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5 Elements of Great Web Design

02 Mar 2015

Elements of great web design1.     Simplicity in web design

Simplicity comes first on the list because it underlines everything from visuals to usability to code.

It’s much harder to create a beautiful simple design, or write elegant simple code, than it is to cobble together a spaghetti mess.

When you see a clean simple design, or an elegant line of code, don’t be fooled into thinking that in that case it was quick and easy. It takes twice as much time and effort to give the impression of being effortless.

2.     Visually attractive

First impressions count, and whether it’s fair or not, people will judge your website on how attractive the design is.

If the layout and use of colour is calm, simple and well balanced, the visitor will get the impression they are dealing with a professional, competent company.

On the other hand, if there are myriad of colours, several different fonts, and things flashing and spinning, they are likely to be clicking the back button before reading the first sentence.

The complaint we hear most often about web designs people take an instant, emotional dislike to, is that the site was too ‘busy’, ‘fussy’ and had ‘too much going on.’ These websites come across as shouty and desperate.

3.     Intuitive Usability

Once you’ve seduced their eyes, the next thing to do is… not get in the way. This means that visitors should be able to find exactly what they’re looking for with the minimum of effort. It should be obvious where to click to find what they want, and they shouldn’t require instructions or to read a manual.

It takes a great deal of thought to pre-empt how visitors will use a website, but if you follow conventions, you’re more likely to provide them with an environment that feel familiar, even if it’s the first time they’ve visited your website.

4.     Clear objectives

At the end of the day, most websites exist to add to the bottom line of a company. This may mean generating enquiries, sales or building trust with a customer base. Whatever the objectives of the website, they need to be integrated into the site at every level from code to structure to visual design.

5.     Search Engine Optimised

You can have the most beautiful, usable web design in the world, but if it’s not indexed by the search engines, it’s not going to do you one jot of good. Search engine optimisation means ensuring a clear, sensible structure, good coding, lots of good quality content and following the SEO guidelines regarding tags, headings, titles and the rest.

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