How to approach designing a website

How to approach designing a website?

The technologies used for website design and development have changed significantly over the past ten years. This goes hand in hand with the fact that the way people view websites has also changed. 10 years ago, the default approach to website design was desktop first. Today, mobile-first has become the industry standard. In June of 2021, mobile phones were responsible for 46% of website traffic in Trinidad and Tobago. If you are a business in Trinidad looking to make a website you should ask your web development agency to implement a mobile first approach.

But what are some other things that you need to think about? Those familiar with the business of web design will often use terms like static, responsive, one-page or minimalist.  When it comes to development, you will often hear about CMSs, low code tools, templates and more. It’s important for you to have a basic understanding of these terms so that you can make the right choices for your business needs.

 What to think about when designing a website?

1. Responsive or adaptive?

Static websites are a thing of the past. These days it is crucial for your business to have a website that looks good on all devices and screen sizes. Users have come to expect websites that do not require them to zoom in or scroll horizontally to view them. An important decision you will need to make is if you want to build a responsive website or an adaptive one.

Choosing between adaptive and responsive website design

A responsive website is designed on fluid grids. Based on the width of the browser the website will automatically rearrange its layout and element sizes to deliver the best user experience. The downside of responsive design is that often they are heavier than they need to be and this can affect the page load speed.

Adaptive design uses a different method. When a user opens a website on their browser, the browser sends the website a bunch of media queries. These queries include information about the width and height of the browser. Your website will use this information to load the correct version of the site. Instead of there being one layout and design, the website is built for multiple screen resolutions and uses media queries to load the correct page. This means that smaller images can be loaded for smaller screen, reducing the load time. The limitation of adaptive design is that you can only design for so many screen resolutions and hence some users might end up with the need to scroll horizontally.

2. One page or multiple pages?

Single page websites are still quite popular. In this type of site design, the site is broken up into sections and users can see more information by scrolling. They are not taken to a different page. This is a good approach for businesses that do not have a lot of content and have a focused service offering. For businesses that have multiple products or a complex service offering, a single page website might not be ideal. In such a situation you will need to have a multi-page website.

If you decide to choose a multi-page website, you need to work with a skilled website design team in Trinidad and ask them to make recommendation for website navigation and structure. A good option for websites with a lot of pages is to implement a mega menu. These structured menus make it easy for viewers to find the information they are looking for and navigate easily.

What to consider when it comes to website development?

Things to to consider when it comes to website development

There are a few important points to think about when it comes to website development:

1. What CMS should you use?

A CMS like WordPress or Shopify will make it easier to scale and manage your website. By working with a professional web development agency, you will be able to customize your website however you like. CMSs generally also have features built in that make it easier to optimize your website for search engines.

2. What is your one time and recurring budget?

A lot of your decisions regarding hosting, template, CMS, etc will need to be guided by your budget and requirements. How much money do you want to spend during the initial set up of your website? How much will regular maintenance cost? How much hosting space does your site need? A web development agency will be able to guide you on the best choices based on your business needs.

If you are looking for a website design and development agency in Trinidad, contact WebFX. We are a full-service firm that provides website design, development and digital marketing services.

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