The first thing to remember when choosing a design for your website is that eye candy will cost you a fortune and not make you rich. Some of the prettiest, most interactive websites never make a dime. For example Amazon.com took nearly five years to show a profit of .5 Cents! even though they had a top notch website.
Though the above example is a bit extreme, it does serve as reminder that your sales copy and marketing strategy have more to do with sales than pretty flashing buttons or graphics. Don’t take our word on it, check out Tom Antion’s website Antion.com proves the point beautifully.
Where to Start When Coming up with a Design?
Picking a design is a combination of branding and functionality. Remember that functionality is more important than branding at first; as branding can be added to the design. If your website is geared first towards branding then towards functionality, you will loose in terms of sales. You visitors need to be able to find your information, before they can buy your products and services!
Think of your website design as a floor plan, or blueprint to a house. A four bedroom, two bath, two story house with a garage is a four bedroom, two bath, two story house with a garage no matter what color the paint is.
An example of a common floor plan is what we like to call the Half T or Closed C. The basic layout consists of a header or top banner, a left or right navigation bar and footer. this website fits the above definition.
Now That I Know the Basics, Where do I Get Ideas?
The first approach, and more expensive one in the development phase, is to surf the web and find sites you like. then provides those to a developer to create a custom website based on layout, level of professionalism, and color schemes. If you choose to take this route, providing samples will save lots of time and money, since the developer will not have to guess what you want..
A more affordable solution is to buy a WordPress Website Template (A complete website design) and then customize it to suit your needs.
Depending on the complexity of the design, or your skill level you might find it necessary to get the assistance of a website developer such as ourselves.
O.K. I understand Layout and Design, Now What?
With an idea of what your website should look like, it’s time to move on to the development stage of your project!