All websites can be improved. There’s no such thing as a perfect website, and there never will be. Like every other type and facet of design, web design is constantly evolving. What’s popular one year could look old hat the next. What was popular five years ago will probably be obsolete now. You’ll never be truly ‘done’ with designing your website, and you’ll have to keep on changing and updating it for as long as it remains online. The last thing any web designer wants is for their creation to turn up on a humiliating article about the internet’s most outdated websites.
The tricky thing is that not everybody is a gifted web designer, and not everybody can afford to keep paying a professional web designer every time they want some minor adjustments made to their site. Every now and then, you’ll have to make a few amendments of your own, and if you’re not a professional, you run the risk of those amendments looking sloppy and amateurish. It doesn’t have to be that way. So long as you know a few pro-tip shortcuts, you can make changes that do your site more good than harm – and none of them are difficult to implement.
If you’re looking to get your website looking sleek and professional without putting excessive amounts of time or money into it, here are five ‘shortcut’ tips that you need to know about.
Use No More Than Two Fonts
Fonts are important. People can’t hear your voice when you’re writing for an online audience, so your font is what carries your tone. Most people understand that if you write in Comic Sans you’ll make yourself sound like an imbecile no matter how serious your subject matter is, but beyond that, font selection is something that a lot of people struggle with – even professional web designers! For a professional-looking site, go with the type of font you’d use if you were putting together a resume and seeking employment. Use one for headlines and another for body text. You should never need more than two.
Use No More Than Two Colors
Just as it makes sense to use no more than two fonts, you should also be using no more than two colors for the majority of your website. This obviously doesn’t extend to pictures or photographic content, but aside from that, two is all you need. You might occasionally use a third shade for highlighting very important text or making something ‘pop,’ but a two-tone color scheme helps to ensure that your website isn’t garish and remains easy to read and navigate. Make sure your colors don’t clash and don’t forget to check what your pages look like on every possible type of display before hitting the ‘publish’ button. Your colors are part of your branding and should remain consistent across the whole of your site.
Keep Columns Narrow
If you’ve got a lot of content to fit onto a single page, columns are your friend. People are more likely to read text content if it’s arranged into columns than they are to continue scrolling down a page to find out what’s at the bottom of it. That being said, narrow columns work better than wide columns, which sometimes struggle to display correctly on small screens and can make things look untidy. This isn’t just about text. Check out an online slots website and look at the way they arrange all of their UK 2021 casino in columns on their homepage. The idea behind that is the more online slots they can fit on a single page, the more likely they are to attract a casual browser’s attention to at least one of them. That advice is applicable to any product you might be trying to sell. If columns make people more likely to click onto (and spend money on) online slots, they’ll make people more likely to interact with your content, too. Columns are like the filing cabinets of web design; they keep everything neatly in order where it’s supposed to be.
Use Grids For Pictures
Picture placement can be tricky when you’re trying to achieve a uniform look, and even more so when your pictures are all of different sizes and vary between portrait and landscape orientation. You could try resizing some of them to make them fit with the rest, but that inevitably leads to some of your images looking stretched or squashed. The best option is to allow them all to be the size and shape they’re supposed to be, but use a grid to arrange them so they’re level across the top, bottom, and sides. You could have a square in the middle of your page full of differently-sized images, and it would look fine. Let those images loose, though, and you’ll find they either look disorganized or push your text content in directions you’d rather it didn’t go in.
If In Doubt, Use White Space
Just because space exists on your pages doesn’t mean you have to find a way to fill it. All of us have felt the temptation to put in one more picture or to write more text content because a page looks too sparse, but in practice, there’s nothing wrong with white space so long as it’s used properly. That means spacing it out intelligently. Distribute all of your content equally across your page, make sure there’s white space around every element, and then be content to leave it once it’s done. White space makes your page look less cluttered and also helps your visitors to see where everything is at a glance. Don’t forget that ‘white space’ doesn’t have to be white, though. It can also be dark space, and so you should also have a dark mode. It’s the way of the future for website design!
If all else fails, don’t be afraid to ‘borrow’ inspiration from elsewhere. Taking entire templates from another website (unless it’s made clear that you can) isn’t acceptable, but taking elements of someone else’s design and putting your own stamp on it is what all designers do, so there’s no reason not to do it yourself. Anyone can have a great looking website, and so will you if you follow the advice in this article!