Pseudo-Elements CSS: What Every Web Designer Should Know

One aspect that I like the CSS is the possibility offered in web design to enter and modify certain elements, who despite not contributing anything to content, we get that point of difference and quality in the design , or that improvement the user experience .

These are elements that we could introduce as HTML tags, but you correctly performed by CSS, allowing us to conduct a more structured web , semantic and clearer in the eyes of search engines. Well for the user or for positioning. And none of this would be possible if there were Pseudo-Elements CSS.

A few weeks ago we published an article about this in Octuweb, and as some things were left in the pipeline, expand and today we collect about CSS and Pseudo-elements

 A little history on Pseudo-Elements CSS

Go to parties and do a bit of memory, which never hurts. The Pseudo-elements were introduced in version 2.1 of CSS, and are 4:


:: After
:: Before
:: First-letter
:: First-line

although it may sometimes also be included in this group and the pseudo-element selector selection ::

Always will accompany selectors and its function is to define a special style somewhere in the item you are selecting ( :: first-letter to the first letter and :: first-line to the first line) or add content and styles before or after the selected element ( :: after content later and :: before adding content before)

Simple right? because the syntax is very simple, as always incorporated at the end of the selector, regardless of status (if we : hover or any other pseudo-class, will be located behind them), being therefore as follows:


:: pseudo-element selector {

property: value;

}

Eye, not to be confused with pseudo-classes ( : hover , : visited , : first-child , etc ..), we will discuss them shortly:)

Syntax Pseudo-elements, what, two colons (: after) or four points (:: after)?

 

Well, the correct way to use pseudo-elements is by using four points :: after , because in CSS3 this variation was introduced to differentiate pseudo-elements of the pseudo-classes (which only carry the double point : hover ).

But initially, when Pseudo-Elements appeared back in version 2.1 of CSS syntax only had two points, for compatibility with older browsers (mainly Internet Explorer 8, we talked about the problems with this browser ) is still using the double point of the board, relegating the use of four points designs and applications that are only accessible by modern browsers.

So, once you know the difference between the old and the new syntax, we will use in this tutorial simple double point ( : after ) if there is still some clueless using an older browser!

Methods and Uses Pseudo Elements.

Perfect, now that you know how to use pseudo-elements, let’s go over some very interesting uses and I hope you will inspire further research, because as you will see below, the possibilities are endless.

The first example deals with how to use pseudo-elements in combination of a web source for defining social icons for each link. It seems farfetched, but if you think about it, just enter the link in the social network, we take care to define CSS icon social network according to the url of the link.

Therefore need a web source with a good repertoire of social icons (font-awesome we can assert) and then define a number of rules according to the social network that we will have.


# Menu-social li a: before {
content: "\ f135";

display: inline-block;

padding: 0 5px;

font-family: FontAwesome;

font-size: 26px;

vertical-align: middle;

-webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased;

-moz-osx-font-smoothing: grayscale;

}

 

# Menu-social li a [href * = “facebook.com”]: before {

content: “\ f09a”;

}

This will avoid the burden of the images of each icon, making the burden of our web have fewer calls to the server and load faster. Similarly, we can add one color for each of the cases, if we want to give the corporate colors of social networks, or select a combination of own original colors .

The second example is about tooltips . We can add custom messages to specific elements , such as links to indicate extra information:


a.quiero-data: after {

content: attr (data-tooltip);

}

a.quiero-href: after {

content: “Link to” attr (href);

}

Imagine how useful it would be this when filling in a form in which each field we offer extra information on the data you are asking us.

Use the Pseudo-elements with head and with a clear objective.

Pseudo-elements are very versatile, and not be included in the HTML render the structure of the web is cleaner and clearer to search engines and / or future designers / companions to be modified. But keep in mind that you must always use them for a purpose .

Improve the user experience, ease the burden of HTML or replace images by sources are some of the advantages offered today CSS pseudo-elements and safe to come many more in future.So you know, to use with head and experiment!

 

HTML5 APIs in use: User velocities measured with timing and navigation timing

Measuring precisely by User Timing API

With the user-timing-API, it is possible to measure the speed between several previously defined points within a Web application. These each have a start and an end point for the measurement must be specified. These can be located anywhere within a script. The JavaScript object “performance” has several methods by which the necessary measurement points can be defined.

 

var messung_start = performance. now ( ) ;

The method “now ()” starts a measurement at any point within a Web application. It can be placed, for example, within a script that performs a computationally intensive function. In contrast to the “Date ()” – object that reflects the current system time as a timestamp, gives the user API timing of the time in milliseconds to several decimal places. If one wants to find out how much time elapses from the first measurement point to load an image, you can place the second measurement point within a “load” event.

