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Updated by Kyle Mani on Sep 13, 2018
Kyle Mani Kyle Mani
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web design company houston

OWDT is an elite web design company and marketing agency in Houston, having worked successfully with companies such as NRG, Forbes, Carnival, Cetco, Situs


What are the most important principles of web design?

What are the most important principles of web design?

Good web design involves more than an aesthetically pleasing appearance.

In fact, a range of professionals with different areas of expertise are engaged in each major decision – when it is done right. We have outlined the 10 basic principles of good web design to address what we consider to be the most critical points in a creating a site that brings in high numbers of conversions.

  1. Less is More – Simplicity Rules

Many sites are over-designed, with too many elements on the page, distracting visitors from the purpose of the site. In effective web design, simplicity rules. Not only does a clean, fresh design make the site easier to navigate, but the aesthetics are more appealing and will stand the test of time. It is unnecessary, as well as distracting, to load a site with design features that don’t serve a purpose. What is the purpose of your company website? To direct new business directly into the lap of your enterprise, in volume, keep your design simple so your users can find their way naturally and easily.

  1. Innovative but Not Distracting

An impressive design involves creativity and natural talent. Professionals in the design industry understand how to use whitespace. Whitespace, or negative space, is the area of the page that is “empty,” found between graphic elements, images, and text. An innovative use of design elements and whitespace creates a less distracting, more appealing design, and guides visitors where you want them to go. Consider the iconic logos of Apple and Google — unforgettable. Simple, clean design, surrounded by whitespace makes a website more effective. Cheaper, lower quality products often have busy, noisy, ad-oriented designs, and website visitors automatically consider a distracting site to be promoting a lower quality product.

  1. Aesthetically Appealing – To the RIGHT Users

You have a specific market segment that is your target customer (or client). The design must be crafted explicitly to appeal to that niche. Research into buyer habits can reveal the type of image, colors, and other design features that are appealing to those you want to reach. Each “buyer persona” has specific likes and dislikes, and research into likes/dislikes are essential. High numbers of site visitors are useless if they are not those who will eventually convert — and buy.

  1. Respectful, Honest, and Engaging

Social media has had a significant impact upon communication, both written and spoken. Visitors want to be engaged in a very “human” way. Even the largest multinational corporations have been forced to put a human face on what they do. Every word, phrase, and headline must be respectful of the user, honest, and have some engaging quality that makes it intriguing. As an example, “put your roof to work” would be more likely to get a response than “find a solar installer.” The basic concept is that people want honesty, and appreciate it. Your company may participate in various charity events, or donate time to causes you care about – let them know who you are. Become real.

  1. Designed for Usability and Functionality

In website design, usability and functionality must drive each decision – outstripping any other design consideration. To achieve a clear, easy, and ultimately, direct path to conversions, both design and technical issues come into play. Every link must function fast, and every button and call to action must be positioned correctly, demanding as little effort as possible for the visitor to move forward to the next step.