Ready to Tackle Website Design, Orange County Business Owners? Here Are the 5 Things You Need to Remember

Orange County business owners have a lot on their plates. They’re likely going to be involved with product design, partnering with other companies, marketing initiatives, branding efforts, and any number of other things.

But some business owners or operators also want to have a part in the website design for their companies, and if you’re moving in that direction, then it’s commendable. You can save some cash by avoiding hiring a web designer, but only if you can create a site that is suitable for your needs.

If you already have some web design skills, then that’s great, but if you’re a relative neophyte, then you’ll have a lot to learn before you can get started. These five principles can guide you as you embark on this new adventure.

Code Writing Skills

If you do not know how to write code, then you can’t get started with web design, Orange County business owners, so that’s where you need to begin. Learning some of the more accessible coding languages out there is going to take you some time, but there are all kinds of tutorials which can help you.

You want code that is crisp and clean, as though your HTML structure was professionally done. If you use any unnecessary “junk code” then the site will be difficult for you to update later. It will also cause bloat for your file sizes. At a minimum, you will need to be fluent in HTML and CSS to make a go of it.

Color Accessibility

Color choices in website design matter a lot, Orange County business owners, and not just in the sense of brand recognition and things of that nature. People expect certain colors to go along with specific industries. If you were to go to a website for a heavy metal band, you’d probably see a lot of black and gothic font. If you go to the site for a flower store, then you might encounter some pastel pinks or powder blues.

Beyond expectations, though, there is the issue of color accessibility. What that means in this context is that you need to use colors that allow all of the text to show up clearly when it is put against a particular background. If you’re using a light red on top of deep orange, for instance, then reading the text is going to be a challenge for anyone who looks at the site.

You want a color scheme that makes sense not just for the tone that you’re trying to set for your Orange County business but also which allows for maximum ease of reading. Look for high-contrast combinations.

Proper Use of Fonts

The use of fonts also makes a great deal of difference in the area of website design. There are thousands of different fonts, but there are only a few of those that can be used safely by virtually all browsers, so stick to an approved one.

Keep your font usage consistent throughout the website as well. If you switch it up several times, then it’s not going to be visually appealing, and people aren’t going to know how to react to your site. 

Be sure to use enough white space where it is appropriate. Tweak line height and letter spacing until all of the copy is easy to read. Also, if you see that certain letters or numbers aren’t legible with a font you’ve chosen, it might be enough to convince you to go with a different one.

Create a Navigation Plan That Makes Sense

The navigation plan for your Orange County business website is perhaps the most critical aspect of web design. If the path to navigate through a site for the visitor to get to where they want to go is not clear, then they are likely to give up in frustration rather than to keep trying. People have short attention spans, and trying to fumble through a poorly designed site isn’t high on anyone’s wishlist.

Site navigation should be a progression from your landing page to your product pages, and the path to your FAQs, blog, contact forms, etc. should be clear. You should also be aware of the technology with which your site is compatible. Have you designed it so that it works with CSS and Javascript?

You should be sure that your site navigation will work equally well regardless of whether the visitor is using a cell phone, laptop, desktop, or tablet.

Simple and Clean

The website design you use should be clean and straightforward above all. That means none of your pages should be a jumble of elements that don’t correspond to one another. You’re looking for high usability, and to get there, you should ask the following questions.

How does each element you’re using tie into the purpose, message, and goal of the site? If you remove any component, will people want it back, or does it serve no useful purpose? How does each element help the user? Does the design need each element, or can you eliminate some of them where there are redundancies?  

Optimize Graphics

You should also be sure to optimize your graphics so that you cut down on page load times. Gigantic files should be reduced as much as possible, so each of your pages loads within seconds. Google will penalize you if you don’t do this, and your users will get frustrated.

Remember that many mobile devices do not have broadband-like speeds, and it is for those mobile devices that you most want your business website to be optimized. If someone is trying to look at your site on the go and they’re getting stuck waiting for a stubborn image to finish loading, they’re likely to move on to a competitor without thinking twice about it.

If you keep these five elementary principles in mind, then you should do fine as you get started with your website design endeavors. Orange County business owners and operators who teach themselves website design will have a leg up on the competition, and the more you learn, the more proficient you will become.