Design is a major factor of any website; it can be a “make or break” in terms of attracting leads and securing big clients.
The look and feel of your website can evoke a whole range of emotions, and achieve a multitude of effects. A simple and sleek design speaks high-end, professional, and perhaps unaffordable. Whereas a loud and bright design may appeal to a younger market, ie. students. Get it right and it will work wonders. Get it wrong and you may be attracting the wrong – or repelling the right – target audience. We like to think of the relationship between your website and your business as a marriage – it is a serious commitment. So, do your research and think twice before saying “I do”.
But how do you know which one is The One?
Instead of chasing the latest web design trends – just because they seem mysterious and exciting – it is better to opt for those with a good, clean track record. The web design trends that have proven to be trustworthy in the past are here to stay: they are reliable and effective. And, like any relationship built on trust, they are bound to be fruitful and long-lasting.
Another factor to take into consideration is ensuring that you opt for a full-package website design: a perfect partner is ideally physically attractive and compatible. Likewise, when it comes to websites, you can’t have beautiful visuals (UI Design) without great user experience (UX Design). The two come hand in hand and you need to ensure your website ticks both the boxes.
At Image+, we’re the matchmakers that seek out this level of compatibility between you and your ideal web design. We always aim to ensure there’s attraction, and good chemistry: we’ve been playing the website design field a while, so we are here to give you some advice.
Great web design, like a great relationship, has strong foundations.
Responsive design is key to great user experience (UX) – but what is it?
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – responsive design is essential to successful web design these days. With more or less 50% of all website traffic sessions being carried out on mobile devices – a number which is growing exponentially – your website needs to be adaptable: it has to provide as good experience – if not better- on mobile phones as on desktops. This means taking into consideration all types of devices and essentially creating multiple versions of your website.
Still not clear on what this looks like? Just take a look at our example below.
The main issue that arises from creating epic designs is trying to squeeze them into mobile size settings. Sometimes phones can’t handle the amount of code and thus it takes them a while to load- creating a “code bloat”. This causes huge delays. Research shows that 53% of users abandon a site if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load, yet the average website takes a staggering 22 seconds to do that. It just doesn’t cut it.
So, you need to find a way to make the two work. You want your website to have a great design but you don’t want to slow down the user’s experience as it will only drive them away. It’s about coming to a compromise without sacrificing too much creativity. It’s a balancing act of its own kind.
Avoid confusion with simple navigation – clarity is key
For a relationship to be compatible communication is key; two people have to be able to a) understand where the other person is coming from and b) know how to respond. In that same manner, simple navigation allows the user to understand how a site works and encourages them to respond appropriately. Simple and sleek navigation creates an experience for the user, guiding them through all that it has to offer.
Once you have the right UX foundations ticked-off you then need to ensure your design looks great too. You can’t be with someone just because you trust them and you get on – physical attraction is also key.
So, User Interface driven Design is just as important.
Use white space for definition
Using White Space is like applying makeup – it acts as a highlighter emphasising the most attractive features. In the same way, using plenty of white space in your design pulls the focus towards the important elements on your page. It lets your product speak for itself, so is suited for brands that pride themselves in quality.
But keeping things simple doesn’t mean that your design has to be boring. Using accents, stunning typography and pairing graphic design with imagery will give the design a fresh feel and some quirk.
That is the effect we aimed for in our project for Elaghmore (see below)- an investment company. By simply applying an angled overlay to the featured image on each web page we emphasised the company’s modern approach to banking.
Use bright colours for emphasis
Using white colour by itself can work for businesses that want to take a serious and reliable stance. But if you’re wanting to get your target audience excited about your brand, opting for a slightly more lively accent will work wonders. Such is the website we created for Gas Data a company deeply concerned with sustainable energy approaches. The white colour not only emphasises their great graphics but it also implies their ethos of sourcing pure energy. And this is further emphasised by the bright green accent colour which runs throughout their design. It’s clear and it’s modern. What better way of getting the right message across to users.
Use dark mode to create a classic look and feel
Dark mode websites don’t just look super modern, they are also very practical. They reduce battery strain and make visuals pop. Pair this with great use of shadows for a lite 3D effect (another one of our favourite web design trends) and you’ve got yourself a winner. Big brands like Nike or Apple consistently use this approach and no wonder why. It’s sleek, effective and often code-light. We swear by it too. See how we’ve implemented it in a website for one of our clients Signal Centre.
Creating a successful web design takes work. Simply following the latest web design trends is often futile. Thus, it is vital to follow expert guidance throughout the process. We’ve given you the basic criteria but professional website design is much more than ticking the right boxes. Experience and expertise are vital when it comes to creating a website design that not only works for you but is also profitable and long-lasting.
Contact Image Plus for Web Design & Development
If you need web design or development, then speak to our friendly experts. Our web developers are based in Coventry, Warwickshire and are always ready to help. Please feel free to contact us and speak to one of our website design specialists.
Contact us on 024 7683 4780 or send us an email at email@example.com.