So you want to learn how to create a website? Then you’re on the right track! Websites are the business cards of the digital age: They allow you to express yourself and your brand in ways that wouldn’t have been possible a few decades ago. That’s why creating a website is a key milestone for any small business.
Developing a clear design plan for your new webpage is vital. Will you hire someone else to do all the hard work, or set off on the exciting (and sometimes challenging) journey of DIY website design?
If you’re a trailblazer with a passion for learning, here are six tips for website design that will leave a lasting impression.
1. Develop a brand personality that appeals to your target audience
Before you begin your DIY web design journey, it’s important to decide how you want to present yourself and your brand to the world.
Some important questions you should ask yourself are:
- Who is your target audience? Are you aiming to attract middle-aged couples who love reading and cats? Or edgy college kids who love skateboarding and tattoos?
- What tone will you choose to express yourself? Imagine yourself talking to the people in the previous bullet point and let your creativity go wild!
Once you settle on a target audience and tone, your brand personality will begin to build itself. You’ll be able to choose other important features of your new website, such as:
- Colors that let your brand’s personality shine. Make sure you settle on a striking palette that sets you apart before you get to work.
- Eye-catching photos that will keep viewers scrolling. Coming up with a photo plan is another essential part of learning how to create a website.
- A brand story or mission that makes you feel “real.” Your brand story should be the candle that guides your way down the long and winding road of DIY website design!
2. Choose your web builder
Now that you’ve ironed out the basics, it’s time to dive into the fun part: Choosing your web builder! There are so many options available it might seem overwhelming at first, but don’t worry. Once you figure out what you want most out of a web builder, it’s easy to narrow your options down.
If this is your first foray into web design, you’re better off sticking with a beginner-friendly builder like Wix. However, if you’re a quick learner who enjoys a challenge, you could give Squarespace a try. Although their interface is a bit harder to master than Wix’s, they’re known for their wide variety of eye-catching templates. On the other hand, if your main focus is web content and blog posts, WordPress is an excellent choice. The highly-customizable text posting features make it hard to beat for newbies!
3. Keep it simple and don’t overload your viewers
Now that you’ve settled on a web builder, you probably want to dive in and start filling your website with all awesome content. However, one of our most important tips for website design is to keep it simple. Research has shown visually complex websites are less effective in engaging viewers. In fact, the busier your new site is, the less likely you are to keep your customers’ attention.
Minimalist web design has really taken off in recent years, so it’s a good idea to stick with the simple premade templates that come with your web builder at first. Also, don’t be tempted by all the fancy widgets that your new web builder may have. Stick with simple banners that link to your brand’s social media and don’t go overboard!
4. Consistency is key with fonts and colors
In our first tip for how to create a webpage, we discussed the importance of choosing color schemes and fonts to define your brand. Once you settle on one color scheme or photo style, be sure to stay consistent across every page.
According to Wix, you should never use more than three different fonts for your website. Otherwise, you’ll run the risk of your page looking cluttered and disorganized. When choosing your fonts, return to our first tip and think about what your brand represents. It’s generally best to choose simple and easy to read fonts like Arial. But don’t be afraid to throw a pinch of personality in and get creative! After all, DIY website design is all about self-expression.
The consistency rule applies to color as well. Stick with the color palette you chose in step one on every page of your site.
5. Don’t waste your visitors’ time with extra clicks
If you think creating tons of sub-pages and forcing your visitors to navigate through a maze of menus will keep them engaged, think again. Research has shown that readers prefer scrolling to clicking in recent years. This doesn’t mean you should spam your new website with endless images and blocks of text, however. The key to keeping your viewers scrolling is simple. Make sure your content is engaging, interesting, and true to your brand’s image.
6. Don’t let security fall by the wayside
Now you’ve come a long way on your DIY website design adventure, it’s time to face one of the more unpleasant parts. Unfortunately, putting all your info out there makes you a target for cyber criminals and scammers. Before you release your site out into the world with all sorts of potentially sensitive data ready for the taking, make sure you educate yourself on the many dangers website owners face on a regular basis. Some common threats are:
Staying up to date on all the latest scams that target small businesses will greatly improve your chances of avoiding cybercriminals and safeguarding your data while you’re mastering the art of DIY web design!
Now that you know how to create a website, get to work!
These six tips for website design are enough to get you started, but don’t think you’re anywhere near the finish line yet! Even after your site is live, be prepared to do your research to stay up to date on the latest design and SEO trends. But for now, go out there and create something awesome for your brand. And remember, web design is even more fun at speeds of up to 940 Mbps* with Quantum Fiber!
*Speed may not be available in your area.