The Design / Layout
In designing web sites, I find it’s best to layout a site map or rough sketch by hand first. Some people prefer to use a word processor like Microsoft Word, which is fine, but unless you want something cut and spliced to HTML, I’d leave the design or a graphics program out of the picture at this point. The design should be one of the last things you think about in my opinion, in the beginning it’s best to form a solid structure of information and content like multimedia and photos.
Find out how you’re going to manage your content, whether it be via HTML file upload, a content management system or a community based web site, you’ll need a solid way of transferring new files and data onto the web site efficiently. Although you may only update twice a year, you’ll always need a way to connect and refresh your website when required.
A content management system, also known as a CMS, like WordPress, is a great way to collaborate with other users and manage your content online.
Upgrades & Maintenance
WordPress is an open source software that is constantly improving so it’s often that they release updates for both the plug-ins that run within the CMS and WordPress itself. At Red Media Design we update our sites on a daily basis just to be sure everything is up to par.
As I mention in previous blogs CMS’s are more vulnerable to attacks than HTML and HTML5 web sites. With this in mind it’s important to have some type of security plug-in installed, if not a few.
Having your website work for you is far more important than having it look good. I’ve seen many un-stylish web sites work well for business owners as points of references, back-end sales processors and even redirect pages. Having a functional website tends to pay off if you’ve structured yourself or your sales pitch well within the content.
Designing a website can take as little or as much time as you want. It’s always key to create a good floor plan or blue print in any construction project.
Design & Style
Style is something I stress highly on your website. Whether it be minimal or maximum, as long as it’s got a good style to it, it will work well.
It’s always important to have your clients in the loop on what you’re doing, it’s equally important to be on the same page as the clients expectations are. I find it best to inform the client of goals and to educate them on the design aspect so they canget involved, but not too involved, because don’t forget, you’re the designer!