It’s 2014, just weeks from 2015. The age of simplicity, the age of technology. We are in an era when the simpler the idea and the more it makes sense, the better. From the iPhone’s basic layout to the face of a watch, simple and effective is the way forward.
And nowhere more so than in web-design. A simplistic approach makes sites look sleek, stylish, and avoids the confusion of having to navigate through endless amounts of pages to reach our destination – a bugbear I think we could all do without.
Hundreds of big businesses are currently redesigning the way their site looks in order to fit in with this style, making it manageable for the reader, and there are plenty of tips to be found along the way.
Focus on Only Essentials
Gone are the days when a homepage should be filled with information for a reader to trawl through, showing all your website can do. Information should be clear, concise, and sell the most important parts of your business to the viewer.
Take Full Tilt for example; above the fold, their new design has no more than one sentence to read, yet its imagery alongside really sells their product, with a link directly below taking you straight to the desired destination for the brand.
The removal of the unnecessary helps deliver the key messages firmly, not clouding it or overawing potential customers or clients with a showering of less important information.
More Content Above The Fold
And generally speaking, this should all come above the fold. As mentioned, Full Tilt has used this method effectively, whilst Apple is perhaps the godfather of web design in this area.
Studies have shown that the majority of people will spend most of their time on the web above the fold, so it’s vital to sell your business without the need to scroll down. Apple’s site does exactly that, with all the call-to-action elements featured at the very top of the page, taking into account the importance of focusing on essentials with again a large use of imagery to entice the viewer.
Limit Colour Scheme
In the past it’s been very easy to go a little crazy with the colour – after all it’s what catches our eye. But subtle shades and a limited colour scheme will not only simplify your site, but improve it tenfold.
Using just two or three colours won’t distract the reader’s attention from any important information, whilst a set basic scheme will keep your site consistent throughout its pages. It will also represent your brand a little more. Rather than your page being a spluttering of colours, these few will become synonymous with your brand. After all, when we think Apple, we think white; Xbox, green; and Nike, orange.
Design Every Page As A Landing Page
The power of search engines mean that often a user will not necessarily land on your site at the homepage. For example, a user Googling ‘buy a Samsung Galaxy S5’ is likely to click through to the actual Samsung Galaxy S5 page rather than Samsung’s actual site. Therefore, the site needs to be designed so that the key information is on each and every page.
Samsung actually does this very well. Their Galaxy S5 page works this beautifully, whilst the Note 4 even has its own micro-site.
Tech sites generally do this well, but even the likes of the Bank of New York Mellon keep up-to-date on design, ensuring their users get exactly what the brand is about. It’s a fine example of modern, simplistic web design with a subtle colour scheme, key information, and all about the fold no matter how deep into the website we are.