ANGELO

While every Web site design should reflect the unique qualities of the business itself, there are some universal rules of professional design that every business owner should follow. You don't want to lose a potential customer or client due to a simple mistake.

1) Don't Be Too Flashy

Flash animation certainly has its place in the Web site world - but it's typically not on the home page of your business site. Customers arrive at your Web site expecting to find helpful information about the products and services that interest them - not a slowly unfolding display of digital animation. Use flash wisely - and sparingly - in your professional Web design. I recommend not using flash at all; especially if you are using SEO. Discuss the pros and cons with your design team.

2) Don't Strain the Eye

Keeping Web site design simple can literally save you - and your customers - from headaches. Use a tried-and-true font style, such as Arial, that's sans-serif and proven to be readable. Background is another area of concern for professional Web design. Using busy patterned backgrounds or placing colored type against a black background may cause users to get frustrated and leave your site.

3) Don't Make it Difficult

Use of navigation in designing your web site is like using GPS on a road trip. Use it wisely to guide visitors to the desired destination - and they will enjoy themselves along the way. Resist the urge to get too creative with this aspect of your web page - a clean navigation panel is a user's best resource. Don't lose your customers interest in a flood of flashy pictures and spinning click here buttons.

4) Don't Waste Time

When your Web site design is full of graphics and images, it requires a greater amount of bandwidth. This increased bandwidth takes longer for the user to download. Keep in mind that some people use older computers. In the time it takes for your Web site design to load, your customer may very well decide it's not worth the wait. Only use the graphics and images that are absolutely necessary for your web site and save the rest for your portfolio.

5) Don't Overdo It

Too much or a cluttered Web site design overwhelms your site's visitors and can make your business appear unprofessional. A disorganized site tends to reflect poorly on the very business it is supposed to promote, while a professional Web design speaks volumes about your attention to detail. Keep it simple and clean.

A good website design needs to not only turn customers' heads, but also keeps them interested. Follow the simple guidelines of a business Web design and you'll see the beauty in a more positive visitor experience.

Create a Professional Web Design for Your Home Page

There's no place like home in professional Web design - the homepage, that is.

When you create a website homepage, keep in mind that first impressions truly are everything. You only have a few seconds to capture their attention. More than any other page on your site, your homepage's design should help your visitors answer several key questions about your business.

Bringing visitors to your homepage is only half the battle. In order to be effective, your homepage must also encourage visitors to stick around and take action. Whether you create a website yourself or work with a professional Web design company, there are several steps you can take to make your homepage a sticky success.

Add a Logo Design

Little things can make a big difference in professional website, and that is certainly the case with adding a logo to your homepage. A professional company can work with you to create a customized logo design that strengthens your brand identity and boosts customer confidence. This logo should also be produced in several file formats for images --.JPG,.EPS, and .TIF -- so you can use your new logo in the website or in print marketing materials.

Explain Who You Are

You'll need to tell visitors about yourself - and do it fast. Building rapport and relationship is a key part of attraction marketing for your business. As soon as a visitor arrives at your homepage, the clock is ticking. If your page does not point them directly to the information they want, they may lose interest in your company. One popular way to accomplish this -- add an "About Us" page to your website.

Reduce Scrolling

Here, web site layout takes its cue from print design. Just like a newspaper's major headlines should be above the fold, your professional Web design should place your most pertinent information above the point where a visitor must start scrolling to view. The more scrolling required by your Web design, the less likely your visitor is to stay.

Test for Compatibility

When you create a website homepage, remember that not all browsers and devices were created equal. Keeping your design simple can help you capture the largest possible audience across the board. To be sure, though, you'll need to test your website from multiple devices and browsers.

Update Regularly

Once your web site is completed, you may be tempted to leave it that way for quite some time. A website, just like a business is always changing and growing. In order for your site to keep visitors and search engines coming back for more, it must be updated regularly. You want to keep building your contact data base with new information and subscriptions.

Promote Recognition and Testimonials

When done in moderation, the homepage can be a good place to display small graphics representing rewards and recognition you've received from your clients and industry peers. By adding these graphics when you create a website homepage, you can strengthen your professionalism by showing visitors that you are a legitimate business worthy of their time.

With so much depending on your homepage, it's important to get it right. When you're ready to create a website yourself or work with a professional, remember these simple suggestions for a professional and effective site that encourages visitors to stick around.