Effective Web Design Elements | What Makes A Website Successful? It Might Not Be What You Expect!
Effective Web Design Elements | The design of your website, its navigational cues, mobile responsiveness, and even font choices can make or break your website. Like it or not, website design choices can mean the difference between achieving the pinnacle of online success, and suffering abysmal digital failure. Like the phrase ‘beauty is in the eye of the beholder’, the design of a website is judged by the visitors, and not the website owners. There are many elements that affect the usability of a website, and it is not just about how good it looks, but also functionality.
When you are designing a website, there are some things you have to be aware of. Things that usually wouldn’t even cross your mind. Here’s the cold, hard truth: Most internet users have the attention span of a two year old kid. There is such a plethora of information, and choices on the Internet that you have an extremely short window to capture visitor’s attention before they leave your website, and move on to the next interesting link. However, there are several things you can keep in mind during the design process.
Logo Placement Counts | Effective Web Design Elements
If you don’t already have one, have a memorable, professional logo designed that conveys your brand image. Once sorted, take your brand-spanking-new logo, and place a high-resolution version of it prominently in the top left-hand corner of each page on your website. Eye tracking studies have found that people scan computer screens in an “F” pattern. Most of what people see is in the top and left of the screen, and the right side of the screen is usually ignored. Link your logo back to the landing page of your website. That way, your logo becomes an effective navigational tool for your website visitors, as well as a brand enforcement tool.
Do It Simply, Clearly, Distinctly, And Visibly | Effective Web Design Elements
By far the most vital aspect of effective website design is to make sure that everything works the way it should, and that users will be able to see where they need to go easily. Your mantra when designing a website should be “simplicity and professionalism”. Try not to go overboard with visual elements on your website. Too many gimmicks, cutesy animations, and fluorescent colors will make you look like a clown. A website should promote your business, and is an opportunity for you to convey a professional image. Balance is essential!
Let The White Space In | Effective Web Design Elements
Just because you have space, doesn’t mean you have to put something there. All too often, websites are stuffed with large amounts of imagery and visual stimuli. An overdose of flashy colors, lowe resolution graphics, and cheap typography all contribute to a cluttered website that will never leave a great impression. However, the solution to this mess is brilliant in its simplicity: white space. White space gives a sense of spaciousness, and overall structure to your design. Breaking up your design elements with white space will enable your visitor to focus on the important content.
Use Typography Wisely | Effective Web Design Elements
Typography is one of the most powerful tools in a designer’s arsenal. It could make or break your design, and lead it to success or failure. In general, Sans Serif fonts such as Arial and Verdana are easier to read online (Sans Serif fonts are contemporary looking fonts without decorative finishes). Keep in mind that the ideal font size for reading easily online is 16px, and you should stick to a maximum of 3 fonts in a maximum of 3 point sizes to keep your design consistent.
Set Up Your Navigation | Effective Web Design Elements
Navigation is about how simple it is for people to take action, and move around your website. Some tactics for effective navigation include a logical page hierarchy, using bread crumbs, designing clickable buttons, and following the ‘three click rule’ which means visitors will be able to find the information they are searching for within three clicks. Whatever you do, you’ll want to make your navigation easy to spot, and simple to use.
Creative Content | Effective Web Design Elements
Once you have the look, feel and functional elements of your website right, you can focus on the actual content of the website. It’s no use having a beautiful, fast website that is full of nonsense. Your visitors will appreciate high quality, credible content, and it will keep them coming back for more, even if the design is less than stellar. After all, bells and whistles add a lot of style, but they’re never a substitute for substance.