These guidelines will teach you why to use certain techniques when creating content and how to work with them in WYMeditor. Following these will keep the structure and meaning of your content correct - making it more flexible to technologies like SEO1 (Search Engine Optimization), screen readers2, mobile phone technologies, printers etc. Following these guidelines will also make your content accessible to a wider range of people, with or without disabilities.
1. Use elements as intended
HTML is a so called markup language. It's purpose is to give the content meaning and structure, not visual effects. Therefor it's important to use elements as intended to not break meaning, structure and compatibility to other technologies. If you want to style your content you've created with WYMeditor you shall learn to use CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).
Using a logic and proper heading structure is among one of the most important SEO techniques. Always use a correct hierarchy. Start with Heading 1, followed by Heading 2, Heading 3... etc. A proper heading structure will also help users to find what they are looking for, faster.
To create a heading you simply place your marker where you want the heading to go and then select "Containers > Heading 1" for example.
Creating lean and accessible tables is a craft but WYMeditor makes it easy. Only use the Table element to arrange different kinds of data - time tables, statistics, member listings etc. Use the Table Header container to mark up headers properly. Doing this wrong will confuse users with screen readers when accessing tables, as headers aren't part of the data.
To create a Table Header you simply place your marker in a table cell and select "Containers > Table Header".
It's also good practice to give users the ability to do a quick overlook of the table's content by filling in a short description in the Caption field. You can do that in the dialog appearing when creating the table.
It's important to mark up lists of items the right way, using Ordered list or Unordered list. Doing this wrong makes it harder for users to overlook the content and will also confuse users with screen readers. Creating a list using Shift+Enter to separate items is therefor highly depreciated as both structure and meaning will break in the document.
To create a list you simply use one of the two list buttons in WYMeditor's toolbar. Hit enter twice to "jump out of" a list.
1.4. Indent and outdent
The Indent and Outdent icons are only intended to create nested lists of list items (as described in 1.3). Place the marker on a list item and hit the Indent icon to make it go sub level. To undo this move or to make it go back one level, simply hit the Outdent icon.
Mark up your quoted text by using the Blockquote container. Doing this the right way will help search engines and users with screen readers to understand your text and give it relevant meaning.
2. Provide alternatives
2.1. Alternative text
An alternative text string shall be accurate and equivalent in presenting the same content and function as the image. This also helps to identify the relevance and meaning of your image which improves SEO and accessibility for user with screen readers.
You can enter the Alternative text in the image dialog, appearing when adding or editing an image. The only exception to leave the field empty is when your image is for decoration purpose only.
2.2. Title attribute
To provide additional information of a link or and image you can provide a Title text. This helps several other technologies to identify the relevance and meaning of your elements which improves SEO and accessibility for user with screen readers.
You can enter the Title text in the image/link dialog, appearing when adding or editing an element.
3. Write understandable
Writing understandable is among one of the most important checkpoints in creating accessible content. Unfortunately computers can't do anything about this, yet. But with WYMeditor you have got the tools to make it down the right way.
3.1. Descriptive headings
A heading element shall briefly describe the topic of the section it introduces making it easier to overlook both for all users. This will also improve the SEO aspects of your content.
3.2. Descriptive link texts
A link text shall be completely descriptive of its location, which makes it a lot easier to overlook and skim-read the content for all users. This will also improve the SEO aspects and the "link indexing" procedure for users with screen readers. "Click here" links are therefor highly depreciated.
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- "Search engine optimization" is a conception for everything that makes your content rank higher when using search engines like Google.
- Screen reader
- A screen reader is a text-only web browser that dictates webpages' content to visually disabled peoples. In this text "screen readers" refers to all sorts of assistive and adoptive web technologies.