How to Design an Effective Website

Whether you’re designing a brand-new website from scratch or launching a redesign, there are a variety of elements to consider influence your site’s performance. Timeless site design, sound SEO good and user experience design are all essential. You also have to consider the site’s loading speed and make good use of responsive design if you want to make visitors and Google’s search algorithm happy.

If you want to design an effective website, check out these articles with website design trends to avoid, tips for keeping visitors’ attention longer.

How to handle SEO during the design process:

The 8 Dying Trends in Website Design to Stay Away From. SmartBug Media. “It’s tempting to think that ‘usable’ and ‘appealing’ mean the same things as ‘flashy’ and ‘trendy.’ But in the world of website design, that couldn’t be farther from the case. While we’re not championing the design of ‘classic’ websites like Havenworks.com or LingsCars.com, we are in favor of creating websites that use clean designs and effective strategies to attract the right traffic, convert that traffic into leads, and help nurture those leads into customers…. Unless your site is Pandora or Spotify and your user is already logged into their station of choice, automatically playing music when a visitor loads your site isn’t ‘classy’ or ‘hip’ – it’s a nuisance to your user. Having playback or volume controls readily available is helpful, but do your visitors a favor and don’t make them have to frantically hunt down the ‘turn off music; buttons when they load your site in the middle of a meeting.”

The Importance of Good UX Design. Silicon Republic: “UX design is not, as many think, the same as graphic or visual design, though the two often work hand-in-hand. UX designers are not focused so much on how a site looks, aesthetically, as how the site works for a consumer and how user-friendly it is. The web designer builds the maze, while the UX designer guides the user through it. UX design also focuses on ensuring that users of the site have a good experience regardless of what platform they are using – something that is increasingly important with the growth of people accessing the internet on mobile devices. Ultimately, good UX design should ensure that people hang around longer on your site, increasing your user count and, in the case of e-commerce websites, increasing the chance of someone making a purchase and recommending your site to others.”

12 Hacks to Keep Visitors on Your Pages Longer. Entrepreneur: “the size of your fonts may also be affecting your site’s ‘stickiness.’ An article published in Smashing Magazine suggests that anything less than 16 pixels could impair your site’s readability….Font size is important but big blocks of unbroken text are unacceptable in any circumstance. Quickly improve your site’s readability by adding headings, sub headings, bulleted lists and numbered lists to break your content into easily-digested segments….Having external links open in the same windows takes visitors away from your site — something that’s counterproductive to keeping them on your site longer. Keep their attention on your content by setting all your external links to open in new windows.”

Search Engine Optimization During Your Website Redesign. iMedia Connection: “Once your site launches, you definitely need a long-term plan for Search Engine Optimization. If you’ve set your site up correctly, this process will look a lot like the work you may be currently doing if you have an SEO effort that has reached maturity. Approaching Search Engine Optimization comprehensively during your website redesign process (as opposed to afterwards) will save you a lot of time and effort, and potentially a lot of cost that may be involved in redoing aspects of your site that were not implemented properly in the first place. After all, many times SEO recommendations for existing sites have as much to do with the coding and structuring of pages as it does on content which may be easier to edit and update.”

5 Easy Ways to Help Reduce Your Website’s Page Loading Speed. HubSpot: “The adage ‘patience is a virtue’ doesn’t apply online. Even a one-second delay can drastically reduce pageviews, customer satisfaction and drop conversions. The speed of your site even affects your organic search rankings. Since 2010, Google has been accounting for a site speed in its algorithm. So what’s the biggest factor contributing to your page speed? Size. It takes browsers time to download the code that makes up your page….As web users expect more engaging site designs, the size of a site’s resource files will continue to grow. Each new feature requires a new script or stylesheet that weighs down your site just a little more.”

Questions to consider before you redesign your website

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