Visitors decide within four seconds of landing on a website if they want to continue reading. A well-designed website conveys ideas without adding too many graphics. It’s not about powerful content or attractive design; it’s about great user experience and dynamic functionality. It can be hard to juggle content and design. These tips will help do that.
To start, here are two pointers to keep in mind:
Know who you are: Successful web designers have one thing in common: creativity. Know what you can do as a web designer and what you are best at. Work on your designs to make them shine. Make sure your creativity matches what you’re trying to portray with your site.
Keep improving your skills: Often designers forget to practice their craft. Work on improving weak areas. With increasing competition in the WordPress community, you must deliver the best results to clients.
How to Improve Your Performance as a Web Designer?
The only thing that really helps improve your skills is to practice, but these tips will give you a leg up in the WordPress community.
The one thing all art and marketing have in common is proper visual representation.
When a visitor lands on a web page, there are only a few seconds before he hits backspace, and it’s the web designer’s job to connect with the visitor in these milliseconds using a clear hierarchy. Make sure your design is organized and structured into simple pieces of content using web design principles.
Visual hierarchy is a visual arrangement that helps the user best perceive and interact with your page so they easily follow the small pieces of content present. For instance, you might have heard about the F-pattern.
The F-pattern works on a common principle. The user scans the blog page from top to bottom and pauses at headers or images. This eye movement creates an F pattern. Your content will get more eyes if you dispay the imporant information in the F-pattern format.
Keep Photoshop Structured
Photoshop is a powerful tool that can make your images look more professional, or fit your brand better. If you are working with Photoshop, you should add proper descriptions to different layers to save for future images. Also, remove extra layers, if not useful. Try putting up all the files in a common folder and name them appropriately. Doing these simple things will save you time in the long run.
Never waste any time you can spend sleeping. -Frank. H. Knight
Consider Fonts and White Space
Proper fonts are incredibly important when creating visual and semantic designs. If you are unsure about the right palette, you can use tools like typecast. With so many changes in the designing community, you can find free fonts with Font Squirrel or Google Web Fonts.
It might seem like a common idea, but it isn’t. I’ve visited many sites with great content, awesome design, and only a little white space. Simple and clean pages are better than pages stuffed with content; you need not fill every part of the page. Adding white space will make your content easier to read, which will keep visitors around.
Use Eye-Catching Pictures
Images are the soul of every web design. Web designers use high-quality images for crafting attractive designs, but many are doing it wrong, especially with landing pages.
When designing picture-added-pages, use the BII rule. It says: your image must accomplish one of the three things: Brands, Interact, or Inform.
Human brains have developed to choose image over content. Your image must speak for itself.
Save Time with CodeKit and FitVids
Refreshing your browser to see the updated design is old school. Use tools like CodeKit to see page changes without refreshing. This saves you from unlimited browser refreshes.
FitVids is a great tool to help with video embedding issues. Video can be embedded easily with HTML 5, but web designers need to look for other things as well, such as the video resizes responsively and FitVids, a jQuery plug-in, is a great help for this purpose.
Reduce Size for Faster Designing
No one likes waiting around for a site or image to load. It’s easy to optimize files so they process faster. Exporting files in 8 bit PNG format decrease process time. You can use WPsmush or download the free Shrink-O-Matic tool. Photoshop is a good option for manual resizing, but not when there’s a limited timeframe.
Utilize A/B Testing
Every developer should make sure the changes they make are received well.
One of the best ways for this is A/B testing procedure. In this process, you put up the two designs and say two landing pages at the same time and research to know which one performs or converts more. You can use WordPress A/B testing tools to help you with this.
Can’t Find Work?
Don’t let the lack of work degrade your web designing skills. Keep practicing on new and creative website designs. Inspire yourself by sharing work with a design community like dribble.
Keep your designs simple, minimalistic, and smooth to surf. While these were a few selected tips, you can always try other ideas. For example, add Moodboards in your web designs, which never goes out of fashion. If you are working for a client, create prototypes to give him a picture of your work.
Have a tip we missed? Let us know in the comments.
Pulkit is a WordPress writer and web design, enthusiast. He loves helping people with website growth and content management. When he is not writing for tech sites or design blog, he can be found discovering new WordPress tools.