Category Archives: Web Design

Web Design Tips For Absolute Beginners

As a new web designer a lot of your design ability will come through practise and research, knowing what is “in” and knowing what will always look good. However, if you’re just starting out and don’t quite have a hold on the nuances, here are a few things to consider.

1. Practise creating suitable graphics

Before you ever try to design something yourself, you need to know how to create suitable graphics and effects. If there’s one thing that will ruin a beautiful concept it is substandard graphics.

If you’re not familiar with the current trends you can get a feel for the prevailing wind in web design by simply visiting a few CSS galleries. Copy buttons and menus and any snazzy effects you particularly like the look of until you’re confident your graphics are top notch.

Once you have a few tricks up your sleeve..

2. Actually design

“I know how it should look in my head, that’s enough”

There are people who prefer to “design in the browser” but until you’re more confident this approach is unlikely to yield favourable results. If you can’t afford Fireworks or Photoshop consider GIMP, it’s free Open Source and doesn’t have all the features you’d ideally have at your disposal, but it’s a good starting point.

3. Don’t be afraid to copy

Obviously I’m not suggesting you steal someone’s entire site design, but if you see a navigation style or a texture that you like, use it as a starting point for a design of your own. There are always certain “looks” that are more prevalent than others, and there is absolutely no shame in using something tried and tested.

4. Design for appropriate resolutions

There’s no hard and fast rule where website width is concerned. Depending on the site in question your users could be a completely different demographic. Generally speaking however 1024 resolutions are still considered appropriate to design for. 960 is a common width for modern sites, take a look at the 960 grid system. Using a grid will help you achieve a nicely proportioned design, making it much more pleasing to the eye.

5. Get your layout sorted first

Leave any color decisions for now, and just mock up the main elements of the design in shades of grey. Make sure content is given an appropriate position and size relative to it’s importance. If it works well without color, you’re onto a winner. Once the layout is finalized you can start to make the more “exciting” decisions.

6. Choose your colors carefully

It shouldn’t need to be said, but don’t choose colors that look hideous together. If in doubt, there are many color scheme sites and applications out there, when stuck for inspiration my tool of choice is usually Kuler.

You should also know about the pros and cons of light vs dark designs. Light text on dark backgrounds are as a rule more difficult to read and can cause eye strain, so are not a great idea to use for magazine or content-heavy sites.

7. Pay attention to fonts

Typography is a complex subject in itself, but for a beginner it is enough to know that it exists, and that font choices are important. While the majority of your website’s content will need to be an easily-readable websafe font, a lot of the time you can go a bit wild with headings to give your design some extra oomph. Investigate Font Squirrel or dafont for something appropriate. For the love of God, do not use Comic Sans.

8. Whitespace. It is good.

Whitespace is, as the name suggests, the space between elements in your design. A cramped page can look overcrowded and messy, while the same page with slightly more space between elements will look completely different.

You can also use whitespace to indicate the importance of an element. A common use for this concept is call to action buttons (a button encouraging users to take an action such as sign up or buy something), surrounding a button with plenty of space ensures nothing detracts from it.

9. Be subtle

I know you want to go crazy with gradients and drop shadows. They’re just so cool.

For the most part a subtler, more natural approach will look infinitely better than a bright blue to pink gradient or a solid black drop shadow. Colors aren’t the only way to misuse these effects either, make sure your gradients are long enough to change steadily, rather than jumping suddenly from one color to the other, and make sure your shadows blend into the background rather than ending abruptly.

10. Prepare yourself

Your first designs aren’t likely to be dazzling. As with any skill, over time you will improve. Keep practising new techniques and looking through the CSS galleries for inspiration. With a few carefully chosen design elements from various other sites you can create something beautiful, and the confidence to design something bold and original will simply come with time.

Critical Mistakes to Attract More Website Clients

Are you the website owner who is having a high bounce rate? Do you think your website is really lacking in converting visitors into customers? Have you ever thought that there could be a problem with the overall layout and design of your website? Often you can fix this problem by simply redesigning the look and layout of your site. There are 5 major factors which could affect the online success of your website.

1) Off base colour scheme for the website: One of the integral parts of your site is the colour scheme. If it is off base then your visitors may lose their interest quickly as soon as they visit the site. You can check for better matched colour schemes at Colorschemedesigner.com.

Just enter your base colour at the site and you will find more than 20 compatible colours for your own website. This tool is freely available to use and you can enhance the look and style of your site with the help of this tool.

2) Incorrect fonts for your site: If the font type, shapes and sizes are a total mismatch to the overall look and feel of your site then it can create a negative feeling for your visitors. You have to match the font type, shape and size with the type of service you are providing to your customers.

Dafont.com can help you to find the appropriate shape, size and type of fonts for your site. This free resource can provide you thousands of varieties for online fonts. Put the proper fonts on your site and see the difference.

3) Browser compatibility factor: Too often website end up with several web browsers not displaying the site as it was intended to look. The compatibility factor plays a very important role here. One of your visitors may open your site in Internet Explorer which shows correctly but that may not be true for the Mozilla Firefox users or vice versa.

There can be some minor issues which may be affecting the multi browser compatibility of your site. You can check this online at Broswershot.org. It is again a free resource where you can test the compatibility of your site in different web browsers and then decide what needs to be corrected.

