Web design is often neglected, but is as important as the content you dish out on your site. Making a good impression on the Internet is quite easy if you consider aesthetics alongside usability features for a website. Part of a webmaster’s objective is to make their readers interested in their website and keep them coming back for more. This is made possible by coming up with web design that will attract people and leave them wanting more. Follow these three design tips to keep people on your site longer:
Avoid sensory overload
Dumping plenty of animated GIFs set on patterned background is a web design trick of the past. People nowadays go for minimalist and user-friendly interfaces on the web. White backgrounds work most of the time, but you can also choose to set a patterned background for added visual interest. Just make sure that the pattern you choose is subtle. For the fonts, opting for simple sans serif/serif fonts is more than enough for maximum impact. Come up with an attractive header for your website. Some webmasters go for a colorful treatment while other site owners prefer a minimalist, black and white banner with typography. What you choose should reflect the tone and content of the website.
Carefully decide if you want to add an mp3 track that plays upon logging onto the site. Most of the time, visitors are ticked off by music suddenly playing on the background. After all, who would want to be startled by some music while listening to your own preferred tracks? The same goes with embedding a video on the website. Unless absolutely necessary, it is better to include it in a subpage instead of a homepage, because it might make loading time slower and not everyone would want to be welcomed with a video.
Make links easier to spot
Easy navigation is important in web design. A visitor will quickly leave the site if he doesn’t find what he’s looking for easily. Make the main pages accessible by placing access above or under the header. Choose a visible color for the links to easily distinguish them from normal text. Fonts should also be readable as well. Style your links in a way that they differ from ads, if applicable. Nothing annoys a person more than accidentally clicking an ad that he or she thought was a link on your site.
Add a related posts plug-in
Some content management systems offer a plug-in that automatically generates a “Related Posts” footnote after each blog entry. These entries are usually related to the current entry and can be personalized as well. This is an effective way of making readers stay longer on your site because they will most likely click the similar topics listed. Some plug-ins even have an option to generate a thumbnail. Having visuals for related posts makes it more attractive to readers.