Web design is considered by some a mere tool for engaging with customers and basically selling more of… well, whatever a business wants to sell. But simply creating a website will not make your service more popular, or your product be bought by more people online. It has to be nicely built to catch the eye, but discreet enough not to distract visitors from your ultimate goal – and well thought out to offer the visitors a logical way from landing page to checkout. Here are some tips on how to make a website more appealing to its visitors, making them stay and explore instead of quickly moving along.
First and foremost, a website needs to adapt to whatever screen size the visitor uses to explore it. The concept is not new – it is called “responsive” or sometimes “mobile friendly”. I, for one, sometimes use an ancient 15″ CRT monitor (I know, it belongs to a museum today, but still) to browse the web, and I often stumble into websites that simply won’t fit on my screen unless I zoom out. This makes the website far less appealing to me – makes me wonder if the designer has indeed intended to leave me out because I use an older screen (image via shutterstock).
Summary of Web Design Trends for 2015
- The Rise of Flat & Material Design
- Background + Full Screen Videos
- Mobile Apps & Social Sites will Dominate
- Interactive Webgraphics Replace Infographics
- Less Coding & More Websites
- Big Images / Video to Replace Sliders
- Responsive Design with Better Performance
- Functional Web Typography
- Card Design
- Augmented Reality
- Subtle UI Animations
- SVG Will Rise
- Responsive Icons
- More Personalization
- Less Clicks, More Scrolling
- Line Icons + Ghost Buttons
- Improved Parallax (Less Is More)
Mobile Web Design Trends
- Wearable & Smart Objects
- Additional Security + Privacy
- Android First Strategy (80% WorldWide)
- Mobile Payments
- Connected Healthcare
Another highly appealing feature for a website is for it to offer essential information in a way that’s easily accessible and typography. Sometimes I want to explore the content of a website, but there are many times when I don’t really care about anything but quickly ordering / subscribing / logging in. The essentials, allowing visitors to get things done quickly and easily should be in the most accessible part of the website – on the top of the first page for example. Take online gaming sites for example. Online games at Platinum Play are great fun, and I can start playing with two clicks if I want, I don’t have to get lost among descriptions, calls to action or ads.
Typography is what people read, learn from and get the most of your message. It is crucial to pick right typefaces, color and spacing in order to ensure that website works in harmony with all the other elements. According to Information Architects, it is safe to say that if you get typography right you’ve succeeded already as it is the most important aspect of a website.
95% of the information on the web is written language.” – Information Architects Inc.
Things to note:
Contrast. Make sure that your copy is darker than the background or other way around.
Line-height. Set line-height from 1.5 to 1.75 to ensure that lines have enough space to breathe and are perceived as a clean layout.
Hierarchy. Systemize your copy, most of the people now scan online so make it easier for them by using noticeable headlines, sub-headlines, bullet points.
Typeface pairing. As a general rule you should not be using too many typefaces on your website. Two typefaces can perfectly do the job. Check out Font Pair, that helps designers pair Google Fonts together (image via shutterstock).
The third thing I would like to mention is not entirely a question of design, but more of functionality: allow the visitor to ask questions in any means he or she wants. Provide an email address, a phone number or a Skype ID for me, so I can ask whatever I want quickly. A mere feedback form that sends an email to who knows where is simply not enough anymore.
And last, but not least, a personal thing: lose the background music. As many of you, I also like to listen to music while browsing the web. The last thing I need is some sticky elevator music invading over my preferred artists (and I’m picky when it comes to music, I can assure you). If you want to auto-play videos on your website, make sure they are on mute – and when it comes to background music, simply eliminate it. I don’t tolerate such things from musicians’ websites I visit, and I surely don’t need it on a business website (image via shutterstock).