Website Design is typically used to describe the process of designing a website including planning, creation and updating of websites. Website Design also involves information architecture, website structure, user interface, navigation ergonomics, website layout, colors, contrasts, fonts and imagery (photography) as well as icons design.All of these are combined with the principles of design to create a website that meets the goals of the owner and designer.
Websites are created using a markup language called HTML. Web designers build webpages using HTML tags that define the content and metadata of each page. The layout and appearance of the elements within a webpage are typically defined using CSS, or cascading style sheets. Therefore, most websites include a combination of HTML and CSS that defines how each page will appear in a browser. Some web designers prefer to hand code pages (typing HTML and CSS from scratch), while others use a “WYSIWYG” editor like Adobe Dreamweaver. This type of editor provides a visual interface for designing the webpage layout and the software automatically generates the corresponding HTML and CSS code. Another popular way to design websites is with a content management system like WordPress or Joomla. These services provide different website templates that can be used as a starting point for a new website. Webmasters can then add content and customize the layout using a web-based interface. While HTML and CSS are used to design the look and feel of a website, images must be created separately. Therefore, graphic design may overlap with web design, since graphic designers often create images for use on the Web. Some graphics programs like Adobe Photoshop even include a “Save for Web…” option that provides an easy way to export images in a format optimized for web publishing. Web designer skills.
Internet connection speed
Many internet users do not have high-speed internet access and this should be taken into account by a web developer to ensure maximum exposure and browsing pleasure for visitors.Inexperienced web developers are often unaware of the impact that images, fonts, scripts, animations and video have on the load-speed of their web pages, or on the perceptions of their website visitors. Information and media overload is a sure fire way to collectively slow a website to a crawl, and to bombard visitors with so much information that they cannot possibly take it all in, resulting in a quick back-step to Google and a click on to the next promising search result. Web users have very short attention spans and if a website doesn’t deliver the information they’re looking for in a few seconds, they will get bored and leave. Slow download speeds also impact negatively on search engine rankings, so it is prudent to keep file and image sizes to a minimum and limit the number of resources downloaded and displayed on the screen.
Web-capable device screens and monitors come in many shapes and sizes, so it can be difficult to know what size to design a website around. But, it’s a big ol’ world of web out there, so, the reality is, that we shouldn’t actually base a website design on any fixed size at all. The web isn’t a fixed medium, so it’s a web developer’s job to create an interface that looks and functions beautifully on any screen. Modern practices encourage developers to think responsively – that is, to build responsive websites that fluidly shift, flow and adapt to any screen, regardless of size or orientation. The most effective of these practices is the mobile first approach, which begins with a website that looks good and functions fully at the skinniest, linear proportion, and then the layout adapts to maybe 2 or 3 columns as the screen gets wider, using the content itself to determine a design breakpoint rather than any popular device dimensions (320px = iPhone portrait, 480px = iPhone landscape, 768px = iPad portrait, etc.). Thinking device agnostically can be a bit of a challenge for newbie web developers to wrap their heads (and often their skills) around, and it is not uncommon to see mobile handsets crumble and crash under the weight of an image or script intensive website, that has been designed on a desktop computer, with a desktop capable mindset. A developer with more experience will make allowances for mobile and use techniques that progressively enhance a website to deliver the best possible experience to the widest possible audience.
Menu Not only does screen size influence website design; The differences in bandwidth/data transfer and multi-media functionality also play a huge part in how successfully a website can be used on handheld and mobile devices, as well as desktop computers. On desktop, hover-functions work brilliantly under the swipe of a mouse cursor, but sadly, events that are triggered on-hover do not translate well onto touch screens. Web developers need to consider this and make substitutions for on-click/tap functions, coupled with a large button or bar (instead of a teeny tiny text link) that can easily be jabbed by a finger on a small touch screen. We can’t be too liberal with the scripts and images either – mobile data packages aren’t geared up to handle heavy image downloads, or complex script functions, and many devices have these features disabled to prevent accidental data overuse and incompatibility. It’s easy to forget that what takes 2 seconds to load on a speedy desktop computer, can take 15+ seconds to load on a 3G mobile when you’re half way up a mountain. And visitors won’t hang around that long when they have stuff to do – they’ll seek out a competitor’s website that loads in a quarter of the time. Limited screen space also forces us to re-evaluate the organization of content, and while it’s always best to put priority content at the top of any web page, it becomes even more critical on small screen devices where users can’t easily scroll to the bottom of very long pages without getting severe finger cramp!
There are a number of web browsers on the market today – mainly Internet Explorer 8, 9, 10, 11, Firefox, Safari, Chrome and Opera and because of widespread browser differences, a web developer must check that their product works properly, and that its appearance is error-free and functional, on any platform used to view it. A professional website will work equally as well, and look almost the same, in all browsers. Web standards are ever-advancing, but while opening up many exciting design possibilities, many of the new features are still not widely supported by all major browsers. And, design features that are completely ignored on some platforms can pose major problems if not given an alternative fall-back – something that less-experienced developers may not be fully aware of, or be prepared to deal with. A conscientious web developer will understand browser limitations, make tactical use of browser specific stylesheets, and employ feature detection techniques to help overcome design problems and provide consistent website usability in this hostile and unpredictable environment – after all, a visitor who cannot use a website, won’t be a visitor for very long.
The Web is basically designed to work for all people, irrespective of the culture, language, location, or physical or mental ability. However, one of the major challenges a web designer faces is to enhance the accessibility of websites. A good designer should ensure that the website is not only accessible across the world but also its various features are fully functional as well.
Navigational structure is one of the vital aspects of any website, as the usability of the website is based on an excellent navigational structure. Hence, in order to avoid any such issues, designers have to ensure that they provide a proper navigational structure to the users. Positioning of content Another prominent aspect of a website is that the users should find it readable. While designing the structure of the website, the designer should place the content in such a manner that it enhances easy reading. In addition, use suitable colors when it comes to font.
Challenges in creating a responsive website
The process of creating a responsive website is a major challenge for designers as it involves a wide array of devices, code frameworks, scripts, and of course, the constant need to work in an innovative way with clients to effectively manages the process. Here are some of the major issues faced by designers while building a responsive website: When compared to a desktop site, building a responsive website takes a significant amount of time. In responsive websites; the content should be prioritized for mobile use. For smaller screens, the designer must know precisely what matters, the devices that people use, their circumstances, and their unique goals. Interaction in desktop sites and mobile devices are different. Responsive websites recognize media queries to assess the screen size of every visitor and then displays the layout accurately. The issue here is that old browsers, particularly Internet Explorer version 8 and older, do not recognize media queries. In responsive design, scaled images instantly lose details, and hence their meaning. This is because scaling mainly happens depending on the size of the screen and not on context. On smaller devices, designing intuitive navigation menus becomes a real a challenge due to the limited screen size.