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If you're one that considers most websites to be the same, try to compare Google to Facebook or Yahoo to Bing. The elements of these websites portray the importance of a quality web design. The ideas in this post should be used as a reference to raise your awareness of the possibilities you can incorporate into making your web design unique.
Google loves fast websites. A fast website is a good website. You can't expect much from impatient viewers (such as myself!). If they're left looking at an incomplete page for minutes while your content loads, the frustration will likely lead to closing your site and find what they're looking for elsewhere.
You should validate every web page that you create. Something you should avoid is using a "what you see is what you get" editor when validating your website designs. If you choose to use those programs, be sure that you take the extra effort to utilize a validation service to validate your code. This kind of metric sits well with Google. A free service called W3C is a great start for this.
Although a majority of people are familiar with Photoshop, many are unaware of a similar Adobe product called Dreamweaver. This software is a gold mine for web developers and allows you to create any kind of page, content, or function you desire. I suggest looking into this kind of software and how it can assist you in your web design goals. Remember - you want to be extremely unique with your web design.
Developing a site that is cross-functional across different platforms will attract more unique visitors. You'll also benefit from becoming fluent in several platforms, including PHP and Java. Web development is another language - one that you can become fluent in with practice just like a regular language! Whether you're designing a new site, or simply helping a friend launch their own, a wide variety of experience and knowledge will help you in the long run.
Create a favicon for your website. This is a small graphic that can be seen in the browser and will make it easier for your visitors to bookmark your website. When they pull up their bookmarks, your memorable favicon will stand out. Your favicon should be consistent with your website's logo and design features.
If a design company doesn't have a portfolio available, I wouldn't even consider them. Carefully review the portfolios of the companies that are in your consideration set. You want to make sure they have the proper experience, knowledge, reputation, and have the capital to meet your demands. The company's portfolio will show you how experienced and knowledgeable they are.
When you decide to venture on your own web design, you probably aren't going to create a revolutionary site like Twitter or Facebook. Overall, the chances of making a worldwide known site are slim. However, with unique web design skills, you can create attractive sites that function even better than those owned by a major company. Use the tips learned here, and start designing your website today.