Whether you build a website by hiring the services of a professional web designer, purchasing ready-made design templates, or using your own HTML skills, good design features are important if you want to create a successful and popular online destination. How often have you come across a website that was frustrating to browse? I’m sure the answer is, “All the time.”
Unfortunately, there are many terrible websites floating around in cyberspace – and that includes professionally designed ones! When it comes down to it, good design is good design and it doesn’t matter if you pay $1000 or $20: if certain design elements are left out in the cold during the design process, the usability of your site will definitely suffer.
Even the experienced web surfer may not realize just how important a website’s design is to visitors, but the truth is, the design is critical, especially if you plan to earn revenue from the site, want to attract a lot of people, and keep them coming back for more.
Well-designed websites make it easy for visitors to find what they’re looking for – be it information, a product, or anything else you might offer on your site. A nicely designed site creates a good impression, allows visitors to surf frustration-free, and gives them exactly what they’re looking for. If visiting your site is a positive experience for the user, it will be easy to achieve success, no matter what you plan to do with your site. There are companies that can help you create the website that’s just right for your business. One such site that offers good design at reasonable prices is http://templatedogma.com/.
Good Design – What to Shoot For
Rule #1 – The number one rule to good web design: keep it simple. In fact, this rule is the foundation upon which all the other good design elements are built. It may seem obvious, but many websites miss the mark when it comes down to the art of simplicity. It’s not always easy to pare down a website, especially if you want to present your visitors with a lot of information or impress them with your high-tech capabilities.
It can be tempting to fill the site with animations, sounds, pictures, video, and loads of text – but this is a bad idea if you want people to feel comfortable browsing your site. Ensure that everyone can easily and quickly navigate their way among the pages of your site without getting stuck in the proverbial mud. Specifically, 1- and 2-column designs are easy on the eyes, allowing you to read from top to bottom with ease. The user feels less frustrated reading straightforward pages without a lot of cheesy distractions and useless gobbledygook.
Rule #2 – Use 3D effects and other graphical elements, such as cute icons, in moderation. Too much stuff on a page can be overwhelming, but you don’t want a website to be stark. An added touch of artistic design here and there can be just what a boring website needs to infuse a little spice into the mix without burning your tongue off!
This also applies to the background color you choose. Most well-designed websites these days stick to soft, neutral colors. This is especially effective if you want to make brighter colors on the page really pop.
Rule # 3 – White space and large text are your friend. The eye needs room to understand all the elements on a page properly, so don’t clutter things up unnecessarily. Make room by leaving wide margins between elements and the pages of your site will have a fresh, clean look.
Secondly, make sure the text is large enough to read easily. At the same time, it is perfectly acceptable to use smaller text, but to make the most important information stand out from the crowd, ensure that it is larger than normal. People will be able to find what they’re looking for faster if they can scan the page for content.
Rule # 4 – Common sense navigation. The navigation buttons you employ should not require a degree in astrophysics to understand. Instead, navigation buttons and bars should be easy to figure out from the get-go, and easy to use. They should also be consistent throughout the whole website and let users know exactly where they are at any given time, no matter what page they’re viewing. Finally, if your site is very large, provide people with a site map to make navigating your stretch of the information superhighway a piece of cake.
Overall, the elements of good website design are achievable if you stick to a few simple, clear-cut rules. Following them will ensure that visitors to your site won’t regret stopping by, so you can sit back, relax, and reap the rewards.
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