 

document. getElementsByTagName ( "img" ) [ 0 ] . addEventListener ( "load" ,  function ( )
{var messung_ende = performance. now ( ) ;

} ,  false ) ;

The difference between the two readings “messung_start” and “messung_ende” then is the time that has elapsed.

Define different measurement points with “mark ()”

Instead of individual measurement points per “now ()” to set and to assign a variable, it is possible to set measurement points using the method “mark ()”. Each of these measuring points is assigned a unique name.

 

. performance mark ( "start" ) ;
...

. performance mark ( “end” ) ;

On Method “measure ()” can then calculate the difference between two measured points. The method takes three values. The first value is a term for the difference is determined. The following are the names of the two measurement points for which the difference is to be calculated.

 

performance. measure ( "difference" ,  "start" ,  "end" ) ;

In the example, the difference between the measurement points “start” and “end” is calculated. To read the individual values, there is the method “getEntriesByType ()”. This makes it possible for my “mark ()” and “measure ()” to determine set points in both the terms and the measured or calculated times.

 

var messpunkte = performance. getEntriesByType ( "mark" ) ;
var messdifferenzen = performance. getEntriesByType ( "measure" ) ;

In the example, by “getEntriesByType ()” issued names and values ​​are passed as an array in each case a variable. Then it is possible to output all the information about the measurements.

 

.console log ( measuring points [ 0 ] . name  +  ":"  + measuring points [ 0 ] . startTime ) ;
console. log ( measuring points [ 1 ] . name  +  ":"  + measuring points [ 1 ] . startTime ) ;

.console log ( measured differences [ 0 ] . name  +  “:”  + measured differences [ 0 ] . duration ) ;

The property ‘name’ returns the name of the respective measurement point or the calculated difference. In my “mark ()” set measurement points is the time measured by “start time”; for by “measure ()” calculated differences it will be delivered by “duration”. In the example, everything is written to the browser console.

Instead of addressing measurement points and calculations based on its type, entitled “getEntriesByName ()” and the response by name.

var measuring points = performance. getEntriesByName ( "start" ) ;

console. log ( measuring points [ 0 ] . name  +  ":"  + measuring points [ 0 ] . startTime ) ;

 

In the example, the measuring point “start”, which was put on the method “mark ()”, pass a variable and then written to the console.

 Remove measurement points and calculations

If you want to delete one or all measurement points or calculations, this is possible with the methods “clear marks ()” and “clearMeasures ()”. The methods, the designation of the deleted value are passed.

performance. clear marks ( "start" ) ;

In the example, the measuring point “start” deleted. If the two methods performed without a name is given, all predetermined measurement points are deleted.

. performance clear marks ( ) ;

Determine loading time of a site with the Navigation Timing API

Unlike the User Timing API navigation timing API must renounce the precise timekeeping in the microsecond range. Instead, the times are measured by a simple time stamp. Therefore, it is very easy to determine the loading time of a site based on predetermined measurement points. For example you can measure the time that elapses from the “unloading” of a previously opened document to the finished loaded document. Are introduced all the measurement points with “performance.timing”. The following is a property that specifies the measurement time.

. console log ( < code > performance. timing . start navigation ) ; </ code >

In the example, the time by “navigation start” determined to which the “unload” event is executed before the open document. Navigation Timing API returns the current time as timestamp in milliseconds again. In the example, the time stamp is written into the console.

. console log ( performance. timing . domLoading ) ;

console. log ( performance. timing . domComplete ) ;

In the second example, the time is first measured when the browser starts to load the DOM tree. The time is next determined at which the DOM tree has finished loading.

 

If you want instead of timestamp know the respective duration of each load times, first the current timestamp must be determined. Then by “performance.timing” values ​​determined from this timestamp can all be subtracted.

 

window. addEventListener ( “load” ,  function ( )  {

var jetzt =  new  Date ( ) . getTime ( ) ;

console. log ( jetzt – performance. timing . domComplete ) ;

} ,  false ) ;

In the example, only the time difference to the completely loaded DOM tree is written to the console. A total of 21 different properties available that measure the time at a certain point in the loading process.

 

In addition to “timing”, there is the “navigation” object that has two properties. The “type” attribute provides information about how a document was called.

