Design is a lot closer to art than science. The experience that users have with your website or app acts as a catalyst to form a strong relationship with your business or product.
Good design matters a lot. For your users, it takes a fraction of seconds to form an opinion. It won’t be wrong to say, web design can make or break your site’s success.
Particularly, for small businesses, it’s a good idea to hire a reputed web design services provider. However, there are some popular principles that can make your design project better with respect to aesthetics and usability.
Let’s first understand what are website design principles?
These web design principles are flexible laws that help and direct professional designers to come up with an attractive final product.
How do design principles help? Well, they help with creating an aesthetically pleasing UI and UX. When User Experience and User Interface are executed in the right way, you can expect to see some conversions.
Certainly, having design principles included for website design can help you make excellent decisions for both your web design business and users.
Key Principles of Website Design
These are some powerful laws and guidelines that every designer must follow. The foremost reason, they are suggested by scientists and design experts in the industry.
So, let’s get started!
1. Make Main Targets Easy to Achieve
According to Fitt’s law, the distance and size of a target element affect the time it takes for visitors to interact with it. That’s why it is essential to make your actionable goals easy to reach, particularly for users.
In the case of more than one target, there must be enough space between them. For instance, in mobile app design, icons need to be big enough to click. The extra space makes users not tap on the wrong icon.
As a general rule of thumb, the minimum clickable area for mobile app designs is 40×40 pixels.
2. Use Known Scenarios and Logic
Jakob’s law advocates the use of familiar scenarios in the process of UI development. Generally, your visitors expect your website to be working in a similar fashion as others do.
Also, having common scenarios allow your users to put their attention on why they visited your website instead of learning the way around a difficult-to-understand UI.
For instance; a ‘pizza icon’ would open a menu of Veg and Non-veg Pizza, right?
So, if you happen to use this icon in your web design, be sure it serves the purpose of users.
3. Limited Choice for Users
Hick’s Law states that the more choices you give to users, the more difficult it is for them to make an informed decision.
This principle stresses the importance of getting rid of clutter and showing users the important options they need. For instance, there are many websites that ask you to make a final choice between Yes/No.
Besides, this law is also applicable to organizing the display of products and services, menu items, and other web design elements.
4. Opt For Simple Structures
The law of Prägnanz suggests using simple structures instead of complex shapes that add no value to user experience. What your users would do is, they would use the least cognitive effort to comprehend your design.
Thus, limiting cognitive overload must be a vital aspect of your web designing objectives. Use this principle by organizing elements into columns, blocks, sections rather than scattering them all over.
5. Alignment of Design Elements To Form A Connection
From Gestalt Psychology, the law of uniform connectedness tells that elements connected visually are considered to be more related than connected with each other.
In onboarding flows, you can use a progress stepper. It helps users to see all the steps that are part of the process.
6. Power Of Content Chunking
Miller’s law recommended that an average person can only memorize five to seven pieces of information. So, it is imperative to divide content into tiny chunks so users can consume the bulky information smoothly.
As your application gets more features, it becomes even more difficult to use. Keeping this essential aspect in mind, you should plan your interface so it can easily fit more features while being simple to use.
Besides, be sure to incorporate the most popular screen sizes and control how many elements users can view at one point. If you see more content in one section, move it to the following one.
7. Group Elements Together
The law of proximity states that elements that stay close would be considered as a group. This also helps users to make sense of the information provided.
This principle of proximity educates designers about making good use of spacing. Elements that form a group must be together as compared to those different groups. On website headers, menu links are grouped together while CTAs are placed on the right side of the page or somewhere between navigation bars.
8. ‘F’ Pattern
When users visit your website, they look for an F-shaped pattern. Because they like to go from the left side to the right side on the top of the site and then they reach the bottom of the page in a similar way.
Such a website design principle helps to improve the sales and conversions of the website. Web designers need to take care of the visitor’s normal flow of reading. It shouldn’t be disrupted. That’s why the F pattern is one of the most popular and result-driven methods to provide an excellent user experience.
9. Keep Connected Elements in Common Areas
According to the Law of Common Region, if elements are combined together closely, they are taken as related with each other. You can also achieve this with the help of sufficient spacing, borders, and backgrounds.
For instance, navigation links can be placed together to form a menu. You may want to use it wisely by using the right composition and spacing.
10. Be Consistent
Consistency is the most important key to ensuring all design elements are aligned properly. We, humans, are wired to seek consistent flow everywhere and website design is no exception. What do you think?
Some fields that need to be consistent include colors, icons, spacing, fonts, headings, buttons, page layouts, behavior, breadcrumbs. Certainly, elements that are in a consistent form provide your website an authentic and professional feel that amps up your business reputation as well.
How to Apply Design Principles Into Practice?
After learning about several design principles, you must be wondering how to implement them. Right?
Let’s have a look at some helpful tips and tricks:
- Keep updating yourself on the latest UI/UX design practices. Learn about user needs first before starting the project.
- Not every principle will apply to your web design. So, keep in consideration the main functionality of the website, primary user flow, and your business objectives.
- Collect feedback for the designs you made from your co-designers. Gather relevant inputs and improvise your designs.
- Sometimes, it’s perfectly okay to break some rules. This way, you can create a room to develop your own unique style. So, break them purposefully and produce some extraordinary results.
In order to build user-friendly and intuitive websites, it is imperative to be aware of some basic principles. The more wisely you use them, the better your designs turn out to be; attractive and more profitable for your small-scale business.
Let your creative juices flow and paint the vision you have for your website using all the design elements.