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An Introduction to website design & the basics
You may be asking why do
I need a website?
Websites can have many purposes and the aim of your website, i.e. what you wish to achieve with your website, is important to establish before any work is begun.
A website is a tool. A tool that potentially has many functions. It is the aim of the website that defines its function.
Your website may be an informational website, aiming to educate and stimulate, an on-line community where people share ideas and thoughts in forums or chat rooms. You may be thinking about a website for your business to increase cost efficiency and increase your client base.
Your website may have a particular functional aspect such as allowing people to order products securely online. This has the benefit of creating customer convenience and repeat orders and your business can reap the benefit of lower overheads with more competitive product pricing.
A big plus is that it allows your company or service to work more efficiently and effectively by improving communications. This could be a private area of your public website with staff only access or a dedicated site for your staff.
Your website may have global appeal or it may focus on a particular geographical area. It may be aimed a particular niche or section of society or it may be of wider interest. Who the website is aimed at - your audience, is crucial.
Your website may be public or may have restricted access. The content may be free to anyone or people may use their credit card to pay for a subscription to your sites content. It may be commercial or non-profit. You may wish to have sponsors who advertise on the site in the form of banners or pop-up "web-verts".
You may simply wish to have an online brochure giving people basic information about your company, from which you can expand and build your web presence, paving the way for future developments.
The purpose and aim of your website is only limited by your imagination.
There are three main elements to websites: the organisation of the content and how it is navigated, the appearance of the webpages and the content in it's own right. This is very much a pre-production planning stage which is very important if we are to implement a website effectively within a timescale & budget.
If you want your website tying in with any existing promotions, colour schemes, or decor, let us know as we can integrate your website into your existing image.
If you have a logo or any graphics you use, or wish to use, let us know, so we can incorporate them to create a branding for your website. We can also create you a logo should you need one.
Webpages can also be interactive, that is they respond to a user's actions. This can be simple, such as the colour of a link changing colour when the user places their cursor over it, to a fully animated button with personality and pzazz!
The third element of a webpage, the content, is up to you. We can incorporate most kinds of digital media into a website or digitize analogue information for you, for inclusion in the website, e.g. scanning of photos & recording of audio or video. This includes written text, video, audio, music, speech, pictures, animation, diagrams, photos, PDF documents, Microsoft Office documents, CAD files, anything you can think of really.
We can capture your content if you do not have the facilities such as video shooting and editing, taking photos, scanning hardcopy drawings/diagrams, recording audio and encoding. We can also create interactive animations and product presentations. Please see our other services section for further details.
We will also optimise your media for the Internet so that it has a smaller filesize and therefore downloads faster. This applies to video, pictures and sound.
As a word of warning the larger the filesize of your content, the longer it will take to download when some one is browsing your website. Most people have dial-up internet connections which run at a maximum of 56kbps and realistically this is not a fast enough connection to stream video of significant quality, even when optimised. However sound, pictures and animation are fine if optimised correctly. If wish to use extensive video streaming it is better to aim at broadband users
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