Over the years, has introduced improvements to the National Web Design Contest. The aim of this page is to outline the lessons learned, a few observations and thoughts regarding the importance of this contest and what you need to know to compete in following years. We recommended that you subscribe to this site for updates.


Most challenges display in multiple browsers
Most have fundamentals of accessibility (alt text for images, for example)
Some have too many divisions (classitis), ID names are confusing – don’t accept tool defaults (such as default Dreamweaver names)
Links must work (some don’t)
Tables for layout is so 90’s
Lots of great design and graphics
Nice color schemes


Good use of negative space in many
Good use of fonts (when not specified by challenge)


Watch spelling and punctuation
Where possible, use bullets to increase legibility (be concise)


Some sites had many errors (can use a tool like Dreamweaver or HTML Tidy to validate locally)
Page titles should be unique and meaningful
Place CSS and JS in separate folders as directed
IF you don’t understand a concept (such as cascade or specificity), don’t try to bluff – just say so
Follow directions
Pay attention to details