No matter what sort of website you have, it is important to make sure that it follows the principles of good web design. A poorly designed website will drive away visitors and frustrate those few who persevere. The following article can help you design a high quality website and attract more traffic.
Look at your site in multiple browsers when designing it. What you see on one browser is not necessarily what others see on other browsers. Make sure you understand the popular browsers out there to design for all. In addition, ask friends and family to check out the site, too. You never know if another operating system makes a difference.
Ensure that your website can pass the NoScript test. This is a Firefox extension you can download, and it will check your site’s readability. Some content, like ordering systems, will not work properly without scripts, but when your site is completely blank when scripts are turned off, then that’s not a good sign.
Avoid using frames. Most sites have abandoned frames on their own as better alternatives have become available, but there are still sites out there that are trapped in 1996. Alternatives to navigational frames include fixed-position navigation panels, having navigation in multiple areas (e.g. left and bottom) or simplifying page structure so that navigational links are never far away.
Don’t disable the visitor’s right-click functionality. Some sites do this in order to prevent people from copying and pasting text or saving images from the site. The thing is, it doesn’t work and disables other useful functions. OCR can be used to capture text from such sites, and grabbing images is as simple as taking a screenshot.
Always mark files that must be opened in an external program with an icon. Many sites host PDF files, and less commonly, DOC files, that must be opened in Foxit Reader and Microsoft Word/OpenOffice, respectively. These files should be marked with an icon representing the file type, and a link to download the appropriate viewer if the user does not have it.
To help you attract a more professional crowd to your site, make sure you design your site with no spelling errors. When designing the site, utilize a spell checker and if need to, a grammar checker. If you have a site with poor spelling and grammar, people will not want to do business with you because they will think it is unprofessional.
When designing your website, you should avoid using too many different types of fonts. Think about how the various fonts look on a standard computer display. Tiny fonts can be difficult to read. Most sites use Verdana, which is easily read in different colors and sizes.
For the best layout, make sure that the colors you choose for the background and font are restful to the eyes. Choosing moving backgrounds or neon colors can make it hard for people to read, and they may navigate to another web site. However, include pictures to break up your content and make the site complete.
To be updated on the new web design tricks, you should join an online forum. When joining these message boards you meet people who usually have an understanding of all the new web design technology. Without this new web design technology you could end up with a site that is completely outdated.
Be sure the websites you’re designing are cross-browser compatible. You must check your site in the most popular versions of every top browser. Some examples include Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Safari, Mozilla Firefox and Opera. Many users use these browsers for surfing online, so you need to be sure your designs are being seen correctly on whatever they use.
Always use fonts which are legible and professional. People judge your sites professionalism by the fonts you use. Skip the fancy fonts such as Comic Sans, since people may not be able to read them on many computers. If your reader doesn’t have the font you require, their browser will substitute a default font instead, possibly throwing the layout of your entire page off. This can interfere with the design of your website.
If the design of your website needs to be mobile friendly, keep in mind that mobile devices have smaller screens and limited bandwidth. To account for smaller screens, you should try to design your website as a single narrow column so that the user only needs to navigate vertically, as opposed to both horizontally and vertically. Limited bandwidth means that you should be extra concerned about your file sizes. You can also opt to create a separate version of your website specifically for mobile devices.
As you have seen, the principles of good web design are not terribly mysterious or difficult to implement. However, too many websites still ignore these basic techniques. Do not let your site fall into this category. Put these techniques into practice to design a website that you can be proud of.