10 Principles Of Good Web Design

web design

The usability and utility rather than the visual appearance are the primary factors that determine the success or lack of success of a web page. Since the person who visits the site is the sole person who can click the mouse and determine everything, a user-centric design is now the norm for successful and profitable web design. If users aren’t able to use a feature, it’s likely to not exist.

We won’t be discussing the details of implementation (e.g. which search box is to be located) since it’s already been covered in a variety of articles. Instead, we will focus on the primary concepts, heuristics, and methods to a successful web design method that, if utilized correctly, could help you make more sophisticated decisions in design and ease the process of understanding the information presented.

We hope you’ll be interested in the usability-related pieces we’ve published previously:

  • Making the Perfect accordion
  • The Designing of a Perfect-Responsive Configurator
  • Making The Perfect Birthday Picker
  • Making the perfect Date and Time Planner
  • The Art of Creating A Perfect Mega-Dropdown
  • The Art of Designing A Great Feature Comparison
  • How to Design the Perfect Slider
  • 30 Usability Issues You Need To Beware Of
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The Principles Of Good Website Design And Effective Web Design Guidelines 

In order to apply the concepts correctly, it is first necessary to know how people use websites and what they think, and the fundamental patterns of users’ behavior.

What do users think? 

The way that users behave on the Web isn’t much different from the habits of customers in a retail store. Users look at every new page, look through a portion of the text and then choose the one that grabs their attention or appears to be similar to the item they’re trying to find. In reality, there are many areas of the page that they aren’t even looking at.

A majority of people look for something that is intriguing (or helpful) and clickable. As soon as some promising options are discovered, they click. If the result doesn’t satisfy the expectations of users The Back button is hit and the search is repeated.

  • People appreciate credibility and quality. If a website provides its users with top-quality content, they will be willing to sacrifice the quality of content by introducing advertisements as well as the appearance of the website. It is the content that is important, not the style that is the foundation for it.
  • Users do not read, they browse. While browsing a web page, people seek out anchors or fixed points that can guide them through information on the web page.
  • Users don’t read, they browse. You can see the “hot” regions appear abruptly during sentences. This is normal for scanning processes.
  • Users of the internet are impatient and want immediate satisfaction. A simple concept is that if the website doesn’t satisfy users’ needs and expectations, then the designer failed to finish the job in a proper manner and the company suffers a financial loss. The greater the cognitive load and more difficult it is to navigate and the more likely are users to abandon the website and seek out alternatives. 
  • Users aren’t making the right decisions. Users don’t seek out the fastest way to locate the information they’re searching for. They also don’t browse websites in a linear way and move from one section of the site to the next. Instead, users are content; they select the most reasonable choice. If they spot an article that appears like it could bring them to their destination There is a likely possibility of it being clicked. Optimizing can be difficult and takes an extended time. Being satisfied is more effective.
  • Sequential reading flows don’t work on the Web. The screenshot right below describes the scan path on the particular page.
  • Users rely on their instincts. In the majority of cases, users just do not read the details a designer has offered. Based on Steve Krug, the basic reason is that people don’t pay attention. We don’t care that we are aware of the way things work, so long as we’re able to utilize them. If you want your audience to behave as if you’re creating billboards, then you need to design amazing billboards.”
  • Users want to control. Users want to control their browsers and be able to rely on the same content presented throughout the website. E.g. They don’t want new windows appearing unexpectedly, and they’d prefer to be able to go back by clicking a “Back”-button to the page they’ve previously visited. It’s, therefore, best to not open a fresh browser window.

1. Don’t make users think 

As per Krug’s first rule of usability, a web page must be clear and easy to understand. When creating a website the goal is to remove those question marks and the choices that users must make with a clear mind, taking into consideration the pros and cons as well as alternatives.

If the site’s navigation and structure aren’t clear the amount of question marks increases. This makes it difficult for users to understand how the system functions and how to go from one point to B. An organized structure along with some visual clues and clearly identifiable links can aid users to find their way towards their goals.

Let’s look at an illustration. Beyondis.co.uk declares that they are “beyond channels Beyond products, above distribution”. What does that mean? Since people tend to browse websites using the “F”-pattern These three assertions are the first thing users are able to see on the site once it has been loaded.

While the layout itself is intuitive and simple, in order to comprehend what the page is all about, users must search to find the answers. That’s what an unneeded question mark does. It is the job of the designer to ensure that the number of question marks is near zero. The explanation of the visuals is put on the right side. The simple exchange of both blocks will enhance the usability.

