There is quite a bit that is involved in web design. From the planning to the fine details, website creation is an overwhelming undertaking when you don’t know what you’re doing. Try using these tips to step up to the challenge.
You will want to make sure you stay up-to-date with new information on website design found in various places around the Internet. If you aren’t sure where to begin, do an Internet search to see what you can find.
Try using fixed-position navigation to let your users navigate with ease. This means locking the navigation panel when a person scrolls down a single page. This is convenient for visitors and helps frequent visitors quickly find what they need.
If you want your website to attract many visitors, it must be simple to navigate. Links need to be prominent and simple to find. Menus can also help with site navigation. Ensure your site users can easily find the way to the pages are the main ones by providing links to them on each subordinate page.
Ensure your site can pass the NoScript test. Download NoScript and activate the Firefox extension. This will tell you if your website can be read. There are some elements (e.g. ordering products) that will not work if there is no script. For this reason, if your website is blank and has no scripts, it will not work.
Maintain normal-sized pages. Not everyone online has a fast connection, and if your website takes too long to load, people will lose interest. If the wait is too long, your visitors may give up and leave.
Don’t use frames. It isn’t the 90’s anymore. Frames were terrific in the burgeoning website development days, but they had their problems too. Frame designs make scrolling frustrating and it makes sites more difficult to bookmark. There are many better alternatives to frames.
Check for broken links before publishing a page. Visitors can get frustrated when they click a link and come across an error page. Links can be checked manually, and you can also find software that will check your site to see if there are any broken links.
The faster a web page loads, the more it will be appreciated. You should minimize the loading time of your site’s pages. You cannot expect much patience from your visitors. If they are stuck looking at an incomplete page for minutes on end while your content loads, they are quite likely to close your site and find what they’re looking for elsewhere.
Ensure people can easily scan your information. Most visitors won’t read all you write, they’ll just scan it over. Broken into sections, text becomes more readable and visitors willingly return. Keep the most pertinent information near the top of the page. This will satisfy your visitors and have them coming back for more.
Stay away from lots of graphics on your website. Although graphics are necessary make your site project a professional, well-designed and cohesive look, having too many can make it look cluttered. Use graphics for improvement, not decoration. Your site will be much more usable and user friendly when you minimize the use of graphics.
Keep page size to a minimum. Users with slower Internet connections may decide that the wait is not worth it if your site is slow to load. Don’t waste their time or your own.
Make sure your website content is both interesting and compelling. People ultimately visit your site more for the content than for the glitzy design. When a website contains helpful information that fits the needs of viewers, they’ll be more inclined to return later on.
Go through all links on any page on your website carefully to make sure there are no links that are broken before you upload the page. Clicking on links that bring you to errors is quite annoying. You can check your links manually, or there are programs that will scan your site for you and report any broken links.
Keep frames off your page. Although the information in fames may be attractive to visitors to your page, search engines can’t see it. The search engine will give your website a lower ranking if it can’t see the great content you are providing. When there is a low rating, there is little traffic.
Let visitors cancel actions if they want to. Types of such actions would include registering an email, filling out forms, or browsing your site for archives or topics. If you do not give visitors the option to get out of an action they do not want to continue with, you are pressuring them into something. This makes them less likely to come back or buy from you in the future.
Good meta tags are a quick way to ensure your website makes it to a good rank on search engines. Your site can show various search engines exactly what your site is all about when you have meta tags. Non descriptive or inaccurate meta tags will result in low visibility for your website.
If you want your website to be more attractive, consider adding your own pictures. Having personal pictures on your site makes your site appear more user friendly. Folks will be more apt to stay on your site when they look forward to viewing all of your photos.
Test early and frequently. Running usability and user interaction tests early in the game can really save you frustration in the long run. Continue to test and make improvements throughout the life of your website.
