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Improving SEO Using Accessibility Techniques
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Installing browser development tools


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Improving SEO Using Accessibility Techniques

with Morten Rand-Hendriksen

Video: Installing browser development tools

When building websites, it's important to have the right tools handy and know how to use them. For the grunt work of the building process, the standard developer tools found in all modern web browsers will do just fine, but when it comes to accessibility and SEO, it could be good to have some extra help. There are some great developer tools available for some web browsers that can be used to assist in accessibility testing, so before we go any further, let's install them. In this course I'll be using Firefox as my main browser, because I've found that this browser and its available tools work the best for this particular process.
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  1. 3m 3s
    1. Welcome
      1m 4s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 59s
  2. 8m 16s
    1. Accessibility and SEO: A primer
      4m 58s
    2. Understanding the benefits of accessibility and SEO
      3m 18s
  3. 11m 26s
    1. Experiencing an inaccessible web site
      6m 4s
    2. Experiencing an accessible web site
      5m 22s
  4. 16m 28s
    1. Evaluating screen readers for Windows and Mac
      5m 56s
    2. Installing browser development tools
      4m 8s
    3. Pretending to be a screen reader
      6m 24s
  5. 7m 40s
    1. Installing SEO tools
      2m 30s
    2. Understanding how search engines search a page
      2m 45s
    3. Comparing sites that are SEO-friendly with ones that are SEO-unfriendly
      2m 25s
  6. 44m 6s
    1. Defining a language for a page
      5m 4s
    2. Defining meta headers for a page
      6m 10s
    3. Creating better semantic markup with HTML5
      3m 13s
    4. Using and hiding section headings
      4m 56s
    5. Creating content hierarchies with heading tags
      5m 29s
    6. Emphasizing content in paragraphs
      5m 36s
    7. Making accessible block quotes
      3m 22s
    8. Using some new HTML5 tags
      4m 47s
    9. Using ordered and unordered lists
      5m 29s
  7. 22m 17s
    1. Marking up links properly
      6m 48s
    2. Marking up images
      7m 23s
    3. Creating a proper image header with CSS
      8m 6s
  8. 32m 43s
    1. Creating an accessible menu with an unordered list
      6m 16s
    2. Creating and hiding nav headings and skip navigation links
      6m 59s
    3. Giving navigation links proper focus with style
      4m 39s
    4. Creating an accessible drop-down menu
      10m 46s
    5. Scrapping drop-down menus for better options
      4m 3s
  9. 3m 44s
    1. Next steps
      3m 44s

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Improving SEO Using Accessibility Techniques
2h 29m Intermediate Dec 06, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

This course focuses on two elements of web development: accessibility and search engine optimization (SEO), demonstrating why they are important and how they work. Author Morten Rand-Hendriksen also shows how good coding practices and modern web standards can make a site accessible and more visible to search engines and social networks.

Topics include:
  • Understanding the benefits of accessibility and SEO
  • Evaluating screen readers for Windows and Mac
  • Installing browser development tools
  • Comparing sites that are SEO-friendly and SEO-unfriendly
  • Defining a language for a page
  • Creating better semantic markup with HTML5
  • Marking up images and links properly
  • Creating an accessible menu with an unordered list
Subjects:
Business Web Accessibility SEO
Author:
Morten Rand-Hendriksen

Installing browser development tools

When building websites, it's important to have the right tools handy and know how to use them. For the grunt work of the building process, the standard developer tools found in all modern web browsers will do just fine, but when it comes to accessibility and SEO, it could be good to have some extra help. There are some great developer tools available for some web browsers that can be used to assist in accessibility testing, so before we go any further, let's install them. In this course I'll be using Firefox as my main browser, because I've found that this browser and its available tools work the best for this particular process.

Several of the modern browsers, in particular Firefox and Chrome, have the ability to add on Add-ons or plug-ins. For Firefox, you find Add-ons by going to addons.mozilla.org, and this is where we'll start. For accessibility testing, I want to install two tools, one that's called the Developer Toolbar, and one that's called Firebug. To install them I open Firefox, I go to addons.mozilla.org, and from here, I can search for the tools I want. First, I'm going to install the Web Developer toolbar, so I'll simply search for Web Developer, and it'll appear here at the top.

To install it, I simply have to click this big green button that says Add to Firefox. Now, just a note, if you like this tool, I suggest that you give some money to the guy that built it, because this is done for free, it's an open-source tool. So if you want to contribute to the developer, you simply click the Contribute button down here and you can give him a donation for his work, but in this case we want to just install it, so I'll click Add to Firefox. The tool is downloaded, and then I get the question if I want to install it into Firefox, so I'll simply click Install Now, and then the tool gets installed.

Now because this is a tool that plugs into Firefox as a program, I need to restart the browser to see it take effect. So I'll click Restart Now. The browser shuts down and opens up again, and now I have a new toolbar inside Firefox. This is what I just installed, the Web Developer toolbar. The reason why I installed this toolbar is because now I have the ability to turn things on and off. For instance, I can go in here under CSS and say Disable All Styles, and I see the page without any styles.

I'll turn it back on again, and then I can do the same for images. I can disable all images and then I see what the page would look like with no images. This becomes important as we start working with the accessibility tools because we want to see what the page looks like without images, without styles, and without other content. The next tool I want to install is called Firebug. So I'll go back to addons.mozilla.org and search for Firebug.

Just like with the Web Developer tools, I'll simply click the Add to Firefox button, and once it's downloaded, I can install it. Again, I have to restart my browser to make it take effect. And with Firebug installed, you see I now have a new button up here in the right corner with a little bug on it. If I click on that button, I launch Firebug down at the bottom here.

Now if you're familiar with the Chrome Developer tools, you'll notice that the Firebug tools are pretty much the same thing. You see the HTML output on the left and you see the CSS that affects that output on the right. With the Web Developer toolbar and Firebug installed, we now have the ability to do deep down testing of our code and view the page in different formats as we move forward with our pages, to make sure that all our code content makes sense, even if people see it without CSS activated, without images activated, and so on.

As a bonus, these two tools make Firefox a very powerful code development and debugging tool.

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