Simplicity: The Ultimate Sophistication

Description: There are so many things you could do with your website it can sometimes be hard to know where to turn. But there is one design trick in particular that is greatly underused and yet very eye catching - highly recommended.

Every website should be a pleasure to visit. We've all landed on a website that is so obviously begging to get our attention that we turn tail and run the other way, back to the search engine results page that sent us there.

It's easy to spot these horrors because they are usually trying to cram too much onto every page. But they can help us in one very important way if we have a website of our own - we can learn how to make our own websites far more impressive as a result.

You've probably heard of the term ?less is more'. This can certainly apply to website design. We'd all like to have words such as simplicity and sophistication mentioned when people look at our own site, so how can we take steps towards making that a reality?

It all lies in the design we choose for our site. Just because there is so much that we can do when designing our sites doesn't mean we have to do it all. Some people have a hard time getting their heads around that. From this point on, try and keep the ?less is more' rule in your mind whenever you set about editing or creating a website.

So how do we put this into practice?

In short, simplicity can be adhered to in several ways. Firstly there is the question of layout. This can incorporate several factors, but the most important one is that of space.

It's quite natural for a lot of newbies to website design to try and pack a lot into their home page. After all there is so much they want their visitors to see, and if they don't go beyond the home page they simply won't see it.

What they don't realize is that when a person is confronted by a huge wad of information all in one go, they probably won't stop to investigate the rest of the site anyway, because they will be having trouble trying to figure out what it's actually about.

The first step to creating any kind of website is to draw a site map to help you figure out what needs to go on each page. By doing this you can get to the bones of each page without distorting the message you want to put across. This will enable you to create a simple but effective design that complements your message and the subject of your site.

Another point to bear in mind is color. Sometimes certain colors will suggest themselves depending on what your site is about. More muted and understated colors and tones can also make your site seem more sophisticated than if you were to use, say, bright primary colors.

The images you use are equally important. There's nothing wrong with using Flash or any other images to help create a stunning website, but be sure you aren't just using them for the sake of it. Moving images can be annoying if they aren't used carefully. If in doubt it might be better to avoid them until you have gained a little more experience.

Finally, advertising plays an important role for many websites. If you want to monetize your site make sure the ads you use don't stick out like a sore thumb if you are going for a simple and sophisticated look. Choose advertising sites which allow you to choose the ads you display, rather than leaving it up to them to provide the content. That way you will still retain control.

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