One of the most important and expensive things a new business must have is a website. If you’re new to doing business online, you can save tons of money designing your own site. Just make sure not to cut corners. The following advice will help you build a site like the professionals do.
Speed is king on the Internet, so you need to make sure your web pages load quickly. You cannot expect much patience from your visitors. If they are stuck looking at an incomplete page for minutes on end while your content loads, they are quite likely to close your site and find what they’re looking for elsewhere.
Make sure that every action can be cancelled if needed. Whether filling out forms, signing up for email notices or even needing browsing options, users will find this useful. If you do not give visitors the option to get out of an action they do not want to continue with, you are pressuring them into something. This makes them less likely to come back or buy from you in the future.
Keep the front page of your site simple. People who are shopping around decide quickly whether to use a site or continue searching by viewing the front page. Describe your business in detail and what it does, but keep other distractions and details to a minimum.
Keep in mind that it is very important to have your website design tested on many different web browsers. Your site may look quite different on different browsers, so don’t be caught unawares! There are a number of resources that you can use to determine what popular web browsers should be tested. Make sure your website works in Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, Safari and the major mobile browsers.
Monitor your site periodically for broken links. Do this from time to time, before uploading it to the server. Visitors who encounter broken links and errors will not stay on your site long enough to view your product. In order to prevent this from occurring, proactively test thoroughly for full functionality.
Your host will likely have design tools that you can use for your basic layout. Don’t rely on these tools entirely, however. Eventually you want to incorporate your own ideas into the site, which means lots of tinkering and experimenting with different things without having to rely on the simple functions of the site-builder you get from the host provider.
Begin by making smaller websites, so you can see your strengths and weaknesses before starting a major site. Start with an index page that introduces your business and products, then use what you learn from that page’s feedback to build additional informational pages.
When shopping for hosting for your site, review all of the features of each plan before settling on one. The things that are important to know are bandwidth, CPU usage, disk space and any other areas that they highlight in their package. Be as informed as possible about the service you are receiving.
Learning anything is never an easy journey, and that holds true for web design. You should expect to have several mishaps during your first web site build. But, you should use what you’ve learned here and you will build an effective site.