The 5 Basic Requirements of Great Web Design
The main purpose of any website is to communicate with its visitors and how each visitor experience the web site will largely depend on the actual visitor, i.e. a teenager will be more attracted to a new funky website, than a more mature person, who is just looking for the actual information in the content.
However there are basics that must be adhered to in web design to make the web site pleasing to visit, easy to navigate and that will leave a lasting impression on the visitor. These are:
- Typography and
Using a balanced combination of these 5 elements, will allow a visitor to:
- Enjoy a pleasing design, but that will allow for easy access to the actual content
- Move around the website easily with intuitive navigation
- Recognize that each page belongs to the web site
When it comes to layout, the main aim must always be to use the golden ratio or as it would be used in web design is the rule of thirds. The page is divided into thirds and navigation, content and imagery is then placed in these different sections to allow for a more pleasing layout.
Colour plays a very important role in web design. Colour associations are one of the most important aspects to take into consideration for example red is always associated with love and thus no one will design a Valentine’s web site in green or blue. Similarly green is associated with nature and blue symbolizes openness, intelligence and faith. Blue is not part of Nature’s appetizing colours and is therefore not a great choice to design restaurant or food web sites. Rather use a combination of red, orange and yellow.
Texture is anything that gives a specific feel being it in the background or in imagery or even in the fonts used in the text. A rough texture may be more suitable for web sites that is used for outdoor activities or safari travel websites, where as smooth, silky texture would be great for weddings, ladies clothes or baby web sites.
The core purpose of all web design is communication and therefore typography plays a very important role in this. Many web designers do not think about typography as an important part, however if you look at magazines and the numerous different font styles and sizes used, the importance of typography cannot be stressed enough. There are numerous obstacles in using typography on web sites, one which is that a visitor may not have the specific font loaded on his computer and will therefore not see the exact font. This can however be overcome by placing such “exotic” fonts in images.
When it comes to imagery the points to keep in mind is to ensure that they are relevant to the content, they must be interesting and they are appealing to the visitor. Relevant images can add interest to any web layout and also enhance the content of the site, but these should also be interesting and appealing so that it emphasis the content and ensures that the visitor is hooked to the content.
In summary, if the basics of web design, layout, colour, texture, typography and imagery are used in a balanced relationship with each other you should have a web site that will be aesthetically appealing and functional to your visitors ensuring more visitors to your web site.
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