Are you designing a website for your business? It can be easy to get caught up in the latest trends, the flashiest plugins, and the newest themes. But when it comes to what makes a good website design, you may be surprised by what your customers actually want.

Your website is like a welcome mat for your customers. And you have 10 seconds to convince your website visitors to stick around.

Read on to learn what makes a good website design and whether you should choose a simple or complex website.

What Makes a Good Website Design?

One of the keys to strong design is simplicity.

It’s easy to make a complex website. But it’s surprisingly difficult to make a simple website.

When you’re designing your website, it can get stressful. Often, many different people are giving you their ideas and input, asking for changes, making requests, and insisting that this one feature must be included.

By the time that website is finished, it’s often a confusing, hopeless mess.

Before you design your website, it’s a good idea to make a list of all the design aspects you need in order for it to be successful.

It’s still possible to have an attractive yet simple website. Just because you’re focusing on avoiding a complicated design doesn’t mean that it needs to look bare-boned.

KISS (Keep it Simple, Stupid)

Research by Google found that simple websites (the types of websites with high prototypicality and low visual complexity) were much more appealing to visitors than complex websites.

Interestingly, the study found that visitors can tell whether a website is complicated or simple in half of a second.

If you’re aiming to attract new customers, increase conversions, and grow your business, a simple website is a must.

Depending on your business, you may find that your website needs a slightly more complicated design than the business next door.

But there are still some key things to include (and avoid). Here’s what makes a good website design:

Ads

There shouldn’t be any ads on your homepage unless your website is designed primarily for ad revenue.

Ads make your website look complex, draw attention away from your message, and can make your business look less trustworthy.

Sidebar

You may assume that a sidebar is a must, but you may want to reconsider adding a sidebar to your website.

If you’ve ensured your website is easy-to-navigate, intuitive, and well-designed, a sidebar may just be a distraction for businesses.

One Thing

When a visitor lands on your homepage, what’s the one thing you want them to do?

If you were to ask your team, you may get a few different responses:

  • Read the blog
  • Start a free trial
  • Find out about the team
  • Sign up for the newsletter
  • Download the ebook
  • Click on the “Products” page

Start from the beginning. Choose one thing. What do you want your visitor to do?

Now’s the time to think about what that action will lead to. If you want someone to sign up for your newsletter, do you have an email marketing campaign in place?

If you want them to find out about your team, are you hoping that they’ll email you straight after?

Your one thing should be the action likely to increase conversions and make you money. And the design of your website should be centered around that one thing.

White Space

Negative space, or white space, is the part of your website without any images, text, or menus. Of course, this space doesn’t necessarily need to be white, but it shouldn’t be competing for your visitors’ attention.

It can be tempting to overdo your website design and pack as many points of interest in as you can. But using white space wisely will help you create an elegant, simple website.

White space will also help you draw your visitors’ eyes to your call-to-actions.

Site Structure

Site structure is another consideration when it comes to what makes a good website design. Your navigation should be intuitive and easy to understand for a visitor who knows nothing about your company.

Don’t make your visitors’ click menu after menu. Make it easy for them to get all of the necessary information within a couple of clicks.

Choice

Giving your visitors lots of choices is a good thing right?

Within reason.

The more options a person has to choose from, the longer they’ll take to make a decision. 

Reduce the number of decisions your visitors need to make. This will make your website less overwhelming for new visitors, and help you increase your conversion rate.

Our short term memories are only able to hold seven items at a time. When creating your menu, limit it to seven items or fewer to avoid confusion.

Brand

Before you begin designing your website, it’s important to consider your brand. When deciding what makes a good website design for your business, you need to keep your brand message clear.

That means choosing fonts, colors, logos, and copy that represents your brand. A visitor should be able to move from one page to the next and experience the same feelings on each page.

Images

Humans are much better at processing images than they are at reading text. That’s why it’s a good idea to add a number of images to your website- making it more enjoyable for visitors to look at.

It’ll also make your website feel simpler, and you can easily change your images along the way without making massive changes to the site itself.

Ready to Design a Simple Website?

As you can see, “simple” doesn’t mean boring, and a complex website doesn’t give you more credibility.

Every business owner wants a website that looks great. And by embracing simplicity, you’ll have a great website that works better, feels better, looks better, and functions better for your visitors.

Choose a simple design, and you’ll make your company’s website a place where your customers want to hang out.

If you’re ready to design a website that represents your business, get in touch today to learn how we can help.

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