There’s a lot to think about when considering your website layout.
It’s important to realize that looks are not everything in a good website design.
There are a lot of factors that build a good web experience for your end-users such as:
- The overall look and feel of the site (colour scheme, banners, menu location, etc…)
- The usability of the site (easy access to the information that the end-user is looking for)
- Very little clutter (it is imperative that the site remain simple and easy to follow)
- Categorization (proper organization of the material)
- The SEO Factor (Search Engine Optimization factor – how visible the site is to the engines)
When looking through the thousands of freely available or paid web page layouts, keep in mind that you want something that follows Web 2.0 standards, that matches the colour scheme of your business and / or product, that is simple effective and easy to navigate.
Always test your websites in as many web browser softwares as you can. The different softwares don’t always display your site the same way and you wouldn’t want your users to see your page distorted or completely mis-aligned. There is a great tool that you can use to see your website in all the major browsers without having to install them all. It’s called Browser Shots and it has many test computers ready and waiting to load your website and take a snapshot image of how it looks in that browser. It can test over 100 different browsers and versions of browsers simultaneously and best of all it’s 100% free.