Ok, I’m not saying you shouldn’t design and build your own website. And I’m a web designer! I’m just warning you that it’s not as easy as you might think!
The latest Go Daddy advert says you can “design your own website in under an hour”. Really? I doubt that.
I won’t go into the whole process as that’ll take me more than an hour to list everything out but here are some basic things to think about before you dive in and start building that website “in under an hour”:
001. Design your logo – you’ve got a logo already? Great! Is it of a sufficient quality to display on a modern screen? Does it look good as a favicon (that’s the little icon you see in the browser when viewing your website?) and does it look crisp and clear on a mobile screen?
002. Decide on a typeface (you probably call them fonts and that’s fine). Does your web design tool include the typeface you like? Not all fonts are licensed for use on the web by the way. Don’t use too many, two is a good guide, perhaps use one for headings and another for the body text.
004. Decide on what you want to say – don’t forget the main reason for the website – is it to gain more customers? Advise existing ones? Educate potential customers? Sell more products?
005. Then work out how the customer will interact with your shiny new site and how are they going to contact you? Is it easy to find your contact details?
What are you going to highlight on the home page? Best to keep it brief, visitors to your website only have a few minutes at most to decide if you’re worth further investigation.
Now you’re ready to start thinking about the design. But wait! The website is not for you, so be careful not to use a design that appeals to you while forgetting what might appeal to your ideal client. Not everyone will love your amazing ideas, keep thinking about your potential customers.
Next time: designing on paper