Successful website design. How to guide!
When planning on creating a website whether for personal use or for business, you will need these 7 important factors in order to have a successful website. If you find that your current website is lacking in traffic then check to see if you have missed a crucial part in this list. Every part of this list is important but ineffective by alone. You have to incorporate every facet in order to truly have a website that will help you succeed in whatever endeavour you choose. These are the things that I believe make for a great website.
1. Content – Of course content is the utmost important factor in attracting visitors to your website and having great, unique and worthwhile content will be your most important weapon. Great content should be informative and straight to the point with a little bit of amusement thrown in. It should be unique enough o have visitors coming back and even giving your website address to others with similar needs.
2. Navigation – Navigating a website should never be like traversing a maze. If your visitors get confused then you might want to think about changing your layout. A website that is a hassle to browse through can bet that any visitors will only be a onetime affair. You should be able to completely convey to the visitor each and every part of your site and where they can find that which they are looking for. Easily readable fonts and a leisure ambiance to your web page is a welcome design.
3. Domain Name – Having a convoluted or hard to spell domain name is one way of being forgettable to users. Refrain from using overly complicated words and choose something simpler and stylish when picking your domain name. It should be something that directly references your content and is witty enough to be remembered easily. Do this and you will have more chances of becoming the top website in your category.
4. Cross Compatibility – If you use Firefox do not forget about making sure your website can be displayed perfectly on other browsers. Depending on your encoding, your website might not work smoothly on a different browser and can greatly limit your visitors. Always see if you are using a cross compatible design on your web page in order to maximize your potential visitors.
5. Top notch quality Media – Having images that are blurry is a flag that just screams amateurish. Be careful when uploading any type of images in your website and make sure that you are optimizing their quality to the max. Visitors being greeted with some sharp and high definition artistic images will subconsciously be thinking of professionalism in presentation.
6. Page Loading – A slow website will definitely be seeing less visitors that faster ones. Today, users expect lightning fast browsing and slow loading is now considered a thing of the past. No matter how flash your website is, nobody will care if it loads longer than 15 seconds, and I’m pushing the envelope their already. If you have slow loading problems I suggest you remedy it right away, why would anyone wait any longer if there are dozens of other websites out there that offer nearly the same content and can be accessed almost immediately?
7. Contact Information – An important part of any website catering to services that is worth their salt, having a contact form in your website is a very simple and easy way to get feedbacks from visitors. It also suggests to the visitors that you are interested in what they think not to mention giving them immediate way to contact you for more information on your business and the like. Always have some way for visitors to contact you directly right in your website. It will be much effortless for them to not copy any address or open another window to message you.
Choosing a dedicated host server rather than shared hosting plan has a lot of perks. You have complete control on the server and will have free reign to customize everything to fit your business or ideas. With all these control at your fingertips, a dedicated server hosting plan will shoulder you with a lot more responsibility than its counterpart. For one, if you have more than one account registered then it is up to you to update and maintain all the securities necessary in case of a virus attack and such. It all comes down to you when it comes to protecting your server.
But what if you don’t have the experience and knowledge of the dangers you’ll commonly face online? That’s where this article comes in, I will shed some light on the problem to help you be more vigilant and reduce the chances of damages inflicted by viruses.
The DoS Attack
The DoS or “denial of service” attack is one of the most prevalent and infuriating problems encountered when facilitating your own host server. This attack is primarily directed at business websites and can completely hinder your online revenue. It consists of attackers incorporating several malicious computers to flood your website with traffic making your website crash and become unavailable preventing potential customers’ entry to your website.
There are a couple of main defense against this attack, first and foremost is to have a server host that is connected to an updated and fairly powerful hardware with a vast resources. Next is to check if your provider is using a high quality security system themselves and monitor your traffic generation round the clock for any inadequacies or sudden spikes.
