No matter what sort of website you have, it is important to make sure that it follows the principles of good web design. A poorly designed website will drive away visitors and frustrate those few who persevere. The following article can help you design a high quality website and attract more traffic.
Keep the size of your web pages small. A lot of modern web pages are full of unnecessary elements, including huge images, Flash advertising, and lots of AJAX. Many people, especially those in rural areas and other countries with less-developed internet infrastructure, don’t have high-speed Internet and will have to wait forever for a large page to load.
If you’re designing a website, make sure the code you write has a valid HTML+CSS. Although most browsers can make sense of code that isn’t valid, it could be rendered correctly or incorrectly. Valid code will render the same way most of the time in modern browsers. You can check the validity of your HTML code with an HTML validator.
You must always look at your finished websites in multiple browsers. Different browsers show websites in different ways. Do research on the various browsers in use, and design your website accordingly. Make sure to also send the site to someone running a different OS to make sure those browsers are compatible.
Don’t use OnExit popups on your website. This tactic is mainly used by internet marketers who are trying a last-ditch attempt to get a sale. Word about these kinds of popups get around, and they will kill your reputation as a marketer. Mozilla has even taken steps to suppress the text on these popups, citing security risks.
Web design is a subject that you always want to stay informed on. With this in mind, if you have any friends that are also into web design then you will want to keep in contact with them. You can exchange any new information you learn so that you’re both on top of your game when it comes to web design.
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.
Always mark files that must be opened in an external program with an icon. Many sites host PDF files, and less commonly, DOC files, that must be opened in Foxit Reader and Microsoft Word/OpenOffice, respectively. These files should be marked with an icon representing the file type, and a link to download the appropriate viewer if the user does not have it.
As you have seen, the principles of good web design are not terribly mysterious or difficult to implement. However, too many websites still ignore these basic techniques. Do not let your site fall into this category. Put these techniques into practice to design a website that you can be proud of.