Your business website the front door of your business resides on the internet. It is like the flagship store or headquarters of a company in offline world. Because of that, it is very important to observe a few design principles to make sure your site reaches out as far as it can, and convert as many visitors possible.
First of all, use a simple and clean design. Simplicity is the trend of the web design in Web 2.0 age. What you want is to create a focus, clean and simple website that focus on delivering your message. Only use as many design elements as you need. The focus of the design element is always to facilitate communication.
Clear navigation is the heart of a usable website. The navigation menu needs to be uncluttered and concise so that everybody knows how to use it, without too much thinking process. The rule of thumb is always keeps it simple until my grandma also knows how to navigate.
You need to understand that the user don’t read, they scan. It is important to have a design that facilitate scan instead of forcing your visitor to read. Visitor always tries to decide if they are landing on the right page by scanning for clues. Therefore, it is important to keep your text at reasonable length. If it is too long, you should split it into multiple paragraphs.
Use images only if it is necessary to facilitate your communication. Always optimize the images you put on the website so that the size is minimum. Too many images make your site load very slow, and broadband penetration is not as high as what you thought. There are still people using 55.6K dial up modem to visit your website.
Many people don’t think that standard compliance is very important. Make your website looks great on Internet Explorer is important, making it looks great on all other browser is equally important. Technology is moving very fast these days. Going online using mobile devices has become a norm. Your website not only need to look good on IE, but need to be as good on FireFox, Opera, Safari, Chrome, and many other browsers on a different platform and different devices. Standard Compliance is the only way to make sure you are forward compatible with many upcoming devices.
If you would like to use scripting language, it must be use with care. First, avoid heavy use of scripting, else your visitor will experience slow response, and you might crash the browser. Second, always provide smooth degradation, in the even script is not enabled or not supported on the target browser. You don’t want your client miss some important message because of the script is not enabled.