Listed below are some things to consider when designing for the web.

Keep user interface tools consistent and user friendly. Keep all underlined text clickable and allow for a change of color of links already clicked. If your site is user friendly and consistent throughout all the pages, people will be more likely to remain on your site for longer periods, as well as visit your site more than once.

A great tip for people trying to decide on what type of website they want to design is to understand that inspiration can come from anywhere. Be it a movie, hanging out with your friend, or simply people watching, you can find the idea for your next website any number of ways.

Focus on how you plan to handle interaction as you’re designing a site. Do you have a shout box on the site? Maybe you have a forum or some type of chat room. At the very least, however, you need to have some method by which a visitor can contact you. You cannot remain shut-off from communication.

Ask your friends and family for advice on how your web site or sites are developing. You want to see if what you’re creating is actually enticing to people when they come visit, you don’t want to make a whole site that no one is going to enjoy, this can hurt your overall progress.

Remember this when posting something important on your site: High and far-left. This is how people read, from left to right, so having the most important parts of your site located at the top of your site and on the left will ensure that your visitors see and read this before anything else on your website.

Create a scalable and reliable website. As technology advances and monitors keep changing, you can’t test your site across all platforms and screen sizes. Make sure the design, hosting, and code is scalable. Do this by making sure it’s error-free and making the loading smooth. This helps you create a good design that works for many circumstances.

To help your website visitors find their way home on your site, always include a link to your homepage on each page of your site. Having a home page link that is visible allows your reader to easily make their way back to starting point. If you do not have a home page link then your visitors might get frustrated and leave your site altogether.

Use a descriptive title. Many site owners forget to name their pages, or name them something generic, such as “Welcome Page.” Search engines do use title descriptions in their rankings, so make sure you are as descriptive as possible, without going overboard. Make sure it is usable for your viewers and the search engines.

When hiring someone to help with your web design needs you should agree to a payment that is broken into three to four payments rather than half of the payment upfront. This will allow you to be sure that you are going to be happy with the web design that you are given and that it will be fixed if you are not satisfied.

Make sure your web design is user friendly to all levels of computer expertise. Sometimes the most professional looking and expensive sites can overwhelm a visitor and they will quickly switch to another site. Have a person you know who is not so well versed on a computer try to navigate your site. If they can find their way around, you know your site is user friendly!

Try to make sure that any music or pictures that you’re linking to is hosted on your own web server. Do not hotlink to any other website images. This can be construed as bandwidth theft and it could put you in violation of a copyright too. It’s not worth the risk.

Don’t use too many different fonts or text colors on your web pages. Word processing or web authoring software may present a dizzying array of specialty fonts or wacky colors, but if you use too many, the text on your website may become unreadable. A good practice is to use just one or two fonts per page and avoid excessive use of bold or italic text.

As you have seen, great web design can make or break your online presence. It can set you apart from the crowd and make you successful if it’s done correctly. However, there are things to keep in mind when designing for web application.

Using the above tips can give you what you need to design on the web effectively.

Eleanor Apicella features a column about websites geelong