Could Poor Design be Holding You Back?
In a fiercely competitive world, first impressions matter. It is widely believed that an individual has just 7 seconds to make an impression, but online this window of opportunity is actually much smaller.
A Google study suggested that users were able to form an opinion of a website in as little as 50 milliseconds (that’s 0.05 seconds), which ultimately influenced whether they stayed on that website. Furthermore, a web credibility research study from Stanford highlighted the fact that 75% of web users admit to making judgments about a company’s credibility based on their website’s design.
These statistics illuminate the significance and importance of design. Having a strong, professional, and consistent design is not only visually appealing; it increases your perceived credibility and trustworthiness as a business.
The convenience of internet access on most smart devices means many people now search online to find a product or service. With so many available options to choose from, good design has become equally as important as content.
Here are four key elements for an impactful web design:
UI and UX
- UI (User Interface): the way a website is presented, through the use of visual elements
- UX (User Experience): the overall experience users gain as they interact with the elements
The way users interact with a website is fundamental for its success, and UI and UX are imperative in achieving these goals. The overall architecture of a website, including the site map and cross-linking, should be carefully considered for your target audience’s needs and expectations. Pathways should be clear, consistent and easy-to-navigate, with visual cues to guide users through the website.
By establishing a brand, you are visually communicating what your business is all about. There are a number of elements to consider: target audience, the product or service you are providing, how you want to be perceived, your business goals and the core values of your business. Your brand should be a culmination of these key elements.
Once you have a cohesive brand, you can implement style guidelines to ensure the consistent and correct use of your design. Style guidelines will help establish when and how to use the appropriate colours, images, and logos, as well as outlining what to avoid. By following these guidelines, it is much easier to uphold a consistent and professional appearance across all business channels from your website to social media.
Accessibility and Cross-compatibility
With the rise of smart devices comes the challenge of cross-device compatibility, testing your website across a number of browsers and devices will quickly identify any issues with compatibility and accessibility. Accessibility is also important – users should be able to navigate your site and find what they are looking for with ease. If your website is accessible, easy to use, and compatible across different devices, you drastically reduce the chances of missing out on (or losing) site visitors.