It is a fact that your site is severely categorized and rated within the first five seconds after the first page loads. Everything that is within view above the fold is assessed and judged, and you only get one chance for each unique viewer to sway his or her vote. What customers are looking for is a topic-relevant design and look and feel to your site. It needs to be professional and keep them interested in the information you have to offer, while it needs to remain information and delivery centric. Sites that are loaded with eye candy and are “loud" will give your visitor’s brains’ a stomachache.
Using basic color theory approaches you can select an easy to maintain color pallet to design and style your site after. Color is important in keeping the attention of your viewers. Keeping bold colors at the top of sections of content and as header bars, while mellower colors can easily be used in backgrounds and sub sections. The use of a third color – typically the overall background color of your site is given display based upon the positioning of the elements in your web site and the amount of textual content. Simple textual content with a larger line height will make you content seem easier to read and actually more sparse, encouraging them to take the time to read a bit more.
Your web site design or template should be consistent from page to page. The same colors and styles are important to carry your theme, and assure the visitor that they have not accidentally linked away from your site. Though different elements can float or change locations, you should always select one stationary location for your company or web site logo, and for your recurring navigation. Once your visitor discovers the navigation on the first page, they will expect to find it in the same location time and again. If you break this cardinal rule, you run the risk of your visitors feeling lost and eventually leave your site completely.
You can design your own web site template using a combination of software applications, or you can purchase website templates from sites designed specifically to market new web site designs. Many of these template websites also provide free web site templates – though your selection will be limited, and the designs are almost guaranteed to be used by countless other beginner website owners.
When designing your own web site template, first find some websites that you personally enjoy and that convey a message similar to the one that you want to say with your site. Use those examples as guidelines or for hints and tips. When you are ready to begin use a program like Adobe Illustrator or Adobe Photoshop for creating a flat un-coded version of the site you want to own. This flat image can then be cut into individual images and placed or called using HTML and Cascading Style Sheets.
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