If you are a newcomer to the topic, web page design can appear to be an elusive, alien art form. But, once you become knowledgeable on the topic, you’ll see it’s not hard. The article below will provide you with some practical tips for designing effective websites.
The 90’s were the last time frame use was popular. When web design first started frames were useful but had many flaws. Frame designs make scrolling frustrating and it makes sites more difficult to bookmark. You can employ easier techniques for better site usability.
Be careful when introducing new colors into the design of your website. It is important for the text to be legible when set on the background color you have chosen. In general, a light background with darker text is much clearer than the reverse situation. If you aren’t sure if your color scheme works well, show it off to a friend for some feedback.
Easy navigation is critical to keeping visitors on your site. You should have the links on your site prominently displayed and easy to navigate. Good menus make navigating your site much easier. To enable easy browsing, be sure that each page includes a link back to the home page.
Pay close attention to the backgrounds of your site design. While some websites utilize moving GIF backgrounds, opt for simple background since these moving backgrounds can make text hard to read. Chose a background that complements your website’s content, rather than a background that clashes with your website’s content. Your website’s visitors will then find it easier to read your website’s content.
Do not go overboard with graphics. Though graphics are necessary for a professional look that is well-designed, too much creates clutter. Graphics are not meant to be used as mere decorations; they’re meant to better your site content. Having the right graphics improves your site all around.
Never use pop-ups. One of the worst things a user must deal with is getting one pop-up after another when visiting a website. Many visitors to a site will just click away from a site with pop-ups, even if the site is a popular one. In addition, many people now have pop-up blockers anyway. Just avoid these irritating ads, so your users will be happy. If your host forces pop-ups on you, it may be time to find a new one.
Always take outdated information and content off of your website. If the page a viewer clicks on is promoting something that happened a year ago, you just lost a reader. Internet users want fresh information from updated and maintained sites, and letting stale content stay up screams carelessness on your part. Put removing outdated content on your to-do list, to do every 2-4 weeks.
You must always include the capability to search if you are working on a large website. The upper right of the main page should have a search box for users to search your whole site. FreeFind and Google both have these capabilities for a website.
Separate your topics. Separate topics to give each one its own page. This will reduce visitor confusion and facilitate readability by the search engines.
Make sure your navigation is simple to use. Your placement of navigation links on your pages will determine the length of your visitor’s stay. Your users must find the navigation of the website simple and consistent.
Avoid excessive use of pop-up windows. Although they may serve some function for your site, the average reader views them as a major irritant. If your visitors become frustrated enough with pop-ups, they may permanently leave your website.
When using links on a page be sure the link uses text content. This helps visitors better understand what they are getting into. If you have hidden links, users may mistakenly navigate away from the page they were on.
Navigation should be easy, clear and maintainable. Where your links are will determine if visitors can get around your site. Navigation must be simple and clear to better the user experience.
Optimize load times on your website. Visitors to your site may be more likely to navigate away from your page if it takes too long to load pages. You can make your page load faster by reducing the amount of content, such as Flash objects and graphics, which both increase the page’s loading time.
You need to make sure the links on your site actually show content. When a link uses text content, it is easy for the visitor to see and understand where they are going. Links on a site page without content, visitors can accidentally click on links.
Be sure to always look at the links on your site, and make sure none are broken. You should do this before uploading something to your server. Visitors who encounter broken links and errors will not stay on your site long enough to view your product. You can prevent this by frequently checking that all links still work.
As you work on your site, make sure to incorporate both conditional loading and independent CSS pages. This will help with maintenance and testing down the road. You want to have an easy time making changes and doing the inevitable maintenance you’ll need on your site in the future.
Most hosts provide design tools that make building a simple site easy, but these tools will not cover you when you want more advanced features. Make your site as personal as possible by tweaking or adding more features to the generic website you can create via the tools offered by your hosting service.
Development platforms build the code for you, however, they really are not as dependable as a regular text editor. The idea with a platform is that you design the site features, and then paste the generated code. However, if you wish to ensure that the code is free of errors, and be directly involved in the process, utilizing a text editor is a better option.
Most people are aware of the Photoshop software and that the more knowledgeable they are in it, the better their chances are of creating good website creation. Strangely, Photoshop’s companion program, Dreamweaver, is far less known, even though it is a purpose-built tool for web page design. The many potential benefits Dreamweaver can offer you make it well worth investigating.
