There is plenty of software for web designing out there, so much choice, in fact, that it’s difficult to decide which program to go for. It really depends on your budget, your level of expertise, the number of features you want and the flexibility of the program.
But without spending a fortune you can certainly produce a great-looking website without knowing anything about coding.
Minimum Requirements For Website Design Software
Even the lowest-budget software for web designing should have some basic features.
• It should have a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor. These editors work like wordprocessors, in that whatever you type or insert into the page will be exactly how it looks when the page is published on the web.
• It should provide you with a selection of templates on various themes which you can use straightaway, and which you can edit quickly and easily. These are basically plug-in-and-go, and are especially important if you are a beginner.
• It should incorporate drag-and-drop design features, enabling you to make simple customizations to the supplied templates with the click of your mouse. Or even better, you should be able to use a drag-and-drop facility to build websites from scratch.
• It should allow you to add audio and video files quickly and easily, and manage images.
• It should allow you to publish your pages to the web with a few clicks.
• There should be comprehensive tutorials included and, even better, a user’s forum.
Additional Features To Look For
The better the website building software, the more features will be included, making it even easier to produce quality websites quickly and easily.
Once your website grows, it will be important to keep your pages organised, structured, easy to find and edit. You want to be able to see, at a glance, where all your pages are within the hierarchy of your site. If you have multiple websites, all of them need to be easily accessable from within the program.
The more sophisticated programs should allow you to:
• Automatically backup your work at regular intervals.
• Insert advertising (Google Adsense, Amazon, Affiliate links etc.,) with a few clicks, wherever you want on the page.
• Create an automatically updated sitemap.
• Create a version of your site which is automatically optimized for mobile devices, such as cell phones.
• Set up a customizable search results page for your site.
• Utilize built-in SEO (Search Engine Optimization) telling you how well your pages are optimized, and what you need to do to improve them.
• Add forums and blogs.
• Add RSS news feeds.
• Automatically add pages to your site’s navigation menu.
• Build and edit forms.
• Include mouseover effects and drop-down menus
Some software packages may even include a domain name and free website hosting for a limited period.
In summary, there are many good website design software packages which can give you almost unlimited potential for creating exactly the websites you want, and for managing them efficiently and effectively.