In this article I will list those elements that are essential in good website design.
Whether you’re a small local business or an international organisation, there are some common ingredients that are essential for good website design. And by knowing what these common elements are you will be much better placed to choose the right website designer for your business.
- Responsive design. over 50% of people now view websites on mobile devices and this percentage is rising all the time. This means that if your website is not optimised for smartphones and tablets you could be losing potential customers. Responsive design means that when your website is viewed on a mobile device, it automatically resizes to fit the screen of whatever device the user is viewing your website on. This makes it easier for them to navigate your site and find what they want quickly, without the fuss of having to zoom in and out of the screen.
- Narrative content. Careful consideration needs to be paid to the narrative of your content. If it is long winded and dull customers will loose interest and move on. If it is engaging and interesting it will encourage customers to make a purchase. You should also cater for the time-starved as well as the time-rich. In other words you need the structure and curate the copy so that people can find what they need to know in a second or they can get an in-depth insight if they spend a little longer reading.
- Aesthetic. In good website design, the look and feel of the website should reflect your brand and its values. Whether you need to convey a friendly, local feel or a more informative, international tone, you need to ensure it is right for your brand. It should look professional, credible and be enticing and engaging.
- Wayfinding and navigation. It should be clear and easy for users to navigate their way around your site and find what they need quickly and easily.
- Continuing the conversation. It’s important to integrate social media together with a clear social media strategy that enables you to continue talking to your customers away from your website. This is an essential element especially if your product or service needs an international reach.
- Analytics. It’s important to either have the ability to easily view visitor data for your website or at the very least be given regular visitor reports so you know how your web design is performing.
- Call to Actions or CTAs. Finally, as part of any good website design, buttons and links that you want users to click on and follow should be clear and easy to find. Careful attention should be applied to customer journeys through your website right up to your final purchase and/or enquiry page.
The above seven points are pretty common across all good website design but this is obviously in no way an exhaustive list. Each business, product, brand and service is different and marketplaces are changing continuously. Research, for example, also plays a big part as a precursor to the website design process, whether it’s research into your audience, marketplace and positioning or competitor analysis.
It’s also important on a purely human level, that you get on with your web designer. We’re all people after all. And the design of a website can be quite a long project. Plus, once the design is complete and the website is launched, you’ll want to at least stay in touch for future questions and support.