Malwares are extensive and consists of viruses, trojans, spywares and worms. These malicious programs damage your computer by downloading important files, history and even keystrokes. The main concern about malwares is that they easily be hidden within a legitimate program installer or files. Preventing them is simple enough, make sure you have an updated anti-virus database and scan each new files and programs that you have in your computer. Scan every installer, no exceptions, and you can greatly reduce the chance of a very dangerous malware from infecting your server.
Unfortunately, as we upgrade our online protection from virus attacks, hackers have also upgraded their tools to steal valuable data and create even more advanced form of malwares. It has become much more common for hackers to steal passwords from server host planners due to the minimal protection and readiness of some providers to these types of attacks. A more steadfast password policy is needed to be implemented especially in the server hosting as a lot of users are in danger of this attack.
To prevent theft of your passwords to your site, you will need a good quality software that handles this problems and to manually make you passwords harder to decipher. The best technique is to have a seemingly random jumble of letters with capitals, symbols and numbers as your password because words, names and phrases are easier to be stolen by hackers. Also, changing your password every week is an efficient way of preventing data theft online. If you have multiple servers connected don’t use the same password on all of them. Assign different passwords and change them every week.
These are the most common security risks that come with having a dedicated server host. Know that studying and researching about new ways to protect your computer will always be the best solution. Keep you ant-virus program up to date and monitor your system resources for any irregularities like a program that’s eating too much resource and report any findings to your server host provider. Like in all cases, prevention is better than cure when it comes to online security threats.
Get the perfect website for your business
Managing, conducting and advertising businesses are slowly being integrated to online media as well. Like designing a shop or office, designing a website for your business will apply all the same fundamentals except in codes. For example, if you want to start a business in cafés then you will have to make the place comfortable, friendly and all necessary information on the products readily available to your customers and this goes the same for website designs. Ever question why some websites that offer the exact same services generate much more traffic in theirs than in some sites? It’s all about the presentation. Let me elaborate on that, an ideal business website should always cater to a user friendly type of design. Online customers do not want to be confused in a clutter of words and links that they have no interest in. Creating content with a straightforward approach is much preferred by customers in all mediums
As entrepreneurs become more internet savvy, it’s getting harder and harder to find a niche in the internet marketing business. But that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t try it, it just means that you will have to find a better web design format than all the rest. As a hard as it may seem, it is not impossible as customers will always look for something better when dealing with online web pages. Create a web page design that is not only appealing to the eyes but also quick to grasp even for the computer illiterate. Remember, basic but artistic are your two main objectives.
Your key weapon in enticing users to visit your web page is their curiosity of the content. The 3 key ingredients are page layout, content and designs. A perfect website should utilize every single proponent into a single driving force. Do not waste any space in a single page but also avoid squeezing too much. When it comes to utilizing every output, it helps to have a professional web designer by your side as they will have complete experience in everything a web page can possibly offer.
Now to give you an idea of how an ideal website should look in order to help you lay the ground work for the design is simply creating an easy browsing experience for the visitor. Straight to the point titles and short precise descriptions are best with small banners that give users an idea of your companies’ objectives and goals. Categorize each portion of your website into a different page; an organized website will be much pleasing and relaxing for the users. Bear in mind that a website that looks like a mess of links and pictures will most likely keep any potential customers at bay. Website navigation should never have a learning curve in order to traverse freely; a complicated design will only leave visitors in utter confusion and will remove the chance of repeat visits.
Be direct with your messages and your information, nobody likes to be spun into a circle when asking about a product. Visitors are already there and are curious of your web due to the content and the design, you don’t need to market to them anymore. Have important directions, information about your products in full view and easy to spot positions and use easy to read fonts. As much as possible, remove any pop-ups in your web page as this has been the bane of online users for a long time. If you need to have advertisements then use the spaces on the banners above and below. Web designing is something that you will have to put effort in and money. Hiring a web graphics designer is advisable but always be in constant communication in order to give directions. They will handle the assembly of the page but it is up to you to supply them with your ideas.
