A guide to designing a good website

A good website must convey a particular message and must grab the attention of visitors. A lot of factors go into great web design – colours, consistency, imagery, typography, simplicity, and functionality.

A perfectly designed website can build a connection with users and guide them to take action. To create a great user experience, you must design your website in such a way that it is highly optimised for usability and functionality.

If you want to design a great website, the following tips will help:

1. The purpose of the website

The focus of your website should be to meet the needs of its users. If your intention is simply and clearly stated on all pages, the user will be highly interested in what you are presenting to them. State the purpose of your website in an unambiguous manner. Websites have different purposes but these four core purposes are common to all of them:

  1. Showcasing Your Expertise
  2. Building Your Reputation
  3. Generating Leads
  4. Sales and After Care

2. Simplicity

You must make your website very simple and easy to use if you want the user to have a great experience.  You can achieve simplicity for your website through design by considering the following:


Colour can pass messages across to visitors to a website and elicit emotional responses. If you find a colour palette that matches your brand, you will be able to influence customers’ behaviour in favour of your brand. The selection of not more than 4 colours works like magic. Complementary colours are highly recommended. Pleasing colour combinations go a long way in increasing customer engagement and making the user feel great.


Typography plays a crucial role in the acceptability of your website as it catches the attention of visitors and serves as the visual representation of your brand voice. You should make the typefaces of your website legible and use not more than 3 different fonts.


Imagery refers to visual aspects of communications, and it includes illustrations, all forms of graphics, still photography, and videos.  You must ensure that the imagery of your website is expressive and in line with the spirit of your company. It must also act as a perfect representation of your brand personality. The initial information we obtain on websites is mostly visual, and as the saying goes, the first impression lasts longer, it is crucial to use top-quality images to create, in visitors’ minds, an impression that you are highly professional and credible.

A guide to designing a good website
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3. Navigation

Navigation refers to the way-finding system incorporated into websites which enables visitors to interact with the sites and find whatever they are looking for. When it comes to retaining visitors to a website, website navigation plays a crucial role. Confusing website navigation is very annoying and makes visitors abandon the affected website and find whatever they are looking for elsewhere. Therefore, you must keep the web navigation of every webpage consistent, simple, and intuitive.

4. F-shaped pattern of reading

The F-shaped pattern is often adopted by visitors to websites to scan the text of a website. Studies have revealed that the bulk of what people pay attention to is in the top-left corner of the screen. The F-shaped pattern agrees with our natural reading pattern, that is, the Western left to right and top to bottom approach.  A well-designed website works with the natural pattern adopted by readers in scanning webpages.

5. Visual hierarchy

Visual hierarchy refers to the arrangement of visual elements based on how important they are. This is usually done by size, imagery, colour, contrast, whitespace, typography, style, and texture.  Establishing a focal point is one of the aims of visual hierarchy. This directs the website visitors to where they can find the most crucial information.

6. Content

For a website to be effective, it must have an excellent design and superb content. Posting great content with compelling language is capable of attracting and influencing visitors, thus compelling them to become customers.

7. Grid-based layout

Grids assist in structuring your design and keeping your content well organised. Grids help in aligning elements on the page, thus keeping the page very clean. The grid-based layout helps in arranging content into an attractive rigid grid structure characterized by columns, well-lined up and balanced sections, resulting in an irresistible website.

8. Load time

If a website does not load on time, visitors will abandon it without wasting time. About 50% of web visitors expect a website to load within two seconds, otherwise, they will leave the site.  If the image sizes are optimised, your site will load in no time.

9. Responsive web design

As more and more people use their mobile phones and other devices to browse the web, you should consider building a website with a highly responsive layout that will enable it to adjust to all manner of screens.

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