The internet is host to over 1.7 billion websites. You read that correctly: billion, with a b. Clearly, the web is filling up fast.
However, it’s worth noting that only a relatively small percentage of those websites are active. In fact, just under 200 million sites are active online.
It’s safe to assume that an even smaller percentage of those will actually be any good!
Some websites are slow, hard to navigate, full of broken links, and aesthetically unappealing. Others are fast, modern, smooth-running, and stunning to look at.
This is where web design comes in. Looking to build a site that’s up there with the best? Let us help. Keep reading to discover 8 essential web design tips.
1. Keep it Quick
Rule number 1 of successful websites of current times:
They must run as fast as reasonably possible.
Nobody wants a slow running site. Think about it. People are impatient these days. Similarly, our attention spans are at an all-time low.
We genuinely have attention spans worse than a goldfish.
If a site loads slowly, then people won’t wait around. You’ve done the hard work and earned their click. However, the would-be user gets tired of waiting for the page to load and clicks back.
Say hello to a bountiful bounce rate, as well as a dwindling supply of leads and conversions.
Keep things quick. Aim for sub 3 second load times if possible.
2. Incorporate Images
Photos are essential components of a high-functioning website.
Nobody wants to read a wall of text. Images help break everything up.
Even better, they’re visually appealing in their own right. Pictures can represent you and your brand. They can even direct peoples’ attention on the screen and encourage them to take action in some way.
Not all images are created equal, though. Stock images are best avoided. They’re generic, unprofessional, and send the wrong message.
Endeavor to use professional-looking photos that are unique to your website. These will have the greatest effect.
3. Remember: Less Is More
When it comes to websites, simplicity is key.
If you’ve ever been to a busy, complex, overcrowded website, then you’ll know why! Everything feels messy and jumbled. Navigation becomes more difficult, and the overall user experience is far worse.
By contrast, a simple site is far easier to navigate and holds more aesthetic appeal.
Apply the rule of simplicity to everything. Avoid excessive amounts of content. Keep your copy short, succinct, and easy to scan. Include images to break up the text. Make forms as easy as possible to complete…And so on.
4. Leverage White Space
White space is one way to keep things simple.
Basically, you want to have enough blank space around your content. It’s known to be a major visual asset in your design, holding user attention and facilitating overall beauty in design.
White space doesn’t have to be white! However, there does have to be space.
Keep it in mind as a rule of thumb in your web designing. It’ll stop you overcrowding your pages and stuffing all available space with content.
5. Don’t Forget the Fold
New to websites?
Then you may never have even heard of ‘the fold’.
Basically, it’s the bottom edge of the screen when you land on a webpage. There’s more stuff to come (‘below the fold’), but you must scroll in order to see it.
In web design circles, content ‘above the fold’ is all-important. Why? Because that’s what people see first. Moreover, users spend a disproportionate amount of time above the fold.
That’s where you hook ‘em. Do what you can to get their attention in this section. After all, you want them to stick around for as long as possible.
Put your best content, slickest visuals, catchy headlines, and calls to action, and so on in this area.
6. Optimize for All Devices
It’s important to remember the different devices people use.
Doing so has a range of implications. As it happens, the fold is one of them.
Above the fold was arguably more important when users stuck with desktop computers. These days, though, mobile phones are used far more commonly. It’s far more natural to scroll on mobile.
As such, making pages longer isn’t a bad thing. The content below the fold can often feed into the overall performance of the site.
More importantly, though, is that your website is optimized for each device.
It should be just as functional on a mobile as it is a laptop and tablet. This means you gain happy users across far more sources.
Optimization feeds into search engine optimization (SEO). Here are 15 SEO tips to boost your site traffic.
7. Incorporate Social Share Buttons
You need to give users the chance to share your content.
There’s nothing better than your users distributing your content. It’s free and organic exposure that helps extend your reach and grow your brand.
Help it happen by including social share buttons on your site.
It’s a super simple way of encouraging people to share your stuff.
8. Use Calls to Action
Think of your users as sheep.
You’re the shepherd.
It’s your job to herd them into a particular action that matches your goals. They won’t do it without your instruction!
For example, you might think your desire to gain subscribers is downright obvious. But, without explicitly telling people to subscribe, it’s not.
Include calls-to-action in strategic places throughout the website. In sidebars, descriptions, blog posts, and more. Tell them what you want them to do.
Time to Incorporate These Web Design Tips
There you have it: 8 top web design tips to help you build the best website possible.
The internet is saturated with websites these days. However, only a fraction of those are actually active; an even smaller percentage are fit for purpose and a joy to use! Of course, anyone designing a new site wants it to fall in this upper echelon of website success.
Thankfully, there are relatively straightforward ways to make that happen. Hopefully, we’ve managed to highlight the mains methods for doing so in this post. Keep these tips in mind and you’ll be on your way to winning website in no time.
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