Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Web designing: What a pain it can be.

There's something magical about web designing. Seriously. According to me, web designing is a perfect amalgamation of intelligence and creativity. It demands so much from the individual that only a very few people are able to reach that level. But inspite of all the odds, there are thousands and thousands of people who not only draw pleasure from it but also earn their living out of it.

I don’t quite remember how I was exposed or rather introduced to this whole world of web designing I should say. I was fairly young when I got my hands on the internet. I remember the day when I opened my first email account. The cyber cafĂ© where we went charged Rs.60/hr. That’s a whole lot compared to the Rs.20/hr we pay that too for broadband rather than dial-up in those days. But I guess at that time the net meant altogether something else. It was like access to some fantasy world. Information was now available on the fingertips, you could hear songs, send emails and share pictures. It was simply just awesome. The excitement of opening an email account was coupled with that day being my birthday. So it was timed as you can say. But it was really nice.

When finally we got net access at home surfing the net became a regular activity. It was something like watching TV. Checking emails everyday became a habit. Waiting well into the night for attachments to download was also a regular affair. But that was a part of the game. I guess here it was that web designing seemed to have caught my eye. The thought of designing a website and having thousands and thousands of people coming daily to your site was something that could take me on cloud number 9. I think the thought may have become so evident that everyone around me soon deciphered that I wanted to be a web designer. It so happened at an exhibition my principal gifted me a book titled “How to design your own website”. It was a book on web designing for starters, that’s what I would say now. For me at that time it was the doorway to heaven.

I still remember the first website I designed. I would best like to describe it as something I prefer not remembering. Such bold use of colours that even the font was not visible. What was worse was that the website background was the poster of Charlize Theron. That definitely might have made readability better (hahahaha). I’m sure my par-exceptional designing skills might have not attracted but definitely driven away many many people who even had the courtesy of visiting my website.

As time went by, I slowly and gradually picked up the finer nuances of this art. The proper use of colours, font and font size now seemed to be the left hands play. At the end of the day, and after many many attempts I can say that I have a website that atleast is presentable to people. The journey has been long, painful, disappointing and depressing but it has been worth the wait and effort (atleast where designing is concerned). If you would like to see my website click here.

I wish designing only included designing the schema of the website and forgetting it. Unfortunately, it just starts there. I don’t even think there’s an end point. It’s something like you have an empty box, now you have to start filling it. But that’s not all. It’s also not that there are only a few things to be done. There’s infact a lot. Firstly you got to have great content. Sounds easy??? Well heres the catch. The content should be relevant, up to date and original. Most people don’t even make it past this. For those who have there’s something called SEO (Search Engine Optimization). What’s this, well lemme explain. Majority of the people on this planet search for stuff on they net they’re looking for. If you’re site happens to offer that stuff then they will be directed to your site by the search engine. So SEO is nothing but telling the search engine what your site offers so that many people may find your site in the search results they get.

There’s also something known as Link Building. It’s telling other webmasters to include your sites link on their website so some of they’re users are directed to your site.

When you have managed to get all these things right (its easier said than done) you land up getting great traffic and page ranks which makes your site very popular and in turn generates a lot of income for you.

At the end, all I can say is that web designing is the same as a card game. You don’t quite know what you’ve got till you’ve see all the cards. What may seem amazing at the onset may not be so enticing at the end.

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