTML5 brings many great features and benefits to the table, but one of the most often overlooked features is one that has become increasingly important from a visitor usability standpoint and, as Google recently stated, from a search engine optimization (SEO) perspective. This ability to increase page load times and decrease server loads is the very subject of today's HTML5 development article. HTML5 Best Practices for Speed Optimization We live in a fast food world. The lumbering beast once known as "Patience" has steadily been defeated by the hand of almighty technology. Gone are the days of slow and steady wins the race. Today, more than ever, speed is everything. This applies to everything - whether that be cooking a delicious corn dog or surfing the web for the latest celebrity gossip. The world no longer wants a story - they want sound bites. The faster the better. If you are like me, you may remember logging onto the Internet before "The Internet" - the old bulletin board systems (BBS). You would dial-up with your old 1200kbs modem and wait patiently for the screech and clang symphony of sweet connected bliss. Your reward for this patience? A bunch of text with no real images (maybe some ascii characters arranged to look like a picture) and certainly no videos. Ah, those were the days. Today, however, websites must be more than mere text. They must be media rich and tech savvy. At the same time, they cannot sacrifice function or speed. We Internet users want our cake and want to eat it too. Factor in the dawn of the mobilization of the Internet, and it is more important than ever to adhere to web development best practices, particularly when it comes to speed optimization and server load times. To help you in this endeavor, below are some tips for optimizing HTML5 websites for mobile and desktop users. Prioritize Assets When a user visits a web page - be it via a desktop computer, tablet, or mobile device, all of the content a user sees without having to scroll down at all, is known as above-the-fold content. Any part of the page that requires the user to scroll down is known as below-the-fold. Best web practices dictate that any content (text, image, media, etc) that are above the fold should render (ideally) without requiring numerous trips back to the server and the user's computer. This is especially true for visitors with mobile browsers, as their network speed and browser speed is likely less than that of their desktop and home networks. There are several steps you can take to prioritize any above-the-fold content. For starters, you can reduce the amount of assets that are resource intensive, such as large, high resolution images. Another way to reduce the amount of resources needed is to structure your HTML5 code in such a way that it loads all of your important, above-the-fold assets and content first, then load up everything below-the-fold. Minify Your Resources As seasoned coders, sometimes we like to experiment with page elements, sometimes on-the-fly. Maybe we implement a new portion of code and comment out older, less efficient code, opting to "hide" the code rather than remove it completely, just in case we need it in the future, or your new fix causes problems you did not foresee. Nothing wrong with that. What tends to happen to the best of us, more often than not, is that we forget to go back and remove all of that unused code. This pads up our files and is sloppy coding practice. When we talk about minifying resources, we are specifically discussing the art of minification. That is, remove any and all code or data that is either a duplicate of existing code, or is (for all intents and purposes) unused. It also includes removing extraneous comments in our code, whitespace, unnecessary formats, and even creating variable and function names that are shorter. Essentially, whatever you can do to shorten your code and ease the burden on the web browser. Minifying code includes HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript as well. Enable Compression on Your Web Server Finally, setup gzip compression on your web server to help reduce the page load time (sometimes you can actually increase your site's speed by upwards of 90%). There are many resources available on the web that can show you how to enable compression - no matter what type of server you use - and that discuss the benefits of gzip compression. A quick Google search should have you up and running in no time!