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Developing an Effective Website Design

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This chapter shows you how to make decisions about developing an effective site design and where you can find some ideas that will help spark your design creativity.

If you’ve spent much time surfing the web, you’ve probably noticed some sites that are well designed and others that are not. The design of your site is important, because it sets the stage for your content and has the potential to keep visitors from leaving your site too quickly and to keep them coming back. This is sometimes called sticky content, because it keeps visitors stuck to your website. The design involves colors, fonts, images, and layout.

This chapter shows you how to make decisions about developing an effective design and where you can find some ideas that will help spark your design creativity.

I Can’t Make a Website That Looks That Good!

If you’re reading this book, you’re probably not a professional web designer. Neither am I. But, you don’t need to be to create a well-designed website. You can learn from the work of others—those with great talent and ability who create true works of art (see Figure 4.1).

Figure 4-1

Figure 4.1. Built By Kids (http://builtbykids.com/) is a well-designed DIY site for kids.

Most of the beautiful and well-designed sites out there were created by a staff that is well trained and well paid. Compared to these sites, your site will look unpolished and unprofessional. However, it’s important to remember that this is a learning process and your budget is probably zero, so keep things in perspective. Learn from the sites that are well done and, most importantly, don’t get discouraged! Have fun and be creative.

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