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Principles Of Good Website Design

9 Principles you should follow for a good website design

Principles Of Good Website Design

In a world where we have more than 2 billion websites, analysis has detected that only 10% of these websites are actually active. Unfortunately, this is not intentional. It is rather the not-knowing that has resulted in most websites being inactive as they have not understood the value of staying up-to-date, consistent, and optimized strategically.

Hence, we have put together wonderful website design principles that should help you stay in the 10% of “good” websites on the web. By doing so, not only would you be able to stay functional in the online world but it will also help boost your site’s user reach.

Have Pleasant Visuals

As a web user, we are certain that you have all come across websites that have unappealing visuals - as a result of which you would have shied away from using the site itself. For example, let us take a look at two such confusing websites we have found.

At a glance, it is evident that this site has a mixture of dominant colors that are hard to look at. Although there is a little contrast, the mix of colors like purple, black, red, and blue does not complement each other in this display. Hence, it shows that the website has been designed with less knowledge about the disciplines, and also minimal focus on usability.

Although this website does not use an unsuccessful mixture of dominant colors, its dull display makes it hard for the user to understand the hierarchy of the web content and what to focus on.

So what can help you to avoid both these issues and develop a quality design? To be honest, this all depends on a few steps that are not even complicated to process. Let us take a look.

  • Define a clear goal for the website being designed. This goal can vary based on your requirements. For instance, it can be to increase site reach, to boost the conversion rate, or even to achieve high interactivity.
  • Define what you are focusing on. For instance, it can be on food, groceries, sports, fashion, etc.
  • Choose a color palette for your website. This might include a choice of colors for your organization’s logo, font, background, and so on.
  • Structure the website content such that it accommodates the pre-defined goal of your website.

Practicing the above steps in designing your website is guaranteed to bring about a better design for your site. But do note that the above steps are not hard and fast rules, therefore, you can decide to play around and figure out what fits you best.

However, there are a few general rules that would further enhance your website design.

Visual Hierarchy

The visual hierarchy law claims that the size of an object and the colors used for it is an indication of the importance the particular element bears on your website. For instance, the larger elements on your website are considered to be more important, and this importance decreases along with the size of the elements. The same goes for the colors as well. The brighter the colors are, the more important these elements are considered to be.

The best example to discuss the visual hierarchy is Instagram - the that focuses on image and video sharing.


Website Design Instagram

When looking at the above, you can see that the main focus is provided to the brand name itself. Afterward, they have emphasized the large image on the screen following the “Log in with Facebook” button. Analyzing the positioning of the buttons tells us that they have focused more on encouraging users to sign in through their Facebook account itself, rather than creating separate credentials all over again.

Thus, little things like this visual hierarchy would be huge in communicating with your users. So do make it a point to accommodate these rules to your website design process as well.

Golden Ratio

The Golden Ratio technique is quite an old design pattern that is YET practiced in the modern world as have researched and found out that it is quite effective. So what is this golden ratio?


Website Design Golden Ratio

Well, this pattern is what the golden ratio is all about. Chances are that you have seen this pattern before, might be in the natural environment, or even on other websites as well.


Golden Ratio
Golden Ratio Web
Golden Ratio Webdesign

Renowned psychologists have claimed that this golden ration pattern is significantly appealing to the human brain and this is why most websites follow this design technique. Hence, do focus on this content layout when coming up with a design for your website.

Rule of Thirds

The rule of thirds comes into play when aligning images on your website. This rule implies that the images of a site should be placed in line with 9 boxes derived by plotting your site area into 9 grids - which are considered to be the most catchy points of a website.

When fitting your images to this grid, make sure that the interactive points of the images are aligned to the areas of intersection as circled by red in the following image. At the same time, do not overdo the images on your website and cramp the space. Select appropriate images that compliment each other and include them without compacting your website.


Rule Of Thrids
Rule Of Thrids Web
Rule Of Thrids Website

Law of Similarity

As implied by the phrase itself, this rule claims that similar components need to have similar outlooks so that the user will know that they all fit into the same category. For instance, look at the following layout obtained from the Slack website.


Law Of Similarity

The red lines along with the 3 elements following the same design layout tell the user that these 3 components on the website are related - that they are Slack brands and are different from the neighboring elements of the site.

1. Optimize the site loading speed

With the evolvement of technology and related networking facilities, users have become more demanding in terms of the experience they receive through websites. And among such demands, the website loading speed has become crucial. This is because site visitors perceive the websites that take a long time to load as “ineffective” or “low-quality”. To be exact, if your website takes more than 2 to 3 seconds, chances are that you would be losing a significant reach.

