What Really Makes Good – if not Great – Web Design?
26 JULY 2018
Your website is your virtual address – your representation to the world. It’s how your potential clients and your existing customers recognise you and your brand. It’s your calling card.
There are now more than a billion web addresses in the world, and this number is growing as we speak. No business worth its salt would exist without a website, and that’s the truth.
But with all the websites that exist, how can yours ultimately stand out? Competition is fierce amongst websites, after all, and you need a website which can basically beat the competition and encourage visitors to stay and perhaps if you’re lucky, generate a great lead or even sale.
So, what makes for good – if not great – web design? First, let’s get to know some basic yet essential principles that comprise effective web design.
Before you go ahead and design your website, you need to be aware of the following:
Your website’s purpose
Great web design begins with having a great and original purpose. Ask yourself this: what do I want my website to achieve or accomplish? Better yet, go into detail: what do I want this particular web page to accomplish? Start page by page, from the Homepage to the Contact Us page to the About Us page and so on, and you can make your website more streamlined and consistent with your goal and purpose.
It’s better to not have content at all than to copy content from someone else. Besides, it’s illegal. That being said, make sure the content on your website is original; even if you have to pay someone to do it, do it. It’s definitely a worthwhile investment.
Clear and user-friendly navigation
One of the foremost principles that make a great website is the navigation. Obviously, you want your visitors to stay – and they simply won’t if your website isn’t easy to browse through. If your visitors can’t find the information they need in 30 seconds (often less), they are less likely to stay. One particular rule of thumb: any of your pages should be within about 3 clicks from another page. Focus on user-friendliness, simplicity, and intuitiveness.
Know what to use
In designing a great website, you should know what to use. And by this, we mean what colours to use, what images to use, what fonts to use, and so on. Do your research; find out about the psychology of colour, as there is such a thing.
The colours your visitors see will have a great impact on their emotions and how they will ultimately behave. Blue is the colour of stability, for instance, whilst green is the colour of nature. Know the psychology of colours so you can choose yours accordingly.
The same is true with fonts. Did you know that there is also a certain psychology behind fonts? Serif fonts, for example, are seen as traditional, respectable, and reliable, whilst Sans Serif fonts are seen as stable, objective, modern, and clean. Script fonts, on the other hand, signify elegance and creativity, whilst Modern fonts impart strength, progressiveness, stylishness, and chic. Know your fonts and maximise their use.
One aspect to bear in mind, however, is this: the fonts you end up choosing, whether they’re Sans Serif or Script or another type of font altogether, should be entirely readable. Also, don’t overload your web pages with different fonts – stick to two; keep it simple.
It goes without saying that images matter, especially if you have an e-commerce website. The thing about images is this: they have to be relevant. If the images you choose don’t have a specific purpose, they’ll basically be useless. Choose your images wisely as they can contribute to enhanced readership.
Don’t just stick to some generic images, either. Have a bit of variation by using screenshots, charts as well as graphs (particularly infographics), vector graphics and custom designs, and professional photos.
There are indeed many aspects which make up a great website; all these form pieces of a puzzle which, when finished, will make up a cohesive, attractive whole. It all has to make sense. Focus on consistency, appeal, and readability, and make sure your website is designed only by professionals (such as our web design experts in Chesterfield) who know what they’re doing. It’s entirely worth it in the end.