- February 11, 2013
- Posted by: Vishal Shah
- Category: Optiinfo
Designing a website isn’t easy. Everyone knows this. That’s why so many people make designing web pages their full-time job, as they know it’s something they can make a lot of money from doing for businesses.
But employing an expert isn’t essential – provided you know what you’re doing and have the knowledge to create not only a website that works, but one that represents your business, supports your SEO strategy and is attractive to visitors.
So, where do you start? Here are some tips to ensure you get your website design spot on.
Don’t distract your visitors
Having too much on a website will be confusing and unsightly for visitors. Don’t do things just for the sake of it – if it doesn’t serve a purpose what’s the point in it being there apart from to annoy your visitors? Things to avoid are:
- Scrolling text
- Animated ads
- Animation and anything that flashes
Don’t do popups
Pop ups are annoying and no-one likes them. They’re frustrating and people will get annoyed if, every time they visit, they have to spend their whole time closing irritating windows with pointless information they don’t really need.
Don’t put text over images
Large images take a long time to load. What’s more, text is hard to read when it’s on top of a picture – all you’re doing is making life hard for your visitors. It also looks very amateur – how many large, reputable websites have pictures or bright, garish colours as their backgrounds? You’ll be hard-pressed to find one so don’t do it yourself. Keep things simple.
It’s important to make your website as accessible as possible – and that means reducing the number of clicks people have to make to navigate their way around the site. A simple toolbar at the side or the top will help to avoid this as it’s an easy way for people to get to different pages.
However, don’t go the other way and cram too much information on a single page to avoid clicking. If the text scrolls down for more than two screenfulls, people will get bored.
The home page
Make it easy for people to find their way home – put a clear link to the homepage on every page.
Think about colours
Colours are vital on a website and you need to get it right. It’s important that you represent your company and promote the brand by using your firm’s colours – but in moderation. Brightly coloured text over equally bright backgrounds just doesn’t work and it looks amateurish. If in doubt, use black text on a white background for a professional look and add colour with headings, your company logo and toolbars.
Your text should not only be large enough to read comfortably, but it also needs to be spaced well. Large clumps of text will instantly put a reader off, so make sure the text is spaced well and don’t try to cram too much into a limited area.
If you want people to follow links around your website you need to show them the way to go. Either highlight your links in blue or underline them. Don’t rely on people hovering their mouse over the link to find it – how many people follow the words they’re reading with their mouse?
Make sure people can reach you
Put a link to your contact details on every page so that visitors can easily get in touch with you if they need to.
Don’t go crazy with multimedia
Flash-based websites take ages to load and having lots of multimedia on a page makes it hard for people to get the information they want from your website. Keep things simple instead of trying to show off unnecessarily.
So, there you have it. Some top tips to get you started with website design. Now, why not see what you can do.
Guest Post By
This guest blog was contributed by Lesley Sampson a freelance blog writer who often writes about web design and how to find the best eshop solution.