Checklist While building a website.
When we have a great web-host to host our website, we just need a good site to showcase our talent to the outside world. Before building a website we try to collect ideas for our site, we used to start with
∑ Site name
∑ Site motto/theme
∑ Color schemes to be used
∑ How the site should be presented to the users
∑ What contents should be in the home page
∑ How the homepage should be structured
∑ What are all the other contents to be put in and where these contents go into,
∑ Which language to code the site
∑ Do I need a database to store some details? Etc.
Lot of things comes to our mind and we tend to forget everything when we are designing the site. So itís my pleasure to share with you the checklist which can be used when building a site.
First we will be looking for a name and the theme for the site (i.e.) what is the purpose of this site. Once these two main things are decided, we go in for the actual design of the site.
Elements you shouldn't leave out:-
∑ Logo: The logo, besides its function as a hallmark, can be used to link to your site. It should match the site theme or at least the site name.
- Banner: A banner adds a graphical element in which you can state the purpose of your website, your slogan, your site-name.
- Date last edited: This element will tell your visitor that you keep your pages fresh and living.
- Title: A general title states the content of the current page.
- Categories and content: Try to divide your content in a few (4 to 7) categories. Fill each category with about the same amount of information.
- Copyright message: Usually found at the bottom, this element stresses that you work hard to deliver useful content and that you want to keep it yours.
- Counter: A hit counter to keep track of your visitors. A must-have if you want to promote your website! Know your audience! There are lots of free hit counters available in the internet on which you can rely upon.
Elements you can add:-
- Links to other sites: A good way of getting visitors is to exchange links with other webmasters. Put links, logos, and banners of your partner site or other site which have some relation to your site. You can also put links of site which is not relevant to your site also.
- Graphics: A few well-chosen graphic elements will enhance your page.
- Link to homepage: If the current page is not your homepage, reserve some space to put a link to the homepage. This will keep your site together.
- Link to own sites/pages: Do not forget to link between your own pages, even if they handle different subjects!
- Keyword list: Adding a keyword list, preferably in the first column of the layout table, will help to get you listed in the search engines. Do not forget to perform a thorough keyword research to identify the best keywords! You can add this keywords to the meta tag also.
- Date today: A current date (October 15, 200, often placed in the top right corner, will establish a feeling of "this site is up-to-date". Of course this does not mean you don't have to update the page often! You can do this using any scripting language. Readymade functions are available to capture the date from the server and print on the webpage.
- Search this site: If your site grows larger, adding an automatic search feature helps your visitors find what they're looking for. You can use the third party scripts to do this job.
- Search the web: Many search engines, such as Google, allows you to use their search feature by embedding a search box connected with their engine on your page.
- Put in favorites: A link can be provided so that visitors can click that link to add the page to their favorites.
- Email page: You can also include a link which automatically emails the current page to any personís mail id given by the visitor. By this visitors are encouraged to let other people know that your site contains something of interest for them.
- Print this page: Especially if you have a content-rich site with a good layout, visitors will like to print your webpage for further reference.
- Downloadable material: Compose downloadable material and put it on your website. Not only freeware counts, also documents, templates, graphic material, and other stuff people are interested in.
- News ticker: Service offered by online news agencies. Especially if you can modify the type of messages to your page theme, short news flashes will interest your visitors. There are separate scripts available to do this.
- Contact information: If you're not afraid of giving away personal information, put your email address at the bottom of each page. Insert something like SPAMREMOVE to avoid being picked up by spammer programs ("email harvesters").
- Guest book: A guest book allows your visitors to leave a comment about you or your site. Can be pretty (if you get good comments) or nasty (if someone misuses the guest book to call you names or so).
- Link to us: Explain to your visitors that you are ready to exchange links with them if they want to. This helps build link popularity and direct traffic.