Design is the first thing that a user observes on a website. It builds the first impression of your business in the mind of visitors. Therefore, it is crucial to design your website cautiously.
Moreover, the success of a website depends heavily on the design. Various aspects contribute to the success of the website; among them, usability and utility are most important.
In simple words, a successful website design conveys the core message properly, keeps the users engaged, and urges them to take a specific action.
Now, if you are planning to design a website for your business or modify an existing one, then some questions might appear in your mind. Such as, What makes a good website design? What makes a great website? What makes an effective website?
There is not a single answer that is suitable for all kinds of websites.
The straightforward answer to this depends on your requirements and future goals.
To help you with this regard, we have done thorough research on the website design philosophy followed by leading websites worldwide. In this research, we have discovered some website design principles that one can apply to any website to make it great.
- Define Purpose of the Website
- Visuals to Keep the Users Hooked
- Typography Builds Impression
- Colors Reflect a Brand’s Message
- KISS Principle
- Visual Hierarchy
- Consistency brings Symphony
- Effective Content Gives Meaning
- Mobile Friendliness to Reach Wider Audience
- Easy Navigation
- Quick Loading Helps to Retain Users
- Grid-Based Layout
- F-Shaped Pattern Design
- Authenticity Builds Trust
So, let us look at all of them in detail:
1. Define Purpose of the Website
Your website should fulfill the needs of the target audience. With the help of CTAs (call to action) and messaging, your website should convey its purpose.
Are you planning to promote your products or services? Are you offering tutorials to the users?
Depending on the business, the purpose of the website can be different. However, any site’s core purpose depends on four points: presenting expertise, increasing reputation, generating leads, and offering customer support.
Here, as you are designing a website, you should ensure that your site’s purpose is clear to users within one or two sentences.
To form a powerful purpose for your website, you need to identify answers to legit questions like, Who is your target audience? What are their needs, and how can you satisfy their needs through your website?
By understanding all these things, you can decide a suitable path for your website.
2. Visuals to Keep the Users Hooked
Visuals are an essential design element used to convey messages and represent a brand’s identity. Here, design components like photos, videos, infographics, and other graphic elements should be used effectively on the entire website.
Visuals should express the feel of the company and support in showcasing a brand’s personality. The majority of the time, users consume information via graphics, and hence visuals are regarded as the first impression of any website.
Thus, using different things like a beautiful hero image, smooth transition effects, and animations, you can showcase professionalism and keep your users hooked on the website.
In short, all of your visuals should not take up the space of the website but enhance its design.
3. Typography Builds Impression
Even though your site’s design is astounding, the text draws visitors’ attention and acts as a visual representation of a brand’s voice.
Here, you should ensure that typography is not only attractive but also readable across the entire website.
Fonts should suit both the placement of text on a page and also the tone of the design. One general rule of thumb is to utilize a maximum of 3 fonts on a website.
Generally, cursive fonts are useful for decorative purposes, and classic fonts are suitable for large text blocks. Also, ensure that fonts are readable.
Popular sans-serif fonts like Arial, Verdana, Helvetica, etc., can help you achieve readability.
Lastly, it would help if you made better combinations of fonts for all the design components like headlines, body texts, buttons, etc.
4. Colors Reflect a Brand’s Message
Colors have the potential to communicate and get good responses from the users.
Selecting a suitable color palette helps you communicate well, make content readable, and grab the users’ attention. One rule of thumb is to integrate a maximum of 5 colors on the website.
Image Credit: Bonnaroo
For instance, a music & arts festival website can have many joyful color palettes, while a financial services website should have a serious color palette.
Moreover, color combinations also play a vital role in the readability of a website. A visually appealing color combination can help you gain users and keep them engaged. On the contrary, a dull color combination will draw users away from the website.
Lastly, a better strategy is to always check color combinations in a color contrast checker before keeping them on the website.
5. KISS Principle
Keep it simple & stupid (KISS) is a well-known design principle followed by leading websites worldwide. It points that a website design should be minimal. Why? Mostly, when a user visits a website, they crave accurate information for their answer and rarely think of the design.
