How to Design Your Website Quickly
If you think everything that matters in a website is its content, you are clearly mistaken. With technological breakthroughs growing exponentially, and an easily distracted audience in the Internet, your website design may be exactly what you need to save your website from dreadfully low hits and tanking audience participation. Let’s walk you through some essentials that you need to know about a great website design.
The Importance of Great Website Design:
Sadly, many companies are stuck with the mindset that either content or form matters. While some companies have taken to hiring the best writers in a badly made and slow website (think about those websites that got all the color combination and graphical images totally wrong), others have taken the extreme end of putting up websites that have very little substance and are convoluted. In other words, most companies have no idea at all what they are doing. The situation is even worse for small businesses and budding professionals who are just starting to explore the Internet.
You’re not about to be told that either form or content matters, because the fact is that both form and content matter! If you want to make a truly interactive website, then you should invest in great website design that will pave the way for amazing content and form. You simply can’t choose between the two; you have to find a way to reconcile them and it all starts with brilliant website design.
At day’s end, you must be wondering: what do I need a great website for anyway? As long as the website fulfills its basic function of either informing or selling to the public, shouldn’t that be enough? Unfortunately, without great website design, you can’t even attempt to fulfill either goal through your website.
It all starts with a basic understanding of how the Web works. Highly visual and choice-based, the Internet has granted the power to the website user: every website user is totally in control of what the website he chooses to visit, the icons to click, or the functions to interact with. Ultimately, it’s all about the audience—not about you.
Unlike television or radio commercials where people have no choice but to watch or to listen to what is delivered them, your business doesn’t get to impose what you want on them. If you release a terrible television ad, a couch potato will have no other choice but to watch it. The Internet is different altogether: if your website has a design that horrifies even the most tolerable Internet user, you can kiss your profits goodbye.
The success of your website and your business rests on a great website design. You may want to skip the design stage and immediately go to putting the website together, but this will only compromise the form and content of your website. You might as well not put a website up if you’re going to scrimp on the website design stage.
Goals of a Great Website Design:
Having laid down the mindset you ought to have when creating a website, what are the goals that you should pursue during the design stage of a website?
First is to keep in mind that your business identity matters. In a sea of products and services competing against each other, you have to struggle and find a way to make your website an embodiment of what you are offering. Take a look at your competitor’s website. Make a survey of your company’s unique selling proposition. Do something that makes your product or service stand out among the others—and make sure that it reflects in your website. A great website design, more than anything, is one that gives a quick recall of what your product is.
Another equally important goal you should move towards is user satisfaction. In the process of making your website design, you might want to create a group of third party users. You may then have this group uses your website at every stage—ask them how they find the website thus far, and solicit their opinions. Make sure that this group is composed of random visitors, not anybody interested in your website success. This may result in prejudice, obviously.
You must also keep in mind what you are putting up a website for. If it’s informative, make sure that the design revolves around a website that principally heeds attention to education-friendly content. If your website is meant to bring in sales, then don’t forget to interact with merchant businesses that will allow your users to purchase from your company. Finally, to drive traffic to the website, pay attention to the search engine optimization and the copy of the website.
Essential Elements of a Great Website Design:
Are there any hard and fast rules as regards great website design? Although there definitely are essential elements that can help you pursue the goals previously mentioned, the rest is really up to the public to decide. In other words, these essential elements leave much room for creativity, so you can come up with ways to excite and surprise your audience.
1) Clear Layout Structure
Tell the links as they are. Internet users don’t want to grope around and waste their time trying to figure out your website’s interface. There’s a way to do this without compromising your creativity. Usually great looking websites have 2 or 3 column websites as this would allow the users to have a clear focus on the website.
2) Fast and Straight to the Point
An effective website should only have one and only one purpose. When you want to sell product A, be sure that your writings are about product A and not product B, C or D. Sometimes giving more choices for your consumers would result in confusion and indecisiveness for the potential prospects. You will ultimately be at the losing end, as this confusing and annoying strategy may cost you some well-deserved clients or customers.
3) Effective, Creative Copy
In great website design, as already emphasized, the content matters as much as the form. Invest an equally precious amount of time in coming up with catchy and snappy lines. Don’t settle for the traditional: go for the bold, the daring, and most of all, go for the content that represents your brand the most. It would be a bit ironic if your website sounds sexy when you’re really trying to sell a brand for kids, won’t it?
Copyblogger – great website for explaining how to create ad copy that sells.
4) Visual Pleasantries
Everybody loves a good visual treat! So why don’t you do your audience a favor and give them just that? This doesn’t mean that you have to spend thousands of bucks in digital design and audio-visual presentations. In fact, you can go for the simpler, visually relaxing style. Make sure the color combination are perfectly matched—be careful not to use too many colors. What you want to do is to take your audience on a journey with your website’s visuals. How you’re going to do it is entirely up to you.
5) Attract their attention
Be daring: do something that will tempt them to interact with you, or at the very least compel them to know more about your product. You can do this by an attention-grabbing headline or poster right smack at the center of the website. Or you can use impressive special effects users have not encountered before. Make sure though that all the other parts of the website concur with this attention-grabbing feature though.
6) Search Engine Optimization
Meta tags, highly searched keywords, search engine-optimized website – all these are factors essential factors in great website design. With thousands of websites being put up every minute, how can you manage to get yours out there? A completely optimized website may give you the initial boost and publicity you need. The best part is that you don’t even have to spend a lot to do this! Use a WordPress CMS system to help you with your website content and you will love it.