The cruciality of the website loading speed is well explained by the following facts put forward by the renowned software company Unbounce.

  • A site that takes even 0.1 seconds more to load loses nearly 7% of conversions
  • Sites that take around 5 seconds to load have a bounce rate that is 5 times more than a site that takes only 2 seconds
  • Nearly 73% of users experience the inconvenience brought about by longer loading speeds
Therefore, website loading speed is something you can no longer overlook.

2. Improve the visibility of the website

When it comes to improving the visibility of websites, the core focus is generally placed on search engine optimization. Popularly known as SEO, this approach focuses on optimizing sites such that they rank better on search engine results pages (SERPs).

For instance, imagine that you are an Italian Restaurant owner in Toronto. If a user was to look for Italian Restaurants in Toronto, on any search engine, you would want your restaurant's official website to be on the very top of the results page that is displayed to the user. This is where SEO comes into play.

SEO involves diverse techniques that optimize your website which help to structure and enhance your site in order to be on the very top of the search engine results. This increased visibility for your website will be a huge driving force for increasing the organic reach of the site and thereby would bring about better results for your organization.

When talking about improved visibility, social media links should also be emphasized. This is owing to the fact that having active social media profiles linked to your site is also a catalyst for increasing visibility. After all, in a world where social media has become a part and parcel of life, this does not come as a surprise, right?

3. Policy and regulation compliance

With the advancement of technology and the related disciplines, we have also witnessed a rise in the number of threats and risks posed in the online world. As a result, most governing bodies worldwide have introduced many rules and regulations that overlook the security of online platforms and the privacy of its users.

Website Design Principles

The General Data Protection Regulation, well-known by its acronym GDPR, is quite popular among these rules and regulations. According to GDPR, any online platform that collects data from its users has to be made secure.

Obtaining a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate is one of the most common methods that is approached to securing platforms. Hence, when deploying your own website, do make it a point to obtain an for your site.


4. Incorporate Customer Feedback

Social proof, or better known as customer feedback, has become increasingly useful when it comes to the online world. This is because the feedback provided by the real users of your products or service can persuade others to go ahead with your particular product or service. This is owing to the fact that genuine reviews from users could build up the confidence of potential customers.

Hence, incorporating customer feedback is a smart strategy that could be leveraged in the modern world. When designing your website, allocate a catchy area to publish the ratings and reviews of your users such that any visitor to the site would be able to see it.

5. Enhanced Accessibility

Accessibility is a core fundamental of as it can make or break your website in the online sphere. For instance, as attractive and catchy as bright colors may look to you, it might not be the best option for everyone. The most ideal example for this is the large number of people who suffer from photophobia and seizures. For such users, bright colors may bring about unfavorable health conditions.

Thus, when devising a design for your website, do keep in mind the diverse user groups you may find within your target audience. Think of their physical capabilities, psychological capabilities, and even their computer literacy. This might assist you in developing a high-quality website that is accessible for a much wider user group.

6. Enhanced Usability

Usability, or how user-friendly your site is, is once again very important for websites. At the end of the day, your user reach can either upgrade or degrade based on the user experience you provide through your website.

When focusing on the usability of a website, the following are a few questions (not limited to) that you could ask yourself during the design process.

  • Is the ?
  • Does the content follow a smart layout
  • How comfortable is it to navigate through your site?
  • Does the website provide a live-chat facility?
  • Does the website have an effective search function?
  • Is your color palette easy to the eyes?

7. Scalability of the website

The scalability of a website relates to handling user traffic as it may not always be stable. For instance, think of an that suddenly puts up a good offer for its customers. Once the offer is made public, the website would experience a sudden spike in its site visitors as you would find both current and potential customers trying to access the online store. In such a scenario, the website has to be able to successfully manage the user experience without any glitches.

8. Easy Maintainability

With the continuous changes made to both technology and business requirements, more often than not websites required upgrades. Thus, from the very beginning of the web development process, you need to ascertain that the site is maintainable with minimal hassle. This is not a hard task for content management systems such as WordPress or Joomla, but when building a bespoke website you may need to input more focus. The following are some such factors you can query your developer if you were to develop your site.

Do they follow best practices for development such as modularized program files, comments, and readable code?

  1. Do they provide understandable and complete user manuals?
  2. Do they offer followup services for any potential failures and issues?



Thus, do focus on the above principles to design a quality website. Although there are no hard and fast rules, the above will definitely make a positive difference to your online presence.

Team Member At Intrango

Intrango: The most affordable web design agency in Toronto

Web Deisgn, eCommerce website design, Logo Design and SEO. All under one roof.

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