Web Design

5 Principles of Good Web Design


When staring at a blank canvas, the design process can seem so intimidating.

Like any other niche, web design has rules that you must follow. Navigation, content, and visuals should all work harmoniously to make sure the design strikes a balance. But how do you build the foundation of a good website design?

Follow these five principles of good web design when mapping out your site’s design and functionalities.

1. Visual Hierarchy

The visual hierarchy of a site should make it easy to access your content in a few clicks. Of course, you don’t want visitors to miss the content, but endless dropdowns and internal links will overwhelm them.

As a rule of thumb, a designer should ask themselves what could grab the attention of their audience and how best to achieve it.

A useful tip is to build the design based on the F-pattern – where a reader scans pages vertically followed by horizontal scanning.

A web designer should also play around with granular details like font size, typography, color, and the use of white space to achieve the desired effect.

2. Navigation

How will users find their way around the site? Can they easily find what they are looking for?

A well-designed website is one where users can easily interact and discover whatever they came to look for.

By incorporating a good search engine into your site, visitors will come back because they know they’ll get the information they need easily. It is of utmost importance to keep navigation simple, intuitive, and constant on every page.

3. Communication

The ultimate goal of visitors is to get information. Visitors are more likely to spend more time on your website if it communicates with them effectively.

A tip to effortless communication is to write straightforward and easy-to-digest content. Organizing information in a hierarchical order and using bullet points and subheadings will make the message easy to read and understand.

4. Load Time

Every aspect of a site has its purpose. If it loads slowly, then it’s useless to the visitor. About half of web visitors expect a webpage to load in less than two seconds, or else they’ll potentially leave the site.

Fortunately, you can make your website load faster by optimizing image sizes and combining code into a JavaScript file, and minifying HTML and CSS. Improving the speed is an ongoing task, so be sure to track your changes using the Google PageSpeed Checker.

5. Mobile Compatibility

Some years ago, responsive design was optional for good web design. Today, however, a website that is not available on multiple devices and screen sizes will not attract users or rank well in Google Search Results.

You can only make your website mobile-friendly by recreating it with a responsive layout. Alternatively, you could build an all-out mobile site separate from your main site and specially optimized for mobile users.

With the growing use of smartphones and tablets among internet users, making your site mobile-friendly is no longer optional.

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