4) Improper site navigation: The site navigation also plays a crucial role in the online success of your website. There are few site navigation guidelines which you can find on the Internet. Improper navigation for website links is a major mistake which many webmasters make in the beginning.

You should not place the “About Us” link immediately after “Home” tab. Web visitors are usually not interested to check out your companies history. Instead they are mainly interested in what products and services you are offering and the price for these. You should place the “Products” or “Services” Tab immediately after “Home” tab. Placing the “Prices” tab after “Services” can keep the attention of your visitors for a longer period of time. These are the minute details which are important when it comes to the site navigation.

5) Wrong call to action placements: It is critical for you to place appropriate call to action within the most visible places of your site. Contact numbers within the header can prove effective to get prospective clients to call you immediately. Try to place the related order link contextually for your products or services. Correct placement for your call to action makes all the difference while you try to get targeted clients through your website.

Attractive and Creative Web Designing Tips

Websites are an essential eSearch Engine Marketing is primarily conducted in order to boost sales. Here are few tips which will help you target better sales. In order to make sure that your website is performing this business correctly, it is necessary to keep an eye on the web designing of your website. As a matter of fact all other internet marketing strategies like article marketing, email marketing, banner advertising etc, depend on the creativity displayed in web designing. The more attractive and interactive a website, the better are its marketing results. Given below are a few web designing tips, which will help make your website more useful and at the same time attractive to the visitors.

The first thing that you need to realize is that your website is more in demand than the fancy decoration that you do around it. This means that it is more important to pay attention to the real website than spending unnecessary time on adding splash pages. The Splash pages are those pages that appear before the real website is seen. They are normally flash creations or java script images clubbed together to create an attractive intro to your website. They definitely look attractive but coming to think of it, they are actually useless. So why waste your visitor’s time in unnecessary showing off.

Another unnecessary hindrance which might affect the performance of your website is addition of too many banner advertisements. The fact is that most web surfers have now learned to ignore these banner ads. Thus, you will be actually wasting a lot of space in web designing for these banners. It is rather more useful to utilize it in some other way which will highlight few feature of your website and attract traffic.

It is said that images can speak better than words. Yes, you can add images in your website pages to make them more meaningful and attractive. But it is also important that you do not over do the act. If there are too many images in your webpage, it will not only clutter the look of your website, but will also increase its download time making your website slow. So make sure that your edit all your image sizes in a photo editor to a convenient size before uploading them in the site.

These are just a few of the many web designing tips and ideas which will make your website an attractive and impressive creation.

Web Design Tips for Creating Professional Websites

THE BASICS OF WEB DESIGN

A website often conveys the first impression of a business, brand or a company. A great website doesn’t have to be complicated or a mesh up, it can be simple yet powerful. To put it in simple words, a design should follow these simple rules of basic design to be qualified as a quality web design.

Connects the visitor with the content
Easy to read and navigate
Simplicity of design
Consistency in design across all web pages
Good choice of contrasting colors for enhanced readability
Design should be direct and properly organized
Design should complement the website’s genre
Color, graphic and proper typography is important for creating a balanced design. But if your website design has all these in it but fails to connect to the visitor, the design will fail. Therefore, creating a great design is only possible when designer is focusing on the content and design at the same time. A designer, who fails to understand the purpose of a website, will mostly fail to create a catchy design.

WEB DESIGN TIPS

Although it is difficult to provide any generic list of design directions for a website, following certain settled design principle will mostly result in great designs. Creating a website can be fun as long as you understand graphics, layout, fonts, advertising area, and color scheme. Here are some generic tips for creating great looking websites that will not only get higher visits but the conversions will also jump up due to good design.

WEB DESIGN TIPS FOR CREATING RESULT-ORIENTED GRAPHICS

– Create lighter graphics

Always think about keeping your graphic images small, mostly 10-12 KB. Many webmasters only focus on creating a visual without thinking about its presentation on the Internet. Websites with heavier graphics take too long to load and are less productive.

– Forget about fancy images

Many good designs lose their appeal because of fancy images, usually blinking. If you want to keep your design decent and attractive, forget about fancy images.

– Graphics should reflect the content

If you want to create graphics that will deliver results instead of just being ‘catchy’, think about creating graphics that will accurately reflect website content. In other words, content and graphics should have a close intimacy with each other.

WEBSITE DESIGN TIPS FOR CREATING A GREAT LAYOUT

– Follow the standards

Using 8 frames on a page will not do any good to your design. Following a standard layout will not only help you to render your pages across all the different browser, it will also keep the layout simple helping you to deliver the message across, without a problem.

– Always prepare a layout on paper before creating it in your graphic program

Most designers get to their computer screens straightaway without first creating a design idea on paper. Even if you are that type, consider creating a basic layout in your graphic program before working on elements of your layout.

WEB DESIGN TIPS RELATED TO FONT, ADVERTISING AND COLOR

– Think about your reader

Always think about your reader when setting fonts, colors and advertising areas.

– Keep a balance between content, graphic and advertisement

Always create a layout that accurately balances graphic and content with advertisement. You will be surprised to see the results if you successfully implement this idea.

– Cross-browser compatibility

With browser wars still on and market share shifting from one browser to another, you have to make sure that your pages are loading as you see them in every browser. Check your design in different browsers before making it live.