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There are so many ways to mess up a website design; that’s why it’s important to know what factors to consider at the very beginning of the designing process. Here are some best practices to consider.
Website, that little piece of online real estate that you can use for just about everything – for business, passion projects, side hustles, etc. For most people, a website should be fast – it should provide all the information they need within a nano-second. But is speed everything? What makes a good website design? More importantly, what are the things that you should do and should not do when designing a website? We’ll answer all these questions in this guide.
A good website should be snappy; it should load in less than 3 seconds to attract people. If a website does not load fast enough, people are quick to look elsewhere for information. But there is more to a website than loading speeds.
Interacting with the website itself should be a pleasant experience. That’s why website designs are all about providing the best user experience or UX. If a website is beautifully designed, fast, and easy to use, it will attract MORE people and compel readers to stay on their website for longer.
To make sure that your website provides the best user experience, here are some dos and don’ts to keep in mind:
Yes, the website is yours and yours alone, but if you want to attract more viewers, you have to base the design on what your target audience wants. Your perception might be different from that of your target audience, and it's their attention that you are after. If you’re going to generate more traffic, you have to focus on your target audience.
It will be hard to attract people to your website if your website is nowhere to be seen in the searches. To top the searches, you have to optimize the website design with SEO. Learn more about the best practices of SEO, then develop your digital marketing plan. Your digital marketing plan should always include optimized meta descriptions and website pages.
Nothing hurts the eyes quite like a cluttered website. If it takes several seconds to find what users are looking for on your website, you do not give them what they want. Your website design should be organized and clean so that people could explore it with ease.
Stick to a clean, predictable layout so users won’t end up being confused when interacting with your website. Be sure that the transition between pages is just as smooth. Avoid cluttering the space with widgets or rows of boxes that are set up haphazardly. The info should be presented clearly, so people don’t have to dig too deeply into the navigation to find what they are looking for.
Consistency is key to an effective marketing strategy. Sticking to a specific colour scheme, typography, logo, and other branding elements help build a memorable brand. Do not stray away from your branding, no matter what platform you use. If your colour scheme is gold and white, use the same colour scheme on your website. You want people to associate your branding with your business. If you use a different colour scheme, then it will only confuse viewers.
A well-planned content strategy is a key to higher website traffic. You want people to go to your website and check out your content. You want people to sign up to your mailing list, hire your services, buy your product, or subscribe to your blogs. You can have all that and more as long as you have a plan. Focus on giving value, avoid the fluff, and optimize your content to top the searches. These are just a few of the many essential things to consider when brainstorming for an effective content marketing strategy.
Nothing's more off-putting than a layout that leaves you anxious and confused because of an outdated, messy structure. Modern website designs are popular because the designs come with features that modern users love: fast loading times, organized navigation, easy to read content, etc. Don't leave a wrong impression on users with an outdated layout that either takes so long to load or one that requires a lot of tinkering to find what you're looking for. Stick to a simple, organized, and clean layout.
Having a colour scheme helps build a memorable brand, but you have to be selective regarding the colours you will use for your website. Generally, your colour scheme consists of a primary colour, a secondary colour, and other colours for the text, hyperlinks, etc. Using too many colours will hurt the eyes and may affect the user’s perception of your brand.
Our advice is to stick to three colours for your colour scheme. Use colours that complement each other well, so your website’s look is easier on the eyes. Also, use colours that could enhance your content and never choose random colours. Straying away from your branding will only lead to confusion for your readers.
Long paragraphs tend to bore the readers and make the entire content harder to scan – something that’s important for many people who are using mobile devices to access the web. Avoid fluff and use short, concise sentences to create shorter paragraphs. Use bullet points, headings, quotes, and blocks to highlight important parts of the content. Break each section with an eye-catching image, an infographic, or perhaps a video in between to give more value to the content. Breaking your content into short, easy to digest chunks increases readability, which will motivate users to stay on your website LONGER.
Poorly-made visuals like bad lit images, dark videos, or poorly-made infographics will put off many people, so you have to exert more effort to create high-quality content. You can use stock images for the photos, but if you can invest in professional photography, do it. It will be worth the money! The same thing can be said for videos or infographics. Have these professionally made if possible to attract more people to your website. Of course, you can do all these on your own as long as you know your way around the applications you’ll use to create high-quality visuals.
A call to action compels the online user to make the desired action. In this case, the end goal could be to get people to sign up for your newsletter, buy a product from your website, try any of the sponsored products or services you’re promoting, or hire you. Whatever the end goal is, do not forget to add a clear call to action on every webpage, so the reader knows exactly what’s expected from him or her.
Your success as an entrepreneur starts with a well-designed website. So always consider the people who will go to your website, what value you are offering to them and what design elements appeal to your target audience.
Please don't rush into it. Do your research, find out what website design works and what doesn’t work for your audience. Put yourself in your readers’ shoes; what do you want to see on your ideal website? By considering these website design dos and don'ts, you’ll be able to build a beautiful, intuitively-designed website that appeals to your target audience!
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