Designing and building your own website

Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should!

That statement could apply to lots of things in your day-to-day life, whether it’s chocolate muffins for breakfast or designing your own website. Common sense usually prevails and we choose the sensible path, eat our porridge and leave the website to the pro’s.

But if you’re teetering on the edge (of designing your own website, not scoffing the muffins), here’s a few things to consider before you start.

It’s quick and simple…

Okay so you’ve looked as the wealth of freebie or low cost website building tools. There are plenty to choose from like Weebly, Wix and Squarespace, and you’re impressed with how quick and easy they are to use. Before you start though have a clear vision of what you want your website to do, who is going to appeal to and how it should look. Scribble it down, so you can refer back to it.

Fast forward four hours, and after a lot of swearing you’re nowhere near finished.

Don’t forget your time is worth money too.
Could you be doing something more beneficial with your time to promote your business, like attending a networking event or designing that killer new product or service? Most likely the answer is yes!

Creating the right image

Creating the right imagine is important – so maybe those pics you took on your phone aren’t the best choice. Don’t worry there’s a wealth of websites out there to help you select images to use on your website. Some have free images and other are paid.

You can find a list with image of sites a plenty in this post – Finding awesome images for web and print.

Web design – there’s more to it than just looking good

So you have a great looking website, but that is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to an effective website. There are a host of other things that need to be considered when designing and building a website:

Copy – or the text used to communicate with your website visitors.

This includes the tone, is it pitched at the right level? For example if you are selling books on particle physics you probably don’t want to talk to your audience like they were a school kid!

You also need to ensure it’s easy to read. I’m not talking about the complexity of the language or sentence structure here, but how it is laid out.

Try and keep your paragraphs short, and the keep the line lengths sensible. Use bulleted lists and bold text to emphasize key points. Not forgetting the designers favourite ample ‘whitespace’.

And while we are talking text, make sure it’s error free. Nothing looks more unprofessional than tyops typos.

And finally…

You’re website is a showcase to the entire world, and it’s open 24-7-365, so shouldn’t it reflect the quality of product or service? Think of it like your bricks and mortar shop or office. We could all go to B&Q to buy everything we need to transform it, but we don’t.

We’ve loads of experience in building engaging websites – from all kinds of clients from start-ups to the NHS, and we’re happy to help. If you would like some help designing your website drop us a line.