This post was last updated on January 22, 2021.
When it comes to website design, there are so many different styles and directions in which your website can go: it can be anywhere from classy to minimalistic, from playful and vibrant to sleek and modern.
While your final look-and-feel should exude your personal style, line of work, and brand identity, there are a few ground rules that are always applicable.
Great web design feeds into your user experience and functionality while being easy to understand at first glance. Below we’ve gathered five simple website design tips to help make your site effective and compelling:
Web design tips for an outstanding website
- Keep your homepage minimalistic and free of clutter
- Design with visual hierarchy in mind
- Create easy to read website content
- Ensure your site is easy to navigate
- Stay mobile friendly
01. Keep your homepage minimalistic and free of clutter
Your website’s homepage should communicate your core message instantaneously. After all, we rarely read every word on a website. Instead, we quickly scan the page, picking out keywords, sentences, and images. With these known behaviors in mind, it’s better to appeal to emotions rather than word count.
- Add imagery: High-quality media features such as beautiful photographs, vector art or icons, will do wonders as alternative ways to communicate your point.
- Include a call-to-action: From making a purchase to signing up, encourage site visitors to perform the action you intended by placing a call-to-action (CTA) button on your site’s homepage.
02. Design with visual hierarchy in mind
Hierarchy is an important principle of design that helps display your content in a clear and effective manner. Through the correct use of hierarchy, you’ll be able to lead site visitors’ attention to certain page elements in order of priority, starting with the most significant piece.
The main components of visual hierarchy are:
- Size and weight: Highlight your top assets, such as your business name and logo, by making them larger and more visually prominent. Readers tend to naturally gravitate towards large and bold titles first, and only then move on to smaller paragraph text.
- Element placement: Use the right website layout to steer your visitors’ eyes in the right direction. For instance, you can place an important call-to-action button at the very center of the screen, or position your logo at the header.
Once you establish a clear hierarchy for your information, readers can’t help but unconsciously follow the breadcrumbs you have left for them. Then, apply color, contrast, and spacing for further accentuation, remaining mindful of what is drawing the most attention and making sure that it’s always intentional.
03. Create easy to read website content
“Readability” measures how easy it is for people to recognize words, sentences, and phrases. When your site’s readability is high, users will be able to effortlessly scan, or skim-read, through it. This way, taking in the information becomes effortless.
Achieving website readability is relatively easy; try these key rules:
- Contrast is key: Sufficient contrast between your text color and the background color is important for readability, as well as for website accessibility. While your website color scheme is likely to be representative of your brand colors, make sure that there’s sufficient contrast between your elements. To do so, try using an online tool, such as Contrast Checker.
- Large letter size: Most people will struggle to see smaller fonts. A typical rule of thumb for web design is to keep your body text at least 16pt. That’s a good place to start, but keep in mind that this number completely depends on the fonts you choose for your website.
04. Ensure your site is easy to navigate
It may be in your nature to break the mold, but website navigation is not the place to be avant-garde. After all, you want your users to easily find what they’re looking for. In addition, a site with a solid navigation helps search engines index your content while greatly improving the user experience:
- Link your logo to the homepage: This website design tip is a common practice that your visitors will be expecting, saving them some precious clicks. If you don’t already have one, it’s highly recommended to create your own logo as part of your branding efforts.
- Mind your menu: Whether opting for a classical horizontal list, hamburger menu, or anything else, your website menu should be prominent and easy to find. In addition, be sure that it’s structured according to the importance of each section.
05. Stay mobile friendly
All of your site visitors should be able to enjoy your professional website at its very best, no matter the device they’re browsing. When designing a website, Wix automatically creates a mobile-friendly version of your site, so that you can keep pace with the increasingly mobile world.
Go over your site’s mobile version while putting yourself in the position of the user, and test out every page, user action and button.
Your mobile website should be cleaner and less cluttered than your desktop version, so consider minimizing page elements and scaling down some assets, like the menu. There are also unique mobile features that you can use to boost your mobile design.