How websites have developed over time

Early websites really were very basic. From the time the first website went live in 1991, built by Tim Berners-Lee, things really took off. By 1993 there were some 130 live sites on the web and by 1996, there were over 100,000.

Technology

Just as computer technology moved fast, so did software and with it website design. Several companies offered their own versions of how to build websites. Some fell by the wayside, some still try, but ultimately, one would become so global, that nearly all websites are built using it today. Wordpress, it’s themes and the myriad of plugins that have been developed, allow web designers free reign. Now able to build swish looking sites for any industry.

Design

From multi-page brochure style websites to very complex E-Commerce sites using Woo-commerce or Magento. Websites now have the ability to maintain the attention of consumers by use of well-written content, graphics, including high quality 4 and 5k video. Google, the largest search engine optimisation company on the planet almost appears to control the internet and how things should work. If it’s web-based, then Google will be involved somewhere. It is completely accepted that if a website is not mobile friendly, then it is not Google friendly either.

Security

Security on early websites was not such an issue as it is today. As globalisation increased, so did the darker side of the world. Hackers, spammers, malware etc. are rife on the internet. Just as a computer can be attacked without firewalls and antivirus, so can a website that is not secure.

In 2017, Google rolled out SSL certification for a couple of reasons. A site that is secure means that data flow to and from the site is encrypted, therefore much harder to attack. Also, a secure site is considered Google friendly. Google indexes sites globally at least twice a day. A well-structured, secure, modern site will be indexed easily.

Legals on a site

It is a legal requirement to have a privacy policy and a cookie policy on all websites. As of May 2018, data protection changed throughout the EU. GDPR came in to force as a regulation to further protect all kinds of data.

Modern websites and the future

A great website is one that has been built correctly, tagged correctly, secured and designed by people who can use the tools currently available to them, to a high standard. Those same experts, whether they be a designer or in graphics, keep themselves up to date with advances in software, themes, apps, plugins and even hardware.

So, what does the future hold for websites?

Pageless websites? VR instead of standard screens may become the norm? Holographic screens to scroll through the web to give the user a touchy-feely experience with graphic-rich 4k video?

One thing is for sure, the internet is becoming more and more integrated into the household. Website design to control a myriad of things within the home and commercial applications can only grow with technology.

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