Whether you’re starting up a new business, or simply looking at ways to upgrade your existing marketing plans, it’s hard to ignore the impact of a website. A few years ago, the telephone was considered the most important marketing and sales tool a business owned. Now few people could imagine building a business without a website in place.
A website is your window to the world. It speaks about your business in a way you never could do in person. It gives a person a chance to investigate as much or little as they desire before taking the next step with you.
If you have a great web presence in place, your business will excel. If your web presence is questionable, you’ll leave plenty of business on the table.
What is involved in the web development process? What can you do before you move forward that will ensure your businesses success? Luckily we’ve found several effective web design principles can help lead the way.
Create a website that draws attention to the most important thing
Have you ever been on a website and had to hunt for a phone number? Or maybe you were looking for office hours for your doctor, and they were nowhere to be found? That happens all the time when the web development process doesn’t involve looking at the business as a whole.
We believe before a website is ever started, before a graphic image is ever designed, that the most important part of the process is to discover the path you choose to lead your clients down. What are your website goals? Do you wish for them to fill out a form? Do you have a special offer you want them to sign up for? What is your value proposition? What is your call to action?
Before one page can be placed in your web design, it’s important to have the process in place. Only then can you design a site that makes sense to your viewer, and provides a logical step-by-step process for them to follow.
Don’t give your viewers too many choices
Remember the last time you were in a restaurant with a huge menu of options? It made if difficult to select an item for dinner. This is Hick’s Law at work.
Hick’s Law states that with every additional choice you have available, it increases the time required to make a decision. And on a website, that can spell disaster. Because if you give a person too many choices, the most likely choice they’ll make is none at all.
When people visit websites, they want information. But they want it in bite size pieces. They want it to be logical. They want it to fit certain patterns. They want it to speak to them, take them by the hand, and walk them gently through.
That doesn’t happen by chance. That happens through a highly engaging web development process. One that we have in place and are happy to work through with you.
Follow the rule of thirds
There’s a very simple rule in the design world called the rule of thirds. It’s one of the fundamentals of creative arts such as painting and photography. It’s used as a technique to help artists build drama and interest in their work. The rule states that a piece should be divided into nine squares of equal size, with two horizontal lines intersecting two vertical lines. At each intersection is where the eye tends to fall naturally. That is where your visual interest should like. These intersections help make what you do more satisfying, more effective. It also makes your audience more likely to remember the information you share.
Why is this important during the web development process? To help aid in the theme of your site. Websites aren’t just a hodgepodge of graphics and copy. Instead, it’s a carefully laid out design that provides the viewer with the necessary information to take the next steps with you.
The rule of thirds gives you the advantage of speaking to your viewers in a way that satisfies their curiosities. It makes what they are viewing more pleasing, giving them ample reason to stick around.
Don’t overcrowd your design space
Ever stuck around a website that was way too busy? Don’t worry, nobody does.
In the design world, white space is beautiful. White space, also called negative space, is the portion of a page left empty. It’s the space between the details of a page, the graphics, margins, gutters, space between columns, space between the lines or copy or the visuals used.
But don’t assume white space is merely blank space. White space is an important design element that enables a hierarchy of information. A page without white space runs the risk of appearing busy, cluttered and very difficult to read. In many cases, people won’t even bother.
This is why simple is better.
The right amount of white space makes a website look clean. Clean design is crucial to getting your message across in a clear and concise way. That doesn’t mean less content – it means a design that makes the best use of its space. It means knowing the best way to communicate by using all of your space wisely.
Simple is often better
You know your business better than anyone. You know the intricate details that set you apart from your competition. You understand your products and services better than anyone.
But trying to get those details across to your potential customers doesn’t work. In most cases, they don’t care. Because people only ask one question when they visit any website online: What’s in it for me? They have a problem and are looking for a solution. Are you the one?
And they don’t want to dig for the answer. They want to reach a conclusion in a matter of seconds. Either you have potential … or you don’t. Either you sound believable and create the desire to move forward … or they won’t.
Find that simple message that speaks directly to your customers, the message that makes people want to move forward. Websites aren’t meant to have everything on the home page. They are meant for drilling down and discovering the most meaningful part for you, somewhere down the line.
Web development understands a website is for drilling down and discovering pieces to the puzzle as the relationship builds. We help you discover the best way to reach out, while keeping the process simple enough for your viewers to understand and move through easily and efficiently. Because that’s all they really want.