Having a web presence is necessary to do well in business today. It’s become a simple fact of life. But you can’t just be there—you have to make yourself seen and look good doing it. Web design is the wardrobe of the digital world and you certainly want to leave a good first impression. You wouldn’t show up to a pitch meeting wearing sweatpants and slippers, so don’t let your website look like you only spent 10 minutes getting it ready.
Web design is an extremely dynamic field. There are hundreds, maybe thousands of different ways to go about designing your website. Whichever way you decide to go, be sure to keep a few things in mind:
Content is Still King. As much as we love to talk about how cool parallax scrolling looks and which typeface best represents your personality, it will always come down to the content. Don’t get lost in the design aspect like some did in 2013 and clutter up your site.
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple, Stupid. The old proverb still applies. Designers are becoming increasingly aware of the bedlam that can ensue when users visit a site. To make it easier on the user, we’re seeing an emphasis on simplicity: using fewer colors to accentuate certain areas, losing the sidebar to focus attention, lowering your character count and pairing text with visual content. It’s about streamlining and getting your info across quicker.
Scroll, Scroll, Scroll Your Site. Social media channels are setting the bar these days, and sites like Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest all feature unlimited scrolling. That design has found its way onto other sites because people expect it. The most popular innovation in scrolling last year was parallax scrolling, which animates the site as you scroll down. But sites that use parallax scrolling usually use text sparingly and rely more on images, which does not help your SEO efforts.
Going Mobile. There was a huge focus in 2013 on getting content to mobile users, and that is not going to change. It’s becoming standard to have a site that functions on mobile devices, and if you don’t you may be perceived as lagging behind. Again, put on the suit and tie, not the sweatpants.