Fixed header bar is becoming more popular in web design. It refers to the name given to any top navigation that stays at the top of your web browser at all times, even while scrolling down the page. By having the bar stick to the top, this means that the user does not have to scroll to the top when they want to change page.

Although fixed header bars have been around for awhile they are being used by more and more websites today as they are both aesthetically pleasing and provide a better user experience for those navigating a site.

For fixed headers to be effective type of navigation there are some considerations that should be taken into account.

The weight and prominence of your navigation bar needs to be balanced to avoid distraction. If the bar is too large and/or dark it will take attention away from the content — directing it to the navigation bar instead. You don’t want the bar to be overpowering or take up too much space. The navigation should add value to the site and not detract from it.

The best sites to use fixed navigation on are the ones with heavy content and a few main areas of navigation that are frequently used. If a user is ever lost they can quickly reference the navigation. Fixed navigation also works well for websites of companies that are trying to sell  products.  These sites often have a cart and potential for a user to be logged in. The fixed navigation allows the users to access the cart as well as any product or category in the shop at any time.  One page sites with long vertically scrolling content can also benefit from a fixed navigation bar so that the user can easily navigate to desired areas of the site without scrolling through data that might not interest them.

Fixed headers are found on many kinds of sites today including blogs, companies, social networks and portfolios.  Some people might not even realize how many sites they use everyday utilize this type of navigation. Some popular sites that use this navigation are Facebook, Gmail and Pinterest.

Keeping these points in mind when creating fixed navigation will enhance both the design and user experience.

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Facebook is a great social media place to promote your brand, products and business.  In order to do so it is important to grow your fans, engage your fan base and make sure your audience sees your posts. With this in mind here are some tips to marketing on Facebook.

Offer value.  Everyone likes and appreciates useful information.  You need to give people timely and helpful information. Add your own take and insight into third party resources.

Use Images and Highlights. Images are the most effective way to drive engagement on a page.  Posts that include a picture can generate two times more engagement than other post types. Images, both on desktop and mobile devices show prominently in Facebook users’ news feeds.
Highlight your best posts so that you will have opportunity to make certain things stand out more than others on your Facebook pages.

Monitor posts and be Responsive.  Pay attention to what others post on your page and answer fan posts. Be sure to do so in a timely manner. There are all sorts of monitoring tools and third-party tools to alert you to comments and messages that can send you email alerts. A timely response will help increase engagement.

Time Your Posts. Your “best times to post” are going to be driven by your industry and by your audience. Determine who your fan base is and when your fan base is most likely to be on Facebook and most likely to engage and post then. Facebook insights allows you to see interaction patterns for your pages over time.

Custom tabs.  Utilize apps that offer something of value to your fans and that have social sharing built-in capabilities. Offer contests, sweepstakes, coupons on the tab.These deals can be big booster of fan engagement, return fan activity, and reach for your page.

Make the most out of Facebook by following this tips and help build your business.  Using social media such as Facebook with active and enlightened information will help you to be more successful.

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With the revision of the “The Children’s Online Privacy Act” it might be time for businesses to assess whether they are COPPA complaint.  Below are some things that all businesses whether they are new or have been around for a long time should consider.

COPPA applies to any commercial website or online service (including mobile apps and social networking sites) targeting kids under 13 that collects, uses, or discloses personal information from children. The law also applies to general audience websites or online services that are knowingly collecting, using or disclosing personal information from children under 13. Personal information is defined as a screen name, or a “persistent identifier” such as IP address, or traditional information including phone number, social security number, photographs, video, and more.

If your app or website fits the criteria above, you are required under COPPA to post privacy policies, provide notice to parents, and obtain verifiable parental consent before collecting personal information from children. There are several ways to do this. You can get parental consent by offering a mail-in consent form, a toll-free number or video conference for parents to contact your business.

If a purchase is made by a parent on the site, use of a credit card that provides notice of the sale to the account holder may suffice. The guidelines state, however, that use of a parent’s app store account password is not sufficient to comply with the parental consent requirement. Some exceptions to the prior parental consent rule may apply.  To be safe, double check with the FTC website.

If you answered yes to any of the above and aren’t compliant the FTC may file a complaint against your business.  You can be held liable for up to $16,000 for each child your business unlawfully collects information about.  States may also bring COPPA enforcement actions against businesses, such as issuing a court order for your company to comply with COPPA.

How can you tell if the child lies about his/her age on a general audience website? The website owner isn’t required to investigate the age of visitors to their site. However, if you have knowledge that a child is using your site (for example,  a parent contacts you), then you could be responsible for gathering information from a child.

In addition to the guidelines and frequently asked questions, you can visit the “COPPA Hotline” COPPAHotLine@ftc.gov where you can get more information.

The revised COPPA rule culminates more than two years of review by the agency to modernize the rule.

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