Custom website design

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1,78 billions.

This is the number of websites created worldwide till now.

You will find among them many beautiful, original and stylish websites.

How to stand out from the crowd, and manage to create an amazing custom website?

Creating an awesome website raises a number of questions:

  • How much does it cost?

  • How long is this going to take? Is it difficult?

  • Who can help me create the website of my dreams?

It might surprise you, but the answers to these questions are much easier than you may first think. 

There is no need to be a professional web designer, nor to use a web agency, in order to obtain an awesome website.

Today, there are a lot of online tools on the internet that allow you to create a high quality website, all by yourself. 

There is probably no magic formula to make a custom website.

However, there are some basic rules that you should follow, in order to make sure your website is both stylish and functional. 

How to create a beautiful website? With which provider?

You have several options: you can use a CMS or a website builder, or ask a web designer to help you make the most of your website template.

Which option better suits your needs, budget and project?

Let’s explore these possibilities together, so that you can find the perfect solution.

Hiring a professional web designer

Of course, you can hire a professional web designer or a web agency, to design your website.

Selecting a trustworthy and qualified expert will allow you to get a unique website that meets your requirements, down to the smallest details. The only thing you have to do is to explain your project to your web designer, so that he/she can realize it.

This will spare you some time, and you won’t necessarily have to maintain your website. 

However, it is essential that you can communicate with your provider, in a free and direct way. Your web designer or web agency will certainly ask for your graphic charter or a moodboard, in order to guide them through the creation of your website.

They can also give you some advice about your website design. Indeed, they are perfectly aware of web design trends, and they sometimes are even one step ahead! 

They can tell you what is possible and what is not, and they can also give you some inspiration.

On the other hand, hiring a professional will cost you a lot. 

Indeed, the price of a tailor-made website designed by a web designer can vary a lot. For example, using a web agency to create a complete website can cost you between 2 000€ and 60 000€.

Why?

It depends on the type of your website, on the complexity of the project, on the number of pages, on whether your provider will maintain your website or not after creating it, etc.

Site design

Making a custom website with a CMS

To build a custom website, you can use an online software, and do everything by yourself.

If you have some skills in development, you can try to use a CMS (Content Management System).

CMS are softwares that allow you to totally customize your website, down to the source code, and to easily add your own content using a dedicated dashboard.

To sum it up, you can create a tailor-made website with a CMS, with no need of coding. But as you may guess, the use of this tool requires some technical knowledge. Beginners may find it very difficult to use.

Moreover, be aware that you will have to maintain your website, entirely by yourself, including for technical aspects. You won’t be able to ask anyone for help, when needed. You will have to correct your mistakes and solve your problems by yourself.

Fortunately, CMS are largely used and popular, which allows you to easily find some tutorials and support forums on Google.

The most popular CMS is WordPress. It counts more than 500 websites created per day in  2020 (yes, you read it right).

The Wordpress community is massive and never stops growing. They will help you in case of problems. 

The price of a CMS may vary a lot, if you want to create a complete website. For example, you can start an ecommerce website for 45€ per month with Wordpress - not including the domain name registration that you will have to pay after one year.

Using a website builder to create a website

For those who are not used to computers, or those who want to be accompanied, and to design their website the way they want, it is possible to use a website builder.

Website builders are all-inclusive solutions that enable you to create awesome custom websites, by using a template as a starting-point, and by adding different elements to the pages.

With a website builder like SiteW, you have the same autonomy and the same degree of freedom, but this time, you are accompanied.

Indeed, the technical updates are supported by the service, and you benefit from online resources.

On SiteW, we do everything we can, to enable you to create a website you love, with no need of undergoing extensive training or getting a computer science degree.

You have directly access to:

  • A technical support team, that will carefully listen to your problems

  • A FAQ section, to answer your most frequently asked questions

  • A blog to give you tips and tricks

  • Templates designed by professionals

  • Specific blocks, that were designed and developed to help you easily create the website of your dreams...

Then you just need to select your package for a one month, one-year or two-year subscription, and the features that you need, from simple blog to professional online store.

 

Create a custom design

Our tips on how to make a beautiful website

If you choose to make your website by yourself, don’t go unprepared.

Be sure of yourself, and study your project before getting a start.

