Planning Strategies to Future-proof your Web Site

Planning for the future is important so that you don't face a lot of work when you have to change your site. A futureproofed site has the following attributes:

  • Meets W3C standards
  • Meets 508 Accessibility Standards
  • Is easy to update
  • Works with screen, print, handheld and other media
  • Accounts for new browsers, as well as the old
  • Prepares for change-over to dynamic, database-driven, interactive site

The futureproofed site also brings visitors aboard, and serves their needs while they are there. When visitors' needs change, the site changes for them.

Focusing on the newest technologies will not futureproof a site. Focusing on standards will.

The latest technologies that may in fact limit a site's usefulness and fail to satisfy visitors are Java, JavaScript, and Flash(TM).

Future-proof site code is meaningful. The word for this is "semantic markup." This means that the site makes sense if it is read without any styles at all.

Why would anyone want to do this?

This is what visitors will see if:

  • They turn off images and JavaScript
  • They use a screen reader
  • They use a handheld device or cellular telephone

The site is futureproofed if the site design is not broken when visitors resize the print size so that they can see it better

A futureproofed site will not just accommodate visitors that use all these gizmos, but will satisfy these visitors' information quests, satisfy their learning ambitions, and satisfy their desire for solutions to their problems.

In addition, the futureproofed site will make it easy for visitors to print information without the visitor having to change printer settings or wasting paper and ink. Visitor's waste paper and ink, for example, if they have to print the site's navigation on each page.