 

console. log ( performance. navigation . type ) ;

The property returns a number that is zero if the document via a link or direct input was called. When the page reloads, 1 is returned. If the document was called by forwards or backwards function of the browser, the value changes to 2. The value 255 is always output when none of the other possibilities mentioned comes into question.

 

Did the page accessed via a redirect, are “redirectCount” the number of redirects, which were executed until the current document was loaded.

 

console. log ( performance. navigation . redirectCount ) ;

Browser Support

 

The User Timing API works in all major browsers, including Internet Explorer 10+. For older browsers, there is a polyfill, but which requires the support of high-resolution time-API. This is supported by Chrome Version 20 and Firefox 15. Internet Explorer supports this version also from the 10th

 

Navigation Timing API is already supported by older versions of these browsers. That is, in Chrome and Firefox it can be used safely. Internet Explorer would support since version. 9

Learn to Start websites on mobile devices as native apps

Native apps for smartphones and tablets are still popular, but not always necessary. Much can be implemented as a web application with HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript. Thanks corresponding JavaScript APIs you have, for example, access to the orientation sensor and can also recognize gestures and react accordingly. The WebApp manifesto, it is also possible to take another classic app properties for web applications. This includes the provision of special launcher icons or a separate launcher name which may be different from the often long title of the HTML document.

Make it look like webapp native app

With some settings in the manifest, it is possible to start a webapp so and look to be like a classic native app. Provided however, that the webapp as a link is on the home screen of your smartphone or tablet and start from there. In Chrome it is the menu item “Add to Home Screen”. As a result, such a link is created. Chrome  is also currently the only browser that supports the WebApp manifesto.

The manifest can specify a deviating from the default title of the HTML document name for the shortcut on the home screen. Indeed, with “name” and “short_name” two different properties for the title of the link. “Short_name” but always overrides the value of “name”. This property is ignored, although “short_name” exists.

"Name" : "Long name for the webapp" ,
"short_name" : "Short Name"

Also, the icon for the shortcut can be determined individually by the manifest. Here, icons can be specified in different sizes for different pixel densities. These are referenced as a JSON array.

"icons" :  [

{
“src” :  “launcher-icon-36×36-1x.png” ,

“sizes” :  “36×36” ,
“type” :  “image/png” ,
“density” :  “1”

}

{

“src” :  “launcher-icon-36×36-2x.png” ,

“sizes” :  “36×36” ,

“type” :  “image/png” ,

“density” :  “2”

}

]

Depending on the device, the appropriate icon is displayed using the values ​​defined in “sizes” and “density”. If no icon found dimensionally accurate, Chrome will select one that fits best.

Normally, a link would be called to the home screen as a normal website within the browser – with corresponding navigation bar. With the “display” property, it is possible to make a webapp so the browser illustrate that no navigation bar is visible. Visually, the webapp is thus indistinguishable from a native app.
"Display" : "stand alone"

In addition to the value of “stand alone” that hides the navigation bar of the browser, there’s the value “fullscreen”. Here, the “action bar” of the device disappears. Above all, games are often presented in this full screen mode. He is not to be confused with the full screen mode of the browser.Currently, Chrome seems “fullscreen” property but not supported. On the device tested, the property is in any case ignored and instead used “stand alone” which is the default fallback in case “full screen” is not supported by a browser.

For the user, the requested URL is not visible due to the hidden navigation bar of the browser.Therefore, this appears on pages leading via a link to another domain, at the top of the screen a small status bar in which the URL of the page is visible. This ensures that the user always knows where he is located.

Furthermore, you can specify a device orientation for the presentation of the webapp. This makes it possible, regardless of the orientation of the smartphone or tablet to have a webapp always in landscape or portrait mode, ie in portrait or landscape mode, run.

"Orientation" : "portrait"

In addition, there is the possibility to define a start URL for the web app. This one from the home screen viewed website or webapp opens with a separate URL.

"Start_url" : "webapp.html"

If the property is “start_url” is not set, the URL is always used, is added to the website from the home screen. With “start_url” so you can, for example, ensure that a webapp is always opened her home.

Often, it is interesting to know for developers when a site from the home screen and when it was called as a normal website. To this end, can the property “start_url” misuse by there simply a parameter is passed, which can then be used to from the home screen to determine separately the calls.

"Start_url" : "webapp.html start screen = 1?"

This parameter can be queried via JavaScript or server-side scripting language. Including analytics tools can draw inferences from where the website or webapp is started.
No subsequent changes to the manifest properties possible

If a site has been added as a shortcut to the home screen, it is not possible to change the properties defined for the set link later. For example, if the value of “orientation” is changed, the user would have to delete the existing webapp link first and then add the site again to the home screen. Only then the manifest file is read again.

