The K.I.S.S. Principle of Web Design
One of the most frequent and frustrating faux pas companies make when designing a website is to overwhelm visitors with information they don’t need. Don’t get me wrong, letting visitors know about your product or service is a must but many companies tend to drive away potential customers with irrelevant and unnecessary information. In most cases, simplicity is the way to go. One of the first things I do when redesigning a company’s website is to see how easily I can navigate the site as a visitor with no prior knowledge for the first time. It’s always a good sign if I can find your product or service, know what it is, and purchase it within a few clicks. I’m not saying have no information but at least make sure relevant information is located on the proper pages. There is a place for everything; it doesn’t all need to be floating on one page.
The page that tends to have this problem the most is the homepage. Often, I come to a website and the homepage is filled with so many pictures, icons, buttons, and text that it becomes difficult to properly navigate the website. This is not only confusing but frustrating as well. Nothing drives visitors away like an unclear and busy layout. Your homepage is designed to help visitors navigate to the rest of the site, it does not need to include everything about your products/services and company in the main body of the page. Let your navigation bar break it down into 4-8 simple categories and narrow down what information is useful. Once your homepage is simple and clean you can move on to making the rest of your website attractive and functional.
So the main take away from today’s blog would be to simplify. On the homepage (and many other aspects of a website) I try to follow the design principle of the US Navy, K.I.S.S. (Keep it Simple Stupid). If I believe I am making something overly complicated or confusing I try to step back and visualize the issue from the perspective of a first time user and then simplify. So take a look at your company’s website today and ask yourself if your homepage is overly confusing, wordy, or busy. If so, contact us and we can help you get back on the right path towards a straightforward and appealing website design.