Just getting to grips


(Martin) #1

Hi guys,
So I’m slowly just getting to grips with RW7 - bought it a few months ago and now there’s a paid for upgrade… if only I’d known that was going to happen :triumph:

Anyways, here we go…
I’ve mainly purchased RW to make a website and then install my phpbb forum into it. So far so good and although the website looks a bit (a lot) rubbish at the moment, my goal has been achieved as to installing the forum.

It didn’t take me long to realise that the adverts were too good to be true, I fact you can’t actually make the website you want unless you buy all these stacks, then when your ideas move you have to buy more stacks… it seems to be a never ending buy buy buy.

So, I’m looking at this new to buy or upgrade RW8 , do I need it?
The first thing I noticed with RW7 was the very poor SEO -
Google hammers me on page speed, css optimisation, image optimisation etc, so it’s not actually all that really is it?
Does RW8 fix all these associated problems or does RW8 come with the exact same problems?

I’m not new to forums but I am new to all this website stuff, all this seo is a nightmare for someone that can barely string together a website let alone make it search engine friendly.

CSS…apparently some of my files are not minimised, google very kindly send you optimised/minimised images,css. Etc but how do I replace the original css?

If I use the inspector, does that rewrite over the RW7 css or doesn’t it just add more?
Will that cause me problems?

I do like the whole RW experience so far, but it really does seem to be made more for people that know what they’re doing rather than some numpty that’s just learning.
It’s taken me weeks to suss out now to add social media icons, why the hell weren’t they included in the basic RW?

Good to be aboard, lots of learning to do and looking forward to reading the wealth of knowledge aboard here.

Website is http://F-RibsAndSibs.Com
Community is http://F-RibsAndSibs.Com/Forum
Currently on RW 7.5.5 using the voyager theme.


(Paul Dennison) #2

Hi @F-RibsAndSibs

RW8 is a good upgrade if you are interested in seeing how your website looks under different devices at the same time. That’s one of the biggest reasons to upgrade.

SEO
RW will not help with everything, regardless of version, but there are a few things you can do to help.

  • You can switch on an option in the advanced settings in RW to minify you css files.
  • Look at pingdom.com, rather than Google pagespeed, as they are more suited for sites generated by RW.
  • Best to optimise your images before adding to them to your project using online tools like https://tinypng.com/ or free tools like ImageOptim.
  • Get a free SSL certificate from your web host from a service like Let’s Encrypt, sites without SSL are now listed as non-secure by Google and Chrome browser.

Your site look good but in places it looks a little uneven. You could look at bigwhiteduck, who makes amazing free stacks (though do give a donation to help keep things going) that are good for better layouts etc.

The forum here, and over at https://community.weavers.space are both great resources full of very helpful people.

Hope this all helps!
Paul


(Doug Bennett) #3

There’s plenty of free image optimizers available. You have to do this yourself because there’s a quality loss that occurs when you compress images. So you need to judge how much compression you want. Most all have settings to turn up or down the amount of compression to apply.
It’s a balancing act of image quality vs file size.

As for the CSS minimize as stated above under advanced options just check the box.

As for Googles page Speedtest it is just a guide for suggesting improvements to the site. You can do everything they suggest, get a top grade and still have a slow loading site. I personally don’t use them but prefer webpagetest.org it’s free and allows a lot more testing options then pingdom or google, plus they aren’t trying to sell services like pingdom does.

The truth of SEO is you can do everything technically everybody is suggesting and still not get found. The most important thing is having good well organized content on the site.


(LJ) #4

Don’t het hung up on things like CSS minification and Javascript compression - it’s available in RW7 as mentioned and it’s all fine but won’t make any real difference to your ranking. Beyond that, any ‘theme’ in any web design package will have limitations that Google and others will highlight - just not worth worrying about. FAR more important to:

  • Write good content
  • Structure it with meaningful header tags
  • Write attention grabbing Description & Browser tags
  • Write meaningful Alt-Tags for images
  • Optimise image size for web use - 85% quality for jpegs should be fine
  • Make the site look nice and appealing! Find a style and stick with it - at present there is an unpleasing mix of fonts, styles and colours

Upgrade to RW8: not essential. You can build great sites with RW7. RW8 is a good upgrade but it won’t make you produce a better website.

Regarding Stacks: just take your time and purchase carefully. Always start with a clear vision of what you want - then find a stack to fit that purpose.

Regarding CSS: only change CSS in the inspector if you have a need to over-ride or add something. if you mess with the original CSS it will revert back should there be a theme update.


(Martin) #5

Nice one guys, thanks…
When I upgrade, does it overwrite RW7 or does it come as a separate app?

Can I carry my website over to rw8 or does the upgrade literally upgrade my rw7 site?

Thanks in advance


(Doug Bennett) #6

It’s a separate app, you can run RW7 and RW8 at the same time.


(Paul Dennison) #7

They can run side by side, though they use different file formats to save the projects on your Mac.

RW8 will convert your RW7 project file to the new format but leave the original intact as a RW7 project. You can’t convert or open a RW8 project file in RW7.

So you can safely make changes in RW8 but if you don’t like them, something has gone wrong or a stack/plug-in you use is incompatible then you can just open RW7 and go back to working on the original file.

Hope that makes sense


(system) #8

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