The Best 8 WordPress plugins

1. Scroll Triggered Box

The scroll Triggered box is a small box that appears at a predetermined position when scrolling down an article. With this box, you can not only collect e-mail addresses, but also integrate Like-Button of social networks. However, there are much better plugins for the latter task pane. This plugin is optimal when it comes to collecting e-mail addresses for newsletter marketing.

Developer: PK2000, Eero Hermlin etc.

Is constantly evolving: Yes

Last Date: 17/12/2014

Cost: Free via WordPress.org

License: GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

Interaction with other plugins: not known

Developer Homepage:   http://www.dreamgrow.com/dreamgrow-scroll-triggered-box/

2. The Hello Bar

The Hello Bar is a very striking way, either to refer to the newsletter and to collect e-mails, or to send important messages and visitors. A major advantage of Hello Bar is definitely that it always remains in the field of view of the visitor, ie has a fixed position. To use the Hello Bar are two components necessary once the WordPress plugin and also the configuration of the plugin on the Hello Bar website . Important to know: The plugin works with all popular newsletter services (MailChimp, Aweber, etc.) together easily.

 

Developer: dtelepathy, kynatro, dtrenkner etc.

Is constantly evolving: No

Last Date: 06.05.2011

Compatible with WordPress 4.01 Yes, completely

Cost: Free via WordPress.org

License: GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

Interaction with other plugins: not known

Developer Homepage:   http://hellobar.com

 

Many Contacts Bar

Again, you have to register for free on the website of Many Contacts Bar and create his bar. This WordPress plugin is only for adding the generated code in the WordPress theme needed. Advanced users can, however, waive the WordPress plugin and insert the code manually via the functions.php. This solution also works with all popular newsletters providers.

 

Developer: WooRank

Is constantly evolving: Yes

Last Date: 03/04/2014

Cost: Free via WordPress.org

License: GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

Interaction with other plugins: not known

Developer Homepage:   http://hellobar.com

3. Digg Digg – Floating Share Bar

igg Digg add your blog is becoming in the viewing area located box with buttons for important parts of articles added. Of course, you can choose which share buttons should be located in the floating bar. All major social networks (Facebook, Google+, etc.) are supported. The plugin also gives you several options for placement of buttons

As you can see, you to Delicious Digg Digg Plugin for WordPress offers a lot of opportunities. It is highly recommended.

 

Developer: joelk87, Andrew Yates / Bufferapp

Is constantly evolving: OK,

Last Date: 02/07/2013

Compatible with WordPress 4:01 – Yes, completely

Cost: Free via WordPress.org

License: GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

Interaction with other plugins: not known

Developer Homepage: No

 

4. WordPress SEO by Yoast 5

 

SEO plugins, there are a dime a dozen, this is certainly the most widely used and best. Aside from the “normal” SEO features such as the shapes of the title tags for pages, posts and the like, this plugin still a really important feature. The pictured above on-page SEO feature helps you to optimize a contribution to a particular keyword. In the screenshot above you can see that such contribution is the Keyword “wordpress plugins” is optimized. The keyword appears for example in the article title, content, URL, etc. on. With this function, your articles have grown better in Google, because you can always check whether you have forgotten something important.

 

In addition, it offers you the plugin also a sitemap.xml and much more. However, for improvement, the functions for manipulating the shares issued, the, other SEO plugins better, I’m thinking of wpSEO Sergei Müller. wpSEO regulates the title issue with drag-and-drop elements and not getting used tags.

 

Developer: Yoast – Joost de Valk

Is constantly evolving: Yes

Last Date: 26/11/2014

Cost: Free via WordPress.org

License: GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

Interaction with other plugins: not known

Developer Homepage:  https://yoast.com/wordpress/plugins/seo/

5. Disqus Comments

Disqus is the most prominent and best external comment system for WordPress (and other CMS). It not only looks nice, it also offers additional features such as rich media support – with easy integration of pictures and videos in the comments. Also for the view and function on mobile devices has been developed Disqus. Disqus is understood not only as a simple comment system, but as a basis for a genuine community. Therefore, one can follow and also share comments on Facebook and Twitter individual commentators. About the management interface by Disqus be easy to manage comments.

 

Developer: Yoast – Disqus and others.

