Quality is a word that is overused in web design and digital marketing communities. But there’s a reason for that: you need a quality web design to increase your chances of having online success.
And your online store starts with your website, the digital doorway to your products and services. A web design with captivating features is important because the visuals are the first impression visitors have of your business. If your design is not appealing, they won’t stay and explore what you have to offer.
What are the elements of a quality Web Design?
A web design has to be more than aesthetically pleasing. It also has to be functional and perform everything your customers need when they need it.
So, what design benefits should you include to give visitors a great user-experience and showcase your products and services?
1. Consistent use of Branding
Before you even start on the web design, you need to determine your brand image and keep your website consistent with the colours of your logo.
Your branding should communicate the personality and core values of your company.
A quality web design projects the image you want consumers to view your brand.
2. Visually engaging hero space
The first element visitors see when they land on your website is the hero space.
This can either be an image or a faded video playing in the background. But whatever visual you choose, it should be striking and pleasing on the eye.
You will of course have different images and styles for each page, and each image should suggest what readers can expect to find on that page. The image can either be a direct image or a conceptual design that reflects your services.
For example, mobile marketing might be a satellite rather than somebody holding a smartphone. When choosing images, be creative and avoid obvious clichés.
The hero space on modern websites dispense with the fold dilemma and encourage visitors to scroll down rather than distracting them with social buttons.
Responsive images are also suitable for multiple devices and, when designed well with images and header text, make it immediately clear what type of business you are and entice visitors into exploring the type of services you offer.
3. Large Typography
Large typography is trending at the moment to give letters proportionate balance against images. And large elements that fill the screen make a better experience for mobile users.
If you have too much information squeezed into one page, the design looks cluttered on small mobile displays, but large typography stands out and makes the text easy to read. On a quality web designs, a landing page can be presented like a poster.
You may also want consider using a unique font in your typography so that it stands apart from your rivals. Some company logos use specially designed font styles so they can be identified by the typography rather than an image – the New York Times is a prime example.
The style of font you use makes subtle suggestions to the type of brand personality you are.
For example, are you fun and bubbly, or serious and solemn, a technology company or a baby’s clothes retailer?
4. Hamburger Menus
Hamburger menus are the three-bars icon you see in the top corner of a website and unveils the navigation when users click on it or hover their cursor over it.
Their function is to tidy up a website by cleaning up the menu bar so the appearance of the website does not appear cluttered on mobile phones.
We live in a mobile world and quality web designs cater towards small screens.
Most business websites have a lot of pages promoting products and services. But trying to showcase them all takes up valuable screen space which can impact on user-engagement.
The hamburger menu is a game-changer and although it may look somewhat non-descript, it’s functionality is the difference between a quality web design and a visitor bailing out because there is too much happening.
5. Style Buttons
A quality website guides customers along the purchasing path and styling buttons are a visual means of indicating there is a path for visitors to follow.
Style buttons also resolve the issue of including too many images on a page.
This can make a screen too busy and possibly even slow down the load times.
The best style buttons are unique designs that have been specially crafted for a business and play a role in communicating your brand identity to your audience.
6. Call to Action buttons
One of the key elements to a quality web design is simple navigation.
If customers can’t find what they are looking for on your website, they give up and leave.
A call to action button is an essential design element which indicates exactly where visitors will be taken if they click on it. The call to action should not always be ‘contact’ or ‘learn more’ but should have a description that asks a relevant question or informs end-users what page is next.
7. Noteworthy product images
If you sell products through your online store, you should include images to give customers an impression of what they are buying and to entice them to click-through and read more about the product.
Good images let your customers know how the product is.
But simply taking a photograph and uploading the image to your website is not always good enough. Images should showcase the features of the product and include different angles, close-ups and backgrounds.
Again, large images work well as they provide more clarity of detail and look visually engaging. If the images have been doctored to highlight a specific feature, they stand out in larger images.
Space is a design technique that is used to dictate the flow and readability of a webpage.
Intelligent use of space is particularly pertinent for brands that want a minimalist appearance.
Although using space as a design element can be subtle, it is a useful tool for creating a focal point and drawing the viewer’s attention towards something you want them to see.
When a design element is wrapped around white space for example, it appears more clearly than it would if you include a colored border.
9. Important information
A quality web design is laid out with the end-user in mind, so important information should be visible at a glance.
For example, retailers should include opening hours alongside contact details at the top of the page.
Maps giving directions to the location of your store is another design element end-users appreciate and also flags you up as a legitimate business.
10. Informational footer
On the subject of providing useful information, make the most of the footer section of a website. There are various ways to utilize this space and it does not necessarily have to be reserved for contact details and address.
You could use the footer as a call to action design or, if you have a lot of services, a one-click navigation zone to your products and services pages.
The footer is how you sign off your webpage.
It should offer something that compels visitors to take action rather than cause a reaction along the lines of ‘Arr, just another basic footer.’
Web designs are an expensive commodity if it does not work for your online business and help to bring in revenue. So if you are going to build a website, invest in a quality web design that is more likely to appeal to visitors.
Are you looking for a new quality web design for your business? What elements do you think are essential on a good website?