You’ve probably heard and read almost everything there is to know about responsive web design (RWD), going mobile, or using large images for your website. These 2015 web design trends may be sweeping the Web – but that doesn’t mean you need to jump into the bandwagon just yet. Like any other fad, these things come and go.
When people change their minds, it may call for a change in design as well. Some businesses (especially start-ups) may not be too happy with this idea. Aside from extra web design costs, it’s going to take them additional time and effort to maintain a cool-looking site. Often, what these firms need is a ‘back-to-basics’ approach that’s affordable, simple, but user-friendly.
What Counts as ‘Basic’
It doesn’t necessarily mean old coding techniques, or sticking to a black and white motif. A ‘basic’ approach in web design means ‘putting usability above design’. Can you recall any fancy website you’ve recently encountered? They would typically have hidden menus, floating photo galleries, or even an unconventional layout (for those brave enough). Yes, they look fun, creative, and bold.
But they may not be user-friendly.
A user-friendly website typically follows three core principles:
- one can effortlessly navigate through each page
- the website can be viewed across multiple devices
- content can be easily understood by most users
A ‘basic’ website has all the relevant and updated information related to the business. Anything in excess – like parallax scrolling – is just a plus. That doesn’t mean that these websites are boring. On the contrary, if web elements are properly utilized, basic websites can be really beautiful.
Benefits of a Basic Web Design
If you have a small business website, don’t feel bad that you’re not incorporating today’s big trends. Here’s why:
- Small and/or special niche websites may want to stick with basic web design techniques because it’s easier to maintain. A simple website that you can update once in a while is better, than spending half your time trying to figure out how to post a short blog.
- They’re inexpensive. When starting your own business, you may not have enough funds to spend on a high-end site, or to hire a webmaster. Instead, you could just get a fixed template, put in quality content, and maintain the website yourself.
- Basic websites are easy to understand – and navigate. This eliminates the guessing game that plenty of users feel when visiting the Web nowadays.
- The problem with complex sites is that it involves too much work (and resources) to alter. Simple layouts can be easily customized. Once you’re ready, minor tweaks can be added onto the web design for better aesthetics.
- You don’t need to worry about changing trends.
Be More Than Meets the Eye
There are plenty of web elements you could take advantage of to stand apart from the competition. Colors, images, text, layouts, and animations are just a few. The trick is knowing HOW to combine these components to properly reflect your business goals. If you’re not sure where to start, ask a local web design firm for help.