UX Principles For Creating Websites

Creating beautiful websites isn’t all it seems. There are important UX and UI principles to follow to build a relationship with your traffic and convert higher. Take a look at our list of the most important website UX principles.

Photo of Brodey Sheppard
Brodey Sheppard

Creating a good website requires a lot of planning, hard work, and perseverance.

Although success isn’t guaranteed, there are ways to make the website stand out. We’re talking about UX design principles, helping designers curate sites based on user behaviour.

Sometimes, a site may look great, but in reality, it proves tedious for users to navigate its different functions. By focusing on UX principles, designers place control in the users’ hands, managing the site based on their requirements.

Website Ux Principles

Today, we’ll discuss how to develop a great website, using UX design principles while also talking about the basics of web design. So, let’s get started.

What Are The Principles Of UX Design?

There are quite a few UX design principles, but we’ve narrowed down the five most important techniques, ensuring that your site stands out.

Ux Design Principles Quote Steve Jobs

1. User Experience

UX design principles deal with user experience and how the site benefits the user. Be it navigation or relevance; users must find what they are searching for, making your website stand out.

For example, online stores keep the design simple while increasing the product’s image size to grab users’ attention. Moreover, the description is to the point, meaning it takes only seconds to decide if you want to purchase it.

2. User Testing

User testing is quite similar to the earlier point, but the idea is that you must test which web elements work and which don’t. Through this UX design principle, you can constantly change and adapt the website to meet users’ demands.

In other words, your job doesn’t end once the site is live; rather, it’s just the beginning. You may have to add new elements that could affect speed and load time, so it’s essential to keep refining the site. This will improve usability and generate more traffic.

The Effects Of Page Load Times Graphic

3. Scannable Content

People visiting an online site don’t have time to read. Rather they want to scan the content to find the relevant article or post.

So, it would be best to divide the text through headings and sub-headings, making it easily understandable. The headings and sub-headings are like directions on a highway, telling users if they are on the right track. This will also allow you to manage the content according to the latest user trends.

Additionally, incorporating videos and images helps grab attention and is a fantastic way to have quality information on the site.

4. Flexible Design

An oft-ignored UX design principle is flexibility. You must remember that people may access the site on their phone, laptop, or other digital devices. As such, you need to ensure that all the on-site elements are visible on any device.

Percentage Of Mobile Traffic By Device

Additionally, using a flexible UX design speeds up the website, improving usability. It contains several layouts, and a user’s site browser determines which layout works best. This also gives your site the edge compared to responsive websites, which tend to be slower.

So, flexibility allows the device to adapt according to users’ requirements, ensuring that the site ranks higher.

5. Consistency

Your web design must be consistent to attract several visitors daily because people don’t trust unknown elements, searching for familiar products and topics.

All great websites use UX design principles to ensure that the web pages are in tune with the target audience. It would also help to use pre-designed templates that have been curated based on user experience.

You can conduct your research and tweak design elements according to the consumer’s needs. Long story short, your site must contain enough user-friendly elements to generate traffic.

We’ve mentioned six sub-laws below, part of the original Gestalt principles, relating them to web design to make the site consistent.

Gestalt Principles Ux Design Graphic

A. Common Fate

Common fate dictates that our eyes follow lines or objects, having a similar trajectory. So, if there are elements on your website that point upwards, it’s natural for users to look in that direction.

Using this law, you can direct users’ attention to a specific post on the website.

B. Similarity

The law of similarity is one of the most important design elements, which helps group objects of the same colour, shape, and size. Hence, you can keep articles that share the same topic separate from other posts.

This makes the website easy to use for visitors while also improving its rank compared to rival pages.

C. Symmetry

People look for symmetry in everyday objects, which makes it easier to group different elements. If you use similar shapes at equal distances on the website, users will consider them as one, focusing on the central point.

Understandably, it would be best to use symmetrical objects for web design, carefully thinking about texts, images, and columns that enhance the user experience.

D. Continuity

One of the design principles involves using lines on the website to direct user attention. It’s quite similar to common fate, but this principle deals solely with lines, even those that intersect.

Interestingly, if a line ends at a point, the human brain chalks out its future trajectory. Hence, it would help to use this technique for improving usability and time spent on the website.

E. Closure

Closure is important in a relationship, with respect to shapes and objects. For example, even if you don’t join all corners of a rectangle, leaving gaps between the lines, the human brain completes the shape for you.

Combining this technique with design principles, it’s possible to create eye-catching logos and other elements, ensuring that the website stands out.

