By Dr. Thomas R. Reich
1. Keep the website design clutter-free and simple:
It is not necessary to add all types of cool Photoshop effects on your site in website design; these effects can result in cluttering the page and may actually overwhelm the users who are looking for the information you are providing. Keeping the website design design simple by:
- Making sure visuals & text in website design complement each other, not overpower each other.
- Optimization of images is essential, so that they download quickly.
- Develop focal points by placing important information for the user in key spots above the line in your website design (the area above the line where you have to scroll the screen for more information).
- Organize all pages in a manner that is easy for users to find information they are searching for.
It is important to project the image of your product, service or mission with the very colors of your website design. For example, a website selling biodegradable goods can utilize the color green, while a company selling shoes for little girls might use pink as the main color on their website design.
- Visual items catch more attention than plain text in website design. To make navigation easier, you might use visually moving or color changing buttons instead of text links to an item you want the visitor to click on. Alternatively, use pictures or thumbnails as links in the website design, rather than text links.
- Gain visitors attention by using such visual tools as arrows, color changing text or pictures that change when clicked right within the page they are on. An example of this might be a colorful section of a salesman holding a price list and the words “click here”, when clicked, the price list appears within the area of the page where the salesman holding the price list had been.
For visitors to want to stay on your website, the page they are looking at must be visually interesting and satisfy some need. Visuals bring the user to the site but content is what keeps them on the website.
- Keep the content updated; never leave dated content passed the event date for instance.
- Keep the language in your text as conversational as possible & keep it lively, interesting, and informative.
- Good content should make interesting reading while remaining short and concise; most visitors do not have the time or patience to read lengthy content, this is an important part of your website design.
- Try creating interaction with users within your website design, by using feedback & comment forms, by doing this your visitors will feel connected to you.
4. Maintaining narrow text may help keep content simple and easy to read:
If the text layout on your page in the website design is narrow (in column form), visitors will be more likely to scroll sideways to read the text, rather than read full page content. This is the reason why most newspapers use narrow columns. Such layout makes text easily readable and more appealing. It also helps when readers are visiting from a mobile phone or even a tablet.
Keep the website design consistent across the site so visitors can easily find important information, and know they remain on your website.
- Use same color combination in all pages.
- Keep main link locations consistent throughout the website design, usually across the top of the page.
- Do not use different fonts across the website design, consistent fonts make a consistent website.
- Try to use fonts that are easily readable, ones that are clear, bold and distinct.
There are millions of websites; most visitors get overloaded with choices, so we must help increase the odds that your visitors will want to return to your site. To accomplish this you must provide them with the information they are looking for, quickly and easily, and keep your website design on target. You must become an information source for your specific product, service, or mission.
7. Stick to conventions:
In website design has conventions that are standard design elements, basic website design elliments most surfers expect to see. As an example, visitors are accustomed to finding RSS, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn links in certain format (the bird for Twitter, LN for LinkedIn and so on) within most websites. If you use non-standard links in your website design, chances are your visitors will miss the important links entirely, defeating your well-meaning efforts.
8. Provide easy navigation within your website design and its blog:
Keep the navigation clear and easy to make the visitors stay on the site while locating important links. Check and double check to see that all the links in your website design open what they were intended to open. If one link malfunctions, does not work or links to the wrong page or site, your visitor will likely leave forever!
9. Test browser compatibility on multiple browser formats:
Make sure that the site opens properly in all the browsers as part of the website design process (Google, Explorer, Firefox and any other browser you can test it on). Do not just test the site on your usual browser, test on many browsers on several different computers. Correct all problems so that your website design looks perfect in all browsers and all computers, both wide screen and square, large and small before you launch the website design to the public. Now is the time to insure there are no compatibility issues. Make sure to test your new website design on smart phones as well as tablets, and don’t forget Mac phones, tablets and computers.
You may think that your new website design is fantastic and easy to use, but you need to make sure visitors to your site feel the same. A usability study should done with other people looking at your site for the first time, this may uncover problems in the website design process, easily addressed before launching and promoting your site to the public. You may find what you designed as an easy to understand feature, is not so easy for your average user. Perform usability tests, as part of your website design process, on a regular basis to make sure the site is up to date with no errors. Update your website design frequently, to make the experience of visiting your website a continuing pleasure!