Here are some suggestions for everyone that has a website. When designing a website you sometimes only have one chance to keep the visitor from clicking the back button on their web browser. For years, we have been told that when going to an interview you have 10 seconds to make a lasting first impression. There is no difference when someone visits your website. You have 10 seconds for that person to deceide if this is the place they should stay.
Rule #1: Limit the use or do not use flashy banners and advertisements at the beginning of you website.
There is nothing more annoying than clicking on a website to see cartoon characters and advertisements for other products flashing in front of your face. The only exception to this rule is determined by the purpose of you website. In other words if the Flash helps convey your message use it.
Rule #2: Make sure your website navigation is easy to use. If your viewer has to search for a navigation button to find information about you or your inventory, the visitor may get frustrated and leave your website.
As a rule of thumb, your navigation buttons should be on the left side or top of your web page because the majority of people read from left to right. Think about reading a newspaper or a book.
Rule #3: When visitors are browsing your site, have a clear indication for the visitor of where they are on your website and how to get to other parts.
You may want to put a link on each page (or breadcrumbs) that the visitor clicks to take them to the home page or another page relating to the information currently viewing.
Use clear paragraph headers as well.
Rule #4: When designing your website pay close attention to loading time. You can reduce loading time by reducing graphics or optimizing them on each page.
The longer it takes the pages to load the more frustrating it can be to the visitor.
Rule #5: Use a font that is common to all web browsers and easy to read. If you want to keep your look consistent use a font common to all web browsers like Arial. This way you know what the page will look like to everyone viewing it.
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