What makes a good website design? What is it about a home page that sets it apart from the competition? There are a number of things you can do to improve the functionality and aesthetics of your site. Let’s start with the aesthetics:
1) Free up the clutter. Too many words and selling points crammed together all vying for attention looks like a mess. Space out your text so that it is easy to read. Adding white space between text and photos, as well as adding small areas of white space in general, help give the site a clean, organized look.
2) Choose your colors, and choose them wisely. Bright colors can get someone’s attention, but don’t blind them! Go bright, but not neon bright, unless you are using those colors as accents. Make sure that the background color and text color are not hard on the eyes. While white text on a black background might look cool, this can be difficult for some people to read. When in doubt, stick with black text on a white background.
3) Consider your first impression. What is the first thing people are going to think of you in the first split second after your site loads? Does it look professional? Have you established credibility with your design or have you already lost it? Have a few friends give you their immediate impression. Do you have lots of tacky, flashing graphics? That’s probably not a good idea. Having a clean layout that starts with a slideshow and a clean navigation bar? That is probably a better idea.
Now for the functionality portion:
1) Remember the basics. This means doing regular upkeep on your site: do all of your links still work? Are all of the photos loading correctly? Is your online form still sending the submissions to your email? That page that you said had “information coming soon!”, has that been forgotten about? Make sure everything is up to date.
2) Can potential customers find information at a glance or do they have to dig for it? Have your main pages listed in your navigation bar (example: Home, Our Story, Gardening Services, Lawn Care Products, Blog, and Contact Us). Make it easy for people to get the information they need quickly and without frustrating them.
3) Consider adding CTAs. CTAs are “Call to Action” buttons and are usually found halfway down the home page. Use these to tell your views to “do” something. (example: Register Now!, Request a Quote, Learn More!, Read our Testimonials!). Then link these buttons to the correct pages on your site.
These are some basic website design tips, but they are ones that shouldn’t be forgotten! If this is your first time building a website, remember to keep functionality and aesthetics in mind, and good luck!