Website Design - What it is and How Mine Stand Out

There are a lot of tips and tricks, helpful information, informative blogs and educational newsletters blanketing the market of website development these days; plenty of it helpful and instructive, much of it a sales technique, some of it gibberish. I don’t claim to be educational and I prefer not to supply nonsense. What I’d like to think of myself as is an adventurer, a self-educated designer, an everyday consumer and a worldly experienced person.

I say this because I have spoken with many, many people about websites in general. This is what they want on their website – the basic look of every other website… except more alluring, larger images (no thumbnails) a little more color, less text, make it a bit less cluttered, make the screen resolution larger, make it more user-friendly (less clicks to get somewhere), etc.

No one REALLY wants a template...

This is important to mention because it proves a point. People SAY they want what everyone else has, but they really don’t. They want my concept: Make an attractive, eye-catching, graphic intense website, that is laid out simply, is user-friendly and most of all is different from the basic templates you see almost all websites out there using right now.

What Screen Resolution Do YOU want?

I read a newsletter once that stated you MUST build your website to fit an 800x600 screen resolution because the majority of people have that size monitor. This information was in a recent article, however, through a simple Google search the original data backing up that statement came out back in 1998 (or thereabouts). People who have older monitors, or with bad eye-sight who have blown up their screen resolution for easier viewing would agree with that statement. However, people with newer computers, even laptops now have a minimum of 1024x768 screen size, widescreen is widely bought now days, and if the viewer has a Mac, most likely every website out there looks microscopic on their 2048x1536 screen sizes. For the most part, the size of the website, to me, depends on the demographic of the users who will be visiting that website.

Can you really see the detail in a thumbnail?

Also, widely available on the internet is the rule of Thumbnails. It states you should use thumbnails (very small images) because you want your pages to load fast, that the average web surfer has an attention span of 6 seconds and if the page doesn’t load by then, they hit the back button and leave the site. That makes a ton of sense – to a point. If the consumer has dial up – yes, it’s going to take a long time to load, but the average person now has cable, DSL or some other form of high speed internet, so now, more can be put in a web page and not slow it down.

Stay Away from Color - Are you serious?

I’ve read that web pages that used color backgrounds and animated gifs are so early nineties, but I disagree. Granted, animated gifs back then were small, and silly, but there are much nicer animated images out there, flash animation as well and why wouldn’t you want to add a little flash and movement to your website? As for color backgrounds, at least if your website background was bright purple it would stand out from all of the other websites that are using plain white backgrounds. Plus you could include a little of that Color Theory towards the design of your website:  Like if you are selling toys to happy tots, you might consider using yellow in your website because yellow is associated with sunshine and happiness. If you are trying to build trust and loyalty with your customers, you could consider a nice blue background, which symbolizes trust, loyalty and confidence, something to ease the customer and calm them into staying on your site longer.


So, my outlook on website design may be atypical but at least it is unique. At least when someone hires me to design a site for them, they get something beautiful, easy to navigate and still includes all of the SEO techniques to get their site noticed and picked up on the search engines. It is a site they can be proud to show off, that when their customers go to; they are pulled into it, they want to see more, it excites their eyes with vibrant color and large images they don’t have to click on 2-4 times to see it enlarged for detail just to discover it wasn’t what they wanted and to hit the back button 2-4 times wasting their time.

I may be new to the web design game… but I also bring a new outlook on the success of this website design venture… my aim is to meet my customers’ requirements all the while presenting them with the flair and distinctiveness they truly desire.  

~ Kathleen 


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