Once you have decided to embark on a journey to create your first website, there are a few things you should consider before creating your content. Most amateur website owners think they can just log into any website builder they want and start typing in whatever content they want. What they don't realize is that the simple mistakes made when creating their website can make visitors leave it as soon as they see it - and not want to come back. But this doesn't have to happen to you.
Before we begin, here is good Rule Of Thumb to always consider when creating content for your website: Do professional periodicals and magazines do this with their articles? If the answer is 'No', then chances are you probably shouldn't do it on your website either.
1) Centering All Your Text
Most people new to website design seem to want to center all of their text. Not only does this make for an unattractive website, but it is the hallmark of an amateur. According to extensive research done on website design, usability and user surfing behavior, visitors read web text from left to right. Knowing this, it only makes sense to align your text this way. There are a few exceptions, but for the most part you should avoid centering all your text.
2) Too Many Fonts
If you have seen all the unique fonts available in Word or other programs, you may think that using a lot of those fancy writing styles is a way to make your website more popular or impressive. The truth is quite the opposite. When a variety of different fonts are used on a website, it makes the page look messy, and even hard to read. Use fonts that are clear and easy to read, like Verdana (which is a common font used for web text). You can use different fonts for headers and sub-headers; but they should be consistent throughout your website.
3) Over Bolding
As you build your website, you may be tempted to try and make a lot of your content stand out by putting it in bold print. Avoid the temptation. If you really have a certain phrase or key sentence that you want to make stand out on your page, you can bold it. However, be aware that bolding a lot of sentences and words does nothing but lessen the overall impact of the bold type.
4) Over Capitalizing
In order to emphasize your website content, you may think it's best to capitalize many of the words you are typing. This is another nasty habit that many novices to web design get into. Putting your content in all capital letters is equal to yelling at those reading your page. This will annoy visitors, dilute your message and will likely send them away.
5) Over Enlarging All Your Fonts
Avoid the overuse of large fonts for the same reasons above. Enlarging too much (or even ALL) of you content dilutes your message and throws off your design. If you make the content text larger than the headers, you are really messing up your website.
6) Too Many Exclamation Marks!!!!
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People will feel like they are in a infomercial - enough said.
7) Too Many Font Colors
It's amazing how colorful you can make your website nowadays. If you have been doing typical store-based marketing, you may also equate all those bright and dazzling colors with signs used to get customers into a store. The Internet is different. When people bring up your website, it's the first, and often only, impression they will get of your company. If you have too many font colors on the screen, it will look cheap and amateurish, plus your marketing message will be hard to read and will send your prospects away.
8) Spinning Logo / Animation Images
For some reason, back in the 90's when web development was first coming out, everyone thought having lots of animation on your website was really cool. It only took a few years for web designers to figure out that this was not the case. Today, amateur web designers make the same mistake. Spinning logos and animation distract people from the most important thing about their website - the content. Over the years, advertising banners on peoples websites have had lots of animation put into them. They do this so they can do just that - get your attention AWAY from the content on the site to look at their ad!
9) Too Much Data to Load
While most website builders will allow you to add a lot of things to your web page, that doesn't mean you need all of them. If you overload your site with pictures, music, videos or other graphics that have long load times, you will send some users - especially those with slower connections, away.
10) Too Much Content
While you may have a lot to say about your company, most people don't want to read that much. They want to know who you are, what you do and if you can help them. Then they want to know how to contact you for that purpose. If they have to read a novel to find the information they need, they will probably go elsewhere.
Using the best website maker on the market can only do so much. Make sure to keep these ideas in mind when you log on to your Doodlekit website and create your own online masterpiece.