Your web-design is a significant determinant on the user experience and the conversion rate. According to a study by Google, the first impression a visitor gets once they land on the site determines how long they are going to stay on the site.
If the first impression is unpleasant, it takes less than a couple of seconds for the user to bounce. Therefore, it is imperative for a web designer to understand the factors that affect the first impression formation.
When visitors land on your site, they observe the following metrics to judge whether it is a simple and sleek or complex and fancy website:
- The colour contrast
- The sharpness of the images
- The font used
- The web-layout
- The amount of text
According to a study done by Harvard University, the University of Cambridge and the University of Maryland the more complex a website appears, the less visually appealing it is perceived to be.
According to the above, there was noted a strong decrease in appeal with an increase in the complexity of a website. It was also important to note that, the sites with the simplest layouts were also rated as less appealing.
Therefore, to appeal to your ideal target market, you have to find the perfect mix between a simple website and the right mix of complexity and sleek.
Here are some of the factors you should consider to get the perfect mix.
Prototypical Sites Are More Appealing
The brain works with already established patterns. Patterns help the brain to process information and make decisions. The brain has a pattern of how a car should look like, how an apartment should appear and also how e-commerce sites should appear.
You want your website to have the basics of the prototype web-layout of your niche. It does not mean that you should not be innovative and creative when coming up with the site. Instead, the site should meet the basic expectations.
Familiarity breeds liking. Your users have searched other sites in the same niche as yours; they have already built a pattern in their brain. They will, therefore, like your site if it is in some way similar to the other sites. However, always make sure that you have something that makes yours stand out.
Simplicity Gives You an Upper Hand on First Impression
As you adhere to the familiarity principle, you also create a strong impression on the users.
Complex sites present too much information to the users to process. When the brain is presented with so much information to process it rarely has time to note, record, and internalise certain aspects of the site. Therefore, the user will either leave the website with an unpleasant unconscious or conscious experience.
With a simple layout, high-quality images and readable font, you can make certain aspects of the website stand out. It is easier to persuade the user to click on a CTA.
Simple Sites Command a Higher Google Ranking
The simpler the website, the easier it is to optimise it for Google ranking. A simple webpage has easier HTML readability, and most of the technical aspects can be optimised for SEO.
A simple website will also load faster as compared to a complicated and flashy site. A simple web-layout contributes to pleasant user experience and will encourage the users to keep visiting.
As you think about the web-design for your business, consult an experienced web designer. Also, ensure to take in-depth research of the most popular sites in your niche. They will inform you and the web-designer of the best practices when coming up with your simple and converting website.