When designing an excellent site, are you in need of expensive software and special templates? The answer to this question varies according to what you are prepared to learn about the process. To avoid the most labor intensive and specialized areas of design, you’ll need to use special software and probably use a third party for some of the work. However, this should not be necessary as long as you are able to educate yourself and work hard to improve your skills.
For multimedia presentations, take advantage of the new HTML5 standard. Although HTML5 isn’t quite as robust for animation and games as Flash, it has the advantage of working stably on mobile phone browsers, including those contained in Apple hardware. HTML5 is also quite a bit leaner than Flash, so load times will improve, as well.
Watch your use of color combinations when building your site. If the text fades into the background due to poor contrast, the text will be hard to read. Dark text colors on lighter backgrounds tend to be easier on the eyes than light colors on dark backgrounds. Let some of your friends see your site and give you some advice before going live.
Avoid using frames. Most sites have abandoned frames on their own as better alternatives have become available, but there are still sites out there that are trapped in 1996. Alternatives to navigational frames include fixed-position navigation panels, having navigation in multiple areas (e.g. left and bottom) or simplifying page structure so that navigational links are never far away.
Newsletters can generate repeat visits. Having customers subscribe to your newsletter allows you to send them important updates about special events, which in turn can get them to keep visiting your site. Put the form for signing up in a prominent location, such as a sidebar, and use it to compile a list of visitors who opt in to your newsletter. Send the newsletter only to people who opt-in or you could get in trouble for spam!
If you desire feedback from your visitors, design your site to include a feedback form rather than a guestbook. A feedback form lets your site visitors contact you without having anything negative be shown to everyone else who sees your site. If you have a guestbook then everyone can read both good and bad comments, something you really do not want people to see, especially when the comments are negative.
While learning to design your website is important, it’s not as complicated as learning the basics of open heart surgery. You won’t have to go to school, and you definitely aren’t holding anyone’s life in your hands. But, by carefully following the advice of this article, you should be more than capable of producing incredible web design in no time at all.