If you do not know much about it, web design can seem like a mysterious and intimidating art. The truth is, you’ll find it easier once you have mastered the fundamentals. If you use the tips provided in the next few paragraphs, you can design a site that not only looks good, but is easy to use, as well.
It is always good to add a favicon to your website. The favicon is a 16×16 image file in the .Ico format. This image is the one you see next to the URL bar, next to the title of the page on an opened tab and is also visible on your bookmarks tab if you choose to bookmark a page. The favicon will help users quickly recognize your page in their browser without reading any text or directly viewing the page.
Be sure your site has a tagline everyone can see. The tagline is some statement or motto that indicates the nature of your business. Having a tagline is important; most users know if they will stay on a page after about eight seconds, so you need to do whatever it takes to keep their attention.
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.
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.
Give your visitors the ability to search your site so that they can more easily find what they are looking for. If someone cannot find what they are looking for right away, their next thought will be to look for a search field. Put this somewhere obvious and include a search button.
Use a tracking service, rather than displaying your visitor counter for all to read. Many websites still display their counters, yet they do not serve any real purpose. There are many high quality tracking services available, and some are even free. Use these instead of showing off how many people visit you.
As you can now see, web designing does not have to be confusing. Designing the right website for you becomes easier as you learn more about web design. Use these tips to create a great site in no time.