On SiteW, we love adventurers, we love the ones who dare, so we are going to share our best tips with you on how to build an amazing website.

Building a custom website: three key points

It is not enough to design a beautiful website: you also have to make it effective.

Here are our three key tips on how to create a website that is both stylish and highly competitive:

1: Make your navigation clear and intuitive

Making a beautiful website does not mean doing “too much”. A stylish website is not a website that is whimsical and messy.

Above all, your website must be designed to optimize and improve the user experience. Your visitors should easily find their way, without questioning. And they should easily find the information they need.

You should design your website, trying to figure out the many ways your visitors will browse your pages. 

With this in mind, you must take care about:

  • Your call to action button design. They must be visible but not aggressive, and should encourage the users to engage.

  • The place of your title and logo. It is not recommended to move them: they should be placed at the top of the page, in order not to confuse the users.

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Info stepup
💡 The best place for your logo is at the top left corner of the page. 
  • The mobile version of your website should be as intuitive and clear as the desktop version. Indeed, given the new consumer habits, you can’t ignore responsive design anymore.

So, creating a stylish website is important, but making a website that is functional and intuitive is even more important, to be more effective on the web.

2: Match your website design to your content

Indeed, your website appearance should serve its content, and not the contrary.

Of course, a beautiful appearance is important, to stand out from the other websites. So it is essential to make your website trendy and stylish.

But, you have to keep in mind the fact that the main goal of a website is to highlight your work, your information or your products.

Consequently, your website should be designed according to the message you want to convey, and depending on your objectives.

For example, if you choose neutral and light colors to create a soft and sleek atmosphere, you are indeed building a modern and stylish website. However, you should be careful that these colors do not ruin your content’s readability.

3: Build your design for your target-audience

Your website is the place where you can freely express yourself.

So it should reflect your personality and your tastes, as well as your company and your brand.

But, you should design it by keeping in mind the characteristics of your audience.

Because your audience will determine whether you succeed or fail on the internet.

If your target audience doesn't like your website design, even if it is sophisticated and qualitative, you may not achieve the expected results.

However, you can create a website that you love, and that your audience will love too. It will be easy, if you get to know your audience well.

To help you in this task, we recommend that you define your buyer persona, or that you carry out a study on other websites that reach your target audience.

You got it: making an amazing website is essential to stand out from the crowd of already existing websites. Your website should be useful for you and pleasurable for your visitors. 

Adapt your template to your design

If you choose to create your website with a website builder like SiteW, you will be offered many different templates for your website. 

Templates SiteW

On our web design platform, start by choosing your website template.

Online services generally offer a wide variety of website templates designed by professionals, of various styles, and for all kinds of business.

Indeed, you can find templates for online stores, portfolios, or for any kind of blog. Those templates have been designed to suit your website type and business sector, while being stylish, effective and responsive.

It is important to choose your template with care, because it is the first step of your website design.

You thus enjoy features that meet your needs. For example, with a blog, you could need a subscription form to your newsletter or a comment section to easily communicate with your visitors. 

As said earlier, to make a beautiful custom website, there is no magic formula. It will depend on your tastes, your brand image, your content and your goals.

You can get inspired by the current design trends, but don’t forget to add your own identity.

You know that trends quickly become obsolete, whereas style never does, even in the web design field.

Anyway, you have to find the right ingredients, the right doses and the right recipe to achieve success. However, if you want to create a beautiful website, it is essential to get to know the current trends, in order to be in line with the times.

To give you some ideas and inform you about the current trends, here is a list of the elements that you can customize in your website:

👉 Website background:

Being able to change your website background is a bonus.

You have plenty of options:

  • Video,

  • one color,

  • image gallery or one image

Regardless of which option you pick, don’t let your background overwhelm your content.  

A good background should highlight your content, while remaining discreet.

For example, a background video can be a very good idea, as long as it doesn't ruin the readability of the title on it.

Don’t hesitate to soften the colors by playing with saturation. You can even change your background to black and white, if necessary, as long as it fits your brand identity.

🚀 Current trend: the current trend is towards minimalism: simple and sleek designs, with an inclination for asymmetry and contrast.

👉 Header and footer:

Designing a good footer is essential. Your website footer and header are important points of reference for your visitors and should contain a certain amount of information. 

