Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Building a website is like building a house. Planning.

In this digital age, not having a website is the equivalent to not having a phone number or a business card. Having said that, there have been a lot of poorly designed business cards over the years. Given the simplicity of a card, imagine the design crimes exponentially with something as complex as a website.

Here are some thoughts/tips on website design which we hope will be of use to you.

1. Murphy's Law of Space. The more space you have, the more room you feel you have to add on. With a television or radio commercial you know you have 30 seconds. The process of editing and less is more comes into play. With a website you can keep adding and adding. This can prove a positive and a negative. Content is good. But so is brevity and getting to the point.

2.Build your house with a blueprint. The blueprint is your sitemap. Don't even think about design until you've determined what your message is and what your priorities of communication are at this time. Your sitemap is the most essential part of the process. If you don't plan this out properly your website will become a piecemeal house of cards and confusion and no one will take the time to play digital dodge ball trying to work their way through it.

3.Your house needs to have good interior design. Now that you have a sitemap and content, figure out what ways you can come up with to simplify and communicate the content on the various internal pages. Remember, your site shouldn't need the visitor to leave breadcrumbs to find their way home. Make the navigation bar consistent so there's an immediate feeling of familiarity as they click their way through.

4.Your business branding is an orchestra. Make sure ajavascript:void(0)ll your media, and especially your website, are playing the same tune. Your logo, your corporate colours, fonts, spacing, branded images should all chime in playing the same song so people don't look at your website and wonder "is this the same company?".

5.Technology is our friend. Use forms and php script to make the visitor want to provide you with their contact information. Make your site complex in code, simplistic in experience.

More tips to come. Have a great day!

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