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The E-zekiel Technology Blog

E-zekiel Technology Blog

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E-zekiel Technology Blog

Guidelines for Using Graphics Effectively

Tuesday, July 24, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
The graphic images proudly displayed on your pages can actually become a source of annoyance for your viewers if they are too large, if there are too many, or if they distract from the content. Following the helpful guidelines below, however, can help you manage your graphics more effectively:

• Use web optimized graphics (those that are created in 72 dpi RGB format) when possible
• Use graphics that are smaller than 40kb in file size
• Thumbnail image width should be less than 100px
• Standard image width should be less than 500px (but even smaller if your content area is smaller)
• Images should never exceed the width of the page’s content area, causing horizontal scrolling
• Use as few images as possible (2-3 per page)
• Use images that symbolize, support, and draw attention to your content rather than distracting from it
• Use the Album Manager to display large numbers of photos

Register Now for Web Training on Forms

Friday, July 20, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
The date, time and subject matter are set. Are you registered? Make your plans to join us via Internet and telephone for a web session that will help you learn all you need to know about creating forms:

Visitor Information: Discover How Forms Can Be Used for Event Registrations, Prayer Requests, and More
July 26, 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. CST

What can forms do for you? They enable you to collect all kinds of information from your visitors – assisting them in submitting prayer requests, ordering products, completing surveys and more. It's a tool that's easy to use, and it'll become even easier when you sign up for this E-zekiel web session.

Tips for Maintaining Site Content

Tuesday, July 17, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
Web site content is not always the easiest thing to master or even maintain, but following a few of the following tips can make it a little easier:

• Use dates sparingly and keep copyright year updated.
• Create and use Content Panels with publish and expiration dates to make management easier.
• Identify links to non-HTML documents with an icon (Word, Excel, PDF, etc.).
• Limit or eliminate divider bars.
• Use content layout templates and page layout styles which provide a clear focal point for the viewer.
• Avoid jargon or unexplained acronyms.
• Update content on entire site continually (but especially the home page).
• Use the Statistics Manager along with Google Analytics to track page views and know which content is getting good results - and which content isn't.
• Avoid anything that causes horizontal scrolling (i.e. images or tables or other objects that are too wide for the page).
• ALWAYS, always perform a spelling and grammar check on your content before making it live.

Translating Text to Another Language

Friday, July 13, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
How would you like convenient access to a translator of multiple languages? Actually, Google offers a tool that gives you just that – and makes it available for free. Look for it at Google Language Tools.

There, you’ll find a box where you can enter text in one language and have it translated to another -- English to Spanish or Spanish to English, for instance, as well as similar options for French, Italian, Russian, Portuguese, Chinese, Korean and Japanese. You’ll also find a box where you can enter a web address for a whole page translation.

Six Steps to Success with Statistics

Friday, July 06, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
Did you know that Google Analytics provides a comprehensive means of tracking the web traffic of your site? By using the E-zekiel Statistics Manager and Google Analytics together, you can discover lots of things about your site's visitors. And, the best part - it's FREE! To get started tracking your site's traffic, follow the six simple steps below:

1) Visit http://www.google.com/analytics/.
2) Sign up for a free Google Analytics account.
3) From your new Google Analytics account, take the tracking code (which looks like this: UA-1234567-1) and put it in the User Name field of the E-zekiel Statistics Manager. Click Save.
4) While still In the E-zekiel Statistics Manager, click the View Reports tab. Sign in to your Google Analytics account.
5) Click the Check Status button within Google to verify that the tracking code has been installed on your website.
6) Watch your stats start tracking in about 24 hours. You can access Google Analytics anytime from the View Reports tab in the E-zekiel Statistics Manager.

How to Create a Poll for Your Site

Monday, July 02, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
The Poll Manager (available with Silver plans and above) enables you to create a simple question-and-answer exchange with site visitors. It works like the other managers, which means you access it through the Control Panel and click the “plus” sign to add a poll. The Page Editor opens, you type your question and click “save”.

Next, tabs for Poll Answers and Poll Placement will appear. To create answers, click the Poll Answers tab and input them one at a time. Click the “save” icon after you input each answer.

Most polls list two to four possible answers. The results, which appear directly on the site, are updated as each visitor makes a selection. (Note: visitors are only able to vote once from the same computer.)

The Poll Placement tab enables you to choose the page or pages where you want to place the poll. The poll will appear in the left or right column depending on the template used.

Using Keyboard Shortcuts

Friday, June 29, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
It wouldn't be a stretch to say that technology is driven by a need for speed. While "faster, quicker, sooner" is the impetus behind software or programming developments, there are also ways to shorten the time it takes to complete individual tasks. Keyboard shortcuts, for instance, give you the opportunity to eliminate a step and reduce typing time without ever removing your fingers from the keyboard. With E-zekiel, you can use any of the following shortcuts in the Page Editor:

Control+c: Copy selected
Control+x: Cut selected
Control+v: Paste selected (Use the Paste from Word icon to remove formatting from copied text.)
Control+a: Select all the items in the current window
Control+z: Undo the last action
Control+p: Prints whatever is in an active window.

If you're using a Mac, use the Command (Apple icon) key instead of the Control key.

For those who spend a significant amount of time at the keyboard, the practice of using keyboard shortcuts can be a great time-saver over the long-term.

Choosing a Good Web Page Title

Friday, June 22, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
Titles make a difference, whether you're talking about books, events, movies … or web pages. You settle on a few key words to promote your means of conveying information, all in hopes of getting the right kind of attention.

For web pages especially, selecting a title as a part of a "marketing strategy" is no small matter – because it's one of main elements given weight within search engines. In fact, when visitors view their search results, they typically decide whether to visit the site based on the page title.

In E-zekiel, you designate your "Site Title" under the Home Page Settings tab in the Site Manager, and it becomes that piece of text that you see on your browser's title bar.

For an effective title, start with your chosen keywords. Remember, meaningful information – like church name, including denomination, city and state – are far more useful than something like "Welcome to Our Church" could ever be. You've got about 60 to 80 characters to work with – that's often all that fits in the display – but that's usually enough for the main information.

Promote Your Summer Activities With the Event Manager

Friday, June 15, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
A tool that comes with every E-zekiel package, the Event Manager provides a way to schedule and promote your events, while removing them once they’ve gone by. And with so much happening in the summer, now’s a great time to fill up your event calendar with everything you want people to attend.

You can list events that occur one time only, or events that recur (every Tuesday, for example). And if you prefer, with Silver and above packages, you can limit the viewing of events to registered members of your site.

Whatever options you choose, all you need to enter a new event is a title, a start date, end date, time, location and, for repeating events, the frequency of the event.

For more about the Event Manager, visit the E-zekiel support site.

Display Your Slogan and Increase Site Traffic at the Same Time

Friday, June 08, 2007 View Comments Comments (0)
When you fill in a "Site Title" in the Site Manager, that information plugs into the strip across the top that serves as your browser's Title Bar. If you'd like, you can also add your organization slogan (think short mission statement, tag line, or community information) in that same strip. To make this addition, access your Site Manager, then click the "Home Page Settings" tab. In the "Motto/Slogan" field, enter the text of your slogan.

Because the Motto/Slogan immediately follows the Site Title, you may need a dash, period or other mark to separate the two. In other words, the Site Title could be similar to "Grace Baptist Church." The Motto/Slogan could be similar to "A friendly, missions-oriented church in Williams, North Carolina."

Adding information specific to your church, your denomination, your mission and your community will also help improve your search engine rankings. That way, more potential visitors can find you – not only on the web but also on Sunday morning!