Professional Web Design
Visiting a website for the first time and you form an opinion from its appearance. If the site is not cluttered and looks professional, you're going to trust it. If you enter a website which has clashing colours, poor navigation and unclear content, you're unlikely to stay for long. If the conclusion you reach from the moment you enter the web page, after the first elements appear, is a mess, the perfection of what should be a professionally designed website is shattered. So what exactly matters when it comes to designing a professional looking web page?
Look at any magazine layout and you'll appreciate the ordered structure. Divide the content and keep it neat and tidy.
Less is more when it comes to colours. Pick four complimentary colours and stick with these.
Avoid overcrowding of the web page. Increase 'white space' around page elements and Increase margins.
Use only one or two fonts. Sans serif fonts are easiest to read on the screen.
Be consistent with the placement of navigation (links) on every page, so that your visitors know where things are without having to search for them.
Ensure you 'guide' your visitors towards your goal, the so called 'money pages', for example where you 'make the sale'.
Only add images if you surely need to. If they don't add to the value, don't use them. Don't place them just because you can.
If you're thinking about adding Flash elements think whether they add value or are just over intrusive and too much of a distraction to the main content. This is especially dangerous on 'money pages'.