Web Designing

Have you heard about Friendster, Facebook, and Twitter? Or perhaps You-Tube, Amazon, e-Bay?  Or surely Google, Yahoo, Wikipedia? Need not asked is it? Since the invention of Computers to the creation of the World Wide Web until today, Web Sites of all designs, purpose and features are exponentially growing. From e-mails, search engines, social networks, video streaming, To online shopping, banking, blogging and name it. However, how are these web sites created and designed?  What is Web Design and How to create a superior website design? Web Design is a kind of graphic design intended for development, presenting and styling of objects or information in the internet to provide them with high-end consumer features and aesthetic qualities. To create a superior website design, these are basic and most important rules and guidelines; Define the purpose of the Web Site.  This is the most basic rule in web designing. The site should be specific in its purpose because it will shape and define everything in the web site. Stick to the purpose of the website. If the website is intended for Social Networking, all its features should be about Social Networking. Decide and define the intended audience. Web design should be specific and tailored to a specific market or audience. It is the guiding principle in selecting features and contents of the website. Contents and features of the website should be sensitive, acceptable, easy and relevant to the intended audience. Readability and aesthetics. The most important rule in web design is that your web site should be easy to read. This means, there must be harmony between the text and the background of the website. Colors of text and background must be chosen carefully. Background must not obscure the text and text color must be easy to read. A perfect text-background blend is essential in the overall beauty of the website. Text sizesshould also be considered, should not be too small to cause an eye-strain nor too big to be intimidating to the reader. Avoid unnecessary clippings, pictures, icons and figures as it may steal the attention of the reader from the contents of the website. The simpler the web designs the better. Be consistent in the layout of the website, colors, text and design should be consistent and conventional so that Readers will be comfortable. Navigability. Ease in navigating the web site is a highly preferable attribute and is very important. …

Tips for Internet Business

These are a must for any business site that I design.  I have found all this information to be relevant and important to keeping your business credible on the Internet. Give Contact information. For personal pages this can be a simple e-mail address, perhaps not with your “real” name. For businesses you should also include a physical address, and phone number with area code. Have a privacy policy, Terms of Service, policy on spam, how personal information will be used etc… It only takes an hour of research and a hyper link to another page for your site to really spell out what you do with personal information. It makes me feel better knowing you are thinking about it. Be up front about why you need certain information. Don’t ask for too much personal info on a first contact. See this as a greeting with a shake of hands, not a shake down. Give a background of your company. Who are you? Why do you do this stuff? You may think that no one will read it but I assure you that those serious about looking into your business will give it a once over. Post official documentation online – for instance I have a copy of my business license on this site. Post anything that you are an official member of that holds meaning to the product/service you offer, i.e. member of the Chamber of Commerce, breed organization, or riding group. Reply to e-mail within 24 hours. If you can’t reply, get a ‘bot to send some sort of automated response (“we will be contacting you shortly” –) Reply professionally with a full signature and additional contact information. Keep your web site well maintained with working links. Realize that this is like a customer calling and in the middle of a conversation with you – you have hung up!  This is a must! Post references. These don’t have to include full name but can be something like – Ashley K. of Orlando, FL. You might be very surprised by what just a few simple sentences do to make a difference in how people feel about you and your site. Be helpful. It might surprise you how many times I have received rude e-mail just from asking a question! Some people don’t think they should bother in responding to e-mail that doesn’t look like it will be a “sale.” How …

