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Web design being around for so long, I would imagine we have some rules or guidelines regarding this topic. When a user visits your website for the first time, what particulars have been shown to take that visitor and transform them into a member/customer? There must be some proven methods of doing things -- something that shows a big cartoony graphic isn't the best way to do conversion (or maybe it is).

Off the top of my head, I'm thinking of things like, login box in a clear spot, simple graphics, showing the product, etc...

In my own searching I just keep hitting websites that talk about UI design of registration forms themselves.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

You can find some more advanced conversion-centric design tips at Smashing Magazine:

Design To Sell: 8 Useful Tips To Help Your Website Convert

7 More Useful Tips To Help Your Site Convert

You might also like NeuroMarketing.com and similar sites with a focus on cognitive science and marketing.

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These links are very useful. Thanks! –  Incognito Jan 24 '11 at 15:30
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