May 25, 2010 9

Top 10 Web Design Standards

By in Design, Web Design

There are countless websites that the average user has access to. Out of all those websites, how many of them are great websites? Probably a small handful. Below you’ll find my thoughts on the 10 key standards that a great website abides by.

1) Compelling Copy

Yes I’m a copywriter and so this is the first thing that comes to mind for me.  The copy on a website needs to create interest, draw in the user, and speak to the benefits. Copy can either turn off the user, or get them to keep reading – and browsing.

2) Layout

Think of a website as a blank canvas. Then slowly, thoughtfully fill that canvas with a layout that is both pleasing to the eye, and user-friendly. The key element to the layout is time and time again, simplicity. Our eyes like to look at simple, pretty things instead of confusing jumbled up things (which you’ll find on all those other mediocre websites).

3) Typeface

Typeface is one of those details that many websites overlook, probably because they don’t grasp its importance. You could have a great line of copy go to waste when the words are dressed up in an unattractive or hard to read typeface. The typeface should be simple, easy to read, properly spaced out, and a colour that complements the rest of the website design.

4) Usability

The user’s experience comes first. If your site is not user-friendly, you’ll lose your audience pretty quickly. Users should be able to navigate through your site with ease, without coming across too many bugs, problems or confusion of any kind.

5) Art Direction

When you look at a website’s design, you can tell which sites were designed by amateurs just looking to get a site up, and which were created by true designers. Art direction is not something to skimp out on when it comes to web design; these are the people who know how to make your site pretty and cater to the human eye.

6) Brand Building

These days it seems every company or operation, regardless of size, has some semblance of a website up. Everyone is “trying to get online” to maximize their sales, which makes sense of course. But the truly successful website are those that speak to the brand and remain highly consistent with the company’s image and advertising.

7) Purpose

As mentioned in #6, everyone is trying to get online. The problem with this is that people are just putting up websites for the hell of it. Before creating a website, a company should know why they are doing it and what they hope to achieve. Do they wish to inform the user of their product? To share the story of their company’s future goals? To offer downloadable widgets? Once the website has a purpose, it can be successfully designed around it.

8 ) Product Oriented

Companies want to drive users to their website. But the website must also be able to drive users to their product/cause/whatever they’re selling. If not, the website isn’t really going to generate much use for them. There must be a clear, direct path for the user to navigate their way to what they’re selling, information about it, and how they can get a hold of it.

9) Uniqueness

This one is a bit tougher to achieve than the other standards. It calls for some extra creativity and finding out what is out there and more importantly, what isn’t out there. But as always, hard work pays off. Unique websites are the ones that get people talking and sharing links with each other.

10) Innovation

Thanks to programs like Flash, websites are able to operate in all sorts of interesting ways. There are countless opportunities to intrigue the user and allow for greater interaction with the site. Some sites find a way to capitalize on web tools and are able to create something truly incredible.

I believe that a website using (or misusing) these 10 elements will determine if it is either mediocre or memorable.

About: Ian:
Hi, I'm Ian T. I'm a York grad and a copywriter for Eden Advertising. I'm the master of procrastinating. I like to use parentheses (sometimes). I love the LCBO because wine makes me happy. I don't blog, I capture moments in time.

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9 Responses to “Top 10 Web Design Standards”

  1. Thanks u r information

    its very useful

  2. Thanks for u r information

    its very useful

  3. seosen says:

    hai, thank you for designs and very useful to me for my seo services.

    The need of growth in search engine ranking and the need of SEO
    The Search Engine Optimization is the basic need for any website to rise in page ranking and for the better growth and development of your site to gain better profits.

  4. Thanks for u r information

    its very useful

  5. enomsoft says:

    thanks for info.

  6. Va Infotech says:

    nice works


  7. stunning designs! It’s really unique and refreshing. Thanks for the inspiration.

  8. web design says:

    nice design man…thanks for sharing this…