Designing Your Own Website? Read This First!

One of the most important and expensive things a new business must have is a website. You can save yourself a nice chunk of change if you can design your own site. That said, it has to be done right. Use the following tips to design professional-looking websites.

Don’t have an abundance of graphics on your site. Graphics are important, but too many can yuck things up. Graphics should enhance what you have to say on your site. They shouldn’t be put there to just look pretty. Your site may be easier to use with just the right amount of graphics.

Minimize your web page’s size. Not all Internet users have fast connection speeds, and the longer your site takes to load, the less interest they will have. If it takes too long many will just leave and visit a different website.

It’s a good idea to set up your site so that it can retain a copy of user information that must be entered repeatedly. When a visitor fills out a registration form on your website, for instance, your site should hang onto that information, and use it to fill out data fields for the visitor on subsequent interactive pages ahead of time. Creating transferable form information will make the overall process simpler and quicker for your visitors, and they will be happy with the time you have saved them.

Is the content on your site fun and interesting? Though the look is highly important, content is the key to return visitors. When the content on your site is valuable and useful, visitors will continue visiting your site.

Create an opt-in newsletter to entice your visitors to return often. If your clientele are able to register at your website for information about product news or highlighted happenings in the near future, they’re more likely to keep visiting. Add a signup bar on your site and use it to track the number of visitors who do so. Make sure you only send off the newsletter to people that want it, or you’re sure to find yourself in some trouble.

Be sure that your website has small files, no matter how aesthetically designed your site is. This is because file sizes are directly correlated with load times. You want your website to load quickly so visitors won’t lose patience with it. You should also keep in mind that not every visitor will be using a high speed Internet connection. Run tests to ensure that even dial-up users report a smooth user experience.

Always implement powerful site-searching capabilities when designing a large website. Put a search box in the uppermost right-hand corner of your homepage so that users can seek specific topics on your site. You can get a search bar from Google or FreeFind.

Optimize your website for older IE versions. There are many people on the Internet who still utilize Internet Explorer. Workarounds are needed because the browser is not 100% compliant with standards. You should read up on the frustrating “box model bug” that has plagued IE for a long time.

You need to have content that moves and excites your visitors. While the look of the design is important, the content is what keeps visitors returning to your site. Useful, informative content which matches what visitors are looking for will ensure your visitor numbers continue to increase.

When putting links on your pages, the links need content. Visitors to your page are more likely to click on a link when they know where the link will take them. When links do not have text content, the link could be accessed accidentally by keyboard shortcut.

Make sure your navigation is easy. How your navigation links are placed on your site will impact how long visitors stay on your site. In order for visitors to have a pleasant experience, it needs to be easy to navigate and clean-looking.

Test your website on all the different web browsers. Different browsers will read and display a site in different ways, which can have some unintended results for site visitors. There are a lot of ways you can determine which browsers are most popular at the current time. Make sure to beta-test your site on all popular browsers, including those used on mobile devices.

It is important to remember to test your website’s design on various web browsers. Different browsers will read and display a site in different ways, which can have some unintended results for site visitors. Utilize the Internet by researching which browsers are the most commonly used. Make sure to beta-test your site on all popular browsers, including those used on mobile devices.

The harder you work on your website creation, the easier it will be for you to learn new techniques. So once you have the basics, start a simple web page using HTML and C+. See if you’ve got what it takes. Practice is one of the most reliable ways to improve web page design skills; start practicing early and often to get the maximum benefit.

Are you stuck? Look online for inspiration. There are thousands, if not millions, of websites waiting for you to browse and wait for inspiration to strike. When you have found a selection of websites you like, set out to determine how they were designed. Remember that you can’t just steal ideas if your site is to be successful. You should always improve anything ideas you borrow.

Remember that you do not have to fill up all of the available space on your website. Making use of all the pixels and space makes the site look cluttered and feel overwhelming. Dividing up your site’s elements with blank space, can make it easier for visitors to distinguish what elements perform what function. A proper amount of empty areas is just as important as the amount of content your webpage contains.

Talk with your friends to discover if you’ve missed anything when you learned certain things, such as Photoshop, HTML, or Dreamweaver. It is difficult to keep all of the details of web design in mind, and it is common to become confused while designing and miss a thing or two. That’s why it’s good to have knowledgeable friends “proof” your site for you.

A visitor counter on the page is unattractive. Visitors really don’t care how many other people have visited your site. Therefore, it is a useless feature to display.

Start building the first page of your site with a template to keep the process simple and straightforward. You want to begin small and then expand at a later time when you are familiar with the entire web design process.

