Apart from content, the design of a website plays an important role as it will also affect a visitor. First of all it is most important that you have exactly that visitor in mind when you choose a design and do not loose yourself in technical tricks and gimmicks just to show that you are able to. Instead you should count on a simple and clean design. Let the following tips guide you:
Try to find a strategy concerning graphics and pictures which best fits your content: Pictures are helpful to demonstrate facts and valorate text optically, but they can also distract people from the actual content when they are used too often, too centralized or too oversized.
Select a font and font size which your reader's will appreciate.
Make sure your texts are readable - dark lettering (best would be black) on a light background will have the best contrast and will help visitors to read your text.
Be careful not to use too many colors, as a website which is too colorful does not communicate as much and can appear disturbing. In addition, it is important to have a look at colors which are close to one another.
Consider which color represents your concept and content best. Plain colors which do not attract too much attention are often the better alternative compared to shrill and noticeable colors - even when you like the latter personally.
Do not change structure and layout for any of your subpages.
If you use less elements and technical gimmicks, the load time of your website will be short which will certainly please your visitors.
Use known symbols for known functionalities, as for example the shopping cart icon for order pages.
Characterize links with one of the usual representations.
Use "Thumbnails" if you want to publish huge images to ensure that the load time is short and your site is clearly arranged.
Do not use too many animations and acoustical signals - if any - because this will annoy visitors sooner or later.
Offer a clear and easy-to-use navigation to your visitor so that he/she is able to find the right way.
Try to avoid that a visitor has to scroll horizontally.
Some more tricks and tips can be found on the Internet for example at