Responsive website design, Norwich

Top Characteristics of Effective Web Design

by Mike Amis

Top Characteristics of Effective Web Design

Many business owners make the mistake of creating a website that is attractive to them. They have ideas of how they want their website to look and they give these ideas to a wed designer who creates a website using their ideas. Then the website may or may not attract potential customers, it may or may not keep those customers engaged once they do visit the website. Do you see where the business owner went wrong? Rather than designing a website that their customers will like and that will keep their customers interested, they designed one that met their needs and their likes.

A website that isn’t well-designed will not only perform poorly, but it will also receive less than optimal Google Analytics metrics and may not rank high in the search engines. How do you know if your website was designed and developed properly? The professionals at Swerve Media have created this list of some of the top characteristics of effective web design.


Your website should cater to the user and it should have a clear purpose. If your site visitors are looking for information, entertainment or some other type of interaction, a properly designed website will give it to them.


A properly designed website should communicate to the site visitors and provide them with information that is easy for them to understand. Organising information using headlines and sub headlines or bullet points instead of long sentences is very effective at this.


There are some standard fonts that effective websites use. These are easy to read, they look professional and don’t incorporate decorative finishes that can be distracting. Use Sans Serif fonts such as Arial and Verdana and a font size of 16px.


User experience depends on a well thought out colour palette. Complementary colours can create balance on a website and not be as abrasive as colours that are too bright or that contrast.


A picture can speak a thousand words, and choosing the right images for your website can help with brand positioning and connecting with your target audience. If you don’t have high quality professional photos on hand, consider purchasing stock photos to lift the look of your website. Also consider using infographics, videos and graphics as these can be much more effective at communicating than even the most well written piece of text.


Making your website easy to navigate is important as site users want to visit your site and find what they are looking for quickly and easily. If it becomes difficult for them, they will leave your site. We suggest using the ‘three click rule’ which means users will be able to find the information they are looking for within three clicks.


By optimising image sizes, combining code into a central CSS or JavaScript file and minimising HTML, CSS, JavaScript, your website will load faster and your customers will be happier.


With more and more customers using their mobile devices to shop online, making sure that your website is mobile friendly is important. If your website is not mobile friendly, you can rebuild it using a responsive layout which will ensure that your website will adjust to different screen widths making it easier for mobile users to use your website.

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