Why you should pay attention to your website’s design

By Elliot McHugh

Do you find it frustrating when you land on a website, only to get lost and abandon what you’re looking for 10 minutes later? It’s really important that your website makes it easy for the web user to find what they’re looking for.

In this article, I explore the top features which make a good website stand out from its competitor.

1. Don’t make me think!

People should be able to find exactly what they’re looking for within the first few crucial seconds upon landing on your website. Even simple things like button names can slow people down and make them think for longer than necessary.

For example, if I land on a site looking for a job, and there is a big red button with the word ‘jobs,’ it’s pretty likely I’ll find what I’m looking for by clicking that button. However, if the big red button says ‘employment opportunities,’ it makes me think for a few seconds, then click. Keep things simple and straight to the point!

2. We don’t read pages. We scan them.

Most of the time, people tend to scan pages, looking for words that capture their attention. Of course, there’s exceptions, like reading product descriptions and news stories, but even then, people often alternate between reading and scanning.

That’s why it’s crucial for things on your website to be clearly titled and laid out – bullet points and lists are a great way for web visitors to capture key information and progress through your site. The more important something is, the more visible it should be. Don’t bother with long bits of meaningless text – keep it simple, clear and informative!

3. Keep the noise down!

Some people can tolerate noisy pages with lots of text, but most can’t. There are three types of noise: Shouting (things demanding your attention), Disorganisation (like a ransacked room) and Clutter (pages with too much “stuff”).

Get rid of things which are not making a contribution – everything that’s not part of the web users’ solution must go.

4. Keep Paragraphs short

Paragraph length should be kept to a minimum on your website. Long paragraphs confront the reader with a ‘wall of words’ and just makes it harder for a reader to find what they’re looking for.

Even single sentence paragraphs are fine. Get in the habit of using paragraphs to break up the text.

5. Omit needless words

Getting rid of all the words that no one is going to read helps to make useful content more prominent and also makes the pages shorter, allowing users to see more of each page at a glance without scrolling. When designing your website, be sure to give concise text and information to your website designer.

And that’s it, 5 features that make a strong website. There are many website design companies in London  and around the UK, so make sure to use a company with a strong eye for design. 

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