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by Imi Bennett / 16 July 2018

Good design will make your website, brand and company perform better from the offset.

The Design Council conducted a study in 2005 of 63 companies that traded on the FTSE 100 over the course of a decade, discovering that companies who put an emphasis on design out performed those that didn’t by a whopping 200%.

As controversial as this sounds (and I’m not just being a bias designer here…) but when it comes to marketing design > content. When you’re browsing online, a website has a matter of seconds to attract your attention. We’ve all been there when a poorly designed website just makes you want to leave; with cluttered layouts, popups, confusing navigation and poor imagery or graphics. Design has the power to trigger trust, or mistrust, and this is even before they get down to reading your content. So, before you all start preaching “content is king”, consider whether people will actually stay on your site long enough to bother reading your content in the first place.

A study was conducted on the exact reasoning behind why some websites come across as trustworthy and others do not. Elizabeth Sillence and her team found that 94% of these reasons were design related, while only 6% were content related. Rather than collecting statements such as ‘it didn’t look nice’ we are able to ascertain real and definite design problems that turn people off from a website;

  • Complex, busy layout
  • Lack of navigation aids
  • Boring web design & colour
  • Pop up advertisements
  • Slow loading site introductions
  • Small print
  • Too much text
  • Corporate look and feel
  • Poor search facilities/indexes

good web design image

The chances are when you encountered a really good piece of design you probably didn’t notice it at all. Instead, you are able to enjoy absorbing the content without restrictive design barriers.

How do you keep people coming back for more?

Consistent Design

An inconsistent brand is forgettable. Some of our most iconic household brands are instantly recognisable by a colour or a specific shape, think Nike or Coca-Cola. It’s this consistency that sticks the brand in our minds. If a brand changed it’s colours with the seasons and updated it’s logo every year we wouldn’t be able to recognise these core attributes. You need to be able to communicate your brand in less than a second. The tone of voice, colour, type and packaging instantly tell people what your brand is all about. Like meeting someone for the first time, what sort of impression are you giving them?

Strong Branding

This is also why a solid set of brand guidelines and style guides are so important to a brand. It may take time initially but it’s worth it to spend time researching and curating the right brand for you. Good design will look at all areas of your business, taking into account what the company does; your company ethos, where your company is based, how old the company is, whether it is a contemporary or traditional company and what your customer demographic is. Once you have implemented your brand it’s best to try to stick to your design guidelines across all your output and boost the power and authority of your brand in the process. In the long run, good design will save you both time and money as you avoid constantly reworking your brand.

As Steven Bradley says,

“Human beings have an attractiveness bias; we perceive beautiful things as being better, regardless of whether they actually are better… and we believe beautiful things function better.”

To find out more about how to put your best foot forward when it comes to design give us a call or drop in to our office in Winchester. We work collaboratively with you to create the right visual identity for you and your company.

Imogen Bennett

Imogen studied Surface Design at University and has a natural talent for pattern and composition. She recently moved from London where she worked as a creative marketer.

She now focuses her creativity on more digital projects and tailoring her creations for Web. She’s a fan of a strong brand identity and communications that are easy for customers to engage with.

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