Bearing aesthetics in mind, you should remember to keep file sizes small. This is because the size of your website’s files directly affects its loading time. You want your website to load very quickly when potential clients visit. The other factor to bear in mind is not all visitors access through high-speed connections. Test to be sure that even computers with slow dial-up modems can connect quickly to your website.
You should have some place exclusive within which to work. Remove distractions, to make your office a space in which to work, without interruptions. Set up your work space for optimum efficiency with everything you need right at your fingertips. This will make working on your website much easier.
When you are just a beginner in web design, provide each page with high quality content that is the right amount to keep your visitors engaged, not overwhelmed. Don’t do more than you can handle or you might wind up posting stuff that doesn’t make sense.
Include text content on your link page. Your visitors should know exactly what they’re heading for when they click on a link. If you have links that have no text content, it may be possible to click them by accident and result in a key board shortcut.
Use keywords in the tagline for you domain and sub-domain names. Keywords will make your website more relevant to search engines and increase traffic to your site. A tagline is also useful because it offers quick information about the overall purpose of your site. Within seconds, a visitor can judge whether or not the site is relevant.
Run tests on different browser applications to make sure your site works on all of them. Different internet browsers can display the contents of your website differently, which can sometimes dramatically alter a visitor’s experience. Utilize the Internet by researching which browsers are the most commonly used. View your website in each of these browsers to ensure that the page will be viewed correctly.
You must always keep site security in mind. An SSL certificate will benefit you if financial transactions are to take place. Additionally, you should consult your website host and look for security features that will be offered with your package.
In your website design, keep in mind that web browsers are more friendly to websites that have independent CSS pages and provide conditional loading. These techniques will make it easier to test and maintain your site. All websites require periodic maintenance, and you want this to be as easy as possible.
Having some unused space within your site is an excellent design feature. Do not fall under the illusion that your site should be completely filled with information. Eliminating clutter will let your customers have an easier experience in navigating your website, and will let them relax and enjoy the experience.
While making your website, remember that you don’t need to use all the available space. If you make excessive use of pixels, your website will seem too busy and cluttered. Dividing up your site’s elements with blank space, can make it easier for visitors to distinguish what elements perform what function. It can actually work to your benefit if you allow some space to be left uninhabited.
When trying to figure out what to do with ads on your site, never place ones that are too large. This can make your visitors feel very uncomfortable. Make sure your content isn’t overdone or repetitive so that people don’t get bored.
If you’ve ideals for many websites, reserve your domain names in advance. Be creative and pick out something that you want, but make sure you reserve it now so that you can still have it later on down the road. It is surprising how many other people may have come up with similar ideas. It’s like everyone is connected or something similar.
Hosting your own site may seem to be a good idea, but it is not as simple as it sounds. Avoid hosting your own website until you understand exactly how much it will cost you and you understand everything involved with hosting.
If you are fortunate enough to have the funding for a major investment into your site, this does not mean that is a wise thing to host the site on your own. You should do the design all by yourself (or as much of it as you possibly can), but allowing another person to be the keeper of your site will let you be free and will allow you to have your mind on different things and not just the site’s security and safety.
Don’t forget to give your site a human element. Add in customer reviews, images of your company, and quotes from the media. These elements help to make your site appear more authentic. It also builds up your expertise, which helps you bring in customers.
Make sure your site’s design is different from competing websites. Check out your competitors’ websites. If you’re too similar visitors might confuse your site with the competition. You will end up being the generic version of whatever niche you are in.
Look at the previous work of any web design company you hire. Find out which companies they have worked for and how good they are. Their portfolio will help you to get a quick insight into their experience and knowledge of web design.
Do you feel more comfortable now? Once you start playing around, you will learn more and more. Reread the tips here if you need to refresh your understanding.
Checklists, reference cards, and “cheat sheets” are all tools that smart web designers do not hesitate to rely on, in order to create, maintain, and troubleshoot great websites. Additionally, this is a good way to generate ideas for site improvement.