A Better Website in 5 Steps: Step 5 – Design

Posted By On Thursday, September 29th, 2011

In this post, we’ll be discussing some simple methods for creating a better website using best practices for design, which plays a rather significant role in the process of upgrading your site.

  •  Use the right colors – Most of us have this one figured out, but the first element of design to check is the color scheme you’ve chosen for your site. When you visit your home page, can you read the text? If you are using an image background or placing light colored text on a light background color, it’s time to make some changes. Keep it simple and readable.
  • Limit use of graphics – While appropriately placing images on your website can be an effective design element, it’s generally best to include only a few on each page. Avoid using images or graphics as navigational elements, since text links are more usable and conducive to a better website design.
  • Test for browser compatibility – This one is a bit trickier, but it’s very important. While the majority of internet users continue to use Internet Explorer, other web browsers have gained in popularity in the last few years. You should open your site in all major browsers to see how it appears in each one. Are there any major differences? Does it display incorrectly in any? If so, changes must be made to your CSS in order to achieve a better website.
  • Design links differently – Be sure that your design makes text links appear different from the plain text around them. If you have a paragraph of black text, any links within it should be a different color and they should be underlined. This makes it easy to spot them.
  •  Feature important content “above the fold” – If you have a call to action and want visitors to click a button, don’t put it at the bottom of the page. Be sure that they don’t have to scroll at all in order to see or click your most important messages.

These are all ideas you can try today, so experiment and track your results.

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