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    9 HTML Codes that Ecommerce Merchants Should Know

    January 25, 2011 •

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    What Are AJAX and Dynamic JavaScript?

    June 16, 2010 •

    Editor's Note: Ecommerce merchants operate businesses using complex technologies. We launched our "Need to Know" series to help merchants obtain a basic understanding of these technologies, recognizing that most merchants are not web developers or programmers. In this installment, contr...

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    HTML5 Video: 12 Frequently Asked Questions

    June 14, 2010 •

    Editor's Note: Many observers believe the new version of HTML, called HTML5, will change online video because of the <video> tag that the new version contains. But, there are many unresolved details involving HTML5 video, and we asked a video expert about some of these. The exper...

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    HTML5: The Future of Online Video?

    June 9, 2010 •

    If you pay attention to online video, chances are you’ve heard of HTML5. It could be the next big technology that will change online video as we know it. Apple’s Steve Jobs famously stated several weeks ago, in his "Thoughts on Flash" letter, that Apple prefers HTML5 video to Adobe’s F...

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    What Is HTML 5?

    May 5, 2010 •

    Editor's Note: Ecommerce merchants use complex technologies in their businesses. A working, "need to know" understanding of these technologies can help merchants. To address this, we've launched our "Need to Know" series, whereby we'll address complex topics in a manner that can benefit...

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    Five Handy HTML Tags To Help Your Ecommerce Business

    March 24, 2010 •

    There is an analogy between driving a car and operating an ecommerce business. With a car, you need to know a few basic things, like how to steer, accelerate, and brake. Likewise, the manager or owner of an online retail business really only needs to know how to process orders, manage customer service, and keep up with the accounting.

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    Web Design Tips: Mobilizing Your Site Using CSS

    July 8, 2009 •

    With a second style sheet and minor changes to a page's HTML, many online stores can offer an excellent mobile shopping experience without creating a second web page or registering a mobile specific domain. Mobile Internet use is on the rise. And online merchants presumably want to pro...

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    Web Design Tips: Converting an Older Table-Based Email Template To CSS

    April 23, 2009 •

    Many email templates were developed using older table-based layouts that "break" easily and are very complicated to maintain. Tables in HTML are fantastic for displaying tabular data. But as a layout tool they interfere with some dynamic and rich media elements, cause accessibility cha...

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    Web Design Tips: Use CSS to Adjust Opacity

    February 17, 2009 •

    The CSS opacity property lets web designers define how particular page elements will blend, adding both style and emphasis to important page sections. Essentially, this property allows you to adjust an element's translucency, changing the amount of diffused virtual light that seems to ...

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    Web Design Tips: Basic CSS for Headers

    February 4, 2009 •

    How your site looks matters. Even subtle improvements—like using fonts or colors that compliment your theme—can have a positive effect on how consumers rate the trustworthiness of your store. According to a 2003 Stanford University study of 2,440 people, 46.2 percent of online shoppers...

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    Web Design Tips: Rounded Borders in CSS

    January 8, 2009 •

    Consumers often judge online stores by visual aesthetics alone, so Internet shopkeepers are wise to use large appealing images, handsome fonts, and occasionally an eye-pleasing curve. When that curve is added someplace unexpected, say in a border around a text box or an image, it can b...

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    Video Tutorial: CSS Positioning

    September 12, 2008 •

    The transition from using tables to create a page layout to using Cascading Style Sheets can be difficult to grasp at first, particularly when it comes to positioning elements correctly on the screen. In this video tutorial by Practical eCommerce's chief architect Brian Getting, we wil...

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    Frameworks For Web Designers

    March 26, 2008 •

    I've written previously about frameworks and how they help developers build web applications. For the most part, my praise of frameworks has been directed at those of us who develop web applications, such as coding up the Ruby, Perl, PHP or .Net scripts that make applications work. Howe...

