Pay Proper Attention to Every Aspect of Web Design

When you are planning to sell a particular product or business via your website, you would naturally have to look after it’s every aspect. A site is somewhat like a store which you maintain in the best possible way in order to attract and impress your customers. When you are on your website, in a similar way you would have to maintain in the best possible way so that you can pull in more customers.

When you are launching your website, the idea of the site should always be to make it presentable and the best way that you can do so is through web design. In fact without proper web designing, your site would look dull and consequently it would fail to attract the customers from wide spheres.

There are several aspects included in the web design. However, you as a web master must at least have some basic knowledge about the design. Otherwise it may turn out that you are being deceived by the designer that you hire.

Content is also an important part of your website. Make sure that the web design should always be in accordance with the information provided in the content. Otherwise your customers whom you are intending for making the site would simply get confused regarding the actual purpose of your site.

Graphical elements are definitely an important part of web design. It has to be implemented in the site thoughtfully in accordance with not only the content but also the space provided in the web page by the web developer. If there are excess of graphical elements in the site, it would naturally take more time to download. This in course of time would make your visitors annoyed. As a result, it might be the last time for which your visitors are visiting your site.

You obviously do not want such a situation because in that case, your entire business would turn into a great loss. Apart from the graphical elements, images, color of the background and the text, the font size should all be carefully looked after. Make sure that you give such a font size so that it is easily readable by your visitors in the monitor. These are actually nothing but just a creation of good impression of your web site. Once your site gets popular, you would automatically find that there are lots of visitors in your site only due to your past website reputation.

Therefore try to be careful in every aspect of the web design that you do. If however, you think that you do require a web designer for designing your site in the most professional manner, you should look for experienced and qualified designers. These designers can be hired from some reputed companies or as individual as well. You would have to pay slightly higher rate to the designer but this would definitely prove to be worth the value of the profit and success that you get at the end.

How Much Text Should You Place on a Web Page?

A frequent question that arises amongst web designers is how much text should be placed on a web page. However many web designers use decisions based on subjective feelings rather than basing their decisions on quantitative research.

Page density refers to the proportion of a web page that is occupied by text and graphics whilst white space is the portion of the page where nothing is displayed. The percentage of page white space and the percentage of the page density will amount to 100%.

Long before viewing hypertext pages on the web researchers conducted studies to investigate the relationship between the amount of information contained on a page and the amount of time that it took for a user to find an item as part of a predefined task.  Not surprisingly and in accordance with what many would intuitively think they found that the more information that was placed on a screen then the longer it took to complete the task.

In light of this research many authors have suggested guidelines on the amount of information that should be presented to users at any one time.  Some authors have issued guidelines stating that screen densities of 25% shouldn’t be exceeded at one end of the scale and 60% at the other.  However one aspect these items didn’t cover which the web designer or web developer should be aware (but frequently aren’t) is that other components of a web page have a significant effect on a web users interaction with a website and consequently the effectiveness of the site other than just the page density.

Furthermore, the main question for a web designer who has a fixed amount of information to present on a webpage is what page density to use as that will directly affect the number of pages required by the site.

One study tried to address this question by presenting a fixed amount of information with different numbers of pages. There were a large number of low density pages, a medium number of average density pages and a low number of high density pages. Other factors such as the need to scroll the screens of information were removed from the study.

What the result of this investigation found and should be remembered by web designers at all times is that performance was significantly faster on the low number of high density pages, with the performance being worst on the high number of low density pages. Another interesting attribute of this investigation was that there was little difference between novice and experienced users, high density pages always won.

These results suggest, to a certain extent, that the best approach for web design is that lots of information should be placed on a webpage as densely as possible without risking the loss of user accuracy or satisfaction. This will also result in a lower number of web pages which a user will have to navigate through. Some people may take this to the apparent logical conclusion that everything should be placed on one page. However, to keep the web designer on his toes, other factors come into play, such as the need to scroll and how the information is presented on page, let alone the time to load individual pages.

A further study which supports high page densities which involved users searching for information on commercial websites found that the more white space, the less successfully people found information. The authors however speculated that although this aided readers who were looking for specific information, it may not be helpful to people skimming pages, who will be most successful when they can skim the most material the most quickly.

However before the web designer or web developer set out to create the ultimate web design there are other design tricks that can increase the effectiveness of a web site.  There are four items that should be remembered:

  • Abbreviations. By using abbreviations which the users will be familiar with rather than the full text the density of information that be conveyed in a limited number of words is dramatically increased.
  • Reduce unnecessary detail. Don’t get carried away with superfluous detail. Winston Churchill once apologised for writing a long letter to someone as he didn’t have time to write a concise letter. Spend time by rigorously reducing the amount of unnecessary text.
  • Familiar format and presentation. By presenting information to users in a familiar way so that they don’t have to think increases the speed and accuracy. Examples of this would be presenting dates in d/m/y format for Europe and m/d/y for the US. Other items would include postcodes (zip codes), thousands separators and telephone numbers (don’t use full international numbers if the users will be from the same locality).
  • Tabulate. If information can be presented in table form then the web design should reflect that. Tables have the advantage of allowing the use of descriptive column and row headings that exquisitely eliminate the need to keep repeating the same label to data elements. The result being the same amount of information with reduced text.

By being aware of these web design guidelines it is possible to create a web site that will allow users to effectively interact and leave a lasting good impression of your hard work.

Choosing a Web Package – A Guideline

One of the very first questions you need to ask yourself is: Why do I need a web site? Several answers might pop up; to boost my sales, to make myself known, to have a reference for my clients, to start a new business,…the list can go on and on…but how do you determine what’s right for you and your business?

The way to evaluate possible contenders for the job is to ask the right questions. Here are some questions you cannot afford not to ask.

In reference to the company that provides web services, you should ask…

1. Are they offering just web development, or, just web hosting, or do they have a vast range of services linked to the web industry?…i.e. do they offer the whole spectrum of services linked with web sites?

2. How do their prices compare to other companies who are providing the same services?

3. How flexible are they to my requirements…a) do they offer extra pages? b) do they offer additional hosting? c) is support part of the price I’m paying?

4. Do they offer dynamic sites? Normally this would give an indication of how experienced their programmers are in developing sites.

5. Are there any references to ‘search engine optimization’ on their site? If not, most probably they are not going to write my site in a way that major search engines can find it and rank it highly.

6. Do they offer search engine optimization? This is very important if I need to rank high and make the task for prospective customers to find me an easy one.

These are questions you should ask and if in doubt don’t hesitate to contact the company before investing your money in them. Most importantly they need to have fast and reliable support, although this can only be verified when it’s too late, i.e. you have already paid for it.

Other decisions you need to take is how your web site should look like. Do you require a static site with a lot of content, or minimum content with impressive graphics, sounds and animations? This would obviously depend on the nature of your business and the way you need to promote your image. The company you choose need to have enough experience to help you make this decision based on your business’ perspectives.

Whatever the case, as in nearly all things in life, a moment of reflection and some research are fundamental in order to make the right decision.