8 rules for excellent web design
When you are involved in the design or redesign of a website, it is easy to get bogged down in aesthetics. “This shade of blue just doesn’t look that great… Wouldn’t it be great if we placed the logo in the upper right corner? … How about we put a huge animated GIF in the middle of the page?”
But if you really want to achieve something on your website (e.g. increase sign up numbers, generate leads, etc.), then you have to deal with more than just the look of your website.
8 rules for good web design
2. visual hierarchy
3. easy navigation
8. the user at the centre
We live in a world with more than a billion websites where visitors can potentially end up. That’s why it’s especially important that the design is user-friendly. Your website must be easy to use. At the same time the user experience must be positive. Visiting your website should be pleasant and, depending on its content, maybe even fun.
It is obvious that usability and user experience are disciplines of their own. You could spend years researching them to understand their complexity. But here we want to give you some clear tips on how to find your way around. So we’ve put together a list of usability and user experience rules that you can apply in your next web design project.
8 web design rules for an excellent user experience
The next time you embark on a major redesign project, keep the following in mind: Most visitors don’t care much what your site looks like.
Your visitors will not come to your site to judge how brilliant your design is. They come to your site because they want to perform a certain action or have a certain information. If you add unnecessary design elements to your site – elements that don’t perform any function – you make it harder for your users to achieve what they came to your site for.
From the usability and user experience perspective, simplicity is your best friend. There are many ways to make this happen. Here are a few examples:
* Colors:Do not use too many. The Handbook of Computer-Human Interaction recommends that you use a maximum of five (plus or minus two) different colors in your web design.
* Fonts:The fonts on your website should be easy to read and, as with colours, you should not use too many different ones. Usually it is recommended to use a maximum of three different fonts in a maximum of three different sizes.
* Graphics: Only use graphics if they help users perform a particular action or if they have a special function (don’t just randomly insert graphics everywhere).
Here is an example of a simple homepage design of Rockaway Relief, a grouping dedicated to helping the victims of Hurricane Sandy on the Rockaway Peninsula:
Remove anything that doesn’t add value. Then add a little visual structure.
Famous sports car designer Colin Chapman coined the winged words, “Make it simple, then add lightness.” That’s a saying you can use as a guide to web design. Every element on a page must offer added value to either the user or the company – ideally both. But if you take the whole thing too literally and remove too many elements, the design quickly becomes spartan. Then you have to give the page a visual structure. That’s what it’s all about:
* The site should focus on the most important content.
* The necessary visual structure and interesting aspects are there, which supports the aesthetic usability. But the visualization should not distract from the most important page content.
You can find out more here: /mt/archives/2014/08/principles-over-standards.php#sthash.GdOvzpl1.dpuf Remove anything that does not add value. Then add a little visual structure.
The famous sports car designer Colin Chapman coined the winged words, “Make it simple and then add lightness.” That’s a saying you can use as a guide to web design. Every element on a page must offer added value to either the user or the company – ideally both. But if you take the whole thing too literally and remove too many elements, the design quickly becomes spartan. Then you have to give the page a visual structure. That’s what it’s all about:
8) Focus on the user
The bottom line is that usability and user experience depend on user preferences. Look at it this way: Who are you designing the website for? Right, for your users.
The principles we have shown you here are a good starting point. But when improving your site, it’s even more important to do testing, get feedback, and make changes based on those findings.
According to Vitamin T, 68% of visitors do not convert because they think you don’t care about their experience. One final piece of wisdom for you: when it comes to usability and user experience, you should care about everything! Put yourself in your visitors’ shoes and keep them in mind every step of the way.
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