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Tips for Building a Great Website

PHP Code Snippets > Tips for Building a Great Website

by Steve Dawson Web Developer


Designing a website may seem easy and in fact it may be for some people but for those who are taking the first steps need to know a few things to keep themselves on the right track at the start. Falling foul at the beginning of the learning curve can make your website, well how can I put it, not very desirable! By keeping to a few simple 'rules', you can design and maintain a website which you can be proud of putting your name to. Don't, whatever you do jump into the mould of flashing banners, loads of pictures and bright colours, all this will do is kill your website dead in the water before it has even got started.

Quite a few designers go down this route thinking it looks great, nice and flashy, but - and it's a big but - they will probably be the only person who thinks this is the case. There is nothing worse than visiting a website that takes a while to fully download and then is so in your face, you take an instant dislike to it and click somewhere else.

What I am trying to get across is that you have to design the website with the target audience in mind, even if you do not like the website yourself, as long as it serves its purpose and makes the client happy, then you have achieved your goal - you have built a solid, fully functioning website.

You can take great reward in the fact that people all around the world could visit one of your websites at anytime. For some it may not be a big deal, but for a designer to have there creation on view is a great accolade. So keep the design simple, effective and follow the few basic website design tips below and it should set you on your way to creating great looking websites.

Top Tips for a great Website

  • Plan your website thoroughly, number of pages, page titles and design theme.
  • Build your website to your target audience, in terms of style and content.
  • Design consistency; keep the same design theme throughout your website.
  • Keep all related website files in the same folder/working directory. This allows you to find any files related to your website and to create a back-up easily.
  • Always use lowercase for your file/page name
  • Avoid using large or multiple graphics on the same page.
  • Use a popular font for your website text as not all computers have the same fonts installed.
  • Popular fonts are: Arial, Times New Roman, Verdana, Scan Serif, Tahoma.
  • Check your website on different PC's at different resolution settings. What might look good on your computer may not be the same as others.
  • Menu navigation should be very easy to use!
  • Titles and page heading are very important. Keep them different on all pages.
  • Meta keywords and met description should also be different and concise on all pages. Keep keywords down to around 10-15 related words and separate with a comma.
  • Never use a black background on a sales or selling website!
  • Always check spelling and grammar on your website copy text.
  • Always keep a back-up copy of all your website files on a CD which is kept somewhere safe!

Just these few simple tips can make you a cut above the rest in the design stakes if you are planning on building your own website. If you have solid brand awareness for your company and you are thinking of doing the planning and designing of your website yourself, it may be wise to think again. Your website could be the first contact a prospective client has of you - and you want it to be right. It could be a good move to hire a professional website designer in this instance.

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