How to design a website

Starting up a website needs direction and acute attention to your target markets needs. Before you begin setting it all up ask yourself these very pertinent questions. Seriously…go to the bathroom, look in the mirror and ask…

  • What do I want to achieve from this website?
  • Who are my target users? (Move away from Flash websites – takes too long to download and our target must remain within African)
  • What impression do I want to create with my target user? (How many people view my site)
  • What are the technical limitations of my target users? (Is your website Mac friendly? Eg. What kind of computers are my target users using?)
  • What is the identity of my brand and ideally where do I want it to be positioned? Eg. Brand position of Vula – humanities blue colour but humanities kids are more funky. They designed it to be user friendly.

Now you are done looking like a crazy person. Let’s think of ways we can adapt that time spent in front of the mirror asking questions…

Say for example you own a bank and you’re hired to make a website for it. Think of the aspects of online banking.

Needs analysis – security, formal, trustworthy look. Eg. FNB. Serious banks would not faff around with trendy designs.

Eg. A humanities bank site would be trendy.

The look would consist of the important info such as log in info, contact details, branches and where I can find atms etc.

Now add design elements

1. Layout – form allows function so keep it consistent

                Types of layouts include: portfolio, corporate, news,

Corporate page has listed info

News sites have bit size info and all info is given out at the same time

Tip: don’t hide all info under fancy icons and make use of widgets!

2. Colour – with style. Don’t use more than 4 colours KISS. Colour pallete ideas:

3. Content – what text, which pictures or add video? Add a gallery to display work on portfolio sites. Proper grammar and spelling is important! No text language. Images must be no more than 100k and NOT pixilated. Less than 50k is ideal.

 Once you have added your elements add the basic programmers information to make your site functional and you have it!


About nicobaleng

My paradoxical love for the web is feeling immense freedom while confined to a seated position behind a desk. This is what the world wide web has to offer. Learning about the latest technological toys or playing around with programs sounds like nerds-play, but once you start exploring, the pc monitor in front of you becomes less and less intimidating. Tracked and documented I will share the journey of an average Joe like me, moving up toward achieving a black belt in web design! KAPOW!

Posted on September 11, 2011, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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