Website design is for the user
Website design begins with a single premise… think about your user first. An important part of website design is interface design, which focuses on the functionality of your layout. This forces you to focus on the whole user experience, not just the interface. Consider the following tips to help you design a better website:
- Know who your users are
To put it simply, this means knowing what they need, what is the users’ goals, and what stands in the way of them achieving their goals. This means that you have to look at your design through the needs of the user. Every decision, from how people use your interface to what types of content to present, you must highlight within that interface.
- Define how people use your interface
You need to decide how people will use your interface. For example, you must take into consideration the predominance of touch-based devices. You must decide if interactions will occur by:
- Tapping a button
- Dragging and dropping an item with a fingertip
- Pointing and clicking with a mouse
- Using key commands or key shortcuts
- Typing into a form field
- Drawing on a tablet
Chances are with the wide variance of devices available to even a single user, your design may need to accommodate a number of different interactions.
- Think sensibly about element placement and size
The closer and/or bigger something is, the faster you can put your cursor or finger on it. Consider the following principles:
- Make buttons, icons, and text links big enough to easily see and click
- Buttons for the most common actions should be larger and more prominent
- Place search bars on the edges or corners of the screen
- If your site requires horizontal scrolling rather than vertical scrolling, you’ll need to appropriately cue users to this unusual interaction type.
The process requires some complex thought, but the simpler your design, the faster and easier it is for users to make the decisions you want them to make. The more options you have to decide between, the more likely it is that you will find an interface that works for you and your readers.
Website design by Charlotte experts
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