If you dream of designing a great website, the thing that is probably preventing you from realizing that dream is the enormity of the project. Whether you are attempting to create your own web identity or you have hired a pro to do it for you, the process can still be somewhat intimidating. If you want to create a successful website, here is the information that will help you succeed.
When developing a website, you must check out how it looks in various browsers. This will help you to make sure your site works for everyone. Design your site with the limitations of the different browsers in mind. Before you decide to go live, you should always have others using different browsers and operating platforms review your site to verify it works on different systems.
Make sure all of your webpages actually have titles, and make sure they are descriptive. A surprising number of webpages out there are called “untitled document” or “new document”. This not only denies visitors a useful piece of information to remember your site, but also absolutely destroys your SEO, since search engines weight page titles heavily when ranking sites.
Don’t force users to install strange BHOs. Many tech-savvy users won’t do it. Common offenders include unusual video players, image viewers, and platforms for interactive games. For most standard use cases, there is a trusted plugin, such as Windows Media Player or even Flash) that will do what you want without driving away users.
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.
Incorporate a site map into your website. Site maps serve several purposes. First, they make navigation throughout your site much easier for visitors. Second, the major search engines can utilize it to index your entire site. This means your search engine optimization improves, and your website receives more exposure, giving you more profit-earning potential.
Keep personal information handy in the event that it must be re-entered by a repeat visitor of your website. For instance, if a visitor registers for your newsletter and they are going to use the same information to make a purchase, be sure the data they’ve already entered is kept, so they do not have to re-enter the same information. Developing “sticky” data like this streamlines the user experience, and your visitors will likely appreciate the convenience.
Adobe Photoshop is a valuable software program for any dedicated web designer. Photoshop is a program that individuals new to web design can use to quickly create professional level pages. Not having this software can lead to a design which looks amateurish and untrusthworthy.
Be certain to have a way to receive feedback from site users. This will let them communicate with you if they feel something is missing, or they do not understand what they see on your webpage, and you will be able to fix it. Allowing visitors to actively participate in your website will make them want to visit again.
When designing your site, try to come up with three or four keywords that you expect users to input into search engines as they try to find your page. These keywords should then be repeated frequently throughout the title, page body and description meta tag. This will make it easier for users to locate your site on the web.
Use custom error pages to make your site more informative. For instance, if you want people to report dead links on your site, either put a server-side script on your 404 page or have a form or email address that visitors can use to report the error. You should have custom pages for 403, 404, and 500 errors, at the very least.
Make sure you are prioritizing your user’s needs. The web designer needs to be focused on the end user’s needs at all times. Usability, user experience and interaction are all important. You need to make sure you are meeting the users needs on all levels. Try to look at your website design as if you were one of your users.
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.
Now that you’ve reached the end of this article, you are probably itching to go out there and design a killer website. Armed with the knowledge that you’ve gotten from this article, you should be able to do just that. Use this information and your best instincts to design the site of your dreams.