F. Proximity

Another grouping technique is the law of proximity, which is simple and easy to use. Keeping various web elements together leads to the belief that they are similar even when they are not.

Hence, you must separate a dissimilar post from other content to avoid confusing people. On the other hand, options like the navigation menu, footer, etc., must lie in close proximity to create a user-friendly website.

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What Are The 8 Basic Web Design Principles?

You need to keep in mind the eight basic principles of web design. So, it would be best to note the following points for future reference.

1. Hick’s Law

If there are several options to choose from, users will take more time to navigate the website. In other words, Hick’s Law states that the time required to make a decision is directly proportional to the choices on offer.

Hicks Law Graph

For example, if you like books and visit a bookstore, it will take longer to decide which book you want to buy. On the other hand, if there are only a couple of books, it becomes easier to pick one. This is also known as the Paradox of Choice.

The same holds true for website design. You need to ensure that the website is easy to use, which means that it’s important to provide fewer options. If the drop-down menu or the web page design consists of more options, it might distract the visitors from the relevant information.

Hence, improving user experience by limiting choices is a vital element in web design. That said, don’t reduce the availability of products on the website; rather, provide better filters to make navigation easier.

The top websites have innumerable articles, but filters make it convenient for people to find the appropriate content.

2. Visual Hierarchy

Visual hierarchy is one of the most effective tools in website design as it helps rank content according to relevance. In other words, it’s the process of arranging the content based on what the eye sees first.

For example, if you visit an e-commerce website like Amazon, you’ll find that the “add to cart” and “buy now” options are highlighted in bright colours to grab visitors’ attention. Similarly, if your web page has images, it’s important to identify the relevant and high-quality photos, giving them preference over others.

You must note that not all parts of a web page hold the same value. So, it’s essential to make sure that people focus on the best post or article. With visual hierarchy, you can decide where visitors click first, using design elements to make the top post stand out.

3. Rule Of Thirds

One of the best ways to enhance the user experience is by using images. But randomly adding photographs to websites won’t serve the purpose, so you need to follow the rule of third.

Rather than placing the subject bang in the centre of the shot, try shifting it to one side, creating a visual appeal. The best images consist of nine equal parts formed by running two horizontal and two vertical lines through the photograph.

By following the design process, you can place the subject slightly to one side, leaving room for other visual elements. This makes it easy to grab visitors’ attention.

Rule Of Thirds Ux Graphic Design

4. Golden Ratio

The next important aspect of web design involves the golden ratio. Long story short, it’s the value of 1.618, which makes web pages more appealing to people.

Unsurprisingly, it has become an integral part of the design principle, ensuring that websites are user-friendly. So, if your web page comprises 600px, it would be best to divide the total area by 1.618, which amounts to 370.8px. This is the space you should assign for the content while the remaining area can hold the sidebar.

With UX design principle trends, you can similarly proportion the height of the web page, distributing various site elements accordingly.

Golden Ratio In Web Design

5. Fitt’s Law

Another design principle that helps develop a great website is Fitt’s Law. It states that the time people take to use a specific function on a website depends on the button’s size and its distance from the user.

This is why music apps have a large play button - a majority of users want to listen to music. That said, increasing the size of the button doesn’t guarantee success. On the other hand, navigation becomes difficult if an element occupies a large portion of the page.

The objective should be to place the button in a specific part of the page, making it easier to access for visitors. In mathematical terms, the usability of the function is a curve rather than a straight line.

Fitts Law Interaction Design Foundation

It would be best to use mouse tracking tools, gathering information about which buttons users hit frequently. So, you’ll know how large the button should be. For example, enlarging a small button by 15% is better than increasing the size of large buttons.

6. Occam’s Razor or Hypothesis

In technical terms, Occam’s hypothesis encourages users to choose a simple theory among many prevalent hypotheses. Hence, the trick is to keep the website free of clutter to engage more visitors.

Many web pages have too much information on the home page, which impacts user experience. So, it might help to keep only necessary options like ’subscribe’ while removing all distractions to make navigation easy.

Now, a simple website may not be successful, but it’s better than having a complicated page that users find challenging to use. Hence, the design process should account for simplicity for the best user experience.

7. Keep The Page Clean

The challenge in web design is to have all the relevant information without compromising on user experience. One of the key elements of site structure is to have enough white space, leaving room between an image and an article.

In other words, empty space makes the website visually appealing by maintaining space between lines, columns, and margins. It determines how you use visual hierarchy to arrange the information, including typography and colours.

Having fewer white spaces makes the content cluttered and the website less user-friendly. That’s why simple websites that incorporate empty spaces in the design principle rank higher; it’s because they look clean.

