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Optimal Website Design

The idea to good website design is to offer your viewer a logical flow while making it ... and easy to ... Lead your viewers to the starting point and then direct them through your s

The idea to good website design is to offer your viewer a logical
flow while making it interesting and easy to understand. Lead your
viewers to the starting point and then direct them through your site
without confusing them.

Here are some excellent tips that can help you develop a user
friendly site and please your visitors senses. Give yourself a chance
before they get away.

1. Use lots of white space.
Don't feel that because you have a whole screen that you need
to fill it up with stuff. Your page should follow a clean
outline. Include your site name at the very top. Below that
list the subject of your page and below that expand on your
topic. Leave adequate space between each section. Don't cram a
lot of pictures and ads. If you have an ad keep it off to the
side or subtly intersperse it between your text. The idea is not
to overwhelm your reader.

2. Don't use animation and flashing objects.
As advertisers we feel the need to get our viewers attention.
This is important but we need to do it gracefully. Flashing
objects and scrolling images distract your visitor and take
away from the content. If your product is better demonstrated
with animation or some other multi-media, allow your viewer to
select the option. Don't force it on them.

3. Every page of your site should contain an 'about' link.
The internet can be a rather cold and quiet environment. If
someone can come to your site and find out about who you are
and what you are about, they can feel a little better about
doing business with you or taking advice from you. Always
include your business address and phone number and email
address as well. This lets viewers know that you are serious
about your business and that you welcome contact.

4. Include a 'Privacy' Link
Viewers like the reassurance that you have a policy that
follows privacy guidelines. They want to know that you will
not sell or give away their information. In these days of
rampant spam, your privacy policy needs to be prominently
displayed. Many viewers and business partners won't do business
with you unless you have it.

5. Always keep your links in blue.
Why does that matter you might say? It's an expectation that
viewers have along with the links being underlined. There's
certainly no law that says they need to be as such but people
spend a lot of time on the internet and it's good practice to
keep your navigation consistent and recognizable. If it's not
you may lose out on clicks.

6. Keep navigation consistent
Keep your site's navigation consistent. What you do on your
index page should be done the same way on the rest of your
site's pages. Keep the colors consistent as well. Don't force
your viewers to relearn each page of your site. Keep your
navigation bars and links the same for each page.

7. Understandable buttons and links.
Title your links appropriately. Don't use cute or misleading
names. For example, if you have a link to sports equipment
don't label the link 'Great Outdoors', call it 'sports
equipment'. If you have a link to 'cameras' don't label the
link 'hotshots', label it 'cameras'. Your viewers don't want
to waste time figuring out what things are. Be clear with
your labeling.

8. Focus on the 'YOU', not the 'ME'.
Make it obviously clear to your readers that you are there for
them. What can you do for your reader? What benefits are there
for your viewer? How can you make their life or business
better or more profitable? Request feedback on their success.
Find out what they want to know or how you can offer them what
they need.

9. Make sure your page loads fast.
If viewers have to wait for a page to load they will click
elsewhere. Here's a site that will help you determine how
well your page loads. If a page doesn't load in 8 seconds
you lose 1/3 of your visitors. Here's a great free tool to
help you check your website's load time:

http://www.1-hit.com/all-in-one/tool.loading-time-checker.htm

10. Use a site map.
A site map will give visitors a "guide" on viewing your site
and also eliminate confusion, especially with larger sites.
It's a road map for your visitors to follow while they are
on your site. Sitemaps will also increase rankings and
placement within the Search Engines.

Article Tags: Website Design, Navigation Consistent

Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Elizabeth McGee has spent 20 years in the service and support industry.
She has moved her expertise to the world wide web helping businesses find
trusted tools, enhance customer service, build confidence and increase
sales. You can contact Elizabeth at
mail@pro-marketing-online.com or visit her website at
http://www.pro-marketing-online.com



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