Web Design Checklist for Beginners

by Michael Cash

Designing a website may seem like a daunting task at first. With seemingly so much to do, it can be hard to figure out where to begin. With web design, as with a lot in life, it can be beneficial to create a checklist of everything you will need. That way, you can clearly see all that is required to design a website. You will be able to track your progress and know what you still have to do. It is important to not go crazy with your checklist. Stick to the essential elements of web design so you do not get overwhelmed.


Probably the most essential part of web design is the software that you will use. Several programs are required to create an effective web design. You want to make sure all of the programs you need are on your checklist. The essential software program for web design is a text editor. A text editor is where you will type all of the actual design code. It allows you to modify HTML and XML tags to get your website exactly how you want it. If you are using any pictures on your site, you will need a photo editing program. There is a wide range of photo editing software out there, ranging from the robust Photoshop to the barebones Microsoft Paint. If you are designing a website that features a lot of photos, you want to invest in a better editing program. A source code editor will also come in handy. These programs allow you to edit the source code of computer programs. A final suggestion for software to add to your checklist is a FTP client. FTP clients are crucial for copying files from one location to another. It will make it a lot easier to modify the pictures and multimedia on your website.

Operating System

The decision about what operating system to use must be included on your checklist. The operating system you use when designing your website can have an affect on whether your website works in other operating systems. In general, almost all websites work in any operating system. However, there are certain circumstances when the operating system you choose causes a problem. Because problems arise so infrequently, it is best to just choose the operating system you are most comfortable working with.


You must have quality hardware to work with when designing a website. The better your hardware, the less problems you will run across during the process. You should design on a computer that has at least 1 GB of RAM, a 1GHZ processor and 2 GB of hard drive space. While these may seem like big requirements, they will make your life a lot easier. You will also want to have a scanner and digital camera on hand to upload photos during the design process. While not required, a smartphone streamlines web design. Smartphones allow you to connect to the Internet almost anywhere that you are. You can check for updates about your website and return e-mails on the go.


You will need to choose a web hosting service to make the website you designed accessible to the public. There are several companies that offer affordable web hosting services. Basically, you pay the company and they give you space on their servers to host your site. Check with your Internet service provider before making any decisions regarding hosting. A large number of ISPs offer their customers free hosting. If your ISP does not give you free hosting, you should shop around to several companies before selecting one or look into hosting coupons for better rates. Look for a host who includes e-mail addresses, script installation and other server tools with their hosting package.

Michael Cash is a twenty something freelance writer and internet consultant residing in western Michigan. When he’s not coaching people out of 1990s era web practices, amateur astronomy and hiking take up his time. A completely random fact about Michael is that he used to “ghost hunt” as a youngster..