Purposing web design is a complex, but essential ongoing activity. Before creating and uploading a website, it is important to take the time to plan exactly what is needed in the website. Thoroughly considering the audience or target market, as well as defining the purpose and deciding what content will be developed, are extremely important.
Web design is similar (in a very simplistic way) to traditional print publishing. Every website is an information display container, just as a book; and every web page is like the page in a book. However, web design uses a framework based on digital code and display technology to construct and maintain an environment to distribute information in multiple formats. Taken to its fullest potential, web design is undoubtedly the most sophisticated and increasingly complex method to support communication in today's world.
It is essential to define the purpose of the website as one of the first steps in the planning process. A purpose statement should show focus based on what the website will accomplish and what the users will get from it. A clearly defined purpose will help the rest of the planning process as the audience is identified and the content of the site is developed. Setting short and long term goals for the website will help make the purpose clear and plan for the future when expansion, modification, and improvement will take place. Measurable objectives should be identified to track the progress of the site and determine success.
Defining the audience is a key step in the website planning process. The audience is the group of people who are expected to visit your website – the market being targeted. These people will be viewing the website for a specific reason and it is important to know exactly what they are looking for when they visit the site. A clearly defined purpose or goal of the site as well as an understanding of what visitors want to do or feel when they come to your site will help to identify the target audience.
Web design is different than traditional print publishing. Every website is an information display container, just as a book is a container; and every web page is like the page in a book. However the end size and shape of the web page is not known to the web designer, whereas the print designer will know exactly what size paper he will be printing on.
Web design involves the structure of the website including the information architecture, the layout or the pages, and the conceptual design with branding.
All websites should begin with a clear strategy so that it is apparent what they are trying to achieve. The strategy then enables the design to fulfill defined goals.
Based on: Wikipedia