If you own or run a website, you should know that it is important to make your site popular and appealing. You have probably read lots of information about how to set up a site and may have a site up and running already. However, you may not realize how important web design is to the success of your site. A way to measure the quality of a site design is by its bounce rate. Bounce rate essentially represents the percentage of initial visitors to a site who "bounce" away to a different site rather than continue on to other pages within the same site. Another definition that I've heard is "I came, I saw, I puked" – in other words the site sucked and the visitor left.
Why is website design important? A poorly designed site can severely increase the bounce rate of incoming traffic, which translates to a loss in business profit. When people wish to buy something from a site, all they have to do is go to the site and make a purchase. There is no need for a face-to-face meeting with the people who are selling the product, so all of their assumptions about the quality and reliability of that product will be based on the visual or audio presentation of the site. If a site does not look professional, is unattractive or has poor usability, customers will have reservations about using the product or service the site presents. The bottom line; if your site design is poor your financial bottom line will be poor.
There are two main components from which most people determine whether a website design is "good" or "bad." There's the usability component, which focuses on functionality, the effective presentation of information, and efficiency. Then there's the purely aesthetic component, which is all about presentation, animations, and sexy graphics. Some designers get caught up in the aesthetics and graphics and forget about the user, and some usability experts get lost in their user testing and forget about visual appeal. In order to reach people and retain their interest, it's essential to maximize both.
You can anticipate two types of users coming to your site: those that want information fast with minimal effort and those that are willing to take some time to explore. You can satisfy both types of visitors by implementing these two concepts within the design of your site.
1. Site search tool. A visitor in a hurry can quickly find the information they desire then move on to the action they desire.
2. Usable, intuitive and consistent site navigation. This provides visitors the tool they need to leisurely explore their way through the site.
Everything matters when it comes to web design, and one of the important concerns of website design is aesthetics. The color palette, layout balance, unity, and emphases of graphics and text will affect your visitor's experience. The lack of visual appeal of a site can easily raise the bounce rate and cause the loss of many potential customers or clients.
It is advisable that you use colors and fonts consistently through the design of your website. If you are planning to include images, make sure that they are good quality images, low quality images will give visitors the impression that the website was designed by an amateur, causing them to think twice about buying from you. A website that has a professional design, look and feel will help you gain the trust of potential buyers.
When designing a website, keep in mind there are several key components (Usability and Aesthetics) that will make your site more enjoyable to visit. A site has to be easy to navigate with good usability, easy on the eye, contain quality content and be worthy of a visitors time. If you achieve these qualities within the design of your site you can expect to have a low bounce rate and a high success rate.