Web Design Purpose Nov 2008

Web design Sunshine Coast

While some businesses are feeling the pinch of the global credit crunch, web design sunshine coast is fielding strong enquiries from website owners whose businesses are slowing. Is this because of the economy or other factors at play? Usually at this time of year on the Sunshine Coast, business is growing with the surge in tourism and families relocating. If your web site is slow, take a look at some of the web design basics.

When defining a website, it is important that business owners ask some general questions before they begin the web design process.

What Is The Purpose Of Your Website?

Many businesses use websites to establish their brand. Others use websites as a communication tool. Some companies see websites as sales vehicles and "billboards". Still others use their website as an educational tool. And some may be any combination of the above. The website must have a purpose in order for it to be effective and the web design should adhere to the individual business brand. On of the first questions web design sunshine coast will ask is, "What is the goal".

What are you trying to accomplish with the website?

A strong understanding of the website will allow a web designer to emphasise the actions they want the website visitor to take on the website. By defining and understanding the purpose of the website, webmasters and publishers can better structure the information on the website. Information can be provided with the appropriate emphasis and navigation. An ideal web format will lead the web visitor to take the action the webmaster wants.

Have you used web design with the audience in mind?

You must identify and understand your target audience. Understanding your demographic will allow you to cater content specific to that group. More on web design research here.

Does the web design follow the Objectives of the website?

You also need to determine what the objective of your website is. What are you attempting to accomplish? Are you trying to sell something? Are you looking for downloads, or is sales your real objective? Is your website trying to promote a specific product or service? Do you want your visitors to take a specific action? Is the intent to profit from ad space in general or to have website visitor's click on specific ads? Are you trying to build a brand? Do you want visitors to purchase a product, or provide an email address?

When attempting to solicit a specific action, there are some general guidelines that you should follow. Your website should be designed to solicit the action you desire, so the navigation should intuitively lead the visitor to take the desired action. If clicking a link is the goal, then that link should be clearly indicated and prominent on the page. This will not only help ensure that the maximum number of visitors will be able to adequately view and navigate your content, but it will also help prompt those visitors to take the action you wish to have occur. More on web design layout.

For example: Many software companies struggle with the action they wish to solicit from the website visitor. Software companies and eBook publishers are often guilty of pushing users to download, at the expense of the actual sale. Some companies prefer to have users download prior to making a purchase decision, while others lose impulse purchasers by only pushing the download rather than the sale. Some sunshine coast websites are guility of this.

In Order To Maximise The Websites Sales Purpose And Objectives, Follow These Simple Steps...

1. Design for Compatibility Issues

If a website visitor is unable to view the website's content, they are obviously going to be unable to complete the desired action. The compatibility issues could be related to technology or usability. Avoid using technologies that require the website visitor to download a plug-in before they can view the website content. If providing content using flash is important to you, you should also provide a flash-free version as well. Also, do not alienate website visitors who might have a disability. Use professional web design, provide alt tags for images, and avoid using a colour scheme that will cause confusion.

2. Design A Clear Web Navigation Path

A website's navigation should provide the visitor with a clear path. Information architecture is the organisation and categorisation of online content -- the process of creating clarity and organising online information in a purposeful, and logical way. Prioritise and emphasise the most important items on the website. Give visitors a clear path to what they are seeking. Each and every page should intuitively provide them links to additional information and purchase options. More on understanding website navigation or website links.

3. Minimise Web Design Distractions

Minimise choices and other website distractions. Website visitors should be provided a clear path of action. It is best not provide the website visitor an abundance of choices. Studies show that a large number of choices often puts the consumer off. It is generally recommended that you provide no more than 3 choices. Keep your message concise and on-topic. Website visitors will often just scan a webpage rather than reading it, so bulleted lists and headlines might be used to emphasise your message.

It may sound like a cliche, but it's the little things that can make the biggest difference. Pay attention to all aspects of your website. Defining the specific website objectives and purpose will help to encourage the desired action or behavior from your website visitors. More on: Why have a website?

You may choose whoever you wish for your web designer. More info on hiring a web designer.

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