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    Software Frameworks

    October 24, 2007 •

    In broad terms, a software framework is a code library that is designed to facilitate software development. The idea is that all of the tedious, low-level details of creating a web application are already addressed in a reusable package. For a web developer, this means you can spend y...

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    Video Tutorial: JavaScript Tooltips

    September 27, 2007 •

    You've probably seen those useful "tooltips" text boxes that are displayed on some websites when you roll over a specific link or graphic. These typically serve several purposes. Most likely, your customers or visitors could benefit from additional information that doesn't warrant an ...

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    Video Tutorial: CSS Design, Part Two

    June 20, 2007 •

    In the conclusion of our two-part video tutorial on CSS layout and design, we will take the layout we created in the beginning of this tutorial and begin to apply graphics and other visual stylings to it, in order to achieve the look we are going for. In Part Two, we will be looking a...

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    Video Tutorial: CSS Design, Part One

    June 19, 2007 •

    Designing search engine friendly websites can be intimidating, particularly for designers who are just learning how to use CSS formatting. One of the most intimidating aspects to learning CSS design is creating page layouts that do not rely on tables. In the first of a two-part video...

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    Flash or HTML: Which to Choose

    October 16, 2006 •

    The question of whether it is better to design a website using Flash rather than using just HTML has sparked many debates among web developers. For the most part, it seems that developers tend to defend what they know, although there are some important differences between a pure HTML we...

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    Tech Support: Isolate CSS and Javascript

    October 1, 2006 •

    Last month we discussed the separation of content, design and functionality when it comes to developing a website. We introduced the idea that HTML documents should contain primarily content, with as little markup code as possible. The reason for this is that any extra code dilutes the ...

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    Optimizing HTML Code for Maximum SEO

    February 1, 2006 •

    Overview Search engine optimization has come to the forefront in recent years as competition for search engine rankings increases. Online business owners often times rely heavily on search engines to generate traffic to their websites, which in turn increases the chances of those visit...

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    Combining CSS and JavaScript to Save Page Space

    February 1, 2006 •

    Overview Real estate on a website has become a valuable commodity. Website owners and designers are faced with the challenge of providing enough content to satisfy their visitors, while also maintaining the visual appeal and usability of the website. On one end of the spectrum is a web...

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    Encoding Images Using HTML

    January 1, 2006 •

    Overview One of the most basic HTML elements is the image tag, which is used to tell a browser to display an image on a webpage. While it is a simple tag to learn, the image tag has quite a few attributes that are important to be aware of. For example, using these attributes we can tel...

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    HTML Email: Effectiveness Requires Planning

    January 1, 2006 •

    Email can be an essential tool for every online retailer. Professional-looking emails instill confidence, build brand awareness, and increase customer loyalty. Retailers can send email communications using HTML that are as visually engaging and effective. There are a couple of points, h...

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    An Introduction to CSS – Part 3

    January 1, 2006 •

    Overview In our last two tutorials about Cascading Style Sheets, we covered how to apply styles to all instances of an HTML tag, and also how to create style classes and then selectively apply styles to only certain HTML tags. For the most part, our styles were limited to font treatmen...

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    An Introduction to CSS – Part 2

    December 1, 2005 •

    Overview In our last Cascading Style Sheets (“CSS”) tutorial we learned how to apply CSS styles to HTML tags using tag selectors. Using these tag selectors we were able to format information using an external style sheet rather than putting all the formatting code into our HTML documen...

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    An Introduction to CSS

    November 1, 2005 •

    Overview Building HTML pages that are both search engine friendly and appealing to your users is crucial to the success of an online business. In the past, there was a give-and-take relationship between the structure and the formatting of websites. The more appealing the site was to th...

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    HTML Primer for the Tech-Challenged

    September 1, 2005 •

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    HTML E-Mail: Text Font Readability Study

    March 1, 2001 •

    In February 2001 my Doctor Ebiz readers patiently answered survey after survey to help me determine what they considered the most readable fonts and sizes for HTML e-mail. While this may come as no surprise to you, it is causing me to change my standards.