Website 101 Tips From the Pros

Reverse Engineer Other Successful Websites

People try to emulate others when they are learning new skills or concepts. If you play guitar, you observe famous guitar players to pick up some techniques. The same is true of sports. This concept can be applied to just about any endeavor.

The same is true when creating your website and is something webmasters forget to do early on. Find authoritative websites with high rankings and break them apart to see what they are doing. Pay attention to every little detail, including the design elements, the wording, and the type of graphics shown on the site.

If you want to save time, you can look for the designers of the websites you are observing. If they are published on the website, you could simply reach out to these designers and get some pricing for your website. Make sure you have a clear plan of what type of site you want. It could be modeled after the authority sites if you want.

If you decide to do it yourself, it is still a good idea to dissect these authority websites to learn what has made them successful. Take notes along with plenty of screenshots. Ask yourself if the navigation seems intuitive and if so, use that as a guideline for your own design.

It shouldn’t even need to be mentioned, but this doesn’t mean to copy anyone else’s website. It’s okay to use them as a reference. But if you copy the site verbatim, you could find yourself in some legal hot water. Besides, it doesn’t do you any good as readers will pick up on the tactic and so will search engines.

By the way, you are allowed to use the same theme if it is available to anyone. For instance, if you and an authority site both use the same WordPress theme, and you both have rights to use it, this is entirely acceptable, and you will notice similar themes when you browse the web. The caveat about copying the site refers to the assets included within the site, i.e., the content, graphics, videos, etc.

The reason why many webmasters skip this reverse engineering idea is because it is time-consuming and boring. But, the benefits outweigh these detractions. You will learn a lot about web design as well as proper content and graphic placement.

Make sure you use this technique across several highly rated websites. Each one will have components that you may not have thought to use had you stuck to just one authority website.

I will repeat one more time: DO NOT copy content from other sites! Stealing others content will cause you mucho trouble and most likely result some legal issues…