Tips for Building an Ideal Website
What's an Ideal Website?
Gazing upon the average website, one gets the feeling of having stepped into a shoebox of newspaper clippings. Tucked between revolving banners, graphic thumbnails with oversized captions and boxed paragraphs, the home-page teems with clutter.
Ask any recent visitor to such a website to recount what was on the home-page and they'll only mention a few of the highlights. Since most surfers are impatient, odds are that they will only glance at your home-page to determine if they want to "stay awhile." Therefore, the home-page needs to present your message clearly - that translates to an uncluttered page.
Once the visitor has seen your message, layout and graphics - which must be planned to download quickly - must be pleasing. All this effort will be useless if the navigation is complicated as not everyone has the computer-mental-dexterity to explore using advanced, flashy and often cryptic page-finding schemes. Make it simple to explore your website and your guests will tank you for it.
Graphics are important since they are the first element on a page to be seen. Regardless whether you take the pictures, create the needed graphics, purchase them from a royalty-free source or retain a professional photographer or graphic designer - be sure that they are attractive and tell your story.
I rendered a few sample websites to illustrate the above tips. At the time they were created, the dot-com's did not exist, therefore they are fictitious. If one now exists, it is merely coincidental.
Travel & More
||Rather than a list of vacations, why not a page for each location? That way, the feeling that this is a special location is emphasized. The traveler sees a slide show that they feel will be the same pictures they are about to take. Samaipata, Bolivia, is remote and teeming with history - not tourists. The perfect get away!
|Tampa Bay Chili Company
||A picture tells it all. Any guest will definitely hesitate when they land on this company's home-page. The product is hot and that is exactly what guests will feel.
||Cat lovers love cat pictures, therefore, a picture of a not-so-perfect cat does a great job of alerting the visitor that this is a "cat" website.
||Again, the picture and company title tell the surfer that they are serious about working on clocks that are in lofty towers - a specialty that commands attention.
|Scraping the Sky
||Skyscrapers are designed by architects. If you are an architect, then you want to open your website with a bold and tall building.