They are strategic. So they must be precise and effective: they are micro spaces, where visitors should easily and quickly find what they need. 

Generally, the header is composed of the title, the logo and the main menu, and possibly an access to the member login area, or a link to the contact page.

The footer can seem a little less useful. However, it is the perfect place to add your legal notice, your site map, a contact form, or a link to your company’s history.

Be aware that users are accustomed to scrolling to the end of the page, and to looking for information in the footer. So don’t neglect the appearance of these elements.

🚀Current trend: today, there exist a lot of different footers and headers. we recommend that you create simple minimal headers and footers, possibly with some effects. 

 

Create a custom website

👉 Colors:

Colors can be double edged: you can choose whatever colors you want, but their interpretation is always subjective.

To sum it up, choosing colors is both difficult and exciting. We recommend that you choose up to 5 colors.

You can select contrasting colors, including complementary colors, to boost your website design, and highlight the most important elements. Try to use neutral colors for the text.

To help you choose, you can also look for the meaning of colors, so that you can communicate your values to your audience, in an indirect way. 

In order to make sure the colors you choose are relevant, or simply to get new ideas, several tools can help you do so.

For example, the Coolors website allows you to generate new colors, by pressing the entry key, in order to see the most used colors. 

Coolors

🚀Current trends: The color trends lean towards bright shades - but soft in intensity.

👉 Typography:

In the same way as for colors, you may be tempted to use a lot of whimsical fonts. Indeed, there exist an unlimited number of fonts, and you can even create your own!

But, as usual when you want to create a custom website, your main goal is not to confuse your visitors.

Typography allows you to convey your visual identity: a well-chosen font can help you stand out from the other websites. So, try to choose a font that perfectly reflects you and your brand.

However, choose a second font that is simpler and easy to read, for your website content.

Also consider checking that your fonts are still attractive and readable, once they are in bold, italic, underlined, smaller or bigger, etc.

If you want to preview some fonts, you can use a software like Google Fonts.

Google Fonts

🚀 Current trend: Huge fonts are currently trendy. These will automatically allow you to affirm your brand identity.

👉  Navigation elements:

Links, menus and buttons allow your visitors to easily browse your website.

Considering the importance of navigation in your digital strategy, it is essential to take special care of these elements.

Links and buttons should be easily accessible and visible, especially in the mobile version of your website.

They also should be consistent graphically with each other: they should have the same look through the whole website, so that they can be immediately identified as navigation elements, and stand out from the rest of the content.

Your call-to-action buttons should be very visible, and highlighted with a contrasting color and a strategic location. Indeed, they should be immediately noticed by the users that may perform an action on your website, like subscribing to your newsletter, seeing your offers, or downloading your white paper.

Menus should be placed in an expected location, like the top or side of the page.

And, above all, menus should look like menus, and should not take up too much space when dropped down.

Your overall goal is not to lose your visitors, and accompany and guide them.

To do so, your menus should be structured and clear, without being too detailed or specific, and while being graphically consistent with your website design.

🚀Current trend: Navigation elements tend to be simple and elegant, and fully functional both on desktop and mobile platforms.

Créer un site design 👉 Visual elements:

Your visual content should always serve your goals, whether they are:

  • videos

  • images

  • icons

  • organic or geometrical shapes

  • lines

  • dynamical contents, like transition effects or animations.

Be aware that visual elements are the first to be noticed by users. Your website should contain some relevant icons and harmonious shapes that reflect your brand identity and match your website design.

You can find nice icons for your website on “The Noun Project”, if you want. For images and videos, it is better to make them yourself, if you can. 

However, if you don’t have enough time to do it, or if you just don’t want to, you can consult our favorite image banks: they are free and high quality.

🚀 Current trend: Dynamic visuals, with scroll reveal animations, are often used today. However, it is essential that it be consistent with your brand identity and it should be used sparingly to be effective.

Now you know very well all the challenges related to the creation of a custom website, and you have all the tips and trends to make it effective.

If you want some inspiration, you can go and see some of the websites made with our tools. 

Whether you want to follow the current trends or to make up your own trends, make sure your website design always serves your content, and never the contrary. 

Now may the digital spirit inspire you. We wish you the best adventures on the web!

Last update: April 07, 2021

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