We finally went live with our Paper Bride website yesterday, and I'm pretty darn excited about it. Its not in its most perfect format (I know there are still some typos and little glitches here and there), but symbolically, it was a pretty big day for me.
Some observations on putting a website together:
1. Man, is it it a ton of work! And I didn't even do the "putting together." I mean, as a black belt web surfer, I really had taken for granted the notion that everytime I click, every little nook and cranny I check out on a website, someone, somewhere wrote that text, coded that html, designed that color combo. And as soon as you fix one thing, it affects something somewhere else.
2. I love Macs...I love Steve Jobs...I will never own or purchase a PC, but man does Apple make it tricky for web designers with Safari. We have a website that works flawlessly with every other browser--except for Safari. This is particularly painful to me as, yep you guessed it....I use Safari.
3. You cannot sacrifice function over fashion. By this I mean, yes, we all want an amazing looking website. But there are so many websites out there that are pretty to look at but difficult to navigate. Or pretty to look at and counter-intuitively designed. As much as I resisted, yes...white space makes a difference and always has a way of making things look cleaner and more professional.
4. Nothing will ever be perfect. It can get close, but even when it is perfect, the next day you'll probably think of something you'd like to change...or you'll get some press that needs to be added...or a link will mysteriously disappear. I figured out pretty quickly in the process that I needed to let go of this notion of perfection and just go with the flow (note: I am definitely still working on this one as it is more a life lesson than anything else).
5. However long you think it will take...it will take longer. This rule has also been applied in construction: if they tell you 6 mos, plan for 12. I don't think its quite the same ratio, but getting a website to look good and behave properly is no small feat.
Ok, I've allowed myself five full minutes of celebration and now must get back to National Stationery Show preparations.