Have you ever found yourself searching for online tools or software that you just know would be crazy useful? Have you been searching so long that you are not sure if these online tools actually exists?
Well, I have been there.
Here are great online tools that are going to make your life easier!
Built With is an online tool that gives a brief, yet concise description of all CMS, themes, plugins, components, widgets, and frameworks etc. It’s a great bird’s eye view of the site that can give you insight as to whether you are able to take on a project, based solely on the type of technology you are specializing in. I use Builtwith.com for three main purposes; First to scope out a potential website development client’s current online capabilities. Second, to do research on a client’s competition. Third, if I see a cool feature on a site that I’d like to mirror it’s quick and easy to determine which theme/plugin/etc that is allowing for that feature.
Google Search Console
Formerly called, Google Webmaster Tools. Google is constantly searching the Internet for new content. When it finds new content and determines that it is a legitimate source it decides to index the site. Your ultimate goal is to have every single page on your website indexed by Google. This is a fundamental step in ensuring your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is working. This tool has three main benefits. First, it shows a site owner whether all of the pages of their site are indexed and properly working for them. Second, it can show a web developer who is acquiring a new client what that clients website status is and answering a question that some potential/new clients are very probably unsure of – – What is your index status? Third, and very importantly, if you are redeveloping a site- you MUST make sure you account for all pages that Google has previously indexed- setting up permanent 301 redirects to alert Google (and any browsers who have that page bookmarked) that the information is elsewhere.
Regardless of how pretty and functional that awesome website you just built may be – Website load speeds will make or break you. Sadly, they break you more than they make you. There are industry best practices for optimizing websites for optimal (read: fast as possible) speeds. GT Metrix is THE BEST! I have found it accurately grading and testing a website. The metrics it gives are in two main categories, “Performance Scores” & “Page Details”. Both of which are categorized out into specific metrics. You get a ‘Page Speed’ score, a “Yslow Score“, and for page details, you get ‘page load time’, ‘total page size’, and ‘number of requests’. Best part, you get a full graded report! It’s hard to explain, you’ll just have to go and test it out yourself!
Yoast SEO Plugin
Seriously, this Yoast SEO plugin is amazing! The free version gives you everything that you may need. There are some shiny, fun things in the paid version. For the vast majority, the free version really does do everything you need it to do. The top 3 things I use Yoast for:
- Title Tag Creation
- Meta Description Creation
- Sitemap creation
Am I Responsive?
Is your website responsive? Is it behaving the way you want it to in each display format- Desktop Computer, Laptop, Pad, Mobile Phone? There are so many different display outputs out there. The Am I Responsive tool will give you an overview of where you are with your site. It will also show you where your strengths and weaknesses are regarding your websites responsiveness. It’s not the most robust tool by any means, but it is free. It gives you an overview of where you are with your site and what the next steps are for you with basic development needs.
I hope you are able to utilize these online tools to further enhance your online presence! I would love to hear about other online tools that you love and use all the time! Tell me about them in the comments below!