Website design can be difficult to get right. Without an effective design, your website faces performing poorly and having negative results on your Google Analytics metrics such as a high bounce rate, low time spent on the site and low conversion rate.
For many brands that are designing their website for the first time, it can be easy to lose sight of who you are designing for. It’s important that you website design is usable, delivers information and is both visually pleasing and coherent to ensure that your user is kept engaged.
Incorporating functionality and usability into your design doesn’t mean that you have to compromise on the look and feel of your website. This is quite the opposite. There are many ways in which to style a website that both promotes your brand message and yet also ensures customer usability and satisfaction.
8 essential elements for a successful website design
A website design should reflect the personality and tone of a company’s brand in order to be successful with its users. Depending on the market that your company is dealing in, be it B2B or B2C, this design will look different but the end result should be the same – a content user.
Listed below are eight elements that should be included within a website design in order to ensure consumer usability and satisfaction:
- Purpose – Each page of a website must have a clear purpose and objective. If a page does not fulfil a specific need, be it finding contact information or listing product details, a user may get frustrated and be deterred from staying on the website.
- Communication – A website user comes to your website with the intention of being able to gather the information they are looking for quickly. Therefore, make sure any information on your website is clearly communication and easy to read.
- Consistency – Ensuring your website design is consistent is key to promoting brand trust and loyalty. Users shouldn’t be confused by your website. Having consistent brand design, theme, and even a predictable layout can help to increase trust in the site and encourage conversions.
- Typeface, typography and colour – The font, font size and colours that you use should all reflect and be consistent with the personality of the brand and company. A well thought out colour palette can also go a long way in enhancing user experience. Complementary colour schemes often create balance and harmony. While, contrasting colours can make it easier to read text on a contrasting background. Vibrant colours such as red or orange can be used for buttons and call-to-actions (CTAs) in order to create emotion and encourage conversion. However, use these sparingly across the site.
- Navigation – Site navigation determines how easy it is for your users to take action and move around your website. A good designer should be able to lead the user around the screen and prompt them to complete an action. Some tips for achieving this may be including breadcrumb navigation or clickable buttons. It is important to ensure that your user can follow the ‘three click rule’, which allows them to find the information they are looking for in three clicks. However, ultimately, the goal of the designer is to always be one step ahead of a user and predict where the user will navigate to next on the website. Keeping this in mind will ensure a great user experience.
- Images – Having the right images for your company can influence brand positioning and how you connect with your target audience. High quality photos, infographics, videos and graphics can be just as effective in communicating your brand message to your users.
- Mobile friendly – Many of your users may be accessing your website using their mobile device or tablet. Therefore, it is now imperative that you design your website to be responsive and mobile friendly.
As mentioned above, website design can often be difficult to get right first time. A lot of trials and errors may be necessary before you find the right one for your brand and users. However, the elements listed above should ensure that you are on your way to creating a successful website design.
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