Here are My 6 Suggestions for Effective Website Design in 2006...
1. No Flash
Flash animations are nice, but make it difficult for people who don't have flash support and is harder for Search Engine Spiders to crawl your site. If you use Flash I suggest you contain the flash file within an html static page.
2. Website Colors
Dark colors are generally a bad idea to use on a website as they appear gloomy. Try using light colors with a few strong colors to support it. Using black as a background is a real no no!
3. Page Loading Speed
Keep your pages load time as fast as possible - people don't want to wait a whole minute just to load each page. Limit your graphics, only use images that have to do with your product or service.
4. Easy Navigation
Navigation. Keep your navigation accessible to your user where they can easily and instantly have access to your site's content. Make your site very easy to Navigate!
5. Keep Consistency
Keep your layout and presentation and logo/graphics consistent through your whole website. Always keep your navigation links at the same place otherwise it may confuse your visitors.
6. Website Width Tip
Keep your website's layout at width ranging from 700 to 780 pixels. Everyone has different resolutions and people don't like having to scroll in all directions to view your website. Stick within these widths and you will have no problems!