Successful Website Designs | Does Your Website Have What It Takes? Tips For Designing A Successful Website
Successful Website Designs | 25 years and millions of websites later, the Internet is still overflowing with badly designed websites. Winning on the Internet starts with having a firm understanding of the basic elements of a successful web design. While every designer may have a different plan when it comes to creating a website, they do have a common checklist. No matter how much you try to avoid it, there are a few elements every website should (and usually does!) include.
If you have a website, or plan to design one in the near future, it’s vital to understand the characteristics that can make or break the effectiveness of your design. An unattractive or poorly built website will do more to damage to your business than good. When designing a website, you first have to define your marketing goals, and then design your website around the actions you want your visitors to take. Effective web design makes important content or desired actions obvious, accessible, and appealing to your visitors. Here are six critical elements to keep in mind when setting off to design a great website.
Appearance | Successful Website Designs
A website has to be visually appealing, polished, and professional. Remember, it’s reflecting your business, your products, and your services. Using a theme that relates to the topic of your website can help to keep you on track. Your website’s layout will vary from page to page – for example, you would generally want the homepage to be more unique and eye-catching than the other pages – but it is crucial to consider the overall effect of the website’s design. A good design should be focused, clear and obvious, and each page should refer to it by making use of the same color scheme and keeping the layout consistent.
Content | Successful Website Designs
Along with style, your website must have substance. This is the backbone of your website, after all. Not only does your content play an important role in your search engine placement, it is the reason most visitors are browsing your website in the first place. Remember that your visitors are looking for information that will help them make a decision, so your content should be informative and relevant. If people get the information that they are looking for, they will sacrifice some usability and convenience. Note this, but make the big idea, “Quality content AND quality function” before making sacrifices for the user.
Functionality | Successful Website Designs
Every element of your website has to work quickly and correctly. Broken or poorly constructed pages will only leave your visitors frustrated and disillusioned with your business. It is vital that your web designers know the ways of making your website work on all the major browsers and devices, but also utilize meta tags, alt tags, making your website SEO-friendly. Many factors affect your search engine placement and visual appearance of your website, so make sure your web designers know their stuff.
Simple Navigation | Successful Website Designs
Navigation is the “GPS” of your website. Navigation or Nav Bars are the buttons that get your visitors where they need to go to get information or do specific things. It should be simple to identify and easy to use. It is also critical to keep navigational menus to a minimum so you don’t overwhelm your visitors. Depending on the type of website, five to ten menu navigation items are the top end of what you should aim for. It is always a good idea to group similar pages under the same topic to streamline navigation.
Contact Information | Successful Website Designs
A beautiful website with easy usability, a pleasing design and consistent design will do nothing for you if your potential clients can’t figure out how to contact you. A good design strategically includes easy access to your contact info whenever and wherever possible. Contact information commonly appears in one of two ways – in the header or the main navigation, or as a Contact Us page with a form or expanded information. Either option can work well, depending on your website design.
Calls To Action | Successful Website Designs
In most cases, a website is the gateway to an action – make a sale, provide information, gather contact information. To make sure this action takes place, calls to action prompts have to be obvious and strong. There is no magic formula to a good Call to Action. The key is to continuously test what works best for your website and your audience. Test the placement, size and color, and make sure you use actionable words.