The online ecosystem is ever evolving and reinventing itself. Solid website design is a craft and practicing web designers implement a variety of techniques to achieve a thematically cohesive look and feel to their sites. Weave these eight strategies into your latest plans for a site redesign in order to have a positive and lasting impact on visitors to your website.
1. Users first. Keep your user top of mind throughout all aspects of the design process. You want all elements of your site to create a welcoming and inviting space for visitors, building to repeat visitation and a positive experience. Navigation is key. Confusing navigation layouts result in frustration, not new clients through word of mouth. Make sure to include several reviewers on your plans for layout, and check in along the process to ensure that you’re building a user friendly site.
2. Less is more. From your navigation layout to the placement of important content and your logo, remember to use white space as an ally. Editing is an imperative part of any creative craft and custom website developers know the value in paring back, considering the effect of negative space and open margins. So much of our lives are inundated with constant advertising which over time filters into white noise. Avoid your content becoming apart of that dull roar by clearly separating the placement of ads and content, making sure to keep your call to action in a place of prominence and sponsored content below the fold.
3. Fonts make all the difference. Just like a confusing navigation layout on a website, overly ornate or difficult to read fonts create more frustration than understanding. Stay sensitive to the user’s needs by utilizing fonts that are simple enough to be read easily but hold true to your stylistic theme. Strike a happy balance between flair and over the top.
4. Color is meant to enhance. Temptation might lead you to play with several different colors as a form of emphasis or style, but be wary of too many colors and too many combinations. Take time in advance to carefully consider the feel and look of your site’s color palette. Chose a simple color scheme overall with a few accent colors. Color can be a simple way to direct visitors to your call of action, but over-stimulation and too many distractions won’t lead to the strong response from clients that you desire.
5. What do you like? Invest time on the front end of your website design to research other sites that you like. Consider what you like about them, then emulate those aspects in your website design. Love a continuous scroll? Think the contact page is well-developed with pertinent information? Build these elements into your plan for how to maximize your website’s potential.
6. Build your base of understanding. It’s worth connecting with custom website development firms that can give the you an overview of best practices for online engagement. The amount of resources and energy you’ll save on the front end will be well worth the preparation.
7. Responsive is a must. Now more than ever you need to be prepared to translate your website design concept across all forms of technology, from mobile to desktop your website should remain true to your original style and theme. Clients engaging with your site on a mobile device will think second thoughts after the frustrating experience of struggling to load an unresponsive site and click on tiny, practically hidden links in order to view your products and services. A responsive website design is a must from early planning into final project review.
8. Set a project timeline. Work from a schedule and build in valuable time for review and stakeholder meetings. There’s a need for creativity and driven productivity in all kinds of website development. Knowing a timeline from the project’s beginning will set up every team for success. You will need buffer time included in this timeline for any reworking or reimagining that might result from stakeholder reviews. Allow for creativity by setting clear expectations early in the project for how and when deadlines will be met.
Using these eight different elements in your website design, you will avoid headaches and heartache in redesign. Remember that editing is key in keeping with a clean and clear expression of the very best that your company offers. Consider how your user will feel when navigating, clicking through, reading content, and taking in your call to action. There is the potential for a powerful and lasting experience online. Let that experience happen on your website.