Get More From Your Site’s Visual Acreage

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Real Estate

One of the most important, and sometimes most difficult, parts of web design is deciding what to do with the space that is given you.

Usually, you have around 960 pixels in width and an indefinite height to work with, and it often feels like too much or too little. It’s very valuable when used correctly, but when used incorrectly it can destroy a website’s potential.

There are similarities in real estate. Each piece of property has a different value, some high and some low. Using a beautiful piece of property in the wrong way can diminish its value. By comparing page area in a website to real estate, we can learn a few principles that help us utilize the “property” of a web page to the maximum advantage.

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7 Essential Elements of Blog Design

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The blogosphere continues to expand almost on a daily basis, and as a web designer we often inform clients of the numerous benefits of attaching a blog to their site. It is always a great way to continuously update your readers as to what new developments are being made in your business and what to look for as they stick with you on this journey.

This in turn, keeps your site well trafficked by the online masses as new content is added on a regular basis. And while there are a plethora of points and elements that are vital when designing a blog, some take precedence over the others.

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40 Creative Navigation Menus

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One of the first things to do when planning out a new website is to work out all of the content that will be in the site. You then divide that up into sections and then into various levels of navigation.

The result is a boring list of links.

That list of links is one of the most important part of your website though, it goes without saying that every visitor to the site will be using them to get around.

In this post we’ve pulled together some of the best designed navigation bars (both horizontal and vertical) to help give you ideas to enhance your own.

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Design Review: Splashnology

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s14

Splashnology is a community design site. Members join up and submit articles, which are then displayed in blog format on the website.

Today we’re going to take a look Splashnology’s design to see what has been done well, and what we would improve on. Lets start by opening up a new tab, and then on to the review!

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Should a Sidebar Go On the Left or Right?

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 leftorrigh2t
Image by Apesara
Whether you use a 3 column layout or a 2 column layout, you have to choose which side you want your content on, and which side you want your sidebar on. Left or right? Which is best?

As always, the answer is; it depends on your blog.

Why Have It On the Right?

  • Western readers read left to right. When scanning a page, we will scan left to right (And top to bottom). Put your sidebar on the right, and the first thing a reader will scan over will be your content.
  • Many people still use 800×600 resolution. When designing your theme, it’s tempting to work with a 1024px wide layout. The extra space is great for the majority of your users.

    However, a good few are still on 800×600 monitors, and will have an annoying horizontal scrollbar to work with. If your content is on the left, they will not have to scroll to read it. The scrollbar will only be needed to see the sidebar.

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Why I’m Using a 3 Column Layout

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columns4.jpgThere are a few seemingly perpetual debates in web design. 800×600 vs 1024×768. Fixed vs fluid. Content on the right or left. The choice of using a 2 column layout or a 3 column one is another of these.

Advantages of a Two Column Layout

  • Forces minimalism. There tends to be less sidebar room in a 2 column layout. You simply don’t have the space for 100 different widgets without overstretching the page. This limit forces you to be a little more careful about choosing which widgets are installed.

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What makes a blog look like a blog?

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Elements of blog design. Dominik Lenk recently asked an interesting question; What are the essential elements of a blog?

In reply I would say that there are very few essentials. It is your blog, and its up to you what you want to include. The only essentials would be to include the basics that you see on every blog, such as a search function, category lists and comment forms.

However, this did lead me onto another question. It is one thing to know the features that technically make a blog a blog, but what is it that makes a blog look like a blog?

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