Web Design Fundamentals
Good web design is consistently a moving target. Standards on what is visually appealing can be extremely subjective. However, there are certain objectives to keep in mind when creating a website that should be considered to maximize the effectiveness of your website and get the most from your audience. Statistics say that you only have a few seconds to gain the interest of the user. The following tips will give you a better chance of keeping their attention and maximizing their time spent online:
Call to Action
The Call to Action is a way to direct the user to do something on the website. This is the predominant method, or point of the site. It could be focalized to the user to get in contact by calling a number, or filling out a form, or selecting from options and providing feedback. Whatever the Call to Action may be, it should be the most prominent, eye-catching item on the landing page, or at least incorporated into the central focus using strong design elements.
Be clear about the services you offer. At first glance, the user should be able to tell exactly who you are, what you do, and have the ability to investigate further for more detail. All content on the home page should reflect the organization and provide a consistent message. If necessary elements may potentially detract from the message, use design to isolate them in such a way that it is understood visually that these elements are separate.
Additionally, if your website is broken into ‘bite-size’ elements, do they stay consistently on message? Does the header and footer content match? Is the user able to translate this information and retain value from the website?
Along the lines of the Consistent Message, the content should be clear about the services provided or other relevant required information. The user should not have to spend a lot of time figuring out the general gist of what is offered or available based on the content of the site. Of course, expanded information should be available, but not necessary to understand what the website is about. Additionally, relevant images or other multimedia design elements should enhance, rather than distract from, the overall information.
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Use these tips to gain better user retention, have a consistent, clear message, and keep your website competitive.
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