So what are some of the key things that help me the most?
Under the headings below I have offered some suggestions on what you might think about, and how you might go about collecting them together:
|1 - Content (Words)|
|Content - the words you include in your page are critical both for your visitors' experience and for the search engines. For the visitor they explain what you do, what you want to say, and make your page interesting. For the search engine, they add meaning to your page. So if your website is about Greg, a carpenter; and the words are about Greg the carpenter; for the search engine, it all hangs together and makes sense.|
For most of the websites I work on I write the words, however, it is always really helpful when my client offers me some word they have jotted down, or an article, or a brochure which helps me understand what sounds right.
As I have suggested, content is about the most important element of a good website. The industry guidance is that you should aim to have a minimum of between 200 and 400 'relevant' words - meaning, again, that they should refer to the subject of the page.
|2 - Look & Feel|
|Getting the 'look-and-feel' of your site the way you want it is often quite difficult to put into words. The way one person thinks it should look is almost certainly quite different to someone else's idea!
My suggestion to help you explain what you want, or what you like, is to make a note of, or save the addresses of website's you visit that, in your view, look right. Generally, you will have four or five sites that sit well with you which we can then take a look at togther and decide the way forward.
Another option, depending on what style of website you want to create, is to have a look through some of the template sites. These come 'free' or 'premium' and are generally very good. The sort of search you might use on Google is "free css website templates", or "clean css website templates". Be warned - there are thousands of them!!
If you are thinking of a self-managed, (CMS), site then you might want to try "free" or "premium" "wordpress themes" to see some of the brilliant WordPress themes on offer.
|3 - Pictures|
|Pictures, or images, bring a website to life. That said, if you visit a website with poor or blurry images it tends to be a massive turn-off!
My suggestion, in advance of building your website, is to collect together some good, big, clear images - photos and graphics - you might even arrange to take some fresh shots, preferably with a digital camera rather than a phone.
What does "good" mean - clear, sharp - taken in good light.
"Big?" - A good size picture gives me room to adjust the size and organise, and optimise it to look good.
A little trick with taking digital photos is to pull back a little to give more space around the shot for editing.
Do remember that if you take images off the web for your site you need to check that using them is OK!!
It is perfectly reasonable that you may not be in a position to pull some of these bits and pieces together yourself. As an example I have just finished a one-page site for a well-established local business and I wrote the initial content in a test site so that the owner could edit and correct it, and add what I had missed. By passing it back and forth a few times it came good!!
We can always work this way if needed.
I hope this page has helped you and if you feel I can assist you with your new website, or help improve the performance of your existing site, please feel free to contact me to discuss your requirements.