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The Difference Between Web and Print

Many Web designers come to the Web already having a print background. Either they were print designers, or they are just used to the manage that a print world gives. When you print a project, it turns out to be permanent and stable. Things are different on the Web.
The thing is, that it's easy to forget. When you create your Web site and test it in your browser, you get it looking exactly how you want it to look. However, then you test it in another browser, and it appears to be different. And when you move to a different platform, it will appear differently once more.
Being a designer, you'll need to work with customers. You will not be doing them and yourself a favor if you don't understand the how print and Web are different. Especially if you bring your portfolio as print outs. This is a common problem, where the customer expects the printout to represent exactly what the page will look like.
Things To Do
Working with Customers
  • Printouts as a Portfolio It is very helpful to make a portfolio, however, remember that the Web is different from print, and including a printed page is not a strong example of your Web site design skills.
  • Defining Goals Be fair with your clients. If they like their page to have very specific layout, font, and images, be sure to explain the faults of it such as download speed and maintenance prior to simply making them a completely graphical page.
  • Find out what the client uses If happen to be a big Opera or Mac addict, and your client only uses Internet Explorer for Windows, you need to remember in your project. Your page could look very different to them.
Design Tips
  • Study your users Get familiar with the characteristics of the users of the site you're building. If they are geeks, they might run Unix on a 21 inch monitor. Or if they are more conservative they might own a 12 inch monitor working with Internet Explorer 3. If you design a site that works for your users, your clients won't be complaining afterwards.
  • Run the tests Test your ideas in every browser and OS combination that you manage to get your hands on. Emulators work if you have no other options, but there is no substitute for a life experience.
  • Remember about resolution Browsers and platforms are important, but if the users and clients are browsing on a smaller screen than you use, they could be unpleasantly surprised

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