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Is Your Website Too Slow? Why Image Optimization Is Critical

Graphics are fun, but if you put in too many bells and whistles when you create your web site, you may lose a potential audience whose Internet connection can't handle lots of graphics, and that means you'll be losing potential customers.

According to the website experts, one of the major concerns in website graphical development is what the results will look like on different browsers, platforms and screen sizes.

Below are the nine steps which helps you to control the graphics on your website:

1 - Keep graphics files small (below 20K) and graphics for navigation below 10K. Your graphics must be saved at a resolution no greater than 96 dpi. Here is how to decide which format to choose: > If your graphics have lots of colors, save them as JPG files. > If your graphics have very few colors, choose GIF. > When using GIF, try optimized palettes that contain only the colors used as they can cut file sizes in half.

2 - Keep text files small i.e., less than 10K. They must be broken into logical chunks and linked.

3 - Design for easy reading. Make your backgrounds as light as possible. If you make use of a background image, keep the action on the side, out of the way of the text and place navigation on the left side of the screen because it is practical and permits you to reserve part of the screen (usually between 150 and 200 pixels) for navigation as well as identity.

4 - Design for 256 colors (8-bit) and 640x480 resolution.

5 - Use ALT tags on graphics. If you are using a graphic in place of a paragraph or more of text, type the same text into the ALT box because even long blocks of text will appear in the browser so people can read it before the graphic downloads.

6 - Include contact information on every and every page, including your company name, address, email address, and phone and fax numbers. Every page must have the site's main URL included.

7 - Keep your site fresh. Be prepared to update your site at least once a month, adding up of new information and discarding anything outdated. You want repeat visitors, so give them something to come back for.

8- Be generous. The more detail you give, the more of a service you offer, and the more reason you give people to visit your site.

9 - Check your site as visitors will see it. Connect to it at 14.4 and 28.8 to see how fast it actually is. View your site at several resolutions and color depths, and on various browsers.



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