Monthly Archives: November 2008

New updated quick reference guides for Accessibility

WebAIM has updated and released their quick reference guides for testing web content and web accessibility principles. Following these guides will help make your websites more accessible and also help search engines index your content.

The Testing Web Content for Accessibility Quick Reference Guide covers:

1. Human Checks:

  • Use a checklist;
  • Disable styles and linearize tables;
  • Check alternative text;
  • Verify color and contrast;
  • Test content scaling;
  • Check keyboard accessibility;
  • Evaluate form accessibility and usability;
  • Test with a screen reader;
  • Valid HTML and CSS.

2. Testing with WAVE:

  • About WAVE;
  • Using WAVE;
  • WAVE Icons;
  • Report Views.

The Web Accessibility Principles Quick Reference Guide covers:

  • Principles of Accessibility;
  • Provide appropriate alternative text;
  • Content is well structured and clearly written;
  • Help users navigate to relevant content;
  • Provide headers for data tables;
  • Do not rely on color alone to convey meaning;
  • Ensure users can complete and submit all forms;
  • Ensure links make sense out of context;
  • Caption and/or provide transcripts for media;
  • Ensure accessibility of non-HTML content;
  • Miscellaneous.

WebAIM also provide a Screen Reader Simulation which shows you what it is like to use a screen reader and their Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool (WAVE). WAVE also comes with the free WAVE Toolbar for the Firefox Browser.

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The perenial fate of the help desk

Usability was an issue even in medieval times.

Some good introductory guides on Search Engine Optimization

Google has just published its Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, so I thought it was time to list a few introductory guides on the topic.

Beginner’s Guide to Search Engine Optimization. by Rand Fishkin. SEOmoz, 2008. "This guide provides a complete overview of many of the processes, techniques and strategies used by professional search engine optimization specialists…"

Pandia Search Engine Marketing 101 – Written by Per and Susanne Koch. "Pandia’s Search Engine Marketing 101 will give you the basics of search engine promotion — knowledge you may use in your own optimization efforts or when buying services from others…"

Search Engine Marketing 101 – "This section of Search Engine Watch (formerly called A Webmaster’s Guide To Search Engines) is primarily for webmasters, site owners and web marketers. It covers search engine submission, optimization, and marketing issues. It explains how search engines find and rank web pages, with an emphasis on what webmasters can do to improve their search engine rankings by properly submitting, using better page design, and other tips…"

Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide – in pdf format (518kb) – (This document requires the use of Adobe Acrobat Reader). Google, 2008. "… following the best practices outlined below will make it easier for search engines to both crawl and index your content…" You can also convert PDF documents into alternative formats.

The Search Engine Dictionary – Pandecta Magazine, "The aim with the Search Engine Dictionary web site and the accompanying book is to establish a standard for search engine terminology by creating a comprehensive glossary of search engine terms…"

The Search Engine Marketing Glossary – SEObook.com. Provides a dictionary of search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing terms and phrases.

Google AdWords Glossary – Google, 2008.

If you have come across any other introductory or beginner guides in SEO – let me know so we can add to the list.

Free tools you can use to do Keyword Research – Part 2 – Firefox Browser tools

[ 18 Nov 2008 – A new tool has been added called Rank Checker – see item 16 below]

This is Part 2 of my series of tools you can use for Keyword Research. In part 1 of this series, I looked at free tools which Google offers. In Part 2, I am looking at the tools available as add-ons to the Firefox Web Browser. These tools do more than help you with your keyword research. [Note: I have only included the tools which work with Firefox version 3, there are numerous other tools which work with earlier versions of Firefox]

7. Keyword Trends in Google Analytics With Greasemonkey – By Sal Uryasev – This Greasemonkey script works for keyword data in Google Analytics, by showing increases and decreases in organic search traffic.

8. Firefox SEO Toolbar Extension with Website Ranking Features – This is a Toolbar extension for Firefox browser. Firefox SEO Toolbar Extension Features The features available in Firefox toolbar: Popular PPC Engines site; Web SEO and search engine tools; Online keyword research tools; Links to SEO-related forums; Search Engine view on the current page; Google PageRank, Alexa Ranking and Popularity Index; Link to Wayback Machine. ToolbarBrowser is a freeware project supported by Trellian Limited

9. SEO for Firefox – Provided by SEOBook – Version 2.9 has added SEO X-ray feature which gives you the keyword density of the page and popular phrases on the page.

10. KGen – by Nicolas Froidure. Version 0.4, September 11, 2008. This Firefox extension SEO tool allows you to see what keywords are represented on your web pages and then generates variations for you complete with misspellings. When installed it opens a sidebar in the browser which provides you with the ability to copy the selected keywords to the clipboard. It also displays the keywords with the repeats, weights and positions on the page. A Tag cloud keyword generator is also provided.

11. RankQuest SEO Toolbar – by Vincent Brown, Updated June 20, 2008 – provides you quick access to more than 30 SEO tools.

12. SEOQuake – by the SEOQuake Team, Updated October 6, 2008 – aimed at helping with search engine optimization and internet promotion of web sites. Provides both a Firefox and Internet Explorer version.

13. SearchStatus – by Craig Raw, Updated October 2, 2008 – displays Google PageRank, Alexa rank and Compete ranking anywhere in your browser, along with a keyword density analyser, keyword/nofollow highlighting, backward/related links, Alexa info and other SEO tools.

14. Google Global – by RedFly Marketing – allows you to view organic and paid Google search results as they appear in almost any location in the world.

15. Web Developer – by Chris Pederick, Updated May 19, 2008 – Adds a menu and a toolbar with various web developer tools.

16. Rank Checker – by SEOBook – This tool shows you where your website ranks in the search results in Google (US and international), Yahoo, and Microsoft Live search.

I am sure there are more SEO tools for Firefox out there – tell me what tools you find the most useful especially for keyword research.