When you want a website that is attractive, accessible and functional, one road to take is to hire a professional web designer. Web designers are experts in their field and offer professional websites that leave a positive impact on visitors. In order to do that, you must know how to select the best web designer to hire.
Plenty of businesses and organizations rely on professional web designers to build their sites. Others choose to let professional website design company to handle work. It is because they know what are the benefits of a professional web design. However, there are some guidelines to creating a professional-looking website that you can follow in order to build one on your own. Let’s take a close look at those guidelines to see if we can turn you into a web designer.
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Rule number one for professional web design is to create an easy navigation. Your navigation needs to be both logical and intuitive so that visitors can freely explore the pages of the site without any confusion or misdirection. Your goal is for visitors to view as many pages as possible. This means that it is your first priority to show them exactly how to do so. The key to a great navigation is meticulous planning. If you are having a hard time when it comes to designing or planning the navigation element in your website, be sure to check our article first about tips for designing the best website navigation bar.
First, decide on the number of main pages you want the site to contain. Keep in mind that these main pages are best displayed within the top navigation. Again, remember to think logically and intuitively. Next, decide how you want to organize the information on the site. One of the tricks of the trade is to start planning on a piece of paper. Visual charts and illustrations are great tools in helping you create a usable and highly navigational website.
Think of your site navigation as a road map that starts out generic and gets further into detail as you move along. Guide the visitor from the main pages deeper into your site towards the rest of the content. Also, remember to make it easy for the visitor to return back to the home page. No matter what page the visitor is on, he or she needs an easy way to get back to the heart of your website.
Once your navigation is ready, the next element to think about is content. Visitors who log on to your website want to know that it provides and interesting and valuable source of information for the particular topic you are writing about. The role of interesting content is to help engage your visitors while a sense of value will keep them coming back for more. One important thing to keep in mind is that people appreciate both accuracy and completeness. For a professional web design, be sure to post relevant content that matches the search requests.
Test the Site
Now that you have the content together, the next step is to test the website. Meticulous testing can turn a simple website into a professional one although the process is often a time-consuming and uphill battle. Many web designers learn the hard way that there are about a hundred different browsers that people use to view content online. Understand that your website should be designed to function properly in the most widely-used browsers. Not all users know how to upgrade their browsers, so you need to be prepared for anything and everything.
The speed in which the pages on your site load is important. Pages that load quickly benefit both the user, in terms of convenience, as well as the search engines in terms of optimization. One element of web design that influences site speed is pictures. Optimize your photos to keep them from slowing down the upload speed of the page. As a rule of thumb, keep photos as small as possible without sacrificing on quality.
Simplify the navigation process with colored links. Make sure that links change colors after a user clicks on them to clarify browsing history. Colored links also help the user figure out their current location on the site. Also, always ensure that the links throughout the site are not broken. This can be a part of the testing phase or as its own entity before launch.
One Final Thought
Obviously, professional web design involves a long, meticulous and time-consuming process. Professional web design requires good planning, expertise and complete dedication. While hiring a professional web designer is a simple way to ensure a successful website, understand that it is possible to build a professional-looking website without the help of an expert. This guideline should help you better understand the steps to take towards professional web design.