ExpressionEngine employs the same design as Beyondis; however, it does not use unnecessary question marks. Additionally, the slogan is practical as users are provided with the option to test ExpressionEngine, and then download the trial version.

By reducing the cognitive burden, the system makes it easier for people to comprehend the reasoning of the system. When you’ve accomplished this, you’ll be able to explain the reason why your system is beneficial and what users can gain from it. Your site won’t be used by people who visit your website if they don’t know the way to navigate it.

2. Don’t Squander Users’ Patience 

When you plan to provide your customers with a tool or service, you should make sure to keep the user needs to be as minimal as possible. The fewer actions required of users to try the service greater the likelihood that a casual user will actually test the service. New users are more likely to try out the site, but not have to fill out lengthy forms on the internet for accounts they may not be able to use in the future. Let visitors explore your site and learn about your products without having to ask them to share private information. It’s not logical to require users to provide an email address in order to test the features.

In the words of Ryan Singer — the person who developed the 37Signals team users will likely be eager to give the email address asked to provide it after having experienced the feature in action as they’d had an idea of what they are likely to receive as a reward.

Stikkit is an excellent illustration of a user-friendly website that requires little or no input from the user. It’s discrete and comfortable. This is exactly how you want users to experience your website.

It appears that Mite demands more. But registration can be completed in under 30 seconds. Since the form is in a horizontal orientation and the user doesn’t have to scroll down the page.

It is best to eliminate all obstacles and don’t need registrations or subscriptions prior. The mere fact that a user registers can be enough of a barrier to user navigation, and can limit traffic.

3. Find a Way to Draw On Users’ Attention 

Because websites can provide active and non-active content, certain elements in the interface for users draw the attention of users more than others. Naturally, images catch the eye more than text like the sentences highlighted in bold fonts are more appealing than text that is plain.

Human eyes are a non-linear system, and users of the web are able to instantly detect patterns, edges, and motions. That’s why video-based advertisements are very annoying and distracting. However, from a marketing standpoint, they are able to do an excellent task of capturing the user’s interest.

Humanized is a perfect application of the concept of focus. The only thing that is clearly visible to the user will be the words “free” which are visually appealing and attractive, yet calm and informative. Simple hints give users sufficient information on the best way to learn more about this “free” service.

Keeping the attention of users on particular areas of your site using a minimal amount of visual elements will help users get from A to B without even thinking about what exactly needs to be completed. The fewer questions that visitors are faced with, the more sense of direction they get and the greater confidence they will build in the organization that the site is representing. That is to say, the less thought-processing needs to be done behind the scenes, the better the user experience. This is the goal of usability first.

4. Strive for the Feature exposure 

The latest web design styles are typically critiqued for their way of providing users with visually appealing 1-2-3-done steps, large buttons that have visual effects, etc. From a design perspective, they aren’t really negative. Actually, such guidelines can be extremely beneficial as they guide visitors through the content of the website in a straightforward and easy to follow.

Dibusoft is a visual site that has an easy-to-follow structure. The website offers 9 primary navigation options, which are obvious immediately. The selection of colors could be too light.

The ability to let the user know what options are available is a key element of a successful user interface. It isn’t important how it’s achieved. All that matters is that the information is understood and that users are at ease with how users interact.

5. Make use of effective writing 

Because the Web differs from printed media, it’s essential to adapt the style of writing to the preferences of users and their preferences for browsing. Writing that promotes products isn’t read. Long blocks of text with no images or keywords highlighted by bold letters or in italics will be ignored. A language that is overly exaggerated will not be considered.

Talk about business. Avoid clever or cute names, names that sound like marketing specifically to companies, as well as obscure technical titles. For example, if, for instance, you are describing a service and ask users to sign up for accounts, “sign-in” is more effective than “start right now!” which is again superior to “explore our offerings”.

The best way to ensure that you are effective in writing is to

  • Use short and succinct phrases (come to the essence quickly),
  • Use a the scannable layout (categorize the text, employ different heading levels, and use bulleted lists and visual elements that break up the uniformity of texts),
  • Use a simple and unambiguous language (a promotion doesn’t have to sound like an advertisement; provide your customers with a reasonable and objective reason as to why they should make use of your service or visit your site)

6. Strive to be Simple 

A “keep it simple”-principle (KIS) is the first priority in the design of a website. The majority of users visit an internet site just to look at the layout; in addition, the majority of them seek information, regardless of the layout. Try to keep it simple instead of complex.

