Modern Style Ideas For Your Design Website + Blog
Your website’s sense of style MUST match your own style standards. It’s paramount in the modern age of branding and web design that your personal or business website (or blog) is as well-designed and constructed as you and your business are.
Many designers, businesses and those with personal brands make the mistake of thinking their social media is the most important impression they can make in online marketing. This isn’t true. After all, there’s only so much you can do to differentiate your Facebook or Twitter from everyone else’s. Even your Instagram account isn’t that unique; past your own crop of photo and video media, the layout will never set you apart.
You have to assume EVERY potential client will eventually find and judge your website on its appearance. Web design is crucial. But high-end web design is also expensive. For small businesses and personal brands, hiring an expensive web designer or development team is simply not a financially feasible option.
So what can you do to make your brand stand out and make your website beautiful? We recently visited the refurbished Peter Salerno Inc. website to look for clues. Peter Salerno and his team handle their web design in house, and have created a sleek, user-friendly site that mirrors the world-class quality of their custom kitchen and bath design.
Here are a few tips and trends we discovered that can help you update your web design and website’s style for your clients, without breaking the bank.
Modern Web Design Tips: Summer 2017
1. De-clutter your home page.
90% of website visitors decide whether or not they like your brand in the first five seconds of visiting your site. It doesn’t matter how amazing you are, or how revolutionary your product may be. A clutter-filled home page makes you and your brand look disorganized.
Don’t throw too much information at your viewers at once. Let them discover your brand at their leisure, page by page. A clean landing page with a few eye-catching designs or photos and a simple navigation menu is plenty for your visitors to take in at first glance. If you give them just enough, they’ll want to see more. If you give them too much, they will leave before finding out anything.
2. Turn your menu into a portfolio.
You may notice the term “UX Design” floating around, and not know quite what it is. Let’s take the mystery out of it. UX Design simply means “user experience design”, and it’s THE most important thing you can take into consideration when designing a website. Don’t focus on trendy effects, tricks or flashy content. Just focus on creating the simplest, most engaging user experience possible.
A great way to implement UX design is to turn your menu into a portfolio. On your homepage, give each of your core menu categories a corresponding photo or image (much like Peter Salerno Inc. does on its homepage). This allows you to give your visitors a visual representation of everything your site (and your brand) has to offer, with a simple text label attached to each.
Peter Salerno’s site does this to perfection. You can look at his homepage for 5 seconds and know exactly what his custom kitchen and bath design lines look like, what products he offers, and where to go for more information.
3. Choose two simple “main” colors, and stick to them.
The most essential piece of advice when it comes to color is simple – please don’t go nuts with text colors. If you have a dark background, use a simple white or light gray. If you have a light background, use a dark gray or black. Using funky colors for your text copy content is incredibly passe and frankly, looks unprofessional.
Base your website’s overall color scheme off two main colors – the color of your background, and the color of your text. Make those two colors firm, unchanging elements of your design across all pages, menus and other design elements. Use a third color for highlighted effects (media borders, links, etc.) if you’d like. But much like home design in 2017, less is often more when it comes to color.
4. Auto-play videos or music are an annoyance.
Unless you’re a band or musician (and even then!), music should never auto-play when you visit a website. What if you’re browsing a website at work, or late at night with family in the house? The last thing you want is to scramble for your speakers when music comes blaring out at you.
The same goes for lightbox pop-up introduction videos. Clients want to see simple, clean design and layout when they first visit your page; an auto-play video only clutters their initial concept of your brand and is generally clicked out of within the first 3 seconds – and often, your website disappears with it.