Web design is a tricky business. It’s not enough to simply slap together a bunch of code and call it a website. If you want people to visit your site, it needs to be easy for them to use and understand. At the same time, designers must take into account the needs of different users: some will want to access information quickly by scanning content rather than reading every word; others might want all the details about every step in an online purchasing process before buying anything. Good web design brings together all the principles that can make your site successful—and this isn’t as simple as it looks!
The why, what and where of your website – what does it do? What does it not do? Here’s your chance to tell the world (and Google) exactly how you want to be perceived by people.
Is this a site that sells products or services? Is it designed to educate or inform customers about something? Maybe it’s a blog that showcases opinions or thoughts on certain topics. Whatever the case may be, let everyone know!
Usability is the ease of use and learnability of a human-made object. This includes attributes such as learnability, efficiency, memorability, error avoidance and frustration tolerance. It goes without saying that usability is one of the most important aspects to consider when designing a web page. If your website has poor usability, visitors will have trouble figuring out what to do with it and may just leave altogether because they can’t find what they came for.
In order to make your website easily usable by your visitors (and search engines), you need to pay attention to some key principles:
“Clarity is about making sure that the information on your site is easy to understand.”
People are busy. We have a lot going on in our lives, and it’s easy for us to miss important details when we’re skimming through the web. That’s why clarity matters so much—it helps make sure that people aren’t left wondering what they’re supposed to do with the information they’ve found on your site. Clarity makes things easier by eliminating any uncertainty or confusion that might be caused by improperly written content, unclear visuals, or unclear navigation.
There are a few ways you can improve clarity in your design:
Visual design is the most important part of web design. It doesn’t matter how well your site works, if it doesn’t look good, people won’t stay on it very long.
Visual design isn’t just about aesthetics, though—it’s also about usability. Good visual design adds to the user experience and makes sites easier to navigate and understand. Visual design includes everything from colors and fonts to layout and hierarchy (how elements are arranged).
The next time you go to a restaurant, take a look at the menu. If it’s hard to read or if it doesn’t have all the information you need, do you really want to eat there? Of course not! The same principle applies when designing websites.
- A clear and obvious navigation ensures that people can find their way around your website easily.
- A search function is always helpful because it allows visitors to find what they are looking for without having to scroll through pages of content and links.
- Provide a sitemap so people don’t get overwhelmed by all the different pages on your site. It should provide an overview of where different sections are located on your site or how they are connected with each other (if they are).
- Make sure there is always one apparent way of navigating back home — this includes the ability to return directly from any page within the site by simply clicking “Home” in either the footer or header area at any time during browsing sessions so that users never feel lost within their own journeys through content areas such as blogs posts/articles as well as user-generated comments sections where questions might arise about where else they could go besides just trying random URLs until they get lucky enough into stumbling upon whatever question needed answered!
Content Strategy and Information Architecture
Content strategy and information architecture are the two main ways of organizing content on a website. Content strategy is how you plan, manage, and organize your content. Information architecture is how you order and categorize your information. They’re closely related—the goal with both is to make it easy for users to find what they’re looking for. But they are different enough that they often need separate teams working on them at the same time (or in some cases, even separately).
- Use a typeface that’s easy to read.
- Make sure the font size is large enough (12px).
- Use a font with enough contrast with the background color. If you have light text on dark backgrounds, make sure you have sufficient contrast between them. For instance, if you are using white text on black, ensure that your text is still readable when zoomed out on a mobile device or printed in black ink (this goes for any color combination). To test this out visually and make sure it’s working well across all devices: increase the size of typeface until it becomes unreadable. You’ll know when it happens because your eyes will glaze over while reading—that’s how people react when they’re trying to understand what they see but can’t get past how hard it is for them to do so! Keep reducing until clarity returns; this should give you an idea of where that sweet spot lies between legibility and usability.* Use a readable font everywhere: desktop browsers, mobile phones, tablets…and everything else!
Color is the most important visual element that can affect the mood of users, and it’s also one of the first things people notice.
It should be used to emphasize important information, not just because you want to use a particular color in your design.
The color palette should be determined by your brand’s personality and goals for its online presence, not by what you like or think looks cool.
Feedback is the process of giving users information about the success or failure of their action. Feedback can be visual, auditory or tactile.
For example: if you put in a query and hit enter, but nothing happens then that’s not very useful for the user. It’s important to let them know whether their query was successful or not so they know what to do next.
Information scent and interactions design
Here are 10 principles of good web design and what they mean for your website.
- Information scent and interactions design.
Information scent is the concept of guiding the user to their desired action by using subtle clues, such as visual cues or text, that act as signposts along their journey. Interactions design refers to the interaction between users and websites—the way that users move through a site, how they discover information and make decisions on where to go next, which features they use most often, etc. These two concepts are closely related: If a user doesn’t know where they’re going because there’s no clear “path” laid out for them by design cues (information scent), then it’s harder for them to get where they want because there aren’t any obvious “lanes” or paths through which someone can travel (interactions).
Good web design brings together all the principles that can make your site successful.
Good web design is more than just great visuals. It’s about usability, clarity, visual design, navigation and content strategy; typography, color and feedback—and even interactions design (how do you make people want to get back on your site?)
It’s important to understand the purpose of your website and then design accordingly. For example: if it’s a news site that requires users to be able to read news immediately without distractions or clutter then simply having some text in an easy-to-read font can be enough for them (as long as it looks nice).
The web is a big place, and there are many different types of sites that you can create. The most important thing to remember when designing your next website is that it’s not just about the site itself—it’s also about good user experience.