Square buttons, round buttons, flashy buttons … will they
match my shoes, my handbag or my tie? Are you stuck in a maze of
buttons, headings, bullets, sub-headings and colour schemes?
Stop! and take a deep breath and read some practical tips for professional
looking great websites.
1. Select and stick to a colour scheme
If your company has a logo or preferred colours on its stationery
that’s a good start. For those of you starting from scratch,
choose two or three complementary colours and stick with them –
don’t change colours on every page.
The most common colour schemes include:
- Red, yellow and white
- Blue and white
- Red, grey and white
- Blue, orange and white
- Yellow, grey and white.
If you’re not sure what colour scheme to choose, surf the
internet and find a website that you like. You can then model your
colour scheme on what already exists.
2. Use templates.
Can’t find a website you really like? Another option is to
choose a template. There are many templates or pre-set designs.
These come as part of your web design software (such as FrontPage)
or you can check out some great websites that specialise in designing
templates and also offers some of them for FREE! with lots of tips
for designing a website.
This is one of the most important issues to consider when designing
a website. You need to ensure your visitors can find what they are
looking for easily. Most great looking websites either display their
navigation bar on the left or at the top. And since most people
are used to this type of navigation, it’s best to stick with
It also helps to include your navigation bar at the bottom of each
page to save your visitors from having to scroll back to the top.
4. Don’t go overboard on special effects
Whilst it is ok to have one or two special effects to jazz up your
website, spinning graphics and logos often distract your visitor
from the content, not to mention they can take too long to download.
Your visitors may click away even before your spinning logo finishes
Ensure your visitors can read the text on the background, ie. no
black writing on dark blue background or yellow on white. Also be
careful that your links are visible before and after being visited.
The default for links in most programs is blue (before being visited)
and burgundy (after being visited), so if you have a dark background,
ensure your links are light.
6. External Links
It is a good idea to open links to other websites (external) in
a new window. That way your visitors can easily return to your site
when they are finished browsing the external website link.
7. Site Map & Search Feature
If you are designing a website that would include more than 15
pages, then it is useful to have a sitemap or a website “Search”
feature on your website to ensure your visitors can easily find
what they’re looking for quickly and easily.
8. Content is King
While it is important that your website looks clean and professional
to be a great website, it is far more important that you concentrate
your efforts on the creating useful and unique contents backed by
whole hearted promotion using ethical means to gain higher search
engine ranking and large volume of relavent visitors.
If you want to design a professional looking website, the top most
things to stay away from should includes:
1. Flash intros, revolving globes, bevelled line separators, animated
2. Loads of pop up or pop under boxes
3. Autoplay music. Allow your customer to play music only if they
4. Hit counters of the free variety, which say “you are 27th
5. Date and time stamps, unless your website is updated daily or
6. Busy backgrounds.
Don’t sweat the small stuff and get yourself focussed on
what to include on the website and the best way to promote it. We
will cover these topics in future articles.
Thinking of creating a website?
Google Sites is a free and easy way to create and share webpages. Learn
Recommended Video Tutorial:
HTML Tutorial 1 - Designing A Website In Notepad - Basics
This HTML website design tutorial teach you how to write and format
your very first web page using basic HTML and Notepad.
Basic Web Design Guidelines
Poor web design is one of the leading causes of small business
failure. There are literally thousands of home-based Internet
businesses struggling to make a living online.
Web Development Tools
Developing a successful web site takes a great deal of planning
and preparation. An important part of your preparation is obtaining
the essential tools of the trade.
Surefire Website Design Tips
Use more text than graphics, and minimize the use of Flash and
and index your site faster.
Flashy Web Designs are Bad
Many business owners want their website to have that cutting-edge
look, and so will ask for things such as animation, music, flash,
and other "bells and whistles" that would be detrimental
to their site.
to Create a Quality Website
If you don't catch your visitors attention right away, statistics
shows us that your visitors will come and go within 15 seconds
or less. So how to design a website?
is critical to a websites
You navigation system must be obvious and easy to use. An image-map
is great if it is very well designed and loads quickly. Text
links are great as they load very fast.
This article is originally written by Ivana Katz who is
the owner of Websites 4 Small Business - www.web4business.com.au,
a company specialising in the design and promotion of small and
home-based business websites.