Local SEO Is Not Optional

The importance of local SEO to your business cannot be overstated. More and more of your customers are starting their search for your products and services on the internet. They’re using search engines when they’re ready to buy. We’ll focus on Google here, but the same basics hold true for Yahoo and Bing. Google has about 65% of traffic, so it makes sense to start there. Local SEO involves three basic factors. Google Places is our starting point. Those listings with little red flags with a black dot in the middle are Google Places listings. There are up to seven on a page. The flag is dropped on to a Google Map on the same page and shows the physical location of the listed business. The good news about a Google Places listing is that it’s free. Now, that doesn’t mean your listing will make the list and display, and the cherished number one position must be earned. Google will not tell us how to get on the list and at the top, but citations and reviews seem to be the factors that will get you there. Citations are very simple. They’re the business name, phone number and address as submitted for the Google Place listing. Other pages from sites such as internet phone directories, a local Chamber of Commerce, industry directories, newspapers and your own website, blog, etc. that list the citation will affect the Places rankings. Reviews come from services like Yelp and Google themselves. Google searches the internet for reviews about your business. For small businesses like local restaurants, reviews will go a long way to determining whether you make the list and where you rank. Making sure you are listed in Google Places is a great start, but it’s not enough. You need to get to the top of those listings and that’s where the other two basics of local SEO come into play. You don’t need a website for a Google Places listing, but not having a well designed, content rich website is a mistake. People, your customers, are searching on the internet. They expect to be able to click for more information. They want their questions answered. Give them what they want with great website design and content that answers their questions. Use pictures and video and give them a way to contact you. Make your website to capture and keep their attention. Finally, …

Looking for a Local Web Designer

While services like Guru and Elance makes it easy for you to find web designers from all over the country or even all over the world, sometimes you need to find a local web designer. Here’s some strategies for finding that local candidate. Do a local search- Google has gotten very good at doing local search. Say for example you live in Sacramento or Baltimore and you want to look for designers in that local area. You can start off by doing a Google search on “Sacramento web designers” or “Baltimore web designers”. Savvy local designers will optimize their web sites so that they will show up in local search results. Referrals From Your Colleagues- The most logical and likely source for finding a good web designer is by asking others in your field. Chances are that they have a website or know of someone who has just launched a website. If the designer did a good job, they’ll be more than happy to give you their contact information. Start off by asking the people in your field that you work with on a regular basis. You can also expand your search by joining message boards and forums for those in your field and asking the members there for leads on good designers. Family and Friends- Some of your family members and friends may also have had a website done recently or know of someone who has. You may even have a friend or a family member who is a designer who will have contacts with others in the field that you can inquire about. Trade Organizations and Clubs- If you are a member of a local professional or trade organization that may be another source for finding a web professional, especially if the guild has a website. You can also consider going to your chamber of commerce for information. Some web designers and agencies may be members. The Yellow Pages- If you’re uncomfortable with choosing a web designer outside of your local area, the Yellow Pages and the White Pages of your phone book, might yield some ads from local web professionals. Look for listings under “Internet Services”, “Web Page and Site Design”, or “Graphic Design”. Online Classifieds- The most popular of these online classifieds sites is Craigslist. If your city is big enough, it may have its own section on Craigslist.org. A lot of design companies and freelancers …

Custom Web Design a Good Way to Start Your Online Business

Using a custom web design for your website is the only way to make an impact with your business right away because you need to set your business apart from all of the other options on the Internet. Most people think they can just pick a generic template and start posting content on the web, but that’s not how things work in reality. You should always hire a specialist to take care of your web design needs because this is the most important aspect of your web business. Without the right design, you could be turning off visitors and forcing them to visit another website to find what they need. While there are plenty of different web design companies to choose from on the Internet, the best method for giving your website a makeover is to hire a freelancer. A freelancer will be able to put more time and effort into your website, and you will not be paying a large amount of money for their services. Since a freelancer does not have any overhead costs, you can simply pay them for their fine work and be on their way. There are a number of different places where you will be able to find web design freelancers, so don’t be worried about not being able to find the right person for the job. One thing that you need to look into before you hire someone to design your website is their past work experience. Take a look at the kinds of websites that they have done in the past, and think about whether or not they would be able to help you in the future. Instead of just trying to pick someone who has a relatively nice portfolio, try to find someone with a portfolio that contains some creative ideas. You will want your website to be unique as possible, so you need to find someone who has a creative mind. Being able to make a nice website is one thing, but having the creativity to create something that grabs the visitor’s attention right away is what you are really trying to find. You will also want to put some of your own input into the final product, so make sure that you are working with someone who is willing to take some of your own ideas and work with them. You can let the web designer do all of …

How Do I Make My Website Mobile Ready?

