Communication is the Problem to the Answer…
If you’re as old as me you might remember that the title of this blog is also a song lyric from ‘The Things We Do For Love’ by 10cc back in the late 70s. Yes. I’m that old – but even THAT’S not old enough for the senior discount at Kroger (that’s another story for another blog post). The lyric came to mind today when thinking through blog post options and seems to fit.
One of the biggest challenges we face when building websites and working with our customers is often a simple matter of miscommunication. While the Red Sage staff members work with website builds, hacks, updates, and email issues on a daily basis, the same isn’t true for our customers. So we often get some rather cryptic emails and have some interesting phone conversations when working through the details of a new website, an update, or an email issue. Very similar to when you’re trying to explain a problem to your mechanic and you can only make the noise that you hear when driving down the road because heaven knows the car will behave like a dream machine when the mechanic is driving it.
So I thought maybe a little internet/website 101 was in order to help us help you .
Web Client or Browser: This is the software your computer uses to view the internet. There’s Firefox, Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari, and a few others, however these are the most popular Below you’ll see what the browser icons on your computer most likely look like.
Folks commonly get the Search Engine search boxes confused with the address bar. Which is easy to do since both provide you with a place to enter data:
Address Bar: Once you have a browser window open you can find the address bar at the very top left of the page. This is where you’d type the address of the website you want to visit if you know it. If you don’t know the address of the site you’re looking for, you’ll use a search engine. See Position A on the graphic below.
Search Engine: You have different options here as well – the more common search engines are Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Each one of the search engines provides you with a window to type in what you’re searching for. This is the Search Window – and is in position B below.
That’s a little on basic web functionality. Next let’s talk about a Red Sage website.
The page that loads first when you visit a website is the home page. We generally refer to the other pages as sub-pages. Every site has a main menu that is seen on every page of the site, and some or our sites have additional menus on subpages that aren’t seen on the home page.
When working on a new site many customers will ask us to change one of the tabs – what they’re usually referring to is a top-level menu item. They do look like tabs, however we have a component we use fairly often that really does have tabs so this can sometimes confuse us just a bit if it’s a site that includes the tab component.
A few other terms related to websites:
Web Server: the server where your website data – all the pictures, background images and content reside
Bandwidth: This is the amount of data that is transferred from you site to a site visitor’s computer when they’re viewing your site.
Links: Text or images on your site that when clicked will present the site visitor with another website or possibly a picture or document to download to their computer.
i-frame: this is a way to show your site’s visitors some content from another website. For example, when you embed a Youtube video on your site, you’re embedding an i-frame. It’s exactly what it sounds like – a frame through which you’re viewing something on the web that isn’t hosted on your site.
Cache: your browser stores images and content from a web page so that when you return to the page it will load faster since you won’t be downloading all the data again. However, this can sometimes cause a problem. For example, if you have a new website and you ask us to make some changes on the site, we let you know that we’ve made the requested changes but you can’t see the changes. It could be that your browser has cached the old site. There’s an easy fix for this, while you’re viewing the site hold down the CTRL key and hit the F5 key. This will refresh the page and flush the cache.
Domain name: This is the name of your website and is most often purchased from goDaddy or Network Solutions.
Domain Registrar: This is the company where you purchased your domain name, usually GoDaddy or Network Solutions.
DNS (Domain Name Server): DNS is like the traffic cop for your domain name. It includes records that direct web traffic to your website and email to your inbox. It can be a bit confusing and it’s something we usually take care of for our customers.