1. Create a physical paper mock-up of your homepage so you can move things around before committing.
2. Don’t copy someone else’s design, be original and memorable and brand your site to your company.
3. Define a purpose for your website and cater your design to achieving that purpose.
4. Pay attention to your use of color. Most colors have predetermined purposes, use them wisely (e.g. red).
5. Be open to other people’s opinions, what you find may make for a bad user experience.