There’s that old saying — if you want to do something right, you’ve got to do it yourself. Many people feel this way about websites. Why pay a professional web designer when you can create the perfect website yourself? Designing your own website is a great way to unleash your creativity and also to make sure your unique personal taste shines through in your site. Furthermore, there are so many tools out there now allowing you to make a great-looking website even if you don’t have much experience doing so.
Check out the following trips and tricks to make a great-looking website without hiring a designer.
1. Get Bootstrap — If you’re creating a webpage from scratch, get Twitter’s Bootstrap, a simple, intuitive frontend UI framework for developers. Bootstrap is pretty easy to use if you know HTML; one benefit is you don’t have to spend hours messing with CSS (unless you want to).
If you need to get your website looking good ASAP, you can also buy a professional website theme from WrapBootstrap.
2. Use large images — Adding big, gorgeous images to your design is a simple and effective way to make your website look better. To this end, you can get free images from sites like Unsplash. On Unsplash, you can download beautiful, high-resolution photographs to use on your website, however you wish, free of charge.
3. Add icons — Incorporating large icons to your menu is another design trick that will greatly improve the look of your site. Font Awesome is a terrific source of customizable icons that are free to use, even for commercial sites. You can even make these icons huge to function as simple graphics for your site. Check them out!
4. Increase line height — Websites typically look better when they have more whitespace, or blank space between elements on your site, as opposed to a cramped layout, An easy way to achieve more whitespace is by increasing line height, or the amount of space above and below lines of text.
This list of website design tips from WebGeekly gives you the code to use to increase line height.
5. Incorporate custom fonts — Custom fonts can modernize and beautify the look of your website in a hurry. One great place to find amazing fonts for your site is Google Web Fonts.
Of course, you want to make sure the fonts you use look good together, so if you need some help in this area, consult an article like 5 Google Font Combinations That You’ll Fall in Love With for inspiration.
6. Crowdsource your logo design — Having an awesome logo can make a big impact on the look of your website and even positively influence how people view your brand. At 99designs.com, you can actually crowdsource the design of your logo, having many designers compete to design your logo for whatever price you’re willing to pay the winner. According to the site’s pricing page, for $299, you can get about 30 designs to choose from. Not too shabby!
Keep in mind that the best logos are simplistic and visually appealing
Now that you’ve got a great design going, get your site ready to compete in search engine results by reading our blog post on SEO.