10 Rules of Web Design

Follow these guidelines to create great websites

  1. Keep it simple.Cramming too much into each page creates confusion. Visitors get frustrated when they have to scroll through a cluttered interface to find what they need. Keep your pages simple and your website will be easier to use.
  2. Make a good impression.When you meet someone for the first time, you want to make a good first impression. The same should be true for your website. The overall look and feel of your site is the first thing your visitors will notice.
  3. Provide intuitive navigation.There are few things more frustrating than not being to navigate a website. Sections and pages should be well-organized with a top-down design so visitors can easily browse through the different areas of your site.
  4. Be consistent.Users shouldn't feel like they are visiting a new website each time they open a new page on your site. A consistent layout and design across the pages within your site provides a more natural experience.
  5. Choose your colors carefully.Color selection can make or break a website. When choosing colors, use a limited palette of four or five colors that don't clash. Make sure the text is easy to read on the background, though you can soften the contrast with colors besides black and white.
  6. Make your website responsive.People access websites from a variety of devices, including smartphones, tablets, laptops, and desktop computers. Your website must display correctly on different screen sizes. CSS media queries are a great way to implement responsive web design.
  7. Develop for multiple browsers.Browsers are supposed to render webpages the same way, but they don't. Test your website in multiple browsers to make sure everything appears correctly. It is best to catch problems ahead of time instead of relying on complaints from your visitors.
  8. Check your website for errors.A small error can tarnish a great piece of work. If you're a webmaster, check your websites regularly for typos, broken links, and images that do not load correctly. Validate your HTML and CSS to make sure there are no syntax errors.
  9. Write your own code.Whether it's HTML or PHP, nothing beats writing your code from scratch. If you build your site from templates and pre-written scripts, your design freedom will be limited. When you code your own pages, you have full control over how they look and act.
  10. Don't forget the content.A beautiful website is an empty shell without content. An excellent website has both great design and great content. Make sure your pages have unique, original content that makes them worth visiting.

Updated December 12, 2019