Web Tip: Is There Such a Thing as Optimal Web Design?

When it comes to the concept of design it is difficult to nail down the best by using a singular standard.  Design is an art and what is good or bad art is hard to define.  Design is fairly subjective and is vulnerable to the likes and dislikes of the user.

Now come the concept of optimal web design.  What exact does optimal mean?  It means “the most favorable or desired form of any particular subject”.  How does this relate to the subject of optimal web design?  Perhaps we can say that it is a design that best satisfies the tastes of the masses, while at the same moment works within the limitation of the function.

This now beg the question.  What is optimal web design?  You can say that a website is optimal when it provides maximum usability to the visitor while providing operational viability.  The balance for the designer is to provide results for both the client and for the end user.

When designing it is important to keep the end user’s experience a priority.  The site needs to be friendly to them.  It needs to be easy to use and navigate.  It needs to provide useful and pertinent content.   The content has priority over the look and feel of the layout and artwork is secondary.

There is nothing wrong with a simple white background or very clean and simple lines in a website.  Perhaps even a reduction in unwanted images that cause long page loads is needed.   Keeping essential elements like page title, navigation and content  is necessary.

The use of pictures need be be used sparingly.  Only those that reinforce the content should be used.  Don’t use picture to only decorate the page.  This will be distracting to the site user.  Although pictures are helpful they need to be used wisely.

Your site’s navigation needs to be simple, organized and consistent.  This makes moving though your site easy and predictable.  This will only help your visitor to get to the content they want.

Include in the design a way for your visitor to gain access to basic information regarding the website.  A good start is to include an about us page as well as a privacy policy for the website.  These element help foster your relationship with your visitor.

Having a consistent layout is rudimentary in creating an optimal web site.  You will need area reserved on the page for these four areas common to most every website.

  • Header
  • Navigation
  • Content Area
  • Footer

Finally, while aesthetics play an important role, creating an optimal web design is still one that best methods for better usability in a website.  Form and function need to work perfectly together to create a positive user experience.

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