From a visitor’s point of view, the most effective web design is one with only text without ads or additional content blocks that are exactly what the user typed in or the information they were seeking. This is among the reasons why a friendly printing version of web pages is vital for a great user experience.

Finch is clear in presenting the details about the website and provides visitors with a range of options, without overloading users with unnecessary information.

7. Don’t be afraid of the White Space 

In reality, it’s difficult to underestimate the value of white spaces. Not only does it assist in reducing the cognitive burden for visitors, but, it also allows them to comprehend the information displayed to the user. When a visitor is new to a layout design the first thing that he or she will do is go through the pages and split the content into digestible chunks of information.

Complex structures are more difficult to comprehend, read, analyze, and deal with. If you’re faced with the decision to separate two parts with a line visible to the eye or by whitespace it’s generally better to choose the whitespace method. Hierarchical structures simplify the design (Simon’s Law) and the more you are able to provide viewers with the impression of a visually distinct hierarchy, the easier for your contents to be perceived.

White space is great. Cameron.io makes use of white space as its principal design element. It results in a scannable layout that grants the content an undisputed position that it merits.

8. Effectively communicate with a “Visible language” 

In his work on effective visually-mediated communication, Aaron Marcus states three fundamental principles that are involved in the application of what’s known as “visible language” which is the information that users can see on screens.

  • Organize: Provide users with a consistent and clear conceptual structure. Consistency, the layout of screens connections, navigability, and consistency are essential concepts for a well-organized system. The same conventions and guidelines must be followed for all components.
  • Save money: work using the least amount of visual cues and elements. Four main aspects to think about include clarity, simplicity, distinctness, clarity, and focus. The term “sample” refers to only those elements which are essential to communication. Clarity: all components must be constructed in a way that their purpose is clear and not unclear. The essential properties of the elements that are required should be easily identifiable. In the end, the most important elements must be easy to recognize.
  • Communicate: adapt the design with the abilities of users. The user interface has to be in harmony with readability, legibility and typography, symbolism and multiple views as well as the use of color or texture to successfully communicate. Make use of a maximum. 3 fonts with the maximum of 3 point sizes and a maximum of 20 words, or between 50 and 80 characters for each line.

9. Conventions are Our Friend

The traditional design of website elements will not create a dull web page. Conventions can be extremely beneficial as they cut down the learning curve, and the necessity of figuring out the mechanism behind things. For instance, it could be a snare to users in the event that all websites have various visual representations of RSS feeds. It’s nothing like our normal lives in which we get used to the fundamentals of how we manage data (folders) or shop (placement of goods).

By following conventions, you will gain the trust of users, gain their confidence and reliability, as well as prove your credibility. Be aware of the expectations of users -know what they expect from a navigational site and text structure, search layout and more.

An example of usability tests includes translating the site into Japanese (assuming your visitors do not speak Japanese, e.g. by using Babelfish) and then providing your usability testers with the task of locating something on the site that is in another language. If conventions are properly applied the users can achieve the goal even if they don’t comprehend a single word.

Steve Krug suggests that it’s more beneficial to be innovative only when you are certain that you have a superior idea, and then take advantage of conventions even if you don’t.

10. Test early, test often 

The TETO principle should be used in every web design endeavor since usability tests are often crucial information about the major problems and concerns that are related to the layout.

Make sure you test it in a timely manner Not too late, and not because of a wrong motive. In this case, it is important to recognize that the majority of design decisions are local, which means that it’s impossible to answer universally whether one layout is superior over the other because you must analyze the design from a specific standpoint (considering the needs of stakeholders, requirements budget, stakeholders, etc. ).

A few important things to bear in your head:

  • According to the research of Steve Krug, testing one user is 100percent superior to testing no user or one. Likewise, testing just one customer at the beginning of the development process is superior to testing 50 users at the conclusion. According to Boehm’s first law, errors are the most common when designing and defining requirements and they are more costly when they are later removed.
  • Testing is an iterative procedure. It means you develop something and test it, then fix it , and then try it again. There may be issues that weren’t discovered in the initial test because users were blocked from using the system due to other obstacles.
  • Usability tests will always yield valuable results. In either case, you’ll be informed of the issues you face or the absence of significant design flaws. This can be valuable information for your work.
  • According to Weinberg’s law the developer isn’t suited to test their code, according to Weinberg’s law. The same is true for designers too. Once you’ve been working on a website for a few weeks, you aren’t able to view it with a fresh eye no longer. You understand how it’s built , and you understand how it functionsYou have the experience independent users and testers of your site would not have.


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