The trick with good web design is that it is that the website must be user-friendly. It must be welcoming. Visitors should immediately want to stay and look around. What visitors expect to find on a website is well documented; the 'do's' are well-known: - here are some of the 'don'ts' of website design.
First of all your website must be distinctive. It must be original and clearly display your business niche. There are now many companies that produce do-it-yourself website templates. These offer an easy and quick way to get a website up and running in double quick time These are fine for people wanting to publish their business details locally or produce 'social' websites of one kind or another but not appropriate for serious businesses. These websites will usually have the company professional logo and a link in the corner of the page. If you are promoting a serious internet business online you do not want to have such links on your webpages it gives a totally wrong message to your visitors to know that you use cheap, or even free, hosting for your company's website.
The other downside is that there will be very few design options, so your website will look like lots of other websites. As I said above, your website must be as distinctive as you can make it. That isn't to say that it must be an over-the-top design, but visitors should leave with an image of your homepage in their mind's eye.
A second important bit of advice: - don't confuse your visitor. We have all encountered websites where trying to navigate to where we want to be can be a nightmare. It can be a bit like those irritating automatic phone answering services where we are given a list of options to choose from requiring us to press a particular number on the phone keypad. This then takes us to another list of options; - and then another; - and so on ad nauseam. This is clearly one of the 'don'ts' of website design. Nothing will drive visitors away quicker than having a website that treats them that way.
Keep your website to the point. Set up a separate website or, at the very least, a separate webpage for each different niche. Never try to deal with both on the same page. You will effectively be offering your visitor a fork in the road with no clear signpost as to which direction to go. It is at this point many will give up and go elsewhere.
Thirdly, don't overload your webpages with graphics. The words are what will sell your products and draw people to your opt-in list, not pretty pictures. Webpages which are splattered with graphics will not only detract from the message but will also make a webpage slow to load, - another good way to drive people elsewhere. This is a fairly common error when building websites.
Finally, keep your message clear. Use words which emphasise the benefits and value of any products or service you are offering. Don't concentrate on features and peripheral issues as your visitors will not be particularly interested. Put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself: "what do they want from me?" Approaching your web development from your own standpoint will often not give your visitors what they are looking for.
When designing your webpages remember these don'ts of website design. It is so easy to drive visitors away taking their business with them.