It’s all well and good to have a website up and running, but the impact it has on your audience will heavily depend on layout, design and functionality. As much as we don’t want to admit it, humans are incredibly quick to judge! It takes less than a second for us to form an opinion of a business based on their website. To keep your traffic engaged, here’s our list of 10 ways to win at web design.
What is the purpose of your website? Are you trying to increase brand awareness, generate sales, or a mixture of both? Is the website just for entertainment purposes, or just to provide information? What you want to accomplish with the website should be clearly communicated to the web user. Each individual page needs to serve a purpose, which is why planning and research is the most important part of the process.
2. Follow the F Pattern
This might seem like a no brainer, but readers naturally process information in order of importance—moving from left to right, then top to bottom. Presenting the web page in this format will make it easier for the user to process and engage with your content, so be strategic and place the high-value info at the top, and left-hand side of your website!
Is the webpage easy to use or does it leave the customer feeling confused and frustrated? With hundreds of other business options, people will simply give up if they find your webpage difficult to use. We recommend giving a brief overview of all your service offerings on the home page, so people get a feel for what you can offer at first instance. Make sure you incorporate clear headings, sub headings, and retain an organised structure that makes navigation easy.
4. Less is more
In any circumstance, a clustered and busy environment makes it incredibly hard to focus. This is the same for your web design! Less is always more, so don’t overload your design with information, images and different colours and fonts. White space is your best friend!
Is your website formal, fun, entertaining, professional, or serious? Is it information, or graphics intensive? Whatever it is, it needs to match your brand! All the minor details like colours, fonts, sizes and styles need to be consistent to make your business memorable and unique. It always helps to have a style guide and logo to act as the foundation of your brand image.
Speaking of image…pictures! The visual elements are the most vital part of web design to draw attention and break up the information. There’s nothing worse than a page that looks like it was torn from a textbook! This is also a great opportunity to put a face to the name of your business and showcase what makes your service unique. We always recommend including real, high-quality photos over stock images.
We mentioned the importance of branding right across your website, but you also need to be consistent in other areas of the web. Marry up the look of your social pages and profile with your website to leave lasting impression.
8. Mobile friendly
With a world of information accessible in the palm of our hands, people are opting for mobile browsing more now than ever. Make sure your website is optimised for all mobile and smart devices to keep navigation and functionality simple! You can either build your web design as a responsive layout, which means it will adjust to different screen widths—or—you can build a dedicated mobile site that comes up when someone clicks on your link from a smaller device.
This may depend on what kind of business you have, but offering a personalisation feature like an option to ‘sign up’ or ‘make an account’ will make people feel attached to your brand, while also giving you the opportunity to contact people with news and updates to keep you on their radar.
10. User experience/testing
Testing the user experience is the final step of creating a web page. It helps to have an outsider do this for you this for you so they can flag up any issues and offer advice from a consumer’s perspective. You should also check the compatibility of your website across all browsers and devices for responsiveness.