With the right mindset, you will be able to have a quality designed web page that not only piques the interest of visitors but also leaves them satisfied after leaving.
Why and how to prevent it
In the early stages of the internet, it was normal to have a sluggish internet speed. It was accepted since it was all new and wonderful. But today, with internet providers all trying to reel in more customers, they know that speed is the key. Internet users today are accustomed to blazingly fast internet connection speed. It has become normal today and all providers out there offer medium to fast internet sped so there is absolutely no reason for you to be snail crawling your way through the World Wide Web. If you find yourself being left in the digital dust then chances are your computer is the reason for this lag. To determine the cause, I’ve listed the reasons for slow down in loading and check every viable option in order to remove the proverbial ball and chain that’s dragging your web page down.
1. Not Auto-Scaling the Images
Ever wonder why some websites with tons of images loads faster than another? Chances are that the latter did not optimize the images and so you’ll have a long haul of huge images to load. Optimizing images to be scaled down helps because the page will only use thumbnails in order to display the pictures and will offer a separate page dedicated entirely to the image’s original dimension. This is one of the most common reasons of slow web page loading and is one the easiest to remedy.
2. Flash Everywhere
Incorporating Flash into your website is a popular design choice. It’s, pardon the pun, flashy and adds entertaining segues for visitors. However, it also includes a huge amount of code in order to ay properly which will take copious amount of resources if you have too many. When adding flash animations into your web page be sure to be mindful of the file size, if it’s too large you may want to scale it down a bit. A good way to decrease the chances of web pages slow loading when using Flash is to use the XML to load data.
3. Embedded Applications
Some social networking websites allow you to embed images and videos from other sites into your profile. Ever experienced a major slow down when opening your profile when using these social networking websites? Yes, if you embed too much media from other sites, it can potentially drag your speed to a crawl. If the website where the media belongs to is slow, then your web page will slow down considerately also. If you need to add any media files in your web page, I recommend hosting your own files in order to minimize this problem.
4. Terrible Web Hosts
Sometimes having a really awful loading speed may not be your fault at all. A perfectly encoded web page with few to no media files incorporated in their page will still experience a massive slow down if you choose an awful shared web hosting provider. This is the reason why I should refrain you from using any shared web provider, if you can, register to a direct host network. If by any reason you only have the option to use a shared hosting provider then research thoroughly and look for legitimate reviews.
5. Spam, Spam, Spam
This one is one another common reason for slow web page loading. Fortunately, there are easy ways to prevent spam from invading your page and bombarding users with annoying advertisements. The simplest way is to use captchas to weed out any bots. You can also install and activate a spam blocker program if you find yourself being spammed by emails.
Slow loading web page can be easily remedied once you’ve analyzed and figured out the cause. When creating your own web page, keep in mind that you just can’t include any media or design that you fancy. Check it first if it is possible that these applications can interfere with your page’s performance.
How to get around a good CSS code
CSS or “Cascading Style Sheets” is a simple sheet language used in customizing and designing the document and fonts of a web page. It uses words and numerical status in order to determine web page fonts, sizes and colours. It may seem like a complicated batch of words strewn together at first glance but it can be learned in a rather short amount of time. While it may become easier as you steadily grasp its program, it doesn’t guarantee that you will not make any errors. Like most encoded programs, your CSS will have to be reviewed in re-reviewed to detect any errors as even the smallest misspell can affect the whole page. On that note, I have listed the most common errors that CSS programmers, trainee and professional alike, makes.
1. Too much Whitespace
Normally, CSS encoders will contain whitespace in their codes in order to make the content easily readable. The downside is that if you use too much whitespace is that it can affect your loading speed among others. A better alternative would be taking out line breaks and extra spaces. This will help in shrinking your file size and removing any unwanted baggage in the web page.
