Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Commonly asked questions are answered here. If you have another question, please don't hesitate to get in touch.

Can you help me fix my website?

ValidBot is not a consulting company, so we can't personally help you, but we have added a ton of information to this website to help you figure it our yourself.

  1. Test Descriptions - We have written a detailed description for each test in our database. If your website is failing one of those tests, click on the link to learn more. In most cases, that description will explain how to fix the problem and how to learn more about that topic.
  2. In-Depth Articles - We have written several articles about specific topics for you to dive in and learn all the details. For example, check out our explaination of security headers.
  3. Tools and Wizards - We have created some interactive tools to help you generate certain settings for your website. For example, try our SPF, DKIM, DMARC Wizard to get your email server configured correctly.

Why does a validation test show a warning when I know that it is fine? I know what I am doing.

Our validation tests are designed to provide general advice for the average website. Our recommendations follow the most commonly recommended best practices. However, there are often multiple correct ways to do the something. If you know what you are doing, and you have a reason for doing things differently, by all means keep doing it. The purpose of our website is to educate developers about different aspects of creating a website so that they can learn and improve their skills.

For example, some of our tests check for backwards compatibility with legacy web browsers. If your website doesn't need to support legacy web browsers then you can safely ignore those warnings that ValidBot produces.

If you would like to silence warnings that you don't care about, you can do this in your account settings.

Do ValidBot validation tests work for all types of websites?

No. Our tests have been tuned and optimized to provide the best advice for small to medium websites. These are websites that have only a few servers running behind the scenes.

Very large websites, like Google, Amazon and Wikipedia, work differently. They have unique problems caused by their size and solutions to those large-scale problems may cause some of our tests to display warnings. This doesn't mean that they are doing things wrong.

For example, very large websites will often have hundreds or even thousands of servers and they use clever load balancing to distribute traffic efficiently around the world. This situation can sometimes cause our DNS tests to display warnings. If your website does this sort of thing, then you likely know what you are doing and can safely ignore these warnings. You can silence these warnings in your ValidBot account settings.

Why do some of the ValidBot tests say that they weren't run?

We have over 100 validation tests to run on each website audit, and sometimes it isn't possible to complete all of them. Here are a few reasons why this may happen:

  1. A prerequisite test failed. For example, if a website has no SPF record, then the test for locating that record will fail, but all subsequent tests that validate that record will be skipped.
  2. In order to run our tests, we fetch and parse the webpage and download other information, such as images and manifest files. If the tested website has software that attempts to detect and block bots, then ValidBot may be unable to get the information that it needs to run some tests.
  3. Some of our tests rely on 3rd party APIs to fetch information. Occasionally, those 3rd party APIs may become temporarily unavailable. When this happens, the audits that depend on this data will not be run.

How do I silence or disable tests that I don't want run against my website?

If there is a ValidBot tests that is giving you warning, and you have determined that it's not a problem for you, then you can go into your settings and silence this test.

  1. Sign into your account and go to your Website Management page where you can verify ownership of your website.
  2. Click the "configure" button next to your website to customize the settings.
  3. Click the "customize tests" button to view a list of every test that ValidBot can run.
  4. Use the on/off switches to disable any tests that you don't want run against your website. These tests will no longer show up on your reports and will no longer contribute to your site's score.

What are the limits of a Pro Subscription?

A Pro Subscription unlocks a bunch of new functionality, including automated reporting with notifications, healthchecks, and historical performance graphs. However, there are a few limits which are detailed here:

  1. Report Frequency:With a free account a report can only be run once a day per domain. With a Pro account the frequency is increased to once an hour. If you try to run a new report sooner than 1 hour after the last report for the same domain, then the cached result will be displayed.
  2. Number of Verified Domains: By verifying ownership of a domain you can enable enhanced testing, healthchecks and historical performance graphs, among other things. A free account cannot have a verified domain. A Pro account can have up to 20 verified domains at a time.
  3. Historical Reports: For Pro subscribers, reports are saved for 1 year before being deleted. Free accounts are limited to viewing the last 30 days only.