Creating a website I will also take care of:
- W3C check of the Web site
- Analysis of errors found
- Editing of Html and CSS code
- W3C check and validation
What means the W3C validation of a Web site
This is a very old topic in the Web history, quite technical, controversial, much debated, often underestimated, of which however I have made a certain opinion over the years.
Precisely for this reason I consider a plus validate a created Web site in order to offer a better quality product to my customers.
But what does it mean to validate the code of a page? Why should you do it?
Is it always necessary to pass validation or can there be exceptions?
Let’s start by saying that validating a page simply means comparing the Html or CSS code of this page with standards, specifications coded and approved by the W3C. A valid code simply means a ‘compliant’ code and validation must be seen as a necessary but not a sufficient condition.
A valid code can not be considered in any case a good code, but an invalid code could have some problems.
What is the W3C
The World Wide Web Consortium, known as W3C, is an international non-governmental organization that aims to develop the full potential of the World Wide Web; to learn more, visit www.w3.org.
This institution was founded in October 1994 by Tim Berners-Lee (the one who actually allowed the birth of the Internet).
In over twenty years of W3C, over 50 standards have been proposed, discussed, defined and formalized; in terms of languages of the Web and in terms of file types encoding.
How to validate a Web site according to these standards
A Web site is not valid as a Web site, it is valid page by page. A Web site can therefore have all, or none, or part of the pages conforming to the W3C specifications.
You will understand that is quite a rather demanding job, even if thanks to the various CMS like WordPress pages are similar to each other and so we proceed by validating the various ‘types’ of Web pages.
There is an online tool provided by the W3C a HTML VALIDATOR that allows comparison of your own HTML code with updated standards, and of course there is also a dedicated CSS VALIDATOR to compare your CSS style sheets.
Just enter your URL, wait a few seconds, and you can see if there are errors or non-compliance in the code.
At this point the code must be reviewed and the errors deleted.
The specifications, are subject to reviews and changes over the years, a Web site that perfectly validated could at some point no longer pass the validation, for this reason the process should be repeated at each change and inserted as a maintenance and revision procedure.
Utility of W3C validation
Being able to validate a Web site is a professionalism and competence index, both by those who design the Web site and by the Company that commissions it, but apart from this purely formal discourse, there are certainly other reasons to proceed to validate your own Web site.
For a correct display
Browsers are very intelligent, and very permissive, they do everything to send the page on screen in the best possible way compensating in their own way any errors in the code. Different browsers can act differently and rise to different approximations and unexpected behaviors.
Validating a Web site allows you to limit the differences in viewing by removing obstacles, even if it is not said that it is sufficient. The factors are indeed many, with the old browsers everything can happen, even to a Web site perfectly valid according to W3C standards.
For a better speed
The presence of errors in the Html code of the page or in the CSS files slows down the reading, even though the browsers still manage to visualize it in some way. Also in this case the validation helps, but it is certainly not the main solution to have a fast Web site. A site can in fact have a perfectly valid code but contain very heavy images or a badly written code for example with many and intricate Html tables, like was in the 90s.
For a better SEO
Even if indirectly, everything that increases the clarity of the code and the speed of loading, also increases the rank and so the SEO positioning of the Web page.
Google does not admit it yet but among the factors considered by the algorithm to reward the best sites in the near future could enter the W3C validation.
In any case the presence of errors in the code makes the reading of the page by the search engine spiders complex and slow, and the spiders are lazy: if they can not index the pages in due time they just pass over.
For a better maintenance
Following the standards indicated by writing good Html code and CSS means completely separating the content (written in the Html code) from the graphic aspect (written in the CSS style sheet) of a Web page. This makes it extremely linear and easier to proceed with maintenance of the Web site. Following the W3C validation prevents creating ‘soups’ of code.
For a better accessibility and usability
Given that it is not easy to define the accessibility or usability of a Web page, we can say that a validated site is certainly more accessible and usable than an invalid site.
Although not in an absolute way probably a valid Web site is more easy to be used regardless of the navigation platform (tablet, smartphone, desktop …), of the browser (Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera …), of the operating system (Windows, Mac- Os, Linux …) or the physical handicaps of the navigator user (partial or total lack of sight, hearing, touch …).
How to understand if a Web site has been validated W3C
The Web sites created according to the rules of the World Wide Web Consortium usually have a logo that certifies the validation, but it is not mandatory to insert the logo, some sites may be up to standard even in its absence.
Personally I avoid the logo (a graphical intrusion not always appreciated) but I insert the links for validation at the bottom of the page, this allows me to easily check after a change of some sort if the page is still valid or not.
Why just few Web sites are W3C valid
Fortunately, the number of valid W3C Web sites is increasing, WordPress and numerous plugins are in fact already a good base to work on, the same can not be said of the graphic templates available that rarely exceed validation.
The majority of the Web, however, is still far away, a valid Web site means undoubted quality but often requires efforts and compromises. Not everyone decides to follow this path, the world’s leading Internet leaders are often more focused on revenues and dividends than on the quality of products and services offered.