When we’re young, we’re taught never to judge a book by its cover. While this is true when it comes to meeting new people, we definitely don’t apply the same principle to websites.
In fact, when it comes to browsing the internet, 38% of people will stop engaging with a site if the layout and content are unattractive. If you run a small business, this means loss of potential customers.
A site’s design also shapes the way consumers perceive your brand. Having an outdated web design with poor functionality is a huge liability today. You have to up your game to keep up with the competition.
If you’re looking to give your site a makeover, you first need to educate yourself on some fundamental elements of quality website design.
Let’s get started right away with these ten design tips.
1. Avoid Clutter
Clean and minimal designs are in right now. Not only do users react well to the aesthetic appearance, they benefit from simple and logical usability.
You want to avoid clutter at all costs. If a user is overwhelmed and can’t find the information they need, chances are they’ll leave your site right away.
Instead, go for a classy yet open design that lets the navigation and linking guide the user through the site. Make sure the homepage is unique from the rest of the site. But keep it simple and organized.
2. Straightforward Navigation
Since you’ll be relying on navigation to guide the user to the information they need, it’s essential that it remains logical and concise. The user should be able to find what they need in only a few clicks.
Think of your navigation as a map and make it easy to read. If your site requires many pages, consider simple drop-down navigation and sketch out the most logical breakdown.
A good tactic is to keep the navigation in the same place throughout the entire site. Somewhere at the top is the best approach. Quality website design means an effortless experience for the user.
3. Typography Matters
When it comes text, the size and style of your font have a lot to do with ease of use. Large text is very popular right now. It’s easier to read and is great for a call to action.
Consider using a sans serif font, as it is easier on the eyes. Headers should be large and attract the eye, but not overwhelming.
Make sure to also choose a text color that is easy to read and is compatible with the background color.
4. Utilize a Contact Form
Guiding the user to a contact form is essential for a business website. This provides the user with an easy way to get in touch with you.
These forms can and should have an attractive design that works well with the rest of the site. They shouldn’t seem out of place or intrusive.
Avoid using too many form fields. Think about the information you need from a potential customer and only ask for these items.
5. Internal Search
If you have an e-commerce site or one with lots of information, consider implementing an internal search mechanism.
Users don’t want to waste time finding what they need. If they can type in what they’re looking for, it makes the experience much easier for them.
As a business, it benefits you when the customer finds exactly what they need. Internal search takes them directly to a product and helps prevent them from clicking away and going to the next site.
6. Quality Imagery
Integrating good imagery is key to quality website design. Not only does it attract the eye, it helps break up the text. Users feel intimidated when they see a long block of words.
There’s a lot of good stock imagery out there, but you run the risk of using the same imagery another business uses. Instead, consider using your own, unique imagery. This helps set you apart and create good brand recognition.
Consider taking professional, high-quality photos to integrate into the design.
7. Keep Your Pages Compact
We talked about a minimal design to avoid overwhelming the user. You should also keep your pages short and compact.
Users don’t like when they have to scroll too much. Keeping the pages compact and content concise helps with this.
You should keep the width of your pages short as well. A user should never have to scroll horizontally.
8. Keep Important Information on Top
The most important information about your business should remain towards the top of the page throughout the site. Again, you’re trying to make the user experience as easy as possible.
Aside from the business name and logo, contact information should be included at the top. This is also a good place for a call to action.
Navigation should also stay towards the top so the user has easy access to every page.
9. Make Good Use of Links
Good internal linking is important for a number of reasons. It helps the user get to related pages when reading content. It’s also great for improving your ranking in search engines.
When linking your content, make sure and use relevant anchor text. It also helps if you can link SEO keyword phrases. Just make sure not to overdo it, as you could get penalized by search engines for having too many links.
If you have a blog, internal linking is a great way to connect web content to a related article. Quality website design should promote seamless delivery of good content.
10. Don’t Forget Responsive Design
When redesigning your website, making it responsive is a must. This means it will display and function properly on mobile devices.
Since people are now searching the internet more on their mobile devices than they are on PC, you can’t afford to neglect responsive design.
This is especially important for a business, as people often look for products and services on their smartphones while out and about.
Benefit from Quality Website Design
Now that you know what needs to be achieved on your site, it’s time to get to work. Users make quick decisions while searching online, so it’s crucial that your business site catches their attention and provides a functional and smooth experience.
At Optimum Systems Online, Inc., we help provide quality website design solutions for your business. Contact us today to learn more.