Is constantly evolving: Yes

Last Date: 09/12/2014

Cost: Free via WordPress.org

License: GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

Interaction with other plugins: not known

Developer Homepage: https://disqus.com/

6. Click to Tweet by CoSchedule

Click to Tweet is a new and very interesting opportunity to share his contributions. It allows you to easily create content tweeting in small boxes to allow your visitors to share a new and interesting way of content.

Developer: Made Today

Is constantly evolving: Yes

Last Date: 11/20/2014

Cost: Free via WordPress.org

License: GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

Interaction with other plugins: not known

Developer Homepage: http://coschedule.com/click-to-twee

7. Jetpack

Jetpack is a very interesting and extensive collection Plugin made ​​by Automattic, the company behind WordPress. Is accordingly high quality. One should not be overwhelmed by the variety of functions, but configure the plugin once reasonable with the items that you really need. Everything else belongs disabled. In this article, I have taken plugin very closely examined and proposed a sinvolle configuration. By the way: One of the most favorite features is the visit analysis.

Developer: Automattic

Is constantly evolving: Yes

Last Date: 15/12/2014

Cost: Free via WordPress.org

License: GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

Interaction with other plugins: not known

Developer Homepage: http://jetpack.me/

 

8. VaultPress

This backup service can not be presented often enough. VaultPress probably the best backup service that is on the market. Every day is very reliable applied to a predetermined time a full backup. These backups can be restored with a few clicks in a few minutes. VaultPress the way, is not free, the plugin requires an account on the VaultPress homepage. Financially for a web page from USD 5.- a month off. In my opinion one of the best ways to invest $ 5.

For 15 USD a month you can get a real-time backup, that means that every time a backup is performed when a change to the webpage was made for. Example, a new article has been posted or page added, or upload a new image etc. This “Basic” plan, however, called worthwhile only for very high frequency sites like DrWeb.de or similar. All the other blogs and websites come with the “Lite” – along well plan. VaultPress is capable of multi-site, but must be purchased for each page of a license.

 

Developer: Automattic

Is constantly evolving: Yes

Last Date: 15/12/2014

Cost: Free on WordPress.org – will require license from 5 USD per month

License: GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

Interaction with other plugins: not known

Avoid the 5 most common mistakes in the design process

Facebook’s design boss Julie Zhuo commented on the five worst errors in the design process and gives tips on how to avoid them. She said: There is no learning without sometimes make mistakes. But it is precisely the following errors are often made in order not to speak. It is always better to learn from the mistakes of others, than to have to make the “hard way” itself. So let’s clearly bring us today the five most common mistakes on the table and discuss so that they can be avoided in the future and the internet a little further moves towards “good design”. Because good design moves and speaks to us, leads us to purchase and to spend time on Web pages?

Here, read: Good design increases the conversion rate

1. We restrict ourselves to a very in the design process

Just in the process of development of a design, one should neither mentally nor total conceptually very limiting, because it is not always the first draft also the best. Sometimes it pays to take a little more time to invest, especially in this process. However, there are mainly two reasons why we can tempt us to cancel the process of designing prematurely.

Time: Few things are more tempting than inducing a rapid, positive change for the product team. Because time is money. It’s appealing to bring a small positive change in a very short time, possibly as a large positive change for several months to need (based on a large project). Of course, it takes the patience of Old Master Yoda to bring the best solution. Let ‘s really a great website before – for example, Spiegel Online. What can a design team in just 2 months cause, and what in the past nine months? Sure, small changes happen quickly, but a desired optimum will take much more time when it really should be optimal. Good design and innovative solutions nobody shakes off the cuff. This takes time and is a long-term process.

 

Risk: When something is well established and functional, it has been its problems, it is easy to change. You know: never change a running system Finally, it might well be that the great new features, or the chic new design with visitors so do not arrive.. What you find could very well hate your users. And that is the decisive factor in the end. For the relaunch of a website is always a relaunch for visitors to the Internet site. Such a consideration often prevents the discovery of new design directions. Therefore check exactly if your fears are really justified in this respect, or if you are held through them to start experimenting in new design directions. Cart calm “the next step”, it may well be very worthwhile.

2. yourself too early to details “firmly bite”

A classic design flaw: they explore a large design task and already have a great concept in mind. You start with the mock-up, but want already set everything. In the back of the head thoughts weave to detail. Should be black this element, that maybe gray? Or take better but more vivid colors? If you want the buttons to be round or square? The more accurate you are thinking at this early process of finding design of such problems, the harder it is that concept to keep in mind. Before you know it, at least 70% of the development time already passed and you have focused only on details rather than the overall concept to develop.