2. Padding and Margins Confusion
For codes that do not use any background colour and borders, using padding and margins are the best substitute. But knowing the definition of each is crucial as they are both totally different forms of code. Padding is the room within the element inside the border while margin is the extra space outside the element. For example, if there’s no padding the margin should be able to compensate and vice versa.
3. Colour Declarations
Colour declarations is exactly that, it handles the fonts colours for your web page content so be sure to not use garish colours that may conflict with the background. There are 3 parts in colour declaration; these are the hash mark, redundancy and hexadecimal code. A hexadecimal code is important as it will ensure that all colours will be displayed the same on all web pages, the hash mark is then needed to validate the hexadecimal code and finally, redundancy is a common fixture in encoding CSS. Using any code that has more than one similar number or letter, it is a good idea to shorten the code to its first 3 or 4 characters. This will ease the loading of the page considerably in the long run.
4. Avoid Doing Repetition
CSS encoders will know exactly what this is. A lot of time, you may input so much code into your stylesheets that you may not even think about using shortcuts. In fact, compressing the code won’t have any negative effect to your web page if done right. It can even save you valuable loading speed since the page will have a more organized and compact CSS code to deal with. Another technique you can use is by grouping together similar codes into one line.
5. The Difference between ID and Class
CSS encoders have to options for the HTML style; ID and Class. These two are important and each has its own specialty. ID is a content that will appear only once in a page, examples are titles and headers to name a few. Class however can be used multiple times in a single page. A good example of a class type attribute would be a link. Anything that will most likely appear in different ages is considered a class type attribute.
All of these factors can cause some minor to moderate errors as it is very easy to look past this very simple codes. This article will hopefully give you a heads up on the little bumps when encoding CSS. Just remember to thorough and you’ll be fine.
A bumpy road for new webs designers
Back in the early days when web designing was still at its infancy, there were a lot of trial and errors in creating the fundamentals of a great web page. Nowadays, there are a lot of professional and web design freelancers that can help you make the best web page possible. But if you’re a web designer yourself and is just starting your career in the field you may experience some bumpy roads ahead. To help ease out your first venture in this field, I have compiled the biggest errors you can make when designing a website.
1. Not Giving the Correct Information
Most online users that are scouring the internet usually visit a site that catches their eyes in the first few seconds they see something interesting. For example, online shoppers will visit your website if they see something that fancies them. One of the biggest errors in online business sites to make will be to not give the specifics and important information. Worse yet would be to have the information posted on your site but being covered in irrelevant advertisements that they are getting skimmed over. When putting together content for your website, ask yourself what visitors would be looking for when browsing your page and make sure that that information are easy to spot.
2. Auto-opening a New Window
This one is a personal pet peeve of mine. I really hate it when I click a link on a website that just brings me to a new page of the site, and not a different website altogether mind you. Cluttering a visitor’s browser window with pages is one of biggest mistake a designer can make. A golden rule that is now being followed by most web designers is that you should never hi-jack a user’s computer, and auto-opening windows every click can be considered one of these offenses. Never put this feature in your website as all users prefer to just press back on the tool bar.
3. PDF Only Site
This one is more common than others mainly because it doesn’t really have many detractors but you should never use PDF for your site unless it is something that will be printed. A PDF formatted website is difficult to navigate as most online commands and shortcuts does not work, instead it is outlined into in document style navigation making cumbersome.
4. Leaving out the Colour Changes
One of the most helpful features when navigating a vast web page is changing of the font colours of links that you’ve already scanned through. This will help visitors of the web page to know exactly where they’ve been, a website that does not have this mandatory feature will increase the chances of confusion especially if you have tons of pages and links in your site. This is a sure bet to not have repeat visitors in your website.
5. Avoid Designs that Scream Advertisements
We’ve all been there, browsing through the pages and seeing something at side of the screen, it’s colourful and just screams for attention. A veteran web surfer will automatically know what this is, and 10/10 will just calmly brush past and never think about it again. These are the advertisements in websites that we’ve learned to completely ignore, visitors of websites will be there to only find what they’re looking for, and they don’t really like getting sidetracked by things that have no interest to them whatsoever. So, be sure to create banners that hold important content that does not resemble an ad. Be creative but study adverts on other online shops to know what to avoid.
