Web developers play a crucial role in bringing digital dreams to life. Strangely, they are often undervalued and their contributions go unnoticed and in some cases, completely ignored by clients who don’t appreciate that Web developers are the unsung heroes that work hard to make our digital dreams come to fruition.
It’s time to shine a light on all of the unseen tasks web developers undertake – from hosting platforms, setting up email accounts and integrating social media features – that the client may not be aware of, or simply do not understand in terms of importance.
Let’s recognise how important these professionals are and why we should be giving them the credit they deserve.
Going Beyond Design and Development:
It’s clear that Web developers possess a unique combination of skills.
They are creative problem-solvers and tech-savvy troubleshooters.
They are the experts to turn to when faced with technical difficulties, optimizing performance, and preventing server crashes. The maintenance, updates, and bug fixes required to keep a website secure and up-to-date are tasks that web developers willingly take care of, ensuring their clients’ websites operate at peak efficiency. Unfortunately, some clients overlook this crucial aspect. For example, they may be hesitant to commit to any form of maintenance plan. From my perspective, this reluctance is highly unwise.
Clients continually ask web developers for advice on increasing profitability because web developers have a unique perspective and expertise in the online space. While their primary task may be web development, they are often well-versed in digital marketing, user experience, and conversion optimization. This advice is generally asked for well into the project and is often unquoted, when a developer says, this is an extra service we actually charge for, clients often balk and complain that it should all be ‘Part of the Service’ – This needs to be fixed.
We know why it’s asked for but when it is sometimes a bit late in the day – it can cause delays to the project and cause resentment on both sides.
Web developers understand how to create websites that not only look good but also function effectively in driving business goals. They can optimize websites for search engines, improve user engagement, and streamline the online sales process.
Unlike management consultants who may charge exorbitant fees, clients can tap into the expertise of web developers at a more affordable cost. They already have an existing relationship with their web developer, making it convenient to seek advice and guidance from someone they trust but must remember this may not have been quoted and to expect extra costs.
Adhering to local Privacy requirements
Privacy policies are a legal aspect of websites worldwide as they outline how personal data is collected, used, stored, and protected by the website owner or operator.
Here’s an overview of privacy policies in relation to websites across the world:
1. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR): Introduced by the European Union (EU), GDPR sets strict guidelines for websites that collect personal data from individuals within the EU. Websites must provide clear and specific information on data processing practices, user rights, and obtain explicit consent for collecting and using personal data.
2. California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA): Enforced in California, USA, CCPA grants consumers certain rights over their personal information. Websites falling under its jurisdiction should inform users about the categories of personal information collected, disclose third-party sharing practices, and allow users to opt-out of data sales.
3. Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA): Applicable in Canada, PIPEDA governs the collection and use of personal information by businesses. It mandates privacy policies that inform individuals about data usage, provide access to their information, and require obtaining meaningful consent.
4. Asia-Pacific Privacy Laws: Countries in the Asia-Pacific region, such as Australia, Japan, and South Korea, have implemented their own privacy laws. These laws typically involve principles of transparency, purpose limitation, and consent for data collection.
5. Privacy Shield: This framework governed data transfers between the European Union and the United States until it was invalidated in 2020. It outlined requirements for U.S. companies to protect personal data received from the EU.
Apart from these specific regulations, many countries have their own privacy laws that websites need to comply with. It is crucial for website owners to research and understand the privacy requirements in the jurisdictions where their audience is located and craft privacy policies that align with those regulations.
Privacy policies play a significant role in ensuring transparency, consent, and protection of individuals’ personal data on websites worldwide. Website owners must be aware of the applicable privacy laws and tailor their policies accordingly to foster trust and compliance. Web developers are often called upon to advise in such situations – I personally recommend Termageddon to my clients:
What sets Termageddon apart is its ability to keep your policies up to date. As regulations change and new laws are enacted, Termageddon automatically updates your policies to reflect the latest requirements. This helps you maintain compliance without having to constantly monitor and modify your policies manually.
In addition to their policy generation services, Termageddon also offers features like cookie consent management, data breach response plans, and legal updates to keep you informed about evolving legislation. Their goal is to simplify the process of creating and maintaining policies, so you can focus on running your website or online business.
It’s worth mentioning that while Termageddon provides a convenient solution, it’s always a good idea to consult with a legal professional to ensure your policies align with your specific jurisdiction and business practices.
Technical Troubleshooting and Maintenance:
In the world of WordPress, web developers possess the knowledge and expertise required to construct bespoke websites tailored to individual needs and preferences. They have the ability to craft high-quality user experiences that are customer-oriented, striking a perfect balance between aesthetics and functionality.
By taking the time to fully understand the client’s business, requirements, and goals, web developers can create a website that fosters engagement, generates leads, and ultimately attracts new customers. They offer a vital service, assisting businesses in reaching their target market, expanding their customer base, and establishing a successful online presence.