You need to use the white space to communicate information about the page just as you would with a blog post. Throughout the design, try to leave enough empty space, ensuring that the users’ eyes go to the important article.

Overall, it improves usability, also helping people with disabilities to navigate the site.

8. Gestalt Design Principles

Although we’re discussing web design, understanding Gestalt psychology will make the website better. It states that the human eye perceives an object in its entirety before looking at its individual components.

For example, if you look at a join-the-dots sketch of a car, the brain will recognise that it’s a vehicle without considering the dots individually. Similarly, the first time a user visits a website, his/her eyes will process the site structure as a whole rather than looking at its different elements.

Factors To Consider While Designing A Website

Let’s now look at some principles of website design that might help you increase usability to achieve a good rank.

1. Performance

Performance is an integral part of user experience that keeps users coming back to the website. You need to make sure that all pages, images, and blogs must load within seconds to make the page user-friendly.

If it takes time to load, then it doesn’t make a good first impression on users. You can use speed-checking tools to know what areas to improve for smoother usability. Usually, optimising the size of content or image is a great way to improve loading -speed.

2. Having A Suitable Interface

You need to keep in mind the users’ demands while designing the interface. It provides the platform for visitors to engage with the content, ensuring that they spend more minutes on your page. That said, make sure that it’s easy for users to find a relevant article by removing useless information.

The design must be crisp and clean, for which you must use consistent colours, making the website visually appealing. However, it would best not to use many shades; instead, apply one solid colour throughout the site.

Also, try to think from the audience’s point of view while designing, to ensure that they have a great experience scanning the website.

3. User Feedback

To improve usability, it’s important to take feedback about the website. You can have a dialogue box where users leave their comments and suggestions on how to make the experience more fulfilling.

2 Common Web Design Statistics

That said, feedback isn’t a one-way street, and using appropriate design principles makes the site interesting. Hence, if there are unavailable products, you need to share that information with visitors.

You can also have a progress box, showing the loading-speed, and making it easy for users to understand the process. Long story short, provide all the on-site information to users and ask them to suggest improvements.

4. Navigation

Website navigation is one of the first things users notice about a site. To build a great website, it’s essential to keep things simple, reducing the number of clicks for easy navigation.

During website design, you need to make sure that the navigation bar only has the necessary features and the drop-down menu isn’t too long. Another tip is to use everyday user language rather than complicated technical jargon so that people can understand.

Overall, try to ensure that users find the relevant content after a few clicks.

5. User Appropriate Content

Speaking of content, you need to filter our irrelevant information from the site so that users get what they want. It’s important to research what content is receiving the most clicks to separate posts that aren’t generating traffic.

This will help determine what articles work for your website, aligning them with the broader theme. Plus, your design principle must allow users to quickly find what they are looking for so that the website stands out.

It also helps search engines rank your website higher, making it easy to relate the content to the search query.

Do UX Designers Build Websites?

UX design and web design are two different concepts, although they share overlapping principles. Web designers curate the website as per the client’s demands while UX designers solve problems for the user.

Web designers find out the source of the problem before working on the solution. Once they make the necessary changes to the website, they test the new elements and release the site. But even after the site is live, web designers keep adapting and testing new design principles to make the site better.

In contrast, UX designers focus on user research to gather relevant information about the site and its products. This helps them find problems that users face, correcting them to develop a prototype. If the new changes improve the usability, UX designers can include them in the main design before launching the site.

Now, both UX and web designers need to create a heat map of user behaviour, ensuring they know which areas need improvement.

Heatmap Of Watch Website For User Design

How To Design A Good Website?

Designing a good website involves a lot of research on user behaviour to determine what content should be on the site. Once you get user feedback and check which articles receive more hits, it’s possible to design the website as per user trends.

Remember to keep things simple, ensuring that navigating the site is easy. Also, using UX design principles is no guarantee of success; you need to be patient and regularly enhance the user experience.

So, don’t forget to incorporate SEO principles to improve website architecture, making it easier for search engines to find relevant content.

Understanding UX Principles

That’s all there is to know about creating websites using UX principles; it’s time now to take your leave.

Make sure to improve the website daily and gather user feedback, making it more relevant. You can rest assured, that with persistence, your site will rank among the top pages.

Photo of Brodey Sheppard

Brodey Sheppard

Brodey is the CEO of sitecentre and a data-analyst in the SEO, Paid advertising space who uses machine learning and AI to advance sitecentre as an industry-leading digital marketing agency across Australia.

Find them on their website: sitecentre, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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