How to use stylesheets

Written by Phillip Harrison

Web sites can contain hundreds of pages, even thousands. You have spent your time making a look and brand for your web site, using different font sizes, colours, margins etc all within each web page.

Later on you decide that you want to changerepparttar background colour ofrepparttar 147622 website, and then realise that you will have to edit every single web page and changerepparttar 147623 background color inrepparttar 147624 body tag.......

This is where stylesheets come into play, by simply putting allrepparttar 147625 web page formatting into a single file and then called upon by each web page, you are able to make changes to your web sites layout in just a few seconds!

12 Essential Web Site Design Tips

Written by Justine Curtis, Enable UK

Web site usability and presentation is perhapsrepparttar most important factor in any web design. This isrepparttar 147537 driving factor that gives your visitors a positive, professional impression of your company and keeps them coming back to your website. This issue focuses onrepparttar 147538 “12 Essential Web Site Design Tips” that anyone wishing to promote their products or services onrepparttar 147539 Internet should benefit from.

1. What’srepparttar 147540 purpose? The most fundamental thing to do before designing your web site is to define its purpose. Do you want to sell products directly to your customer through your web site, or collect contact details to develop future relationships? A lot of this will depend onrepparttar 147541 products or services you sell, those with a larger price tag will require more relationship building than those that would count as an “impulse” purchase. People also use web sites to research products as well as purchase them so a company selling fridges for example may not be able to sell them through their web site (people don’t often buy fridges online!) but they may well be able to direct them to their nearest store whererepparttar 147542 item they are interested in is in stock.

Identifyrepparttar 147543 purpose of your web site and make sure allrepparttar 147544 actions you askrepparttar 147545 customer to take leads them torepparttar 147546 final outcome you have identified.

2. Definerepparttar 147547 structure Once you have decidedrepparttar 147548 final outcome you want to achieve, whether it’s a sale, an enquiry, etc. work out a logical progression throughrepparttar 147549 process your customer would need to go through and structure your web site around it. Giverepparttar 147550 customerrepparttar 147551 information they will be looking for and help them find it easily and quickly. If you offer a large range of products, use a search facility, if your products carry a detailed specification, add a “click for spec” button which links to further information on an additional page, this way you will not slow those who are ready to buy, but offerrepparttar 147552 additional info required by those still undecided.

Above all, keeprepparttar 147553 structure and progression as simple and logical as possible.

3. Decide on an overall design layout. Most web sites have navigation downrepparttar 147554 left hand ofrepparttar 147555 page,repparttar 147556 company logo graphic acrossrepparttar 147557 top andrepparttar 147558 content ofrepparttar 147559 page below and torepparttar 147560 right. Another common layout is to have bothrepparttar 147561 logo and navigation menu alongrepparttar 147562 top ofrepparttar 147563 page andrepparttar 147564 page content acrossrepparttar 147565 page beneath it. As these arerepparttar 147566 most familiar layouts to users, it would be wise to stick with them asrepparttar 147567 last thing you want to do is make your web site confusing to your customers.

Avoid too many moving graphics, as they are distracting, avoid large logo-only entrance pages (click here to enter site…) as they only delayrepparttar 147568 user and avoid anything “cute” that may undermine your professional look.

4. Be careful with colours. Use contrasting colours for your text, black or blue on a white background is ideal. Don’t forget to checkrepparttar 147569 colours of your text links both before and after they’ve been visited, you don’t want them to disappear. Patterned backgrounds look dated and unprofessional and make your text harder to read, try to avoid them. If you have them, use your corporate colours in your logos, buttons, etc. and keeprepparttar 147570 overall colour scheme inoffensive, clean and simple.

5. Be consistent. Put your links or buttons in a prominent place and keep them inrepparttar 147571 same place on every page. Make sure your colours, navigation, typeface and text size are consistent on every page. Make surerepparttar 147572 user knows which page they are currently viewing and provide direct links torepparttar 147573 contact and home page on every page of your web site.

6. Don’t get creative with your typeface. Make sure that your text is easy to read. It’s very tempting to use an unusual typeface but your customers will appreciate text that’s easy onrepparttar 147574 eye. They want to read your information and not be challenged in doing so. Also remember, when it comes to overall design layout, white space is beautiful. Break up your text into short paragraphs, bullet points, etc. For more detailed advice on designing a professional web site that will achieve high search engine listings and increase customer conversion rates, download our ebook “Start atrepparttar 147575 Beginning”. Click here for an excerpt:

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