Regardless of how many websites you’ve designed, how your site looks when you are done is an important element, perhaps the most important. Being certain that your website is easy for users, looks good, and has quality content will mean that you will attract more site visitors who are likely to return to your site over and over again. The tips below serve as a good starting point for making a great web site.
Use the proper graphic tools for web design. Keep in mind that bitmaps don’t usually work well, while PNGs do. PNG is the right choice for non-photo images, such as text buttons and screen shots. If an image has in excess of 256 colors choose PNG. If it does not, GIF is another option. JPEG works best for photo images.
Allow your users the ability to cancel something if they are not happy with what they typed in. For example, allow users to cancel registration for newsletters or easily back out of a search. If visitors cannot cancel an action they are not interested in, such as providing their contact information, they will feel they do not have a choice and won’t buy anything.
Choose your color scheme wisely. You have to be certain that your text will be readable on top of the background colors you use. In general, a light background with darker text is much clearer than the reverse situation. If you don’t know whether your color theme functions well, ask a friend or colleague to provide feedback.
Make your website easy to scan. Many usability tests show that most online visitors do not read everything. They usually only scan for things that interest them. Use sub-headers to break text into sections your readers will appreciate. You should put the important stuff on top. All of this ensures a more satisfying experience for your visitors because they can quickly find what they need.
If your site users will be registering to use your site, you should use their personal information to auto-fill forms. For instance, if someone filled in their name and address when creating an account, pre-populate this information when the customer fills out an order form. “Sticky” data will ensure that the user fills out all the forms they need to instead of leaving when it becomes too difficult.
Keep personal information handy in the event that it must be re-entered by a repeat visitor of your website. Saving data from one form to another, like username or email address, is imperative. It’s annoying for visitors to have to re-register for different site functions, so work to make the site experience positive for your users.
Take the time to do keyword research. The focus of your website should always be to give your users a quality experience, but you cannot do that if you are never seen. To ensure the success of a website, there must be a good understanding of the keywords that will attract visitors to the site through search engines.
In order to provide the clean yet effective site you have created in your mind, you need to purchase a site building and design program that offers the tools you require. Many of these programs are easy to use and you can build a great website rather quickly. If you don’t have a good site, you won’t have a large number of visitors.
Prioritize your user’s needs. Their needs should be your primary focus. How easy information can be accessed and the website use are critical. These are vital considerations you must take into account. Try to look at your website design as if you were one of your users.
Do keyword research. The focus of your website should always be to give your users a quality experience, but you cannot do that if you are never seen. Knowing what keywords will help to increase traffic is part of web design success.
Your navigation methods should be clear and easy to maintain. Where you place your navigation links is key to creating a user-friendly site that keeps visitors planted. In order for visitors to have a pleasant experience, it needs to be easy to navigate and clean-looking.
If you’re creating a large site, include search functions for your visitors. At the top right of every page in your site, incorporate a search box which will let visitors search for a term that appears on your site. You can get free search boxes from Google or FreeFind.
Make sure your load times are low. Visitors to your site may be more likely to navigate away from your page if it takes too long to load pages. When you reduce your graphics and other fancy elements, you will speed up access to your pages and retain your visitors.
Place personal photos on your site to make it look better. Putting pictures on a website adds a more personal touch and helps the user relate better to your information. People always like to look at interesting pictures that they have never seen before, and many times will spend hours on your site looking at them.
Stick with common fonts that look professional. They are common for a reason. You can tell if a site is professional just by viewing their fonts. Fonts that are overly artistic may seem like a good idea, but often aren’t accessible on all computers. Use a font that is part of the default font subsets on user computers. When the font defaults it can tend to make your webpage look much worse than it really is.
Know your niche. If you’re going to have a blog site or something similar, you have to be sure things are done to learn about that subject before posting anything. By providing your viewers with information that is murky or false, you lose traffic. Having a good blog involves having an education on your subject.
Never use pop-up ads on a website. Integrating pay per click advertising to earn money is an important part of designing a website, however pop up ads only obstruct readers’ view and serve to annoy them into leaving. People will avoid your site. Keeping your site free of excessive ads will only create a better experience for the visitor.
There are many newsletters available that distribute both proven and novel web design information. Sign for some of them to keep yourself inspired and give yourself a web design “safety net” you can rely on to maintain your base of knowledge on the subject. These are great for both pros and beginners.