3. To maintain good design for a good product Mistake

A scenario: A talented designer comes with a smooth polished prototype your new website to you, filled with interesting content and professional photos with attractive, smiling people. There is also a totally exciting, extremely professional presentation. Your entire environment together with you is very excited about this really great presentation that hardly any questions asked and the result is automatically accepted. Because if something looks good, we are also willing to it as “good” to accept.

But good design is not everything, and certainly not an end in itself. A polished on optimal design product with professional photos and content may well be disadvantageous for customers. For example, it can conceal lack of user friendliness. In addition, the website will act completely differently with the contents of the customer. Perhaps the content is not very interesting, the photos are not so professional and the persons represented not as attractive. Again, with the content of the customer’s website is fully appear different. In the worst case, the great prototype runs in a crude representation with suboptimal content. Therefore, you always insist on the presentation to get the contents of which will later be seen on the website. Then it is clear already in the presentation, if it still caught on something and whether the product everywhere going the way it should work.

4. Review of style and clarity at the expense of usability

Designers have a great tendency to aesthetic that is reflected in your lifestyle. It is obvious that designers not only create functional things, they should of course also look good and (where possible) cool to the touch. Sometimes even just to let other people develop a sense of awe when they capture and sensing design. Sometimes, however, this desire for aesthetics and clarity is pushed too far, and then goes at the expense of usability. As we know, of course, all theoretically, an app or a website should be user friendly in the first place.

Knowing the target audience is important here, because this sets the framework for the success of the designer. For example, create an app for other designers, then move other priorities in the spotlight. In an app for seniors are at it again completely different requirements that must be met. Create a gesture based app. Let your mother test the app. If this order can handle, it is sufficiently user-friendly. Always remember that you designed the app or web site may million visitors / users happy. Therefore, make sure always first on usability and then following good design, which can support the user-friendliness. Please make never the mistake of assuming that something you like, automatically suits the intended target group. This target group may have different priorities and ideas. Therefore, designing Always for the target group. The bait has the fish and not the fisherman says the wise grandfather from the off.

5. Never underestimate the skills outside your area

Each designer, I know, takes his area for which he is responsible, very seriously. No matter whether it is a website, an app or product. These existing among designers attention to detail extends mostly on first sight unseen things, such as the error page for a website. However, for the obvious things are often neglected, perhaps seen as too mundane. But who cares about an error page when the basic menu is not correct?

One of the most powerful lever to people about the value of a mobile app, are interactions with the UI, such messages. And yet there is very little developers and designers who are seizing the opportunity to make the UI (re) messages so that they are useful and not annoying. How many messages can appear as, without which they are perceived as annoying? Hardly anyone cares about this very important process. This can be a starting point for a seamless collaboration between design and development. Another example is the determination of the best entry point for a new feature. This is a controversial and challenging endeavor, but crucial for success as dozens of other things that could change. Here developers and designers should work hand in hand to make a new feature looks good and still even more user-friendly.

You should also ask yourself what could cause the users of the app or website to switch to your customers to use the Website or your client app and become buyers. We please not forget the Marketing: How should people learn from the new feature, how to talk about it or think? Today it is not enough to simply have an app or website, visitors or users are no longer alone. It is not only the experience within your area, you need to think ahead, leave your comfort zone and with other departments, which are clamped in the process of working together. Only then the product developed will also be a great success.

Static Google Maps – better cards in responsive design

Some time ago I wrote a post in which explains how Google Maps in Flexible Web Layouts can be embedded. In this post I want a – imagine alternative and would like to discuss in the comments – user-friendly for my taste. Google’s map service is automatically generated here as a static graphic (Static Map) integrated and linked to the map service.

The difference between embedded Google Maps Static Maps

Normally Google Maps as iframe embedded in a website. This approach has advantages and disadvantages.

Benefits

  • An iframe integrated map service with full functionality to the site. It can be scrolled, zoomed and the type of display can be changed
  • Google Maps with full functionality is user-friendly, at least if a mouse is used
  • The integration of the iframe is straightforward. Google provides the code snippet on Google Maps ready

Disadvantages

  • The charging time is negatively affected by additional and possibly unnecessary functionality
  • An iframe is a very inflexible element – in responsive design such a solution is very troublesome and time-consuming
  • An iframe solution is not user friendly on small screens or touch screens

If the card as a so-called. “Static Google Map” is included, using a normal image, which is then linked later to the address on Google Maps. This image can be used asimg tag in the HTML code or CSS background are included. The graph is then rendered directly through Google, you use a URL as image source with parameters for the size, type and location of the map, the zoom factor etc. Also, this approach has advantages and disadvantages:

