If you want to design a website as a hobby, for your business or even as your own career, a solid foundation of knowledge will help you get your foot in the door. From learning HTML to knowing search engine optimization techniques, there are many facets to web design.
Read on to find some advice which will cover all of the basics.
White space is an important part of web design, so don’t be afraid to use it. Cluttering up your web pages with too many images or too much text, or using a distracting background, will only irritate your visitors. White space can make the important elements of your page more visible.
Consider your website’s background carefully. While some websites utilize moving GIF backgrounds, opt for simple background since these moving backgrounds can make text hard to read. Choose a background to work with your website, not conflict with it, and your visitors will be able to better read and understand your site, and your point of view.
Use a descriptive title. Many site owners forget to name their pages, or name them something generic, such as “Welcome Page.” Search engines do use title descriptions in their rankings, so make sure you are as descriptive as possible, without going overboard. Make sure it is usable for your viewers and the search engines.
Test your website before it goes live. There’s nothing worse then launching your new website and having to take it down right away due to bugs or other issues. Get a group of people together who are using different web browsers and computer platforms, and ask them to use a beta version of your website, writing down any issues they come across.
To help keep your site visitors happy, do not underline words. Underline words on the internet signifies that the word is a clickable link. If you have too many words on your pages that are underlined with being clickable links, then your visitors will be frustrated after continuously trying to click on them.
To help you design a website that is free of clutter, do not include any scrolling text on your site. Websites that have things constantly moving back and forth on the screen is really distracting to the visitor. Not only is this distracting and annoying, it screams unprofessional and will cause your visitors to leave quickly.
Do not use blinking, scrolling text or other animations. Also, steer clear of sounds or music that plays automatically. All of these things are distracting to users and provide nothing of value. In addition, connection speeds vary from one site visitor to the next, and everyone does not have the same speed. Those users with slower connections will resent the slow-loading elements of your site.
Use breadcrumbs and make it so that clicking on the site logo returns you to the homepage. Breadcrumbs are markers that show where the visitor is in the site structure. For instance, the breadcrumbs might read “home > furniture > beds.” When the user clicks a link in the breadcrumbs, he can return to a page further up in the site hierarchy. Clicking on a business logo should generally take the visitor back to the homepage as well.
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. It is incredibly important to keep broken links to a minimum. If visitors encounter them often, they will disappointed and no longer come to your site. Save yourself some headaches by making sure that everything is working as it should.
Forums are going to be your best friend in the next few weeks, this is because there’s a lot of information to be gained from various forums where you have the ability to gain endless amounts of knowledge from people all over the world. So check out what websites and forums can help you along your way with web design.
Begin your attempts at web design with simple sites that can be evaluated for potential problems. Begin by making a few very simplistic pages that offer just basic text, and check out how well you do with that.
Web hosting is a package deal and you need to take the time to understand what the host is providing you for the price. You will need to know the following: bandwidth, disk space, CPU usage, and any other items that are part of the package price. Be as informed as possible about the service you are receiving.
You’ve read the advice here and are ready to put it into action, so get ready to design your site! Start by sketching out a design and making lists of the content you’ll need and you’ll have your website online in no time.
Don’t forget to keep reading and learning so you’re never left behind.