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Web Design – Setting up a Good Website

When setting up a website, much of the success of the site depends on the quality of the web design and programming.  Often the difference between a website that actually gets you more customers and one that doesn’t is in how well it’s designed. In this case, that means not only the graphics, but also the layout, the site navigation and even the content on the page. 

A good site design encompasses good content, usability, appearance, structure and function. The first thing a person will notice is appearance. The design needs to be pleasing to the eye but it’s also important that it be related to the subject matter at hand. A church website should not have a dark black background for it’s pages. On the other hand, a black background would fit well for a heavy metal band. These are simple examples. In practice, design is a complex interplay between many elements on the page to make them all work together and to support the core message of the site.

Usability follows from design but it’s not the same thing. Usability comes into play when you are dealing with an interactive medium such as a website. You rarely think about usability in relation to a printed brochure. The site navigation should be simple and clear with every button being completely self-evident and easy to click. Complicated menu systems that require strong hand-eye coordination to operate are a good example of poor usability. Good usability is something that people won’t even notice if it’s done right because they will just find it natural and intuitive.

Usability is most related to the structure and function of your website. The site needs to be organized in a clear, logical manner. One that is readily apparent and easy to take in. It also need to function well and in an expected manner. Making people login before they can purchase is a function that might make sense to a business owner who thinks that requiring registration will enable him to get the names and addresses of more people who come to his site, but it represents a distinct difference from the way that most sites work so it will tend to annoy people and cause you to lose customers.

The content of your site is equally critical. People come to websites seeking information. They want to know about a product or service, where to get it and what it will do for them. And they want to be able to do it quickly. Clear, compelling headlines will draw them in and concise, informative copy will keep them reading. Too much self-aggrandizement will usually lose people quickly. Humor can draw people in but it’s rarely universal and can often turn people off just as easily.  Good content helps the reader develop a trust for the company offering it and a confidence in the goods and services that they provide. 

It takes more than a single individual to produce a professional web design. Consider hiring the team of professionals at NDIC. Give us a call for more information at 805-962-8565.