5 Tenants of Great Web Design


Getting your webpage to not be hated by the greater internet community can be quite hard. The Internet Age has cultured a lot of mean birds, and these tenants will help you avoid getting your eyes pecked out and get your webpage some traffic.

Know Your Audience

Who would ever use your site? What does it even do? Think about these questions. The reason you want to consider who will be using your site is the same reason you want to consider who will be reading your resume: you want to maximize the effect. Where does this information come from? If you were designing a website dedicated to high-quality window-washing agencies, your audience would be people who are looking for good window-washers. These people would probably be small business owners, and small business owners are usually adults above the age 25. Boom: that would be your target audience. Designing for your audience can take your site a long way.

Make it Easy to Learn

Once you get people through the door, you don’t want to force them to navigate a maze. Put some time and effort into making your menus and pages as natural as possible. Shorten lists and subcategories. Make intuitive buttons in intuitive locations. By making a site easy to learn, it not only makes it hassle-free for first-time users, but it also makes your users more likely to come back instead of finding alternate routes to the same information. In short, it will boost return traffic, and for many website designers, this is exactly what you are trying to make happen.

Get to the Point

Despite its similarity to the above tenant, this point is worth pointing out. No user wants to spend all night going through menu after menu and reading everything to find that piece of information they wanted. Practice brevity and cutting out fluff. This is no different in writing, filmmaking, scriptwriting, and many other arts, so why should it be different for site design? Brevity, like intuitiveness, is part of what separates a good, easy-to-use site from a long-winded and labyrinthine one.

Be Sure it’s Useful

How awful would it be if you spent hours on a site, making it flow like one would expect and cutting out garbage, only to find that the information you provided was totally useless to everybody? It would make your site useless. No matter how great a site, there will be no traffic if there is no need to go on it. Some advice: consider again your audience. What are they looking for? What could they be looking for? Are you providing for them? Another route is to view your website as a service: it is there to do something for somebody. If it can deliver, its good; otherwise, revise.

Don’t Use Comic Sans

The reason you shouldn’t use comic sans is simple: it is unprofessional and hard to take seriously. This applies to an even broader theme: make your website professional. There are certain things that are incredibly taboo in the world of the ‘net, with Comic Sans MS being one of them, that you should never, ever, under any circumstances do, lest your website’s reputation be crushed and smashed into tatters by angry keyboard warriors… Unless you are trying to prove a point, of course.