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  1. #1
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    Doís and Doníts of Web Design

    Do you want to have a website for your company? If so, then you must have already thought of a look for your website. But before making that thought a reality, you must first know what your websites must and must not have. This can help you make your website more attracting and effective to its visitors.

    First off, your website should have titles that make sense. On every web page, there is a title that you can read in the top title bar of your browser. You should have a title that is more general rather than specific. For example, if you want to give information on how to train dogs, and you have a dog named Lyka, you should have a title like How to train Dogs instead of something like How to train Lyka.

    Donít put any flash intros on your website. A research says that one of the most clicked buttons on websites at present is the Ďskip introí button. Flash intros can only slow down the download of your website and irritate visitors.

    Donít put links on web pages that are still under construction. Visitors will just get irritated if they clicked on the link and found nothing. Instead, just disable that link until the web page is ready for viewing.

    Turn off the blue borders on linked graphics. Links usually are clickable by words but you can replace it with a image to make it look like a button. But the problem is that it will still have a blue border on it to make it look like a link. That blue border does not look good with the button, so turn off that blue border.

    These are all the necessary stuff that you need to learn before letting a web designer design your website. Instruct them on what they should put and what they should not put on the website they are about to design.

  2. #2
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    I agree with these tips, especially the flash intro one (unless its a very cool flash intro )
    Thanks for sharing!
    If I could add: navigation is the most important aspect of your site. Have your site navigation menu at the top/side of the site and accessible from every page consistently. The user should find any page on your site with ease.

  3. #3
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    I agree .. thanks for sharing anyway .. flash sux .

  4. #4
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    Good points. A few I would add are first, watch your navigation! Nothing is more annoying than a site in which the user can't find what they're looking for. For the most part nothing should be more than a click or two away. Also, make sure your content is available without forcing the user to do anything but clicking the mouse. Many users won't take the time to type anything into a site so if they can't find it by clicking they might just go away.

    Second, as a designer/developer it is very important to pay attention to the SEO aspects of the site these days. Take the time to make use of technologies such as RSS, sitemaps, robots.txt and more. In the end your client will be grateful.

    Next, watch your browsers! Just because it looks great on your screaming Vista machine in the new IE8 Beta you downloaded doesn't mean it looks great anywhere else. Check it in IE7 and Firefox at a minimum and if your can try adding IE6, Opera, and Safari. Finally, try a computer other than your own. It's amazing how much a different monitor can sometimes change the color scheme, not to mention what a different OS like linux or Mac can do to the fonts and other aspects you spent so much time perfecting.

    Finally and most importantly, HAVE FUN with it. If you don't enjoy the project your working on it will show in the final product. Don't overstress on every detail, and don't lose the big picture. In the end your job is to convey information in the most effective way possible. If you let your frustration grow over the details and start losing your patience with the project itself that big picture will get lost in cyberspace and the only thing you'll wind up conveying is your frustration to an equally if not more frustrated client.

  5. #5
    SitePoint Member Decipher's Avatar
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    Don't forget about the H1 and H2 tags.

    And I agree with wiggsfly. Proper navigation, link structure, and checking your design IN ALL MAJOR BROWSERS is a must.
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  6. #6
    SitePoint Enthusiast devAngel's Avatar
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    i agree on your points...though if you have links that is still under construction, you could always have a god 404 error that would get them back to the index page so the traffic would also redirect to the index page. There are some sites that has a good 404 traffic :P

    I agree on the flash intro as well. Im not a flash fan so I'm one of the surfers who clicks to skip the intro
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  7. #7
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    Thanks for the tips...I've had a website online for about a year now but trying to make it look and run a bit better, these hints will come in handy.

  8. #8
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    Keep your text size big if you can. Small text looks great from a graphic design standpoint, but discourages users. Big text is easier to read and will keep visitors reading longer. Text set at "medium" or 12 pt is usually good.

    Keep in mind the senior citizens. If you want people age 60 and over to really read your site, back 4 feet away from your screen. If you, as a young person with a young person's eyesight have trouble reading it from four feet, your senior citizen customers will have trouble reading it from normal distances.

  9. #9
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by devAngel View Post
    i agree on your points...though if you have links that is still under construction, you could always have a god 404 error that would get them back to the index page so the traffic would also redirect to the index page. There are some sites that has a good 404 traffic :P

    I agree on the flash intro as well. Im not a flash fan so I'm one of the surfers who clicks to skip the intro

    A better solution is to NOT make it a link until the page it is to link to is finished.

    The skip intro button is only the second most common action when a flash intro appears. Hitting the back button is about 10 times more popular in that situation.
    Stephen J Chapman

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  10. #10
    <code></code><WoW></WoW> nukeemusn's Avatar
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    Cross browser support is necessary, but cross-browser-indenticalness (my word) is not. Where budgets allow, take advantage of more advanced browsers capabilities. But allow the design to degrade gracefully without them.

    Keep AJAX-y stuff minimal; limited only to what is absolutely necessary. As cool as it is to refresh one part of a page and not have to reload, it does tax the server, and can lead to odd behaviors if the data source isn't working perfectly. Also, if you do use AJAX or any kind of scripting, MAKE SURE IT'S SECURE.
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  11. #11
    SitePoint Addict palgrave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nukeemusn View Post
    Cross browser support is necessary, but cross-browser-indenticalness (my word) is not.
    I agree. The trick is not to make it look the same in lots of browsers, but to make it look good in lots of browsers.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by palgrave View Post
    I agree. The trick is not to make it look the same in lots of browsers, but to make it look good in lots of browsers.
    An easy way to do this is to follow W3C standards and grab a book like Eric Meyers - Building Websites using CSS.

    The W3C.org site is a great resource and always fun to tour. Maybe I am too much of a geek. LOL.
    James Kudlovich - Director of Possibilities
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  13. #13
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    i agree on most of the tips..

  14. #14
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    I agree. Thanks for sharing.


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