Once you know exactly what you intend to publish and who the targeted audience will be, the next step is to determine the mood of your website. Should the ambience be informal, professional or high tech? Will you use graphics, animation or music? How will the text be structured and which fonts will be used? How will visitors navigate through your site? Whatever you decide, try to maintain the same theme and conventions throughout your site.

The most important part of your website is the textual content. What you write should add value and make the visitor want to return. Review your web page objectives and your target audience and make your message suit that audience. Don't forget to check your spelling and grammar before publishing your pages. There are a few tricks to keep in mind regarding word repetition, use of headers and titles but these will be discussed later. At this point, focus on content!

Publishing on the net is different from writing for a newspaper in that you are able to take advantage of multimedia capabilities. Photos, graphics, music and video can make your site interesting. Be careful, however, not to overdo it. Graphics, for example are often large files that take time to download. Most people won't wait more than five seconds for a web page to load.

Don't forget that people use many different types of personal computers, modems and versions of software. A web page that loads quickly on your machine might not function quite as well on another. When writing web pages, the golden rule is: small is beautiful!

You can find graphics for your home page on the web by searching for "Index of GIF files" or "GIF library". When you find something you like, copy it to a directory on your hard drive by right clicking on the graphic and selecting "save picture as". To find appropriate music, search for "midi" and the name of the singer or composer. The names of these two file types terminate with ".gif" and ".mid". If you suspect that a graphic or song is copyrighted, you should ask permission from the owner before using it.

To keep life simple, all pictures, animations, graphics, music, etc. that you plan to use on your home page should be stored in the same directory as your main HTML program file. If you haven't already done so, create a directory on your hard drive to consolidate all the software components that you will use on your page.

The use of tables to group and align text can help make a page more attractive. Tables are fast to load and are easily generated from most HTML Editors. The spacing between table cells and the borders around the cells can be altered or made invisible. Text and graphics within table cells can be right justified, left justified or centered