When it comes to designing or re-designing a website, it can be easy to get very pernickety about the aesthetics. However, if you are really trying to accomplish something with a website, you will need to focus on more than just how it looks. In a world where people have more than a billion websites to choose from, you need to make sure that yours is the one chosen. This can be done via usability and experience. Now, you could choose to spend years studying the details of visibility, but for the sake of jumping a few points, we’ve put together a list which will help you whilst working on your next web design project.
While the feel and look of your website is important, most visitors will evaluate your site according to action and if they can find a specific piece of information. If you are adding unnecessary design elements to your website, it will only make it harder for visitors to accomplish what they came for.
Here are some simplicity examples:
- Colours- don’t use too many.
- Typefaces- they should be legible at the very least.
- Graphics- only use them if they will help a visitor complete a task.
In addition to keeping your navigation consistent, the overall look of the site should be consistent. Backgrounds, colour schemes, typefaces, should all match. Even the tone of your writing in all areas should be the same. This doesn’t mean that every page should have the exact same layout, but keeping to the same theme will keep it easy to use and give off a better impression.
Usability and user experience hinge on preferences of the end users. So while the principles list is a good place to start, the real key to successful web design is to conduct other user testing, gather feedback and make changes according to what’s learnt.
What other principles do you think make for fabulous website design?