Over the last couple of months we have been looking at our performance, and this included the hardware and services we use to host all our websites.  The result has been our transfer to a specialist VPS hosting company that offers us faster support and plenty of tools to help us keep our services working reliably.  We have also managed to speed up our websites along the way.

We had been well looked after by our colleagues at Brill, but when they were bought out by a different company, we took the opportunity to explore the wider market.

The result is we have moved all our customers to our new home with Tagadab, a UK-based business web-hosting specialist.

One of our biggest concerns was ensuring that our data stayed in UK data centres, for both speed and data protection issues.  Tagadab offers guaranteed UK-based servers, which a named location...

Each year at AlbanyWeb we undertake our own Annual Website Health Check, where we take a hard look at various aspects of our performance, and select a particular project for improvement.  Lately we have been thinking we could make some improvements on the speed at which our websites load, and so made this our project for this year's check.  They were pretty good, but we wanted them to be really good - so we took a good hard look at ourselves.

Over the summer we went through some benchmark testing, using a variety of tools to ensure that our results were consistent.  These included popular and useful tools such as Yahoo's YSlow, and tools at GTmetrix.  Our scores on these tools were pretty good, but we identified a few areas for improvement, both on the way we build our websites and deeper into the way our servers respond. 

The results...

Offering 'members only' services is often a very popular option, although few people appreciate that it can add a large amount of difficulty to maintaining a website.  However, sometimes the need is unavoidable, as with the London Self-Directed Support Forum, a professional network that required both a public presence and services for members.

Fortunately, we had a solution ready, a simplified user management system, which allowed selected website maintainers to add new members to the website with a very simple form, with an easy way to create content visible only to those new members. 

The solution is based on Drupal access and roles, but while the default interface can be confusing, our customisations screen out the unnecessary detail.  The website maintainer simple adds a username and an email address, and the system sends an invitation to join the site.  The first time a new user logs in, she or he...

Recently, we completed a straightforward brochure website for a plumbing business.  Sounds a little dull?  Quite the opposite.

True, it was missing 100% of the fancy widgets, social media interactions and flashy graphics that many people think defines a successful website.

However, through good organisation of content we were pleased to be able to deliver a very effective website at a very reasonable cost.  Many website packages offer a default menu structure that is based on the type of content - one page for images in a gallery, another page for testimonials, and another page for 'general information'.  So far, so webby.

I have searched for plumbers online plenty of times, so I decided to create a website that would answer my questions as a potential customer: what services are offered?  When can I call? Is there a callout charge, and if so, what?

We decided to put that information on...

We are proud to announce the launch of our yoga community site Threads of Yoga.  We've started out with a list searchable list of yoga classes in Scotland - but there will be plenty more coming up.

We are excited about the site, so please check it out.

  • We love creating the perfect site for each of our clients, but it is nice this time round to create a site our own way.
  • It a chance for us to showcase our skills.  We've put in a powerful search, neat navigation and applied techniques to give good visibility in search engines.  Already we are seeing individual classes appearing in search results - so this offers a fantastic boost for individual yoga teachers.
  • The site is free to use - we are giving our time to support our passion, and using a website to spread awareness of the benefits of yoga...