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Saturday, 29 December 2012

Ways to create successful websites


I have been programming websites for 4 years and i have seen many ways i stuck myself in the middle of the road when my projects grow larger. And i simply want to start again fresh. But this is not the solution. Many developers face those problems and what they do is start again from the beginning, leave the whole project unfinished or finished but with huge problems. What should every developer know before taking the next step to create some robust content management systems ? In my opinion i will describe some ways to avoid these common problems and organize yourself without being lost and end up with headache.

Whats, Hows, and Whys 

Every developer should ask himself these 3 questions before starting to develop their project. What i want clearly defines what we want to do. Making a big clear picture of our target is the first thing we should do. Then analyzing what we want enters the second question. How this should be done ? In this step we define what we can use and cannot use to begin developing our idea. And the last question is why should i do this ?
Time is important for us humans and making sure that our ideas will not just loose us time is the answer for the third question. Answering this question you make sure you are about to start something worthy.
And answering to yourself these 3 questions will complete the overall steps and they would bring us the solution whether is good to do it, what we can use if we start it and why this idea should be brought to life.

Team work vs self work

For huge projects it is good to have team of developers that can save you time. But there is sometime where you feel that no one is completing the job as you can do it. Not for the fact that they don't know how to do it but they cannot understand you what you want, and they do not share same ideas with you. This is bad team cooperation and communication. And you want to do all things by yourself. If you have team of developers and you are lead developer you should organize a meeting where you answer the 3 questions above in front of your colleges. And you make sure they will share the same ideas with you.

Working by yourself with huge projects can be done. Its not said to be impossible but that would require lots of time, concentration, be separated from friends parties and other things in your life ( not mentioning your girlfriend or boyfriend they can calm you down). Some people say that creating websites is piece of art and in any moment could be ruined if things don't go well. This is correct but i highly oppose the fact that programmers are separated from designers. Programmers cannot be designers and designers cannot be programmers. This is totally wrong. I have done clean UI designs and i have been programming websites with huge structure all by myself. And i proved that i can be programmer and designer at the same time.

Another consideration to take when you work by yourself. If your design or inner structure of your website looks very cool to you, there is always someone somewhere who don't likes it. It is not said that if it looks good to you, would also look good to the public. Everyone's experience is difference and everyone has its taste of looking at websites and their beauty.

Design, design, design...

One of the main problems i have been facing when developing websites is the look and feel of the design.Practicing and taking ideas from different sources, designers and templates is the way everyone does. But creating pixel perfect layouts requires more effort inspiration and being creative. However if you are more at the programming and you feel that design is not for you then you should ask a friend who can do the design for you but however this also requires from you to show him some ideas of how the design should look.

And as i said i oppose the fact that you cannot be programmer and designer at the same time. You can also do pixel perfect layouts you just have to gain yourself more creativity. And the most important part when you start a design and you are in middle of the road do not ever try do change the design while programming things, or do not ever try to start the layouts from the beginning just because you have seen some website or design on the internet that looks cool and you would like to implement in your project.

No no this is bad approach to creating websites. It can loose you huge amount of time getting back and changing layouts. Just finish it the way you started. And after producing it you can do some manipulation with the layout and by the time gradually change the look of your website. Another consideration to have if you are doing design and programming is that creating pixel perfect layouts with CSS is very very different from creating layouts with image manipulation software like Adobe Photoshop is. In these days very low percentage of images are implemented in websites and most of the percentage is done by HTML and CSS together. Creating images for things that can be done with html and css is loose of performance.

If you start something finish it how you started no matter if you find better solutions to your problems, better designs for your layouts or better ways for your job to be done. Firstly show something to the public then gradually change things and do improvements. There is no way to get it done perfectly with one shot.

Security, performance and content

You as a developer should have other considerations when developing websites. Security is another step that requires high concentration. There are lots of articles on the internet that talk around this title and we will not go in deep details here but just to mention that security is primary thing to make sure your hard work is not ruined by someone who thinks it is clever and feels like he occupied the whole world just by putting down something that its not for bad purpose. Developers are hackers themselves. Normal users never tweak your website they just click on the links you offer, but developers will want to do tricks and manipulate your website in different ways. You should prepare your website to behave normally to every input and trick.

Performance is another fact that many users leave your website and never come back. Optimizing your scripts your css and your database is very important part of creation. And the most important part is content. Having good content with not very good layout is better than having mind blowing robust layouts with poor content. When users come to your website they are seeking some informations. And you should bring them that information as quick as possible. Less links, less images that are not related to the content, and good layout is the way users would feel comfort inside your website. You want to gain reputation right. Then you are about to take all these steps to be successful web developer. You can do all these things by yourself. It is not said that all this requires huge team work. Team working just saves time. While self working requires time concentration and never thinking that you cannot do it. You push forward till you see the success.

Advertising sharing and gaining reputation

You want to get on the top ? You want to be one of the highly ranked websites on search engines ? You want to be wanted ? Then you share your website, you advertise your website around the internet, and telling  the public what content you offer is important. Because adverts depend on the content of your website.
And there are always people that seek for the content you are about to share on your website. But being different from others is the key to get on the top. Remember that you are threaten by many websites out there that share same things as you do, but you have to do it better than them or just stick with the fact that you cant do better, and cannot get on the top of all them.

Should i do it ? No i cant do it ... But i wanna try it ...

These questions never come if you successfully answered the 3 questions of success But if you ever  feel that there are lots of websites that share the same thing you do and you ask yourself  why should i do it then you should do it because you think that you can do better than others. Before facebook there was myspace. But Mark Zuckerberg thought he can do better and he was right. An interesting question i saw on the internet was "Hey why should i loose time learning to create websites when there are lots of them and we can never reach them ?" And the answer to this question was shocking. If there are 4 giants on the internet like Facebook Google Twitter and Youtube then there is the 5th upcoming one that will surpass all of them and will threat them. And this 5th one can be you. No one knows what can happen. So its worthy to work hard, try and never think you cannot be better than someone else. Don't be same...be better.

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