Newly qualified graphics designers are typically highly creative individuals determined to make their mark by creating spectacular graphic designs for every new client they work for. After a few months however most graphics people start to appreciate the importance of taking the time to listen to their client to make sure their design matches the clients brief. When the graphics project involves designing a website there are many other factors in addition to creating ‘whizzy’ graphics to take into account:
Font colour against background colour
Whilst there is no question that light coloured text on a dark background looks very modern and ‘cool’ this is not actually a good idea for a website. Even if the website looks wonderful with light text on a dark background, bear in mind that light on dark will put a lot of strain on the reader’s eyes, so try to avoid it if possible.
Page navigation must be perfect
Much research has taken place about how most people look at web pages. People have now become accustomed to finding navigation links for the ‘About Us’ page, the ‘Contact’ page etc. in a certain location on the page. The objective is to make it easy for your visitors to find what they want quickly and how the navigation is incorporated into the website design is key to achieving this. Even if it seems repetitive and boring – you can reinvent the wheel in other ways without it leading to the website user struggling to navigate the site.
When you are used to designing and developing high end websites it is very easy to ‘overdo the complexity’. Complex websites often use .php or similar as opposed to straightforward HTML or CSS but this is not necessary for all your web design projects. PHP is great for more a complex site, such as e-commerce or multiple forums, but CSS still offers an easier, more user-friendly layout for smaller sites.
Keep it clean and simple
Don’t overcrowd your pages with logos, animations, videos or graphics. If you need to draw your visitors attention to a specific section of the page, you can do so by simply changing the font style or font colour without adding to the complexity of the page.
You web pages should be designed with the visitor in mind. Each page needs include ‘calls to action’ and using the latest conversion architecture techniques you should strive to make it almost ‘intuitive’ for your visitor to take the appropriate action you want them to take i.e. the next step in the sales / conversion process.
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