Who’s a pretty boy then! When it comes to designing websites, you shouldn’t just rely on looks.

If you take a quick look at the most popular websites, you’ll see some very good designs, but if you look beyond the fancy logos, or clever graphics, they all follow a similar template. And it’s this template you have to bear in mind when thinking about deigning websites.

If you think about it sensibly, the internet in its present form hasn’t been around for that long, indeed, the internet powered by fast speed broadband is comparatively young, maybe at most five years. And in that period of time, conventions have almost subconsciously drawn up which dictate how a website can look and be built.

Technology is one key factor; human nature the next. Technology dictates what you can do with a website in terms of download and upload speeds, and how it can be structured. In other words, build a website which is too complex, with too many individual items being loaded, and few people might have the connection speed able (or indeed patience), to stay long enough to read. You can already see this happening with some major newspaper sites where so much is packed into a single page, that download times can be slow on old computers, or low speed links.

Then there’s human nature. People think in a certain way and if the website is built counter to human logic, then it will fail. Pages and information thus have to be ordered in such a way, that people can use them with ease.

So, when designing websites, don’t just think about the looks; think about the functionality.