Creating your own website from the ground up is a real time consuming effort, be sure to remember these grave mistakes in order to avoid them in the future. Again, sometimes trial and error is the best way to be successful. There’s always more to learn in order for you to create the best website design possible.
Is your website working for you?
There are some web page features that offer to be helpful but do the exact opposite. When designing web pages, you should think twice about incorporating any of these irritating features as all of the items on this list can greatly damage your reputation and any future visitors from staying in your website. The usual suspects before have been spam advertisements and slow loading but now we have a new set of unwanted features that can drive you mad in the long run. Here are a new set of features you should avoid when designing your web page.
Sure captcha has it uses when weeding out spam bots online, but adding this feature to any comment box is very annoying, especially if you only want to comment only a few words, trying to read the convoluted jumble of letters will take you more time than actually writing the post. This feature however is important to the website owner as it removes any bots from spamming the comment box; however it also negates users from posting as most will unlikely trouble themselves with typing captchas which will then affect the look of your site due to an almost devoid comment section. If you have captcha installed and wondering why you don’t seem to get as much comments as traffic suggest, you’ll know why.
2. A mess of bookmarked icons
A lot of website has done and with actually good reason. Bookmarking or logging in using other popular networking sites will greatly be appreciated by users as they will not have to create new accounts for your site. They can use their accounts from previous sites which mean they can interact with your site immediately. The problem here is that if you overdo it, you’re going to have a mess of icons at the bottom of every post making it look ungainly and unprofessional. This is not a major gripe but it can lead to some distractions.
3. A new breed of pop-ups
Back in the heyday of spam adverts, pop-up have become the bane of many internet users browsing along their favourite website. It felt like a shooting game where you constantly have to close every single window that shows up. It has become less prevalent as years gone by and a couple of solutions were given like hiding the pop-ups behind your browser in order to deal with them later. However, now it appears that a new more annoying version of the pop-ups have surfaced, these are the ones that you appears and just halts your browsing, they make you interact with them to continue, some even has fake close buttons that when clicked will lead you to their link. Not fun and irritating are the best words to define this. Web hosts actually have no option but to use pop-ups in order to increase their traffic but it is a fine line to walk on.
4. Installed media
This one seems to be done with good intentions but again, may hinder the visitor’s experience when browsing. I’m talking about the aesthetics of the web page, adding designs, bells and whistles are all well and good but if it causes any sort of slow down or interference to the user that is browsing then I suggests you tone it down a little. Most websites will change their designs depending on the celebration of the month so you have to expect to encounter this, but the best way to go about getting with the celebration in terms of web design is to not deluge your site with trinkets that will no doubt only distract users.
The 5 Search Engine Optimization Tips
In order to maximize the visibility of your website in search engines, it is imperative to know how to properly use the SEO or “Search Engine Optimization” to its full potential in order to have an advantage. SEO uses statistics based on the keywords that you used in your site in order to list the top searches for users. Users will always choose the links that are shown at the top of their searches and being able to appear at the first page is a must for all would be business websites that intend to succeed in their online venture. Learning the techniques to optimize your web page into SEO will also help you in free advertising your website will appear even as users type in words that relate to your page.
The Title Tags
Your title tag will be the first to be checked by the SEO as it browses for related keywords for the users query. Ignoring this is a huge mistake at it will cost you numerous potential clients. If you want to optimize website visibility then correctly imputing the keywords in your title tag is important. I suggest putting in some of words that define your website and add some emphasis on the content. If you have a wide selection of pages within your website, refrain from using the same titles for each page. Highlight the keywords that each page contains in order to spread your link to a broader target.
