Office of Communications

Creating & Maintaining Web Pages

Resources

General Web Writing Guidelines

Keep it Short and Simple

It is difficult to read large blocks of text on screen, so keep sentences and paragraphs short. 

Follow the University's Writing Guide to ensure content is consistent and professional.

Keep it Current

Review your site regularly. Only create what you can maintain.

If you publish material that will become outdated, be responsible for removing or updating it. This includes periodically checking that hyperlinks remain valid.

OmniUpdate lets you schedule helpful reminders to update time-sensitive pages.

DO NOT publish pages with no content and disclaimers such as "under construction" or "more to come." It is better to have less, but meaningful content, rather than incomplete or outdated pages.

Don't duplicate your content on multiple pages, creating confusion and the possibility for conflicting updates. Where necessary, use assets for repeatedly used content elements. 

Make it Scannable

Most Web users scan pages before reading, to decide quickly if the information is relevant. Use of these simple elements can help:

Don't use images to convey text-based information. Search engines can't read images.

If it can, it should be a web page – don't use Word docs. Use pdfs only if necessary.

Fonts, Photos and Graphics

Use only our standard fonts.

Graphics are better in a .png format, not .jpg, and should be transparencies so they don't conflict with the background color in our new template. 

If you need photos for use on your site, check out how to use our shared photo library on Google Drive. For new coverage or event photo requests, use our online form.

Links

If possible, highlight relevant text as the hyperlink, and avoid using the phrase "click here."

Because many websites use underlining to indicate links, avoid the use of underlines in your text to prevent confusion.

Don't Delete Without a Plan

If you plan on deleting or renaming a page or file, request a redirect from Michael Gorman.

Follow Copyright Laws

Be careful when reusing images found on the Web. Wikimedia Commons is a resource for freely usable media files.

Also be aware of potential copyright infringement in music tracks of videos you post. Respect applicable copyright and fair use laws

Web Addresses

Keep URLs simple. Site index pages do not require "index.html" in the address. For example: www.iwu.edu/math/ is preferred over www.iwu.edu/math/index.html

Generally, if you see iwu.edu links that include "www2" or a tilde, such as /~theatre/, these are outdated formats and should be updated for clarity (even if redirects still keep them functioning).