Are you one of those business owners who have been asking ‘How do I make my website mobile ready?’. If you are, then one of the problems you will have or will come across is that there are so many different types and sizes of mobile devices that it is more a case of how do I get my my website to fit on all those different size screens, rather then just make my website mobile ready. The chances are however, that your current website is probably too big to be an effective marketing tool for mobile devices. When I say it is too big, I am not just talking about the screen size, but rather the amount of data including pictures that has to load for the page to show properly. Why not go see what your website looks like on your mobile now? You can carry on reading as it will probably take a few minutes to load! With the amount of data your website holds it takes too long to load when tried to be viewed on a mobile, apart from not looking good or being easy to navigate. This means you are losing potential customers right now! So it is less a case of ‘make my website mobile ready’ and more a case of how can I get a website mobile design that works on all mobile devices? What makes a good mobile website? How you actually can tell a good mobile website design is firstly by the speed it loads. The mobile web is not quick and loads at about the speed of the old 56k modems used to, so if it takes 30 seconds to a minute to load a basic screen with any pictures appearing shortly after, if you have a mobile ready site. The next thing to look for is how it looks on screen and how user friendly it is, with clear calls to action and navigation. A good website mobile design is one that has the most important information showing up straight away at the top of the screen, without the need for the customer to scrowl down. So an immediate call to action and contact details should be the first thing they see. Next it should have easily clickable links to other pages such as Google maps to get directions, products, services or menu pages, contact us pages. Photos …

Do You Need a Local Mobile Website Design Company?

A lot of businesses like to work with local a company, which is why when it comes to having an optimised website for mobile devices; they look for local mobile website design companies. The thing is that the local mobile website design companies may not be right for you or your business. With the internet having changed the world forever, we are no longer restricted to just using local services such as local mobile website design, as it allows businesses to work closely together even if they are not in the same country. This means that you find the right mobile website design company for you regardless of location. How do I find the right website mobile design company for my business? Of course the first step may well be to see what local mobile website design companies there are in your area. The thing is though that you should not hire any business just because it is local, but rather because it can and will do a good job and at the right price to fulfil your needs. Your need is to get more customers through your doors. With the massive growth in internet phones and internet mobile devices, having an optimized website for mobile devices is not only the smart move of any savvy business owner, but soon to be an absolute necessity if a business is to stay competitive. So your mobile website should fulfil the following criteria. Load quickly: There is no point having a great mobile site if it takes too long to load. Currently mobile phones are loading pages at about the same speed as the old 56K modems, if you can remember those old days of waiting for pages to load. We are so used to high speed broadband that people don’t seem to have the patience any more. Fit the screen automatically on all mobile devices: It is perfectly natural to have to scrawl down a page, but if you have to also scrawl sideways in order to find what the page has to offer, then you are back to the same problem as the original website of not been user friendly to your customers. Be user friendly: You want your customers or potential customers to be able to find what they want easily. So very near the top (showing up without any scrawling) should be a strong call to action such …

Five Steps to a Thriving and Successful Website

To be successful, your company website should include an eye-catching front-end design that attracts the attention of visitors. Your website should also put forth a trustworthy and professional image. The aspect most company’s overlook in the design of their website is creating a strong back-end able to support the company’s growth. Many companies develop their website without paying enough attention to the importance of navigation, growth, and friendliness to the search engines. The following paragraphs detail five crucial steps that will make your company’s website more effective. 1 – Search Engine Friendliness Some websites do not need to rely on traffic received from search engines. These websites, such as USAToday.com, FoxNews.com, and CNN.com, receive thousands of daily visitors because people are already aware of these websites and their web addresses. Most websites, however, need traffic from search engines to survive. By keeping search engine friendliness in mind when designing your website, the search engines will crawl, index, and place your website in the results of an Internet search. 2 – Easy Navigation When people are navigating around your website, they need to find the information they seek quickly. If not, they will move on to another website. Experts attribute this to short attention spans and aggravation at having to “figure out” a website. Strive to make sure your website’s navigation is simple and intuitive. Use easily identifiable labels for buttons and graphics. Make sure links stand out and are immediately recognizable. This frequently overlooked aspect of good website design can interfere with the success of your business. When designing your own website, consider asking for some recommendations from a good website developer. Chicago and other major cities have many professional website developers who can review your site and make recommendations. 3 – Uncluttered and Simple to Read One of the most common mistakes that many companies make is cluttering their website with too many graphics and different fonts. Even worse, many companies stuff so much information on the pages of their website that visitors can process it. This leads visitors to becoming overwhelmed and then leaving the website altogether. The design of your company website should use graphics and fonts that build trust, show professionalism, and keeps visitors on your website. The easiest way to accomplish this is by removing the excess and leaving plenty of blank space so your website is simple to read. People like to scan when …