Don’t just put popular words in your tags as it will spread you too thin in a wide area. Besides, there are a lot of malicious websites out there that do this kind of exact thing. The thing you have to remember is that to use words significant to what you offer or what your web page is all about. Use distinguished and specific words to focus your optimization to your target audience. While adding the name of your company into your keyword tags is fine, do not use the name as a standalone tag unless your company is a widely known commodity. Otherwise it will be trampled by other sites that have used a myriad of important keywords.
When uploading images and videos never leave the alt attribute empty as this will also add to your sites visibility. The SEO will also scan images and videos of a site so adding accounts in yours will greatly improve your chances. This works like an image test, by showing only one portion of the object will make it difficult to discern what you are looking at, you need the whole picture and the alt attribute can help clear this up.
Don’t be greedy and ignore the option of adding links to other sites that has related topics to yours or can help in giving more information to the user. Giving links will be like leaving fingerprints on that website, thus adding your page to theirs if users happen to visit their pages first. Expanding your grasp is the best way to generate traffic into your site. This gives you the opportunity to affix your link into theirs and the SEO will gladly conjunct the two of your sites together.
Web page Loading
Internet users hate it when something interferes with their speedy browsing. Everyone likes a webpage that quickly loads everything and a slow page can earn a lower ranking in the SEO. If you find yourself in this predicament, check your HTML codes for any inaccuracies and downsize, or better yet, divide large high definition images or videos into separate pages, another reason for slow loading is the hosting server provider’s own slow system processes. Read reviews before choosing a provider to remove this problem from slowly crawling into your business.
Fine tune your website
While SEO is a great way to generate traffic into your website, there are actually more methods for you to employ that have no relation to using SEO. These are simple yet effective means in their own right that can help you expand your web page to even further users. In order to increase traffic into your website you’ll need just to follow these 3 simple steps, and I can guarantee that you will increase the chance of a spike in your online traffic. Check out portfolio.
Step 1: The Perfect Bait
If your website appears on the first page along with a couple of other similar sites, one of the key elements for the user to click on your site and ignore the rest is to have interesting and eye catching titles and headers. The short description below your website’s name is crucial as it will be the proverbial hook, line and sinker for you website. Make it interesting and direct so that you’ll catch the eye of users scanning down the page. A perfect and witty title can instantly grab attention so work on that, plus a little research on marketing never hurts. Study the key points of interest in your website and accentuate that but try to make it as compact as possible. Once users have taken the bait, you can bet they’ll choose your website while browsing down the list.
Step 2: Topics and Subjects
Most article writers and bloggers tend to gravitate to current events or what people are talking about right now to garner more hits. While this is a smart thing to do you have to understand that you are now in the heap of literally thousands to millions of other sites that are focusing on the same thing as you. You should never put all your eggs on one basket, nothing wrong with tackling current affairs but you should also key in on the more specific topics. Focus on a less talked about subject and pass it through the microscope, create topics about it and, I cannot strain this much more, be specific with your keywords. Being precise with your topic will help narrow you down on search engines and will increase your shot of being visible at the first page, maybe even the top of the list.
Step 3: Think Big
When it comes to websites the bigger your webpage the better it is. Polls have shown that larger websites tend to generate more traffic as they expand even more. This is a perfect example of escalation when you start with a simple website and then upgrade it to bigger and better design and content, so will your visitor hits. I am not saying that you immediately enhance your website; you have to have the right content in order to advance. This may mean that you have to steadily and gradually work on each aspect of the site in order to find what else is missing and develop on that.
Managing a website could be as fun or as stressful as you want to be, and making sure your website gets enough hits is the main hurdle for every website owner. This is basically marketing 101 with a little twist here and there. Keep your eye on the ball and you’ll be able to run your website smoothly and efficiently, but get distracted and it can cause a domino effect of problems. Just remember that there are more ways to generate traffic than optimizing SEO. I’m not saying you should skip fixing your SEO but add that with these list and you can really achieve your goal for your web page.