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Page Design:

Building Your Site:
Putting it all together

What make a site successful?

Site Design

Content Design

Page Design

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Reference Library
What EVERY web designer should have on his desk


The Rules

  1. The Internet is not print (this really is a good thing).

    In the print world, I can control exactly how I want things to look. I can pick a font face and size and EVERYONE sees that font face and size. I can choose from a bazillion colors and EVERYONE will see the exact color I selected. My printed pieces are a specific size of my choosing and the content is in the order that I determine.

    None of this is true for the web. Stop whining and get over it.

  2. There are different browsers and different computer platforms out there. Check your web site on as many platforms and browsers as possible. If you know your audience (which you should) you should have a head start on what platform and browser needs the most attention. Know (in general) what the big differences are and avoid problems in the long run.

    Don't design web sites for only one browser, platform, or plug-in. And don't say it on your home page "This site designed for..." The site is designed for your user--whatever platform or browser he is using.

  3. Every page should have a title, the company logo (which should link back to the home page, an e-mail link and the web address. Every page should have validity--author name, company name, copyright information, privacy statement (if gathering info) and a revision date.

  4. Colors: The background should be light (white) and copy should be dark (black) subtle doesn't work and is hard on the eyes.

  5. Graphics: Use the correct file format. Keep the size small. Reuse them to save the user time. Don't scale them in HTML. Use animated gif judiciously. DON'T have things blink!

  6. Maintain a consistent look throughout your site.

  7. Design with a grid in mind

  8. Keep you pages short if material is designed to be read online. Keep your pages narrow (no wider than 535 pixels) for material that may be printed. Keep your most important information "above the fold" (in the first 295 pixels).

  9. Try to have as much information on the screen deal be the information the user is seeking. Excessive graphics, navigation, banners and distractions are unnecessary and annoying.

  10. Use the appropriate link colors. It will keep from frustrating your user. Make sure all link images have <ALT> tags. Don't have any links that say "click here". Consider using the <TITLE> tag for text links.
    Use e-mail addresses as links, not the person's name. Be careful with e-mail forms--provide an alternative.

  11. Style Sheets: Use them. Because they are good and because you should.

  12. Frames: Don't use them.


© Copyright 2003 | Something Graphic | 20 November, 2003

Contact me:learn@CognitiveHorizons.com