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  • Spencer Campeau

Five Ingredients for Effective Website Design

A good website design is like a good recipe: it can make or break your entire business. A poor design can lead to lost customers and lost sales, while a great design can attract new customers and keep them coming back for more.

But what makes a "good" website? How do you know if your site is effective? The answer lies in the five ingredients of effective web design: good user experience, easy navigation, clear presentation, beautiful design and reliable performance.

Good user experience

The user experience of your website is about how it makes visitors feel. Each person will have a different opinion on that, but it's clear that good user experience can make someone happy to be visiting your site.

If you're not sure whether or not your website has a positive user experience, ask some friends and family members who are unfamiliar with what you do/sell/are. If they leave the site feeling confused or frustrated (or worse), then there's something wrong with how the website is designed.

One way to improve people's overall impression of a site is by making its content easy to understand and use. The more intuitive something feels, the better—and this applies equally well for both novice users as well as advanced ones!

Easy navigation

Navigation is the most important part of a website. The goal is to make it easy for your users to find what they are looking for and then quickly get back on track when they leave a page. Consistent navigation makes this task easier, so avoid changing the navigation from one page to another.

Using menus and tabs is one of the best ways to provide clear, consistent navigation across all pages of your site. They should be placed at or near the top of each page and be clearly labeled so that users can easily identify them as links back up in hierarchy or down into subcategories or related content.

Navigation should also be easy on mobile devices so that people don’t have trouble navigating around your site when using their smartphones or tablets — especially if you have long pages with lots of information! Mobile device users don’t want to scroll through endless amounts of text trying figure out where they need go next!

Clear presentation

In order to ensure that your site is easy to navigate and read, you have to eliminate clutter. This means removing anything that does not contribute directly to the content of your site. Don’t use too many graphics or fonts; stick with one or two styles that are consistent throughout your website.

If you want people to read all of your text, then use white space positively—it will give them a chance to catch their breath and focus on what matters most in your writing. You can also use graphics as a way of breaking up large blocks of text into shorter chunks (and making it more interesting).

Graphics can also be used to highlight important information or emphasize key points in your content. If you choose the right graphic for each situation, it will make everything look professional while also helping readers find what they want quickly without being distracted by unnecessary visual elements!

Beautiful design

This is the first part of your website that visitors will see. It's important to make it visually appealing and easy to use so that people don't bounce off your site immediately.

Web designers have many tools at their disposal to create beautiful websites. They can use images, videos, animated graphics, text boxes and buttons—anything they can think of! If you're not a designer yourself (or if you're working with a designer who isn't familiar with the brand), be sure that your style guide is up-to-date so everyone is on the same page about what type of design elements should be incorporated into each page template.

The main purpose of a website's visual design is twofold: firstly, it helps visitors find what they're looking for faster; secondly, it increases engagement by making each page more interesting or informative than its competitors' offerings—all without distracting from the main message being conveyed here (in other words: don't go overboard).

Reliable performance

The next ingredient is reliable performance. Speed and reliability are two sides of the same coin: if your website is slow, it’s likely that it will also experience failures more frequently than you’d like.

Reliable performance is a combination of several factors, including:

  • Overall speed of the website—how quickly pages load overall and individual experiences (such as form responses) perform at different connection speeds

  • How quickly your site responds to user input (whether by clicking links or buttons or other interactions)

  • How quickly the site responds in the face of network latency and other requests on your server (e.g., images from another server)

  • How well it responds when there are other requests on other servers sharing the same network path

To make sure your website’s performance is reliable, you need to take a holistic view of how it functions in different situations. Take the time to set up a monitoring tool that will alert you to problems before they become issues for users (such as high latency). By taking these steps now—or working with an agency that does this work for you—you’ll prevent frustration for customers and improve your bottom line in the long run.

Follow these ingredients for optimum performance

Now that we've covered the five ingredients for a successful website design, it's time to get started. First, ask yourself:

  • What are my goals?

  • Who is my audience?

  • What kind of content should I create for this website?

  • How can I use these ingredients to achieve those goals and attract an audience? Here are some tips on how to follow through on these questions:

  • Start small. You don't want to overwhelm yourself by trying to redesign your entire site at once! Instead, pick one or two pages and start with them—then expand from there once you feel confident in your design choices. Make sure that every page builds toward something bigger than itself (like a goal or target market).

  • Keep track of what works and what doesn't work—you'll learn more about your customers' needs over time as well as get feedback from them via customer service emails/comments/posts etc., but also be aware of any trends in terms of keywords used when searching for similar products/services so they can be incorporated into future efforts too!


We've covered the five things you need to keep in mind when designing a website. You don't need to be an expert in all of these areas, but having a basic understanding is helpful. If you're still struggling with some of these concepts, now would be a good time to read up on them and try them out on your own designs.

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