Simple website design is by far the best website design strategy. This is a fact that has been backed by innumerable studies and focus groups. Simplifying your website design can make the difference between success or failure when it comes to your business’s website!
You’ve probably heard the phrase “work smarter, not harder.” Simple website design is the smart strategy when it comes to building your company’s website. Not only does it take less time to develop a simple, organized, streamlined website, but it can maximize your conversions, too!
Effective website design is about communicating as much as possible with as few elements as possible. Here are nine reasons simple website design is the best website design:
1. Simple website design gets more conversions
Study after study has proven that simple website design leads to more conversions than convoluted websites with excessive ornamentation. Many ecommerce store owners even report massive increases in sales after simplifying their websites.
It can be tempting to try and promote sales by pulling out all the bells and whistles, but trying too hard can actually have the opposite impact. People don’t like it when they feel like someone is trying to sell them something.
In fact, flashy websites tend to drive away conversions. Meanwhile, minimalistic sites allow visitors to easily make purchases or find important information without feeling like someone is actively trying to make them do so. This is not to say that your website shouldn’t contain any images, videos, or eye-catching colors. Rather, you should use these elements sparingly and in ways that highlight main conversion points like “add to cart” buttons, lead forms, newsletter subscription boxes, or “contact us” tabs.
Notice how the above example has a clearly defined call to action? There is a visually appealing color scheme and some font variation to keep the web page interesting, but the overall simple website design and lack of excessive ornamentation allows users to click the largest, easiest to find button to contact one of our business development specialists about our social media advertising services. This page is optimized for conversions.
If you want more sales, consider optimizing your website by getting rid of any unneeded details that may distract users from main conversion points. Also, learn to effectively utilize white space to make a visually appealing website that is both professional and easy to navigate. Simple website design puts the focus of your site on the conversion points without leaving much room for users to stray away, thus driving sales.
2. Simple website design is timeless
In the world of website design, time moves at a rapid pace. Website fads come and go, making new styles outdated incredibly quickly. One of the only trends that has remained relevant pretty much since the advent of the Internet is simple website design.
Utilizing a simple design means you won’t have to update your site as often as it won’t soon become outdated. Some business owners are able to go years without making changes to their websites because they chose a timeless, minimalist design theme. Other business owners, however, have to update their websites constantly to keep up with evolving trends.
3. You don’t want to distract your website visitors
If someone clicked onto your website, they did so for a reason. However, that reason was probably not to admire your supreme graphic design skills. They know exactly what they want to find on your website and, as the website owner, your goal should be to make it as easy as possible for visitors to find what they are looking for.
Removing unnecessary distractions from your website creates a more clear, concise, and streamlined user experience. The easiest way to improve the user experience on your website is to simplify it.
Don’t make your website visitors overthink. The paradox of Choice states that the more choices you give someone, the less likely they are to make any choice at all. If you overwhelm your website visitors with dozens of clickable buttons and hyperlinks, eye-catching images, videos, gifs, and more, they become much less likely to click where you actually want them to click.
Take a look at your website. Which features can you remove to simplify your website design? Certain features may be more distracting and less important than you think.
For example, a pop-up requesting that users sign up for your newsletter may seem like a good idea. However, what if that person was going to make a purchase and you distracted them with your pop-up? Now, not only may they not make a purchase, but they might become irritated and even less likely to sign up for your newsletter than if the form was at the bottom of the page where they expected it to be.
Going a step farther, no one is going to read every word on your website. It’s best to put the most important information front and center and remove any lesser information someone might otherwise read instead. The absolute best way to ensure people will read the information you want them to is to remove any other information and streamline your website.
When you provide too many different things for people to look at and interact with on your website, it can create a great deal of confusion. Users might not know where to look or even where to start when it comes to navigating your site. Simple website design allows you to guide users’ eyes along your website with effective use of white space and clear navigation tools.
4. Simpler designs appeal to users’ expectations
People have certain expectations for the layout of specific types of websites. Have you noticed that most of your favorite ecommerce sites have very similar layouts? That is because they are following the expected layout pattern in order to maximize conversions. If your website visitors already know exactly where to click to get to where they want on your site, even if they’ve never visited your site before, they are more likely to convert into customers.
The screenshot above shows the bottom of the homepage of our website. Users typically expect to see a few items on specific areas of a site including a clickable logo in the top left corner that will bring them back to the homepage, a menu or navigation bar along the top of each page, and contact information at the bottom of the page. Other popular conventions you may want to consider utilizing on your site include shopping cart icons for users to view their cart if you run an ecommerce store and a search bar near the top of the page.
