What is Web Design?
Today, web design is so much more than simply the visual aspect of a web page. The days of “online brochures” are over. In today’s competitive online space, web design (or good web design, that is) is the complete process of researching, planning, developing, implementing, and managing a website. It is everything from the way it looks to the way it works. And let’s not forget credibility! A good web design increases your online presence and gives your prospective clients a credible “first impression.” Which is just another reason why your web design should have a seat at the head of the table.
Basic Elements of Modern Website Design
The basic elements of web design are, for the most part, parallel to those for all types of design. These elements include:
- Fonts: The type of font you choose (ie: condensed, serif, sans-serif, etc.) affects the way search engines read your website. Assuming they are able to read it at all. Enhance your design by choosing “web-safe” fonts.
- Content: This couldn’t be more important. Search engines gauge the importance and relevancy of your site by its content. Compliment your visual design with strategic use of visuals and text, both optimized for search engines.
- Color: Choose the colors of your website with your brand in mind. Whatever color palette you choose, make sure they are web-safe and are easy on the eyes.
- Graphics: This includes everything from logos and icons to photos and videos. When choosing graphics for your website consider the size of the file, proper naming of the file, placement, and color palette of your design.
- Layout: The layout of your web design may be the most important element. This is the way that all of the above elements are arranged – we like to call it “the journey”. Your website should be laid out in a way that allows your users (and search engines) to find the information they’re looking for within seconds – without sacrificing the consistency and appearance of the design.
Each element has specifications that are important for creating a website that isn’t just creative, but also data-driven. Template website designs (and there are plenty of them out there) might be able to help you design a website that looks pretty, but it skips over the small details within each element – and these small details are what determines the success of your website online.
Why Having a Professional Web Design is Important
If you own a website for your business, having a professional web design is critical for your success online — here’s why:
- Your website will need to meet the needs of your users. They will need to be able to get the information they are looking for quickly and without frustration. In the end, this builds a stronger, more positive relationship that creates returning, loyal customers.
- You will need to be seen by search engines. It’s not enough to just have an attractive web design anymore. Your website must also be coded, created, and optimized in a way that allows search engines to read it. Hiring a professional website design agency will help you attract search engines and ultimately drive organic traffic (AKA: paying customers) to your website.
- You will need to avoid technical mishaps. In an age where access to information is endless, it doesn’t take much to send a customer looking for answers elsewhere. Hiring a professional web design service eliminates any extensive loading times, errors, or broken links.
Building a User-Friendly Website
Truth is, if you want your site to be used, you have to make the site easy to use. This includes site speed, layout, multiple device compatibility, and user experience (UX). To build a user-friendly website keep these key ideas in mind:
- Navigation (The Journey): The web design must take into consideration how the user will navigate throughout the site in respect to menus and site architecture. Navigation should be as seamless as possible. Remember, it shouldn’t be hard for the user to find what they’re looking for.
- Media and Graphics: Media and graphics should enhance the user’s experience and quickly deepen their understanding of your products or services – not bog the site down.
- Interactive: Things like animations, comment boxes, and an invitation for feedback can increase user interaction and is a great way to build email lists. This helps transition online users to loyal customers. That said, don’t overdo the interactions.
- Compatibility: Web design is no longer isolated to the computer. Your website should be optimized for every type of operating system including mobile.
Ready to build a website?
If you are ready to create a website, here are your options:
- Learn how to design a website using pre-made templates and implement search engine optimization and user-friendliness yourself.
- Hire a professional web agency to design, develop, and manage your website.
No matter which option you choose, be sure to give as much thought to the backside of your website as you do to the front.
How can Charley Grey help with your website design?
As we discussed, web design is more than picking a font family and a color palette and throwing it into a theme. A website should be designed with the brand, targeted customer, and search engines in mind. Charley Grey provides this kind of customized web design, development, and management all for one, low monthly fee. Our managed plans ensure that you get a beautiful website that does exactly what it’s supposed to – create paying customers.