If you’re seeking to make the most of your web presence, it is advisable to invest in the services of a qualified web developer. They will be there to support you, providing the expertise, assistance, and guidance needed to ensure the success of your website in the world of WordPress.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Analytics:
An effective online presence relies heavily on SEO practices and analytics tracking. Web developers understand the importance of optimising websites to rank higher in search engine results. They implement SEO strategies, including meta tags, alt tags, keyword optimisation, and site speed improvements, among others. They integrate analytics tools, which enable clients to gain insights into website traffic, audience behaviour, and other essential metrics.
- Search Console: Setting up Google Search Console is crucial for monitoring and optimising your website’s performance in Google search results. It provides valuable data on how your pages are being indexed, identifies crawl errors, and allows you to submit your sitemap for faster indexing.
- Expanding Beyond Google: While Google is the dominant search engine, it’s worth considering optimisation for other search engines like Bing and Yahoo as well. These search engines have their own algorithms and ranking factors, and optimising for them can help attract additional organic traffic.
- Utilising Social Media: Social media platforms offer an excellent opportunity to enhance your website’s visibility and improve search positioning. Sharing your content on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn can increase the chances of it being discovered and shared, thereby driving more traffic to your site. Additionally, engaging with your audience on social media can help build brand loyalty and increase your online presence.
- Local SEO with Google My Business: If your business has a physical location or serves specific areas, setting up a Google My Business page is essential. It helps your business appear in local search results, gives you control over your business information, and allows customers to leave reviews. Optimising your Google My Business listing can significantly enhance your local SEO efforts.
- Analysing Website Traffic: Implementing analytics tools like Google Analytics provides valuable insights into your website’s performance. It allows you to track metrics such as page views, bounce rate, traffic sources, and user behaviour. With this data, you can make informed decisions and optimise your website accordingly for better search visibility.
Web developers play a crucial role in implementing these SEO practices and analytics tracking. They ensure that your website is optimised for search engines, making it easier for potential customers to find you. By integrating SEO strategies and analytics tools, they help you monitor and improve your online presence, ultimately leading to increased organic traffic and better search positioning.
Social Media Integration:
In today’s digital landscape, having a social media presence is crucial for any business. It allows companies to connect with their target audience, build brand awareness, and foster online engagement. Web developers play a crucial role in helping businesses seamlessly integrate social media platforms into their websites.
By integrating social media into their websites, businesses can provide visitors with an easy and convenient way to connect and share content. Web developers ensure that social media icons and share buttons are strategically placed on the website, making it effortless for users to follow the company’s social media accounts and share interesting content with their own networks.
This integration goes beyond just adding social media icons. Web developers work to ensure brand consistency across all platforms. They design and customize social media plugins and widgets to match the website’s look and feel, ensuring a seamless user experience. This attention to detail helps reinforce the brand’s image and messaging, creating a cohesive online presence that resonates with the target audience.
Integrating social media into websites extends the reach of the business. When website visitors share content from the site on their social media profiles, it exposes the brand to a wider audience. This organic sharing increases the likelihood of attracting new followers and potential customers, ultimately expanding the brand’s online reach.
The collaboration between web developers and businesses in integrating social media also fosters online engagement. By leveraging social media platforms, businesses can interact directly with their audience, responding to comments, addressing concerns, and building relationships. Web developers ensure that these interactions are seamlessly integrated into the website, allowing for a cohesive and interactive user experience.
Accessibility and Responsive Design:
Developers place great importance on creating websites that are inclusive and accessible to all individuals, including those with disabilities. Their main objective is to adhere to accessibility standards, as outlined in the guidelines set by the European Commission (https://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?catId=1202). These guidelines emphasise the implementation of features like alternative text for images, ensuring adequate colour contrasts, and maintaining keyboard navigability. Developers also prioritise responsive design, allowing websites to adapt and provide an optimal user experience across various devices and screen sizes.
We take advantage of:
Equalize Digital’s Accessibility Checker is a powerful tool that helps make websites accessible. It scans your content in real-time, providing feedback on accessibility errors and warnings based on Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1. It lists the specific code that triggered each error or warning, allowing you to prioritize fixes. Thorough documentation is available to assist you in resolving accessibility issues. Additionally, Accessibility Checker ensures ongoing compliance with ADA, Section 508, AODA, and WCAG by helping content managers and contributors confirm they are entering content in an accessible manner. It provides in-page tests, an easy-to-understand accessibility checklist, and reading level checks. The scans are visible as you type, eliminating the need to switch between screens or visit third-party websites. Whether you have a small business website or a large enterprise organization, Accessibility Checker is an essential part of your WordPress accessibility strategy.
Note: It’s always important to consult with accessibility experts and perform thorough testing to ensure your website meets the needs of all users.Your web developer should be able to advise you on this aspect.
I may be biased…But,
It is evident to me that web developers possess a distinct combination of creativity and technical prowess, resulting in truly innovative outcomes.
From securing hosting and configuring emails to enhancing accessibility and integrating social media platforms, web developers go beyond mere design and coding – they are invaluable collaborators who ensure clients receive an unparalleled online experience.
It is important for clients to acknowledge the diligent efforts invested in their websites in order to cultivate a fruitful partnership with their developer. By obtaining a rudimentary understanding of what it entails to be your web developer, you, as the customer, can only stand to gain.
So, how much are you willing to invest in your website from day one?