Characteristics of Present Day Web Design

Responsive Web Design

 

Mobile internet use is on the rise. Today, more than 60% of internet users connect to the web through a smart-phone or other hand-held device. And every year mobile usage continues to rise.

Without a doubt any website that exists today should be capable of access through a smart-phone device, an iPad or any number of hand-held devices that now exist. If a website is not optimized to be viewed on a smaller screen, the text will be too small to read, and the navigation very difficult to manage. The solution is Responsive Website Design. So what is Responsive Design? It is the manner in which a website responds to the size of screen that it has been accessed upon.

This visual example demonstrates how a website can respond differently to various size screens:

responsive illustration - web design copySEO is also another important reason to consider building a website with responsive parameters. Search Engine Rankings are either highly penalized or rewarded if a website is able or unable to adapt to multiple screens. The last few years Google enacted it’s new algorithm guidelines that would significantly reward any website that contains responsive parameters. Mobile friendly websites are now labeled with a higher rank than those without. You can trust that a fluid and responsive website will serve up your website in the best manner possible no matter what the future holds for an assortment of screen resolutions.

 

Simplicity

 

Adding unnecessary content or additional points of context to a website can sometimes become the rabbit hole a web designer falls into upon planning a website. So let’s keep this section simple.

• Try to use simple icons where applicable. Icons that easily illustrate what the viewer is seeking.

• Simple website design is quicker to load and easier to operate

• A cleaner layout is easier to scan

• Use as few colors throughout the website as possible. This too will assist in the practice of good branding

• Never use too many fonts as this creates a busy atmosphere and slower load times

The University of Colorado and Harvard University completed a study on the matter of website design simplicity with a strong concencus towards many correlations among all demographics. [View study]  Those that fell into the category of participants with an educational level of Phd were more prone to lean towards less colorful websites. High school and youth demographics were more favored of websites with movement and more brightened characteristics. The only universal commonality was the characteristic of simple yet aesthetic design that was easy to navigate.

 

SOLID Content

 

Solid content comes in two variables; text and visual. First, let’s talk about the visual identity of a good website design. Good branding should take place at any given point of interaction with your customer. If your Facebook banner color is different than the primary colors of your website. During that transition, continuity of persona and identity should occur. If the typography on your business card or billboard doesn’t match that of your website, an opportunity to create a persona has too been missed. A customer will think of your organization as you set the tone and tenure for it to be. Color schemes and design styles should always retain a synergy of continuity. Otherwise, the visual perception of your identity will seem erratic and retract a level of respectability.

Let’s talk about text content now. SEO and Keyword measures are a book unto themselves. But let’s breeze through some basics. Make sure your content is carefully crafted far before a web designer begins to write any HTML. It truly helps for a good measure of keyword exploration to take place prior to the site construction. Well structured and organized content will be recognized as Google scans your website. So take into account how well that information is organized.

Once your new website has been launched, be sure to add new blog content often. This will quickly increase your page rank. Adding new articles no less than once a month will boost your visibility on the world wide web and express your expertise in the field that your company provides business too. Most of all consider the fact that the more often you incorporate wording that correlates to your industry, the more often your organization will come up through a Google search first.

 

A Navigation Menu that easily makes sense.

 

While crafty wording that captures the attention of your audience can sometimes seem like good flypaper. It too can cause confusion as to where the customer needs to go. And a frustrated customer is not one to stay on your landing page. More often than not a customer simply wants to complete a task or answer their question. Crafty words should be placed in headlines. But not in navigational regions. A menu title needs to satisfy the customers thirst to complete a task or to gather the information they are seeking. Save the clever words for story headlines and keep those complex illustrations for story support. But not in an area that assists in the flow of traffic. As you develop your web content, keep in mind that navigational items should never contain more than text or simple symbols of recognition. Customers most often read left to right so place your important content to the left. The top menu item to the far right, should either steer you to contact information or a final call to action. Too many navigation items can

More often than not a customer simply wants to complete a task or answer their question. Crafty words should be placed in headlines. But not in navigational regions. A menu title needs to satisfy the customers thirst to complete a task or to gather the information they are seeking. Save the clever words for story headlines and keep those complex illustrations for story support. But not in an area that assists in the flow of traffic. As you develop your web content, keep in mind that navigational items should never contain more than text or simple symbols of recognition. Customers most often read left to right so place your important content to the left. The top menu item to the far right, should either steer you to contact information or a final call to action. Too many navigation items can

Customers most often read left to right so place your important content to the left. The top menu item to the far right, should either steer you to contact information or a final call to action. Too many navigation items can

Too many navigation items can curtail a user from successfully accessing your website. Try to narrow your navigation menu items down a minimal count. Once you have made it to this point narrow them down once again into sub menu items. Simple navigation keeps web traffic happy and willing to connect and or purchase an item.

 

Use of a Content Management System (CMS) such as WordPress

 

Website content will be sure to become outdated sooner than later. So it’s great to facilitate the customer with the capability of easily making those edits on their own. How can this be done? Through an easy to use Content Management System (CMS). With a CMS there is not a requirement to understand code skill-sets such as CSS, Javascript, and JQuery that were once mandatory to construct a website. Nope that all takes place through a simplified interface that anyone can manage in order to edit text content or to add a blog story.

There are several CMS platforms to choose from, such as Drupal, Joomla and Concrete 5. I prefer to use WordPress and these are just a few reasons why:

  • WordPress is Free
  • WordPress is used by 59.3% of all the CMS websites. This is 31% of all websites on the web. This number has increased every year for the last 8 years. These are the latest statistics.
  • An enormous developer community that offers endless free tutorials and documentation
  • Free plug-ins that allow you to create virtually any kind of site imaginable
  • WordPress makes SEO easy
  • WordPress is flexible and allows you to have complete ownership of your website
  • WordPress allows extreme creativity to take place.

WordPress has been around for over a decade and the online support forums are endless and it is never a problem to find an answer to any number of questions. Simply put. WordPress is the boss.  It is the dominant king of the web and its market share has continually expanded for over 8 years now. It will not decline anytime soon. WordPress is the dominant favorite among graphic web designers and for very good reasons. It’s simple for their clients to use and it’s security measures tend to be very extensive. A WordPress website will enable any customer the capability of quickly staking their claim on the world-wide-web.

If you have any questions in regards to website design please do not hesitate to reach out and inquire.

 

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