Designing a website may seem like something only an expert in computers can do well, but you may be surprised at how many websites have actually been designed by people that are simply motivated to do so. Perhaps the most difficult part in designing a website is in knowing where to start.
The Very Beginning
Naturally, the very best place to start is at the beginning. First, a logo is needed. This need not be fancy and can really be anything you want it to be; fancy or simple. Once a logo has been established, the website will need to be designed in Photoshop. One of the great benefits of using this program to develop a website is that you will be able to see exactly what it will look like when it is online.
Be sure to incorporate the logo into each and every page of the website, and keep the theme generally the same. Setting the maximum width at 960 pixels is also a good move as it will allow for the website viewer to see the entire page without having to scroll to the side. Most websites are generally aligned in the center of the page, rather than on the left of right, so keep this in mind as well. Once these steps have been completed, you will need to add in the header, footer, and content area.
Once the actual design is complete, it will need to be saved in JPEG format. If you are anxious to see it in actual web format, feel free to open it in HTML as this will not harm the file. Following this conversion, image slicing is necessary, then coding the website into HTML and CSS. This may sound confusing, but there are ample resources available online that take you step by step through the technicalities.
Factors to Keep in Mind
If you are designing a website for yourself, then there is no real reason to worry about time. However, if you are doing so for another individual or business, complete as much work as you can as early on as possible to prevent missing a crucial deadline. It may help to set mini-deadlines to help ensure adequate time is set aside for each step.
Know the target audience of the website. If it is retirees interested in bird watching, a cartoon-character basic design will likely not be popular or appreciated. Also keep in mind what the purpose of the website is: informational? Increasing business? Driving traffic to another website? Whatever it is, keep this in mind at all phases of design.
Though the first website you design can be time-consuming, there is a learning curve as with almost everything else in life. Who knows? Perhaps you’ll become the newest online web designer that has all of your friends talking.