Don’t forget about Internet Explorer 7 and 8. There are many people on the Internet who still utilize Internet Explorer. Unfortunately, many aspects of your site may not be compatible or displayed properly due to outdated rendering standards, so you may have to create some fixes for the elements that do not work properly. An example would be the vexing “box model bug” which troubled IE for quite some time.
Limit the amount of content you start out with on a given page to small amounts when you first start out. Many newbies place too much information on their home page.
Prioritize your user’s needs. As a web designer, it is important that you make this the focus of your design. This can include user experience, accessibility, usability, and user interaction. You must know these very well and consider every possibility. Try to make sure you look at your site from the perspective of your visitors as you design it.
You need to think about who your target audience is, and gear your website toward this group. Ask others what they want to see on your site. This provides you better focus with site design and a better understanding of what features to include. The best way to create the site your visitors want is by soliciting their advice.
Pay attention to the graphics you use. GIFs and JPGs are your best choice for graphics. Although PNG and MBP files might be the better options for web graphics, they take up way too much disk space. By converting your file types to more manageable sizes, you will provide your visitors with a better experience.
Write content based on the literacy level of your readers. A variety of visitors will visit your site and you want everyone to have access to the information shared. Create content that is easy to comprehend yet provides valuable information.
Test the functionality of your website. It is important to do this for each step. On each instance of adding a feature, be certain that you have someone look it over and give you objective feedback. While a video that loads slowly may not seem too terrible in your eyes, someone else might think differently. Ensure you get the opinions of many people to better your site.
When creating pages that have links, be sure the links contain text content. This will let your visitors know what they’re going to click on. When there is no text content on the link, a keyboard shortcut could be stumbled on.
Look at the site statistics daily when updating your site to figure out its appeal. You can see who all is visiting your website and which pages they are spending time on. This will help you make better design decisions moving forward.
Website counters are unattractive. This might seem interesting at first glance, but your visitors find this distasteful. Avoid adding a counter and use other ways to watch your traffic levels.
Be certain to make the logo that is appearing on the site, link to the home page. This type of clickable logo has become a standard expectation from most Internet users. These users will become frustrated if clicking your logo has no effect and they have to go hunting for a link elsewhere. This will make your site more seamless to navigate.
If you have some ideas for more than one website, you should reserve a name for your domain, now. It should be creative and cover the area you wish to dive into. Surprisingly, many people may have the same idea as each other. We are all connected and think in similar ways.
Ask for feedback about the design of your site. What one web designer and you assume is a great web design, many others may find cluttered, confusing or a pain to navigate very easily. Try asking a select group of your website visitors to go through your website to report to you what they loved and disliked about it.
Practice each step of website creation until you have it down pat. This is important so that you can make sure you are able to apply the knowledge you are gaining. The last thing you want to do is think you’ve learned something but didn’t properly digest it.
You will save yourself a lot of time and trouble if you avoid those free hosting sites from the very beginning. Everyone likes free stuff, especially entrepreneurs who are just getting their businesses off the ground, but free hosting comes with a catch: ads, lots and lots of ads. This can significantly change the way you have to do business, and make you lose customers in the process.
It’s fine to have a new user fill out a CAPTCHA when he registers for you site, but after that, he shouldn’t see another CAPTCHA. Some captchas require the user to jump through hoops just to access content. Chances are that only the avid fan will put up with typing a captcha, everyone else will move on to other websites.
Even once you have learned the basics, you should always keep learning new techniques. Just as the content on the Internet changes daily, web standards are constantly changing and adapting. You can read blogs on design to learn what you can do to compete with people in this sort of thing.
Do your best to design a website that is original and will stand out from the others in your niche. Go look at your competitors’ websites. You don’t want to be classed as “one of the pack”, the more unique you are, the more noticeable you will be. Your site will be considered as a copycat of your competitors’ and not seem trustworthy.
If you are looking to create your own site, then consider trying a grid or shared hosting, rather than using a dedicated host or VPS. You don’t know your site’s traffic load, and there is no reason to overpay.
This article will help to guide you down the path to a website which attracts quality traffic, builds a relationship with visitors and creates an awesome user experience. Such a site will no doubt be pivotal to the success of your online business.
Though it might seem appealing to host your own site, it isn’t as easy is it seems. Unless you’re versed completely concerning site hosting and have adequate funds set aside to begin that venture, it’s best to seek out a different host.