Cruise the internet and take a look at different websites. Most look really different but take a closer look. Once you ignore the colours and graphics you’re notice that the actual layout of the website is very similar from one website to another.
There is no hard and fast rule to say where the navigation, logo and content need to be, but there are a few generally expected places for each component. The last thing you want is your potential client to leave your website because they can’t find anything.
What makes a good layout?
A lot of what makes a layout good is how appropriate it is for your audience. If you are targeting web savvy people you can get away with more intricate and unusual placements. Keeping to the more usual placements are better if you are targeting business people who may not have the time or inclination to go searching or folks who don’t spend a lot of time on the computer and don’t know what to look.
The number of columns also can affect how your website looks. Too many columns can make your content look cluttered and inefficient while too few can make it difficult to read from one side of your website to another.
Graphics can be a great addition to your website to make it more interesting and easier to read, but make sure you use relevant images the make sense within the content of the page.
While there is no right or wrong format for a website some are definitely more effective than others. You’ll notice I didn’t say which ones are which, that’s because what’s right for your company and audience won’t necessarily be suitable for someone else.
To decide what’s best for your business take a look at your competition. Not just your direct competitors, but also websites for similar and alternative services both in your own local area and in different cities. Note what you like and what you don’t like and, if you can, ask your customers for their opinions. Once you’ve done this you’re ready to start designing your own website.