Effective Web Design Strategies

Web designing has many elements and factors that make the website more appealing, sticky and competitive. Some of these factors has been discussed in the article entitled, "Web Design An Introduction". The points discussed in that article are the importance of web designing, structure and navigation, labeling links and theme selection. More vital factors are discussed in this article.

Color Scheme

Ask anyone who works for an advertising agency about how they use colors in advertising and you'd probably get an in-depth discourse on how color affects the mood of people and the studies behind it. It is a recognized fact that colors affect people in different ways. While it can be argued that this is highly subjective, certain colors do tend to promote a certain mood in general. Blue is generally taken to be a sign of stability and strength (think IBM blue). Black is normally associated with formality, Red is widely used in connection with food. Ever notice why a lot of restaurants and food products use red as a predominant color in their shops or packaging? Be very careful in picking out colors for your website.

Using graphics

Any drawing, picture or background design element you use in your website falls under the category of graphics. Now it goes without saying that the graphics you use should go hand in hand with your color scheme and website theme. More pictures and graphics make a web site interesting, but this has its drawbacks, graphics take up a lot of bytes, and too much graphics of too high a resolution can considerably slow down the download speed of a website. The secret here is saving the graphics in formats that are more compact. Graphics formats commonly used in web design are: Portable Network Graphics (.png), Joint Photographic Experts Group (.jpg), Graphics Interchange Format (.gif), and Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG).

If your site is intended to sell, the use of good graphics or pictures becomes even more important. Apart from drawing and keeping attention, pictures whet the public's buying appetite and make them want to see more. A case in point would be a site like eBay, if the ads didn't contain pictures, do you think anyone would bid on them?

Using music

Unless your site is about music or promoting music, as a general rule don't put music that automatically plays in your homepage. Many people are irritated by this either because 1. The music came as a surprise (especially loud music) or 2. Any piece of music, no matter how nice can be tiring to listen to if played over and over.

Information organization

How you store and organize your website's content is important especially so if your website is content centered. While complex websites make use of databases to store all the info, you can keep these points in mind in making a basic website: 1. Collect, label and organize information in such a way that it can easily be retrieved by the site user who may have no idea at all on how it is organized. 2. Find out how users use your website. If they spend more time browsing your 3rd page than your first page, consider moving that content up front. (Kerr, 2001, p. 23)

You can also follow the 2-click rule of web design guru Jakob Nielsen: your site visitors should be able to find the content they're after in just two clicks. More than this and you risk losing them to more user friendly sites. (Goldsborough, 2003, p. 16)

Pages to consider

There is no hard and fast rule on what pages you ought to have in your website. It really depends on many factors which include the type of website you have , the products and services you are providing and others. The recommended choice of page sets not only can be researched from your targeted audience but also from your existing competitors. Just browse through your popular competitor sites and take note of what pages they have that is luring their targeted audience.

Nevertheless, the following are some general possible web pages that you can consider having on your web site.

Home page / Index page,
Press Release,
Content / Products description pages,
Shopping Cart / check out page,
Terms and Conditions,
About Us,
Contact Us,
Survey and Questionnaires,
Site map,
Directory / Recommended Resources,

Compelling Sales Copywriting

To increase the success of your site, you would need to implement certain effective internet marketing strategies. By developing some of these skills, you create a certain level of "stickiness" which will help retain your prospects and hence increase the chances of sales. The following are some of the effective usable strategies.
1. Use attention grabbing headlines.
2. Use hypnotic and persuasive words
3. Directly or indirectly emphasize the underlying reason why the prospects need to pay for your products and services. Also highlight their benefits.
4. Keep sentences and paragraphs short and to the point.
5. Be friendly and personal
6. Focus on the readers' needs; highlight the problem and offer the solution
7. Evoke Suspended Curiosity so the reader will want to read on.
8. Create Scarcity so the prospect will feel that its their loss if they don't take action
9. Bribe the visitors with quality offers, bonuses, freebies and sweepstakes
10. Provide a genuine form of Guarantee

Getting it out

So after picking a theme, going through color schemes, sorting through a ton of graphics, and encoding your content, you finally come out with a website you can be proud of, so now what?

The best website in the world would be useless unless people know about it and visit it. It is then important for you to market your website. Of course you can phone all your family and friends and ask them to visit the site but that would only get you so far. A better alternative is to embark on different Internet Advertising campaigns.

Happy website building and good luck!

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