Posted 8th January 2016 | By ExtraMile

You may have read my previous blog on my top 5 design myths. In this blog, I'll be looking into this a bit more, with 5 more design myths- aiming to explain why the myths are exactly that - myths!

You may have read my previous blog on my top 5 design myths. In this blog, I'll be looking into this a bit more, with 5 more design myths- aiming to explain why the myths are exactly that - myths!

1. Once you've found a design that works, it will work for any company's site
When starting a website process, it's important to consider your target audience, and consider what you want them to be able to get from your website. It's unlikely that you will be able to find a website with the same aims as yours, with similar branding, target market, and content. If this is the case, it might be worth investigating your differentiator and emphasising that through your website, as well as considering alterations to your branding so you, again, set yourself aside from them.

2. You view the website in the same way that users do
As an employee of your business, it is likely you will know your company inside out. Things that seem obvious to you will need to be explained to the user. While you may know the technical name for your products, it's likely the user may only know what functionality they need from the product, so it's unlikely they will understand certain terms that may come naturally to you! The user may search for "fire extinguisher" and it's your job to inform the user about the different fire extinguishers available. It's extremely hard to detach yourself from a company you know a lot about, but its important to try and take the user's perspective to walk them through the process. Try writing your content early on in the process and send it to friends and family – if they understand it without needing further explanation, then that sounds like good content!

3. To get a good design, sacrifices must be made
It's important to find the balance between design and usability. It's all well and good having a website that people love to look at, but if it doesn't encourage users to get in touch with you, then that doesn't make business sense. A good combination of visual design and usability is essential for making the viewer want to stay on your site. It's also important to have calls to action (links on the site that encourage interaction – e.g. "email us" "get a quote") throughout your website, so that the users can engage with you without needing to click away from their current page.

4. Small details don't matter
The small details are sometimes the most important – have you ever been deterred from signing up to something because it asks for your phone number? Simply adding the word "optional" next to the box can, and has, influenced how many people click through to the next step. Although this may not seem to be a designer's priority, the ExtraMile ethos is something that our designers and SEO team take very seriously, so we are constantly thinking of ways to encourage user interaction.

5. Design is the most important aspect in websites
If you think of a website design as the design of a shop window, there are many other important things that affect the success of the actual shop. Firstly, the branding above the shop window – it's important to try to maintain a consistent brand throughout all marketing materials and for this brand to be engaging to users. If the design is not consistent with the brand, or if the brand is outdated, this could affect the success of the shop. Secondly, the location of the shop (as Jade discussed in her previous blog), the shop will be majorly affected by the amount of traffic that passes by – it is therefore important to consider SEO when designing and building a website to help drive traffic to the site. Thirdly, it's important to consider the efficiency of the staff in the shop – for a website this correlates to the speed of loading, the little features when you hover over a menu item, the colour of the box changing slightly for example. All of these features may seem insignificant on their own, but add them all together and you have a recipe for success!

Written by Emma Bourne, Business Coordinator at ExtraMile Communications.

extramile

About ExtraMile

A digital marketing agency with international capabilities