The abundance of websites on the Internet has given users an enormous amount of choice regarding which ones they want to stick to. These users have taken no longer than five seconds to decide whether they want to spend time on a website or move away from it. For companies owning these websites, this is a serious matter. They need to choose an effective web page design, which catches the user’s attention in five seconds, otherwise, they risk losing out on the potential customer.
Most people confuse effective web page design with the creation of a great-looking website. This is only partly true. Several factors constitute an effective web page design. The good news is that anyone can pay attention to these factors and attract traffic to the website. It will be much simpler if they incorporate these effective web page design principles into the website from the word go, or else it might take a lot of redesigning and reworking to get things in order.
Another word of caution: do not think that only websites which feature a vast number of pages or look very jazzy are the ones that people want to stick to. Even a simple website having an effective web page design can be great to surf if these factors are incorporated into it.
The principles of effective web page design
1. Communication style
A website is all about communicating with real humans. So, adopt a simple communication style. Avoid using jargon or language that is optimized for search engines only. Remember, the search engines will not purchase your product, but people will. So, write in a manner that both human beings and search engines will love.
2. Effective design
Google has been talking about user experience for a long time now. Search engines love websites that give a rich and fulfilling experience to their users. The design should be such that it is intuitive and straightforward so that users don’t get confused.
3. Do not spam
It is wrong to think that putting too much text into a website makes for an effective web page design. Google actively penalizes websites that do a lot of manipulation and stuffing of text and keywords to rank high up in the search engine result pages. Keep the information on your website simple, relevant, and interesting.
4. Quality of Navigation
Does your website require your users to search around for information that should have been available to them easily? Navigation is an essential determinant of user experience. Pay special attention to the navigational structure of your website. Place the most valuable information on the home page, and the rest should be neatly put under the different pages which should be accessible through the primary or secondary menu. Use the sidebar to effectively feature information that you want your users to see prominently.
5. Search facility
Install a search box for the users to find the information they are seeking. Don’t rely solely upon the navigational facilities that you have provided. Often, they don’t have time to go through all the pages to find what they want. A search bar can save valuable time for them, resulting in an enhanced user experience.
6. Clear call to action
A call to action refers to communication that provokes the user to respond immediately. For example,” flash sale for two hours, buy now” is a call to action which prompts the users to immediately buy, so that he does not miss the flash sale. Think about what you want the visitors to your site to do once they are there. Featuring a clear call to action on the website is a must for effective web page design. This will prompt the users to respond the way you want them to. Otherwise, people will come, see and leave, and that will not make any difference to your business performance.
7. Appealing Visuals
The choice of color combination, fonts, backgrounds, images, etc. should be pleasing to the eye. Avoid using color combinations that are too bright or too dull, otherwise, you will risk the user well before the five seconds are over.
More than ever before, people are using mobile devices to serve the Internet. The number of screen sizes that are in use is overwhelming. Ensure that your website has a responsive design, which will cause the website to look good in all screen sizes. A responsive design will cause the website to intelligently adapt itself to fit the screen and would not require the user to zoom in and zoom out to see the content of the page.
9. Browser compatibility
Have you checked whether your website looks good only on one browser and gets distorted in the others? Your website should be properly rendered in major web browsers like Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari. Ask your web designer to ensure this compatibility so that you can cater to a wider range of audiences.
Have you ever got stuck with a website that takes forever to load? Do the five seconds get over even before the site is loaded fully?
Site speed is an important determinant of user experience. This factor is incorporated into the algorithms of every important search engine. Slow-loading sites are brutally penalized by them and demoted in the search engine rankings.
Check your site speed with Google PageSpeed Insights to see how your site currently fares on the speed front and make necessary changes to make it fast.
If you have a site that takes forever to load, not only will you force the visitors to surf away but will also lose search engine visibility quicker than you think. Effective web page design will make sure that the site loads faster by incorporating technologies like server caching, compression, etc.
Search Engine Optimization providers do thorough testing of the website to improve upon the above-mentioned factors. They will give you recommendations about how the website can be made attractive and user-friendly. The result is a better user experience and visibly improved rankings on the search engine result pages. For a free analysis of your website, contact us.