Choose some reference books on design principles in general, and web design in particular. Stick to books for beginning web designers until you’ve mastered the basics, so that you won’t miss anything you need to know as you study web design.
If you need to design more than one website, then you should check into multiple platforms. Knowing MySQL, Java, PHI and more will benefit you in the future. It does not matter if you are designing for yourself or for your friends, you should work on becoming a multi-faceted web designer.
To properly design and maintain your website, it is important to have your own office space. Eliminate any distractions, and improve your workspace efficiency so that you can be ready to work. Make sure everything that you need is within reach, and create a space that is efficient for all your design needs.
White space, or space that is unused and empty, is truthfully beneficial to a website, so don’t think your site has to be chock full of pictures, graphics and content. This available white space can make reading your site easier. This will prompt your visitors to read more, stay longer and seek you out in the future.
Even if you see designs you are attracted to on other sites, it is better to be creative on your own. Develop your own designs and features, as well as improving upon ones that you have seen on other sites. By doing this, you are taking advantage of a wide range of web design options.
If you have crucial information for your website, put it at the top and towards the left of the page. Many people start reading from the left to the right, so placing the most vital website elements in these areas will help readers see them before the rest of the site.
Discuss things with your friends to gather if you missed anything while learning about Photoshop, HTML, or Dreamweaver. You will want to be sure that all the information you learned has truly been retained, the last thing you want to deal with is being in between the making of a site and then becoming lost or confused.
Give your website some time every day. While working on bits and pieces in brief spates can be productive, to accomplish real goals you’ll have to invest some real hours. As you progress, you’ll find that working for solid chunks of time on your personal sites will also help you remember information that you need to finish your projects.
If you are new to web design, you should start with a very basic layout. This allows you to modify the structure as you become more comfortable with design principles. You should start with the basics, then advance to the more complex functions as you improve your skills and get more experience with the entire process of web designing.
Graphics can add interest and value to your website. To make sure you don’t have a bland site, make sure text wraps around images. When your content looks professional and well thought out, it creates more interest and encourages users to return to your site.
If you’re going to put a logo on the website, link it back to send users to the home page. Over time, the “clickable logo” has evolved into a standard that people assume is part of every website. If the logo is not click-able, visitors might get frustrated looking for a link to your homepage. A clickable logo makes your site much easier to navigate.
You want to ensure that each webpage within the domain, and it’s sub-domains, has a tagline that can be clearly seen. 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. This tagline will quickly inform them as to the page’s goal, offer, reasoning, or purpose and often determine whether they remain or click the “back” button.
Make your error pages as helpful to the viewer as possible. A confusing error may pop up when a visitor clicks on a broken link. Try designing your own error pages to provide visitors with the reason they received an error and a link back to the homepage to remain on the site.
Let someone test the functionality of your site along the way. Each time you change your website or add something, have a friend visit your site and try it out. A video that loads slowly may mean nothing to you, but someone else may disagree. Even more importantly, a video may load quickly for you, but not load at all for someone else. Ensure you get the opinions of many people to better your site.
The site’s interface tools should be user friendly and consistent. This means that links should be checked often to make sure they go to the right place. Make sure to use code that changes the color of all links that are clicked on so that that visitors know they’ve already used the link. If your site is user friendly and consistent throughout all the pages, people will be more likely to remain on your site for longer periods, as well as visit your site more than once.
Learn what you can about cascading style sheets. HTML is important, but CSS is where real design happens. CCS contains style sheets that serve as a reference guide format to give a website a certain design and flow. Style sheets also make it a breeze to apply universal changes across your entire site. All it will take is altering a single line of code to change the font on every page of your site.
Think outside the box when you are looking for website inspiration. Pay attention to colors, shapes and general designs that you see in any magazine, book or even roadside advertisement signs. You should make sure you are watching for creative ideas and you will find the inspiration you need to make your site unique for your visitors.
Hopefully, after reviewing this information, website development looks a little less forbidding to you. Increasing your knowledge will ease the design process. You should quickly learn what you need to know to succeed as a web designer using the techniques you just read about.
Do regular checks to make sure none of the links on your webpage are out of date or broken. Good web design relies on being user friendly, and broken links are frustrating to your visitors. Schedule regular inspections of your links, and repair the broken ones.