Benefits

  • An image in the HTML code can be easily scaled, in the CSS code also stand by Various options are available
  • Significantly better performance
  • Easy to use on all display sizes, as well as in Mouse and touch operation
  • Easy handling
  • JavaScript

Disadvantages

  • The interactivity is lost – it is a static image
  • The user leaves the site
  • An API-Key is required (see below)
  • The maximum page length is 660px. For larger maps a paid Google account is required

Out functions

In recent times – mainly in the environment of responsive design – a clear trend can be seen: Complex or user-unfriendly functions are given increasingly operating systems or to (web) apps.
In the case of Google Maps must ask oneself as a web designer, which advantages of a website visitor promises of a map. Normally, the following objectives:

  • The card serves to Overview
  • The card is issued for guidance
  • The user should be able to calculate a route

Suppose we take the work and manage the Google Maps iframe together with its functionality to integrate flexible in our responsive site . The small map section is on smartphones and many tablets but never as good as the installed Google Maps app of the unit.
If we Embed Google Maps, however, as a static image, we protect the performance in the first step. The user must not load correctly if he does not need it. If it takes more than an overview map, click or tap on the map and it will be forwarded to Google Maps. On the computer, he receives the map service is on mobile devices – if present – the app open. If the app is not installed, the mobile website of Google Maps opens.

Here’s how: Static Maps in the website

To use Static Maps, you need first an API Key. Based on the Keys recognizes Google how often the map was called. For web pages with strong visitor numbers is Google Maps fee (which is also true for the iframe version).

Can generate API key

API keys for the various Google services can be created fairly straightforward.

Importance of Responsive Images

Flexible pictures are an important part of responsive sites. But unfortunately it turned this exact topic of Web designers in recent years, enormous challenges. Without scripts, it was not possible to display images without loss of quality or performance on all display sizes. And even with the support of scripts were some changes -. For example, the change of the image detail – a really tedious task. With , srcset & sizes are new HTML elements and attributes migrated to the specification, with the help of many problems are solved soon.

<Img> vs. background

This article focuses on images in the HTML code, so to contextually relevant graphics. The images as an element with CSS background were assigned, can already today about media queries to be replaced. In HTML, however to date there were no media queries, so the exchange was not there readily possible.

The previous solutions

Mid-2014, most sites still work with a compromise. It is played the same image for all display sizes and display technologies. With the following CSS specification make the image act flexibly:

img {
max-width: 100%;
height: auto;
}

This procedure is known to have major drawbacks. Either be loaded on small displays to large files, which harms the performance, or the image is scaled by its actual width also. The latter results in poor image quality on large displays. High-resolution displays are not taken into account.

To resolve these problems, various tricks and scripts were used. For completeness, I would also like to mention briefly some of these techniques.

Downsampling

To achieve both normal and high-resolution displays a good quality image, the image is often charged in double size. About the size of HTML attributes do you scale down the image to the desired size. The aim is to increase the pixel density of the graphics to the extent that they the DPR corresponds to high-definition devices. This method is called down sampling.

5 SEO Foundations More Important Than Link Building

Mobile Friendly Website

Google has decided to punish in their search results to sites not tailored to mobile devices, by “mobilegeddon” update. The only thing that is clear is that from this date begin to penalize Google in its search results to websites that we are “mobile-friendly”.

Google has made ​​available to the webmasters with a free tool to examine the adaptability to mobile devices of your pages. For more information about the changes that you need to enter on their websites, webmasters can dip into the so-called “Mobile Usability Report” of Google Webmaster Tools.

Website Navigation

A clear and simple navigation is essentially important for the success of a website. A complicated and unclear navigation will confuse your visitors. Those who do not quickly find what they are looking who leaves your website faster than you think. Therefore, a clear navigation is very important and Google rewards sites which have clear navigation

Full Informative and Regular Content

Content is one of the most important parts of the health and authority of your website. Without a great and unique content you may find it difficult to position your website and even harder to find users who want to spend quality time visiting your pages

You need fresh, original, unique, relevant content, and last but not least need to create it on a regular basis (not worth making good content a week and the next do nothing). While the blog is a great place to do this, you also need to do it in other web pages.

