It’s easy to build a website, but making sure it’s effective is a trickier task. A site must serve the user’s needs but it must also meet the requirements of the business too.
So what do you need to consider when building or commissioning a site to make sure it meets all of your needs?
The user comes first
It’s tempting to throw every weapon in the web designer’s armoury at a site and make it the most technically advanced, gorgeous looking thing ever. But that’s of no use if it takes ages to load and is difficult to navigate.
Clear navigation is an essential for any site, it not only makes life easier for visitors it ensures they stay on your site longer. A site that’s hard to find your way around means that people are unlikely to linger. It also helps if your site has a clear and consistent design, all your pages should look as though they belong together. You should choose colours and fonts that are easy to read and select standard fonts to ensure they display correctly on all systems.
A site for all systems
A few years ago you would have been pretty sure that your site visitors would have been using a desktop or laptop computer with a screen size of around 15-inches or larger. These days there’s much more chance that they’ll be using a smartphone or tablet, but there’s also a chance that they could be using a large-screen smart TV.
When commissioning a site from crowdsourced software testing companies like http://www.mytesters.com you need to be sure that it’s going to display well on all systems. This isn’t only a hardware issue, you need to have cross-browser compatibility too, it’s no good if your site works in Internet Explorer but doesn’t display properly in Chrome.
Keep up with technology
As with other areas of IT, the web evolves and website design in Swansea and elsewhere needs to keep up with this. Features like cascading style sheets (CSS) and HTML5 make it possible to create sites that are much more flexible and able to adapt to different systems than the old table- and column-based sites. These technologies also make it possible to add more user-friendly features.
Content is important in any type of media, but that doesn’t mean that you have to add material to your site just to fill the space. It’s vital that whatever you put online is relevant to your audience. It’s also important that it’s good quality.
Search engines penalise poor quality written content for example so you need to ensure you have well-produced material. Images are a key feature too, but again ensure that they’re relevant and they’re optimised to load quickly. Try to resist the temptation of snazzy animations, fly-out menus and so on as these can prove annoying to site visitors and actually get in the way of them enjoying the site’s content.