(Guest Post by Jon Docksey at Design JD)
It’s no surprise that a website needs to be captivating from the moment you log on. If it’s not, why bother sticking around? That being said, the main issue web designers face is maintaining a balance between cool, eye-grabbing graphics and necessary information. The best way to do this is by designing with UX in mind…
It’s all about the UX
UX, or User Experience is how a user connects with the website. This might be in terms of its load speed, first impressions or overall layout. Having a well-designed website is what will help your customers differentiate you from your competition. Ideally, it will show all the information needed for the customer to make a decision.
Short but Sweet
It’s important to remember that customers clicking onto your website are looking for immediate information. They won’t want to have to search page to page looking for simple solutions. We suggest making the following things easily available, products and services, pricing, previous work, contact details etc. In the end, your customers will have a much better experience because they can enjoy the graphics and design while simultaneously getting the information that they want.
Visual hierarchy is a great system to follow to ensure that your customers are shown the information most prominent to them. For example, make sure everything you want them to see such as products and services, is right at the top along their site path. This shouldn’t discourage you from putting information towards the bottom of each page. However, just keep in mind, it may be glossed over.
Exiting, but don’t Go Crazy
As we mentioned before, it’s important to represent your brand and have fun with your website, but remember there are limits. If your website is a bit over the top with colours and animations everywhere, it may distract from the important information you want them to see.
A good rule of thumb is put yourself in the customers’ shoes, would you be distracted?
When it comes to designing a cool, engaging website there’s a lot to think about. You will have undoubtedly looked at your competitors and tried to think of ways to develop something more enticing. While it’s tempting to reinvent web design and try and think of something that’s never been done, we suggest a more subtle approach. Instead, first, make sure all the information you need is well displayed, then go in and add a hint of your company’s cool flair.
Understand your Audience
Similar to most aspects of business, understanding the target market of your website is crucial. This is because you can gauge how they will interact with certain characteristics of the website. For example if you’re selling things to an older audience but your website is packed full of flashing colours and animations, they will likely find it difficult to use. The same goes for younger generations if you use a web design that looks like it’s dated back to the early 2000’s.
Overall, there are many different aspects to take into consideration when designing a website with User Experience in mind. For more information, check out the User Experience Honeycomb.