Talking from a visitor’s side, the site should have the proper text and only the blocks without ads to satisfy what users are searching. By doing this, you will be able to provide a better user experience. To build a simple yet effective website, you can check out these amazing minimalistic website design examples.
6. Visual Hierarchy
Visual hierarchy is one of the basic web design principles you should keep in mind while designing a website.
It is mainly the arrangement of elements based on their importance. It should enable visitors to look after the main components of the web page without reading the content.
You can achieve visual hierarchy by focusing on its chief principles such as size, color, page scanning pattern, headings & subheadings, white space, and space & texture.
Lastly, to accurately utilize visual hierarchy principles on your website, you should define your site’s primary business goals.
7. Consistency brings Symphony
Consistency is one of the primary website design principles that makes a website useful, and you can achieve it by focusing on the three main elements:
Visual Consistency: Elements on a website, when viewed appropriately, result in visual consistency. It allows users to understand the services of a website. Hence, you should make sure that fonts, sizes, headings, sub-headings, and button styles remain consistent in the entire website. To achieve the same, decide the suitable colors for your texts and buttons in advance.
Functional Consistency: It means all the controls of the website are functioning in a similar manner. It brings down how things are predictable to the user. A proper functional consistency would enhance the usability of a user on the website. Lastly, users will feel more secure while navigating through the website.
Internal Consistency: It is a merger of visual consistency and functional consistency. It enhances the usability and familiarity of the product/service on a website. Anytime you add new content to your website, you should focus on internal consistency. In short, the representation of the content should be the same on new & old pages. Ultimately, it helps users to understand things quickly and use them.
8. Effective Content Gives Meaning
Website design principles are incomplete without considering effective content for the website. By utilizing jargon-free, compact, and high-quality content, you attract more visitors to your website and urge them to take specific actions.
Here, SEO also plays a vital role in the content. Therefore, you should plan about SEO in advance and include necessary keywords and phrases using a conversational tone.
Besides this, you should also follow the content-first approach, where you have to write content before even starting the design process. By this, you can identify any changes down the line and correct them as and when needed.
9. Mobile Friendliness to Reach Wider Audience
With the increasing usage of smartphones, tablets, and other devices, having a mobile-friendly website is highly required. Moreover, it is one of the essential fundamentals of web design followed by every website.Therefore, you should consider designing a responsive website that is accessible across multiple screen sizes and devices.
By optimizing your website for mobile, you can provide a better user experience and increase SEO rankings.
11. Quick Loading Helps to Retain Users
Nobody likes to stay on a website that takes a lot of time to load. Moreover, based on a survey, 50% of users expect a site to load within 2 seconds and leave a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load.
12. Grid-Based Layout
Pointlessly putting content on a web page can make it look weird. The grid-based layout enables you to follow a proper architecture and manage content effectively. It assists you in keeping elements on the pages in a way that they are visible.
Image Credit: Curioos
Using the grid-based layout, you can place the components into a suitable grid structure with columns, sections, boxes, and that ultimately results in a visually appealing website design.
13. F-Shaped Pattern Design
The F-based pattern is the ideal method using which visitors scan content on a website. Various researches on eye-tracking have discovered that people look at the top and left side of a screen. Hence, you should appropriately design a website considering the standard flow of reading followed by users, i.e., top to bottom and left to right.
14. Authenticity Builds Trust
Consumers in the digital world are very clever. They can quickly spot a website with fake or overpromising content. Therefore, it is highly suggested for you to be fully authentic about your brand.
To showcase authenticity in your website design, you can consider some of the things given below:
- Integrate testimonials and reviews from real people.
- Add authentic photos and videos.
- Communicate clearly about your services.
- Make sure your site possesses an SSL certificate.
- Add Frequently Asked Questions.
By creating an authentic website, users will trust your website more & more. Further, it helps you to engage users on your website and urge them to take specific actions.
We hope that we are able to answer your question, what makes a good website design.
Have you decided to optimize your existing site? Or Are you planning to design a website from scratch? In any case, you can apply these good website design principles to create a user-friendly, functional, and attractive website for visitors.
Besides this, if you want any help regarding your website design, you can contact us.
WebY King is a professional website design and development company. We provide custom website design services and have a team of designers who can deliver you the most suitable website design solution for your business.