Working With a Web Designer Who Understands SEO

When you hire a professional agency to design your website, it’s important to realize that the aesthetic presentation is but one of many factors to your site’s success. It should be attractive, but must also accommodate the search engines. After all, an appealing shell that doesn’t attract the right type of traffic will fail to produce results. It is akin to a beautifully constructed billboard standing in the desert. If nobody sees it, the beauty is lost – or, at least, inconsequential. Today, we’ll take a closer look at working with a web designer who understands the relationship between aesthetic appeal and search engine optimization. I’ll explain areas in which many nicely designed websites fail. I’ll also describe how specific changes can transform a beautiful “billboard” site into a results-driven property. When Design Fails to Produce Results Sadly, one of the favorite tools of professional website developers continues to be Flash. While Flash can be used to generate eye-catching videos, search engines are still ineffective at properly indexing it. A couple of years ago, Google implied that they would soon be able to treat Flash-driven pages in the same manner – and with the same algorithms – as conventional text-based pages. While their ability to do so has gradually improved, it is still extremely limited. As a result, it is more difficult for sites that are built with Flash to control high rankings. And that impacts results. Another issue emerges when a web designer ignores eye-tracking studies. There is a growing store of research available that details the movements of visitors’ eyes when they visit a page. Failing to build a website that considers such eye movements hurts conversions. A web designer who is intimately familiar with SEO can build a site that is consistent with these studies leading to improved conversions. Traffic, Then Conversions Often, website developers will argue that a nice-looking site has a better chance of converting visitors than otherwise. The logic in this argument is flawed. First, there is little to no evidence that a beautifully designed website will always convert visitors at a higher rate. In most cases, conversion is a matter of creating compelling copy that triggers a response. That copy may be accompanied by an attractive design, but the design rarely drives the conversion. Second, a site that doesn’t receive traffic has no audience to convert. That is why search engine optimization is …

A Smart Approach to Large Site Architecture

When you’re building a small online property with only a few pages, there is normally very little flexibility with regards to its structure. In nearly every case, the link structure will be flat across one level. That is, the home page will link to every other page. However, when a site grows very large, its structure can become problematic. It’s not uncommon for properties with multiple contributors or user-generated content to expand into tens of thousands of pages. This can also be the case with datafeeds containing thousands of products. If a web company plans a site’s architecture poorly, it can lead to less exposure in the search engines, lower traffic volume, and increased visitor frustration. Below, I’ll describe a smart approach to designing large sites with regards to its information structure. I’ll explain how to ensure the search engines can easily index your pages while making it easy for your visitors to find exactly what they’re looking for. Building a Search Engine Friendly Structure A search engine can only index a page if another indexed page links to it. If your website has less than ten pages, building a structure that is easily crawled by the engine’s spiders is simple. As noted, the linking between the files will usually be flat. The challenge is keeping the architecture manageable with tens – even hundreds – of thousands of files. In theory, a spider can crawl through a large website and find every file, without regard for how deeply those pages lie within the hierarchy. But, there are two potential problems with relying upon the spiders to do their job. First, their tendency to crawl deeply is influenced – at least, in part – by the frequency with which your website is updated. For example, a blog or forum that is updated frequently is more likely to be crawled than a datafeed-driven property that is rarely updated. Second, even if the spiders “deep crawl” your website, the lack of an easy-to-navigate categorical hierarchy can frustrate your visitors. If they cannot easily find what they’re looking for, they’ll abandon their search. The solution is to have your web company leave a breadcrumb trail. Leaving a Trail A large online property with thousands of files should integrate an easily identifiable trail into their information architecture for visitors and search engine spiders. The sheer volume of pages requires that this architecture follows a multi-level …