Websites that stray too far from expected layouts risk confusing their visitors. There is a certain amount of credibility involved with simple website design that adheres to expected conventions. When your website is both familiar and easy to navigate, it erases the learning curve and speeds up the process of a visitor becoming a customer.
If your website does not adhere to standard web design patterns, no one is going to marvel at your innovation. They’ll only be left wondering why certain buttons or pieces of information were not where they expected them to be.
5. Simple website design is universally appealing
A 2012 study by Google proved that visually complex websites are consistently rated as less appealing than websites with simple website design. A simple website design is able to quickly establish trust with your website visitors. Meanwhile, websites that contain too many images or different colors and fonts tend to look spammy.
No matter who your target audience is, they are more likely to be able to trust and easily navigate your website if it has a minimalist style. Older audiences can sometimes have a difficult time reading fancy fonts, text over brightly colored backgrounds, and heavy blocks of text without a lot of white space. Likewise, younger audiences are even more likely to be distracted by an overabundance of images and videos. The best way to optimize your website for all audiences is to simplify it.
6. Simple websites load quicker
Fast load times are absolutely imperative, not only for a great user experience, but also for good SEO rankings. According to the experts, users tend to abandon websites that take longer than three seconds to load. That may not seem like much time, but in the digital age, people are accustomed to expecting information at the click of a button. Waiting for a web page to load is not an option.
Furthermore, Google uses site speed as a part of their search engine optimization ranking algorithm. The faster your website is able to load, the higher it will rank as a result when people search affiliated keywords. Simple and well-organized website structure can do wonders to boost your website’s Google search engine ranking.
Cluttering your website up with too many images, gifs, videos, etc. can drastically slow your load speed. By opting for a more simple website design, you can ensure your website will load much faster. Simple designs also reduce the workload on your server, which can improve load times even more. Videos and large image files take up massive amounts of space to host, and removing them from your website is one of the quickest and easiest ways to improve your website’s load speed. Most hosting companies charge by how much space your website takes up on their server, as well. So not only can simplifying your website improve your load time and increase sales, but it can also save you money!
Notice how in the above screenshot from GoDaddy, complex sites require a more expensive web hosting plan then simpler sites.
7. Simple website design looks professional and trustworthy
Clean, simple website design legitimizes your business. It establishes trust and makes users more likely to return to your site at a later date. A 2017 poll found that 48% of people determine the credibility of a business based on its website design. In fact, the vast majority of Internet users report that the presentation of a website directly impacts how much they trust a business.
So how do you achieve this beautiful but simple style on your own website? The answer is white space. White space is all the blank space on your website that appears in margins as well as in between words, letters, images, and headlines. Effective use of white space helps users focus on one piece of your website at a time, streamlining the conversion process.
The webpage above is a great example of how to effectively utilize white space (and how white space does not actually have to be white). There is plenty of blank space between the headline, body text, image, and call to action button. This allows the eye to easily navigate the page and quickly find the call to action.
It’s a simple fact that people are more willing to make a purchase or fill our a lead form on a website that looks professional. The easiest way to achieve a professional look on your site is to adopt simple website design with plenty of white space and careful use of fonts and media.
8. Simple website design is easy to adapt
The more complex your website is, the more opportunities there are for things to go wrong. Also, making updates to a highly detailed site can be a nightmare. Keeping the code of your website clean and simple can save you or your web developer countless hours in the future when maintenance to your website becomes necessary.
Eventually, there will come a time when you will need to make updates to your website. Whether you need to fix a bug or add new information, the simpler your website design is, the easier it will be to make those updates. Simple website design isn’t just important for user friendly navigation and conversion centered layout, it is also necessary for easy routine maintenance!
9. Simple website design is proven to be effective
There’s a reason most major brands have simplified their logos in the past few years. Simple designs are better designs! Take a look at the images below to see how some of the world’s most popular brands have simplified their logos over the years:
You can adapt these same design simplification ideas to your company’s website! Notice how Google switched from a serif font to a sans serif font? This is because sans serif fonts tend to be easier for most people to read since they are more simple. Dropbox and Spotify both opted to remove text from their logos since the images speak for themselves. When possible, convey information on your website through images or infographics instead of large blocks of text. As long as the images aren’t too complicated, this can be a great way to streamline a web page and encourage more people to actually look at the information you are providing.
No matter what industry you’re in, simple website design is always going to be the most effective website design strategy for you. You can boost conversions, improve user experience, save money on web hosting, and even improve SEO all by simplifying the design of your website.
Do you need help simplifying your website? Check out our website design services today!