9 Fundamentals of Good Web Design

Discover the secrets to attract and retain your audiences’ attention

Wiliam Wu

Wiliam Wu

Digital Content Creator

The success of a website is determined by its usability and functionality rather than its visual design.

Because the website visitor is the only one who clicks the mouse and thus determines everything, user-centric design has become a standard method for effective and profit-oriented online design.

After all, if the website visitors are unable to understand or navigate your website easily, it may as well not exist – a waste of resources.

In this article, we will concentrate on the fundamental concepts, heuristics, and techniques for good web design. Before we apply these fundamental concepts, we must understand how people interact with websites, how they think, and what the core patterns of user behaviours are.

What do website visitors think whenever they visit websites?

Web users’ behaviours aren’t all that different from retail customers.

Website visitors examine the content on each page, then click on the first link that catches their attention or whatever that matches what they’re searching for.

They don’t even glance at most of the page.

If the web page does not satisfy the users’ expectations, they will simply hit the Back button and resume their search.

Here are some interesting findings from the research:

  • Users skim rather than read. When reading a web page, visitors look for fixed points (whatever they are searching for) that will lead them through the material.

  • Internet Users enjoy quality content. If a page delivers high-quality material or any websites that are rich in what the consumers are searching for, they may ignore the design of the website altogether. It shows that content is far more significant than the web design itself. However, even that being said, companies shouldn’t ignore web design as well. Aim for a balance.

  • Internet consumers aren’t very patient. They want to go in and grab just the item(s) they are searching for, and then leave. If a website fails to fulfil the expectations of internet users, the company will lose money. Be sure to optimize the website – it’s the very least anyone can do.

Here are 9 principles to consider while designing your future website:

1. Purpose

What’s the core purpose of your website?

The goal of a website might be as basic as pushing conversion, conveying the story of a firm, or generating more sales. You should be able to express the purpose of your website in a line or two – think of your mission statement.

You should not make up a web design as you go along. Your purpose will help you design a plan that will aid your web design and content production.

Knowing your target marketing is an important part of determining your website’s purpose – who is your audience, what information do they want, and how will your site deliver information?

Knowing your audience’s demographics and problem issues can help you steer your site on the proper path.

You can read more about the types of website design for your company here.

2. Information Flow

The content design must have a logical flow – you can’t jump from one point to another.

Your content should lead your readers to a conclusion, with each piece building on the previous one.

Each phrase should provide greater information about your website’s goal, keeping readers interested in what comes next – most importantly, if possible, it must contain the information they are searching for.

Header tags are useful for structuring information and assisting web spiders in ranking your site for online searches.

If you don’t have all of your material beforehand, you can utilize headers to help you do framing first.

Visual components should be ordered as well. Define sections that use visuals and graphics to supplement the written information.

3. Good User Interface (UI)

A user interface is simply defined by how a user interacts with your website or any system.

It acts as a conduit between your website and your web visitors. If your website’s UI is designed properly, your user will naturally spend more time on it.

That’s why professional web designers play such an important role today. It’s more than just programming and design, they will need to think through and strategize accordingly.

You can’t simply assign an intern to work on your web design – because the poor design will hurt your company’s image.

Here are some pointers for creating a decent user interface:

  Maintain a basic user interface.

  Make good use of the page layout.

  Fonts and colours must be consistent

  Remove any unnecessary information.

The web designer will need to think from the user’s perspective.

Before we start designing websites, we’d ask ourselves questions as such the target audience, the activities that are intended for them to do, and the specific areas for interactions.

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4. Simplify

Whether you are offering services or selling a range of products, always aim to make your user needs as simple as possible.

The easier for a visitor to sign up (with limited risks), the more probably it is that the random visitor will try it out. It’s ideal to allow visitors to experience your offerings without requiring them to share personal information.

Simplified navigation is also a crucial aspect to develop your website.

More than 93% of internet users feel that easy navigation is one of the most important features of websites. It’s true because if your website is difficult to navigate, it will naturally cause frustration to your visitors – knowing that patience is very limited now, they will leave almost immediately.

A simplified menu design enables the ability to browse across web pages quickly and consistently.

Responsive Design

Responsive design refers to the creation of a website/webpage that is compatible with all types of devices/screen sizes in the market – mobile phones, desktops, laptops, and other display devices.

In today’s context, all internet users expect mobile versions of websites. It is the designer’s responsibility to design the website not just for smaller screens, but also for larger ones as well.

Mobile website usability should not be limited to a certain iPhone,  Samsung, or Xiaomi phone. The web design should work with every smartphone on the market. 

Responsive design enhancements include the following elements such as image optimization, appropriate button sizes for different devices, and website plugin removal.

If possible, always consider the mobile-first approach. It refers to the technique of creating an online experience for mobile first before designing for the desktop web or any other device.

Using a Mobile First approach seeks to reverse the workflow of creating for the desktop and then scaling down for mobile.

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6. Quality Content

Quality content is another important component of your web design.

You need to make your content valuable, and informative and it should direct your audience to the activities you want them to do – such as sign up for your newsletter.

SEO should be considered and included in the content. SEO may be done deliberately and tastefully, using a conversational tone and including keywords and phrases that do not distract from your content.

Defining the objective of your site helps define the content you can create.

Using a content-first approach means working with real content from the start of the design process.

Instead of getting yourself busy with tweaks (and even overhauls), quality content makes it easier to detect changes that need to be made along the route.


7. Visuals

Visuals should contribute vitality to your web design rather than just merely taking up space.

All images should be high-quality and visually appealing – a superb web design may be ruined by poor graphics.

Every design component reflects and expresses the identity of your brand. Animated graphics, photos, and other images can help “break up” your web page’s content – giving your audiences’ eyes a break from reading.

A captivating hero image offers an excellent first impression. Your audience’s attention can be captured and held by observing animated transitions and scroll-triggered effects. It helps your website form an engaging experience.


8. Colour Application

Colour applications to your website must be synchronized with your brand style guide. The worst thing you could do is to have a different colour scheme or theme for your website.

The colour pallet you use in a design is a great deal – it affects your customers subconsciously.

Depending on your business or industry, you may implement more bright colours if you’re in the entertainment, or a darker tone if you’re in financial services.

A colour scheme can do a lot to represent the character and message of a business.

 Once you have sorted that out, you will need to apply and maintain a consistent colour palette for your website.

 However, some colours may only work well with certain texts while others may not. You may want to conduct a poll, test, and iterate until you receive positive feedback from users.

Here are some tips you could take away and apply immediately:

  1. Keep the colours as simple as possible.
  2. Avoid using bright or dark hues.
  3. Only highlight the key facts, and only if necessary.
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9. Authenticity

 There’s nothing more powerful than the truth – anything less could cause damage to your brand.

Good design is truthful.

It does not wrap a product into something more inventive, powerful, or valuable than it is.  It must not deceive the prospect by making unattainable promises.

Consumers are smart – really smart today. They can see through most manipulations

A website’s aesthetic appeal should be complemented by depth and authenticity.

If you’ve ever visited a website with phoney testimonials, you would undoubtedly press the back button immediately. Nobody ever wants to get taken advantage of – it never feels nice.

Cliches and ambiguous marketing text will not help you connect with your audience. Position your brand as an authentic voice by offering valuable information.


These guiding principles may be found on practically any good website you visit. There will always be exceptions but understanding the fundamentals will allow you to modify them without compromising your web design.

It would be difficult to create a nice and user-friendly website without these principles. Just bear in mind that a website with high usability and user-friendliness will always flourish in the real world.

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