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Creating an effective website can seem like a huge job. It doesn’t matter if you’re a seasoned pro or have zero experience, it’s still extremely intimidating. There are many aspects involved including the colors used and how the site should be laid out. Additionally, you always have to be abreast of the current trends. The advice in this article will help you to create an attractive, interesting, and successful website.
Keep the size of your web pages small. A lot of modern web pages are full of unnecessary elements, including huge images, Flash advertising, and lots of AJAX. Many people, especially those in rural areas and other countries with less-developed internet infrastructure, don’t have high-speed Internet and will have to wait forever for a large page to load.
When you’re thinking about how to design a website, you need to be sure to think about the navigation. You want your navigation to be easily accessible and easy to use. Put the navigation bar on every page in a noticeable place. Also, make sure that it flows well with the rest of your page and doesn’t distract visitors.
Avoid using so-called “mystery meat navigation”. This involves using unlabeled images or other elements for the site’s navigation. In many cases, the visitor has to mouse over the buttons to even see what they do. Navigation is best kept simple. Use text links across the top or along the left side of the page.
Include a link to the homepage on every page of your site. One of the best ways to do this is to make a graphic title for your page that can be included on all pages. Web users are used to clicking on a graphic to return home so there won’t be a learning curve to navigating your site.
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.
Use a style sheet to stay consistent. There is almost nothing more disconcerting than being sent to a page that looks at nothing like the site you were just looking at, even if it is concerning the same subject. Style sheets help with saving your formatting, so each page looks similar to the rest.
To help your website visitors easily navigate through your site, design it so that it becomes easy to find “stuff.” When you have a simple site that makes it easy to locate information, you keep your visitors there much longer. If you make it difficult for them, then they will get frustrated and leave.
Make sure your website uses a consistent font throughout. Some websites change fonts willy-nilly without any design reason to do so. This makes the content difficult to process for visitors. Most websites, especially business websites, will do just fine sticking to basic fonts like Arial, Veranda, or even Times New Roman.
Don’t load rich content automatically. Rich content mainly refers to music and videos, but anything other than text or graphics qualifies. Many people browse in work environments where sounds suddenly playing is a big problem. Also, many people find such rich content annoying in general. Rich content should require some interaction from the user before playing.
When it comes to figuring out a design for your website, there are many things you must consider. While website design can feel daunting to some people because of many different factors that go into building it, this should not mean the project has to be hard. Apply the tips you just read to guide your efforts in the right direction.