Begin by making smaller websites, so you can see your strengths and weaknesses before starting a major site. Start with a few basic pages containing a small amount of information, and then make your assessment.

When you are going to design a site, find specific individuals among your target audience and ask them what they personally want to see. This will help your design and help you tailor some of the features you have available on your website. Any advice from the audience is important for your website.

Always proofread everything that you publish on your website. Your goal is for people to be able to read it easily and quickly. When you have glaring errors, it sheds a negative light on you and your business.

You should have a visible tagline included on not only every webpage that is in the domain, but also the sub-domains. These tags should immediately draw the visitors’ eyes when the page loads. Good taglines are high on the page and formatted in large, clear text. It will immediately let them know what the goal of the page is, the offer it’s providing, the reason it exists, or the purpose of it. Most of the time, this determines whether or not this visitor remains on your page or exits out.

Keep your content to a minimum when first creating your website. Visitors may become confused if there is too much information on a page.

Delete any spam that appears on your site. Blog owners will find that regular site maintenance is especially helpful. The same applies to websites with forums. Keeping your site clean will give it a good reputation.

Ask people from your target market what they want to see on your site. This will help with designing your site and features too. You want to create a site that your viewers enjoy visiting.

Try your best to focus some serious time each day to work on your website. You will have to dedicate a couple of hours during the day so you can get work done, instead of trying to accomplish little bits and pieces at a time. Working hard creates focus, which means that you will create a better site and therefore improve your profit margin.

If you want to host videos, check with the web host to make sure that it is allowed. Some hosts do not permit videos to be hosted on their servers. Those FLV files absorb a great deal of server space that simply may not be available to you. Before putting the effort into this feature, make sure you’re not wasting your time.

Be certain to make the logo that is appearing on the site, link to the home page. Over the years most people have come to associate a logo with a link, that when clicked, will take them to the homepage of a website. Visitors will become frustrated if there is no easy way to return to the home page. If your logo is clickable, people will find your site more navigable.

Learning to work with more than one platform is in your best interest if you plan on designing more than one site. Skills in Java, PHP, MySQL and others will enable you to build many different kinds of websites. Try to become well faceted in many arenas of web page design, even if it is just for your website.

Your logo should be near the top of all of your pages. Link your pages with one another so that your website is a single coherent entity. Also, this will build brand recognition for your site. Your logo should give a clear idea of the purpose and mission of your business.

When spam ends up on your site, you must clean it up immediately. This is a necessity for blog and forum owners who allow people to comment on their site. Keeping your site clean will give it a good reputation.

White space is something that should be used to your advantage. Despite its name, “white space” is not necessarily white; it is just blank areas on the web pages. Website visitors don’t like websites that are overly cluttered and confusing, so use content sparingly. White spaces makes the page easier to read, and this can help more visitors feel comfier on your site.

User Friendly

A cc (country code) top level domain is useful to buy when you want traffic from a certain area. This means the domain name you are given fits that area. CCTLDs are great for directing visitors from different regions to your website, especially when they might not find it otherwise.

Look to make any interface tools as user friendly as possible. For example, users should be able to click on text that is underlined. Visitors will stay longer on your page and will be much more likely to return to your site when you provide consistency and conventions that are user friendly.

When you are reviewing any new site you create, be sure that it has logos and any needed branding. These could include the Better Business Bureau, to inform your customers that you are a trusted business.

Check out other websites to come up with a style that you may want to work with, and can really inspire you to create a beautiful site. Use the positive aspects of a site and avoid the negatives if you want your site to be unique.

If your website is a commercial one, do not use a web hosting service that is free. This is because you don’t want a bunch of other advertisements taking away the focus from whatever products or services your site is selling. Using a host you pay for is a much better idea.

If you are putting up a business website, avoid free hosting sites as this will cost you business. Although free always sounds good, especially to someone starting up a business, these hosts will crowd your site with all kinds of ads which you have no control over. This can conflict with your website creation as well as your company philosophy, and it will also repel customers.

It is crucial for people who design web pages to set attainable goals with each task they take on. Working to meet a deadline that is not feasible, will result in poor work, which will translate to more issues down the road. You want work that you can handle and you don’t want to overload yourself.

Don’t expect the ride from beginner to website design pro to be a cake walk. You may even make a couple of errors when trying to design your page. However, as you continue learning and putting what you learn into practice, your websites will attract more and more visitors.

Make sure that your website is designed to be attractive and easy-to-use. A website that is easy to navigate helps visitors stay longer because they know how to find information. To avoid visitor frustration, streamline and simplify, while still presenting all needed information.

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