- Paperback: 360 pages
- Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (November 30, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0470889527
- ISBN-13: 978-0470889527
- Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 0.8 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 20 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,233,058 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Website Design and Development: 100 Questions to Ask Before Building a Website 1st Edition
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From the Back Cover
To get the right answers, ask the right questions
Planning a website for your business? Get it right, right from the start! George Plumley knows just what you need to consider to create and maintain a site that achieves your goals. He'll be your virtual coach, to make sure you create the best site possible.
What should our site look like?
How wide and tall should it be?
Are we effectively using images?
Will our site work on mobile browsers?
How will we make our users happy?
Should we use popups?
How do we make our links user-friendly?
Will our content be easily accessible?
How can we protect our users' information?
Do we have a marketing plan?
Are we integrating our site with social media?
How do we get other sites to link to ours?
What free online advertising methods can we use?
...And the number one question-
Why are we building a website in the first place?
About the Author
George Plumley has been helping individuals and small-business owners build top-notch websites since 1995, and his outstanding training videos are his signature. He is the author of WordPress 24-Hour Trainer, also published by Wiley.
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One book I've suggested to my customers for a few years is Building Web Sites All-in-One For Dummies. For a book with "dummies" in the title, it provides a very good overview of how professionals approach a site build. Unfortunately, it is almost 800 pages and many of my clients just can't bring themselves to start it, let alone finish it.
That's where "Website Design and Development" comes in. It covers much of the same material as the "Dummies" book, but it's shorter and easier to read. I can tell this was written by a design/development guy -- it's structured for scanning, just like a good site.
Knowing a little about online design and development can save you and your business -- and I'm not kidding, here -- thousands of dollars. Considering you can read this book over a weekend, I honestly don't understand why you'd hire an interactive agency without reading this first. You'll soon know 1) how to see through the smoke of development jargon, 2) which features your particular site needs and which ones it doesn't, and 3) how you can best gauge your site's projected scope and success. (You'll also enjoy the site build more because you can be more intelligently involved in the entire process -- and the process is kind of fun.)
Nutshell: The "Dummies" book mentioned above is still my recommendation for the layman with an interest in really sussing the build process. If you don't have that much time -- or stamina -- then "Website Design" is a great second choice.
NOTE: This review is not aimed at folks who are actually going to build a site, but at those laymen who want to know the process so they can intelligently oversee and participate in such a project. If you want to actually build a site yourself -- do the coding, image editing, programming, etc. -- you'll need a different set of books.
However, the structure of the book itself is a testament to Plumley's ability to present information in appropriate sized units, to provide the tools to relate information on this page to other pages, to allow further exploration via sidebars and DVD, to choose appropriate fonts and colors. The book is so well designed for paper format that one immediately trust's the author's ability to produce appropriate web site formats.
The chapters consist of questions built around a particular issue: domain name, hosting, e-mail, design and layout, user experience, construction, content, marketing, search engine optimization, security. These issues represent the full spectrum of elements of a website. This is a real strength as many similar books present only the business view, the techie's view or the user's view.
For each question one finds:
- a very readabile description of the issue and the elements surrounding it
- a visual indicator of the importance of the issue
- very well done examples
- tips, notes, warnings and references to the dvd resource
- rules of thumb
- a list of the related questions
- a list of action items
All the sidebar items are excellent examples of clear, succinct writing. The list give cross-references in a very unobtrusive and manner.
I would prefer that maintenance, blogs and forums receive attention - and a bit less time be spent on marketing and promotion ... but as I said initially, writing a book like this is a thankless task. I thank George Plumley for taking it on.