Web Design Don'ts


Your website is the life and soul of your Internet presence, if your website appears and acts unprofessional you will seem unprofessional as an online entity and people wont feel confident buying from you.

With that said webdesign is a complex issue and I could discuss it for days with you, but for this article and for the moment anyway, I will concentrate on sharing the things you should not do when it comes to designing your site, as ultimately bad webdesign affects people more than good webdesign. These don'ts of webdesign are in point by point format.

Don't use frames, frames are a thing of the past and are out of fashion, they mostly confuse visitors and they basically destroy your chances of getting good search engine traffic. Not to mention the problems associated with bookmarking and printing pages that use frames.

Don't limit access to your site by requiring visitors to already have or download a certain plug-in, this is the same as increasing download time and most people wont bother to wait for the download, they'll just visit your competition instead.

Don't have scrolling pages which requires the visitor to scroll sideways to see the whole page. This is so annoying to most visitors that they will leave straight away. This happens when you design your site at a certain resolution and someone visits with a resolution lower than that. Design for a resolution of 640x480 if you want to be sure that your pages avoid having scroll bars but you're pretty safe designing and maximizing your pages for an 800x600 resolution because most people surf in that resolution.

Don't annoy your visitors with blinking text, pages full of banners, continuous background music that slows down everything, pop-up windows, text that's hard to read because it's a similar color to the background etc. If you do annoy them you can bet they wont return.

Don't use under construction pages - you are only wasting peoples time if you direct them to a page that's not ready, so never link to pages unless they are finished.

Don't make them wait, if people have to wait for a page to download because it's bogged down with too much graphics and other media they'll just leave.

Avoiding the above don'ts of webdesign will at least give you a chance of retaining visitors and maybe even have a few of them return.

For more about avoiding the dont's of designing a website, check out
Web Pages That Suck: Learn Good Design by Looking at Bad Design
by Vincent Flanders, Michael Willis

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From Amazon.com...

Unless you're abnormally gifted, the best way to learn a craft thoroughly is to learn not only its central tenets but also its pitfalls. Here, authors Vincent Flanders and Michael Willis teach you good Web design by pointing out ugly, misguided, and confusing sites--any site that fails to deliver good graphics and clear, well-focused content. As the authors show you all sorts of corporate and personal pages, they help you determine your target audience, design your site and its navigational elements and content, and solve problems concerning graphics and text. You also learn about using tables versus frames and get an introduction to hot technologies such as plug-ins, cascading style sheets, XML, databases, VRML, Java, streaming video and audio, videoconferencing, and chat. Finally, the authors address maintenance and marketing issues, teaching you how to set up an appropriate domain name, update your site, register your site with search engines and directories, and use reciprocal links and banner ads. The authors address cross-platform issues and Netscape/Microsoft incompatibility issues where appropriate. This is a full-color book, with enthusiastic, amusing writing as well as helpful screen shots and tips on Web-design software. The companion hybrid CD-ROM includes utilities for creating GIF animations, style sheets, and HTML pages and for creating, compressing, and optimizing Web graphics.

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Article by David Callan - admin@akamarketing.com
David is the webmaster of http://www.akamarketing.com.
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