Web Design Beginning Web Page Design Advanced Web Site Design Web Site Management Professor Higgins Web Design Resources

CSC 112 - Lesson 6

Putting the Pieces Together

Over the last few weeks we have assembled all of the parts to put our puzzle together. By doing this in advance, we will save much time and you might even be amazed on how quickly everything comes together.

Finishing your template

One of the first things we did after we decided on the navigation for the site was design a template for your pages. I won't go over all the advantages of the template again but I want to make one point. Try to be sure that everything is right (perfect) before you start pasting in your content.

Don't be too despaired if you forget something or need to change a link after you get started because we can still use global replace and other Dreamweaver site management tools to make our changes but that still takes time so try to get it right the first time.

If you have to do a global replace, try it first on your template and then do it on the entire directory (folder) or site. Be careful. Try to get enough words or characters in your replace string to make it unique so you don't accidentally replace things that you didn't intend to.

Before you start inserting content, be sure to test your template on as many browsers as you can. It's always best to find any compatibility problems before you start adding content and features. Problems are easier to isolate before anthing else is added.

Pasting in your content

After your template is in a state of perfection, start pasting in your content. You might find some flaws in your design or in your navigation. If you do, now is the time to fix it before you get all of your content pasted in. Be sure to run your spell checker over your text.

Format as you paste

Format your content as you paste it in. After you are done, you'll still need to go over everything one more time to be sure that it's right but do as much as you can now. As you are pasting in your graphics, obviously you will need to resize them and edit it. This is a good time to compress your graphics if you plan to do it on an individual basis.

Use conformity to your advantage

By naming the individual pages and graphics the same name as the "item" name in the product database, I simplified by programming and my database structure. By arranging pages into manageable folders, you can also reap benefits in terms of simplified programming. You might not always need to do this on every web site but do think about it. Could you simplify your searches, programming or life through a naming system. Sometimes a good naming system makes things much easier to find.

Think about keywords

When you are setting up your page and directory names, think about any keywords or keyword phrases that users might type in to find you page. Is there any way to incorporate that into your naming system? If possible, work your keywords into your code.

Do any programming first

If you need to write any programs or if you need to set up any programs, do that first. If you run into problems with your template, it's likely that it might happen with your programs. Sometimes certain programs have limitations built in that you must work around in your design. Also, by gettin this done first, it makes assemblying the site go much quicker, It's always best to get all of your content together before you assemble the final site.

Put in the muscle

Since everything is created in advance, it's really just time at this point that's standing in your way of having a completed web site. Just do it and get it done. Since you designed the site with a modular design (templates), you can easily make minor design changes later. By using tools like updatable pages and databases; maintance, updates and design future changes are even eaiser. You will be amazed on how quickly everything comes together when you plan in advance. Everything from now on is easy.