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my website: should I  start over or revise the site? Website test to find errors?

Posted on 2013-05-14
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Last Modified: 2013-05-28
Hi, I made a website a while back, and did a redesign back in 2008, but never finished the site fully. Lots of the content has to be changed, so I was wondering if it would be worth it to just start over from scratch?

My main concern is with the websites coding. I am not sure if there is a better way to do things today, but back in 2008 I used dreamweaver to modify the html.

Recently I got an email from a company that wants to redo the site saying they did a scan and they show it has many html errors, which I am not sure if it is true or not. Obviously they want me to buy the service, I dont want to do that, only mention it because they said I have html errors. If I do, it may not even be worth editing maybe I should start over? Just not sure what the best method of starting would be. For example back in 2008 I originally found a HTML template site and edited it to fit my website by adding a navigation bar and created new pages based off the template, etc. Is that still a good way to go? Or is that method not good with todays technology? However I dont know much programming other then html and alittle css, But like I said we do have dreamweaver (we got cs 6 at my work which I would use).

FYI my site is www.cellprophones.com, I was wondering if anyone also knows of any scanners or applications that will look for errors in my site?
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Question by:hydrive1902
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by:Scott Fell, EE MVE
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You can check by clicking  here, your site has 3 errors on the home page.

Things change pretty fast, I would start over.    Today you should account for viewing on phones as well as tablets and desktop.   I would start over.
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by:Jason C. Levine
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My advice would be to blow up the site and start over using a Content Management System (CMS) such as WordPress to handle the content and also provide you with more options to extend the site without needing to engage a programmer or use a tool like Dreamweaver.  DW is good for people who are creating visually complex sites and have deep knowledge of HTML, CSS and Javascript.  If you are just scratching the surface of those technologies you would be better off grabbing a CMS, installing a professionally designed theme, and just managing the content.

I am not sure if there is a better way to do things today

HTML is still HTML but modern users expect a site to be much more visually engaging and better organized that what you have currently.  The current site looks very much like an amateur attempt and it's probably driving more customers away than it generates leads.  This is where installing a CMS can help you separate content from design and allow you to add pre-made or custom built templates much easier and faster than copy/pasting into a HTML template or using Dreamweaver's less-than-optimal Template feature.

Recently I got an email from a company that wants to redo the site saying they did a scan and they show it has many html errors, which I am not sure if it is true or not.

True or not is somewhat irrelevant.  All of those emails are spam.  As far as checking your site, you can always pass it through the W3C Validator:

http://validator.w3.org/check?verbose=1&uri=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.cellprophones.com%2F

You can also use the Console function in your browser (Google on how to activate as it varies from browser to browser) to see what each page is loading and if any errors are generated.
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Gary earned 125 total points
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3 very minor errors
Ignore the spam email - I get them every day.
Your current site has a very basic structure so starting from scratch is not going to make much difference than if you just edited what you have and maybe make it look a bit smarter
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by:nickinthooz
nickinthooz earned 125 total points
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The three errors that you have are all common errors and there's nothing to be worried about.  As far as starting over.  Yes.   The site is wayyyy out of date as far as layout and graphics.
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by:Jason C. Levine
Jason C. Levine earned 125 total points
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The three errors that you have are all common errors and there's nothing to be worried about

Not entirely true.  Any error in the validation, no matter how minor, throws the browser into Quirks Mode and break other things such as javascript or display elements.  You should always strive to have everything validate against your chosen doctype (XHTML 1.0 Transitional in your case) and be standards-compliant.  Quirks Mode allows the browsers to choose how to interpret and display certain things and while almost all browsers do a good job of it you still want there to be no guesswork involved.

That you have only three is excellent and means you only need to take a short step to having zero.
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by:Scott Fell, EE MVE
Scott Fell,  EE MVE earned 125 total points
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I agree with Jason - you seem to have a nice product to sell but you are targeting the folks with iphones and androids and tablets.   The site is out of date and you want to find yourself a responsive template that will accommodate most devices by detecting screen width.

Check out http:themeforest.net.
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Author Closing Comment

by:hydrive1902
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thanks for the info everyone. I edited a few pages and have some major issues with my navigation bar, so in the long run if I can not get the bar fixed I may be better off starting over. Going to also check out word press as well, a friend sugested that as well. Thanks for the info everyone.
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