Social Media Presence

Social media is not a measure of return on direct investment, they are more of a help to achieve certain goals, so you have to pamper them and give them everything they ask for. It is a reality, users are directed to social networks as a way to connect with brands. For them, these channels represent a quick and easy way of contact. It is a reality, users are directed to social networks as a way to connect with brands. For them, these channels represent a quick and easy way of contact

Studies show that customers engaged (engagement) become loyal customers and its effect on the ROI is much higher than you think. So make sure you have a plan to take full advantage of social networks and have very clear what your strategy. So claim your business’s profile on as many social media platforms as you can. Also social media presence helps you retain your search positions.

Brand Mentions

A mention is when your brand or business is quoted in one website, with or without bond. However, you may wonder what the difference between the typical reference link and a mention.

Well, now Google has evolved. Just do not read links from social networks. Now links are not considered but mentions: it is considered that a user cites the brand or company as a mere mention of his audience, and not to refer to other content (as in the case of links).

Today, social mentions are clearly a new factor of authority in the SEO positioning. There was the view that a link on Social Networks interested us for the simple fact that it was a link. That already supposed a value in our positioning strategy, albeit

Three methods for mobile-optimized websites

For the basic orientation of a mobile optimized website are three versions to choose from:

  • Responsive web design: The responsive design, there is a URL for all devices. Also the source code is the same. The output of the page is, however, adjusted via CSS to the respective client and its screen size.
  • Dynamic Serving: In this case, the content is also available on the same URL. The server returns the contents, however, depends on user agent and fits HTML or CSS to.
  • Separate mobile-optimized website: here the mobile content under a different URL available than in the previous examples.

Mobile-Friendly ranking factor update

From 21 April 2015, the mobile-friendliness of a website is considered another ranking factor in Google. With “mobile-friendly” the usability of a site on smartphones is meant. The algorithm change therefore only affects mobile searches in all languages ​​around the world.

This means: If the contents of a domain is not “mobile-friendly” that is not optimized for access via mobile devices so they can be at a disadvantage when searching on a smartphone. Google also identifies the mobile-friendliness of a URL on the search results pages and warns the user of mobile searchers mobile friendliness of content.

As search engine Google wants every user provide the best fit for its search and result situation. By examining a website on their mobile friendliness can be assured that the mobile seekers can actually consume and use the information on the site in its entirety.

Provides a site the best information for the seeker on a cell phone user, so this content is really to use him only in unrestricted mobile usability of the site also. However, if the content at this time “mobile-friendly”, so it can also not  suitable best results, be related to the situation of seeking a mobile device user.

This Google has of course recognized and goes out even in the distribution of search traffic from an early transcendence of Desktop Search:

 

What does Google under a mobile device?

Searches a user on his mobile device with Google, so the advantage of “mobile-friendly” site for site operators can no longer be dismissed out of hand. When a mobile device Google distinguishes four classes of devices:

 

Smartphones: eg Android devices, iPhone or Windows Phones

Tablets: these mobile devices treated Google more like a desktop computer

Multimedia phones: they do not support all the HTML5 standards

Feature phones: they do not support standard HTML

The term “mobile device” refers primarily Google Smartphones and Tablets less and feature phones.

Google has its own smartphone search index?

When a search query the Google search engine is different between a smartphone and a desktop search search. The results on the search results pages originate in both cases, but the same search index. Depending on the user’s device used a different URL can be displayed for a

What are the criteria for a mobile-friendly site?

Whether the contents of a website “mobile-friendly” are checked Google for each URL in detail. If a page for use on smartphones optimized, this recognizes the Google bot when re-crawl and weighted this factor immediately. So this happens in near real time.

The four criteria are crucial for a mobile-friendly website:

 

For mobile devices unusual software like Flash is avoided

The text can be read without zooming

The size of the content is adapted to the screen, so that users do not need to scroll or zoom horizontally

The distance between links is large enough so that users can tap on the desired link problems

Webmaster can do this with Google’s own house tool analyze a URL, whether it is optimized for mobile devices. Proposals to improve the user experience on mobile devices are displayed at the same time with.

Note: Responsive Design Vs mobile-friendly

Already in mid-2013, Google has the right configuration of the mobile site

Announced as a ranking factor for search results on smartphones.

A so-called responsive web design here is only a (partial) means to an end. In addition to proper scaling of designs on different mobile devices and the changed arrangement of elements on a Web site, it depends on more technical factors to really be considered a “mobile-friendly”.

In addition to four criteria for mobile-friendly sites may, for example JavaScript, CSS, and image files will not be excluded from the crawl. Incorrect redirects or missing information on the Mobile-optimized content

Often these mentioned points are not always covered by mere “responsive design”. Therefore, adjusting the page layout on the display area of ​​a smartphone guarantees still far from comprehensive mobile-friendliness of the content.