Flat website is the philosophy of creating more user friendly yet aesthetically attractive web and application interfaces. The aim of flat web design is to minimize the number of clicks it takes to access content on a website. Flat websites are perceived to be more indexed, irrespective of where the website is being displayed or accessed i.e. computer screens, tablets or smart phones. Why people prefer flat designs for their websites over deep hierarchy designs is because plain sites are very simple to use and content is very easy to discover as it is not buried under multiple layers of intervening content; deep websites are very difficult to use.
A flatter hierarchy for web interface provides more prominent and specific labels for various categories and content, which does not overlap and is very user friendly.
Few examples of companies or applications illustrating flat designs include Tampa Green Hospital, Florida, British Health, Windows 8, Shopify, United Pixel Workers and even Magento.
In so many ways, analysts consider flat web designs as a response to ever growing mobile internet and mobile application trends.
Internet is on the move
Look around and every other individual would be busy doing something on his or her tablet or smart phone. The trend of mobile internet is ever growing and incessant. People can now easily and quickly access websites and content on their cell phones, whenever they want. This growing trend of mobile internet gave rise to the need of web architecture and mobile apps that provided fast loading pages, easy to use web interfaces and simple navigation.
Flattened websites are more SEO friendly
Yes! The flatter the website the higher its chances are of being shown in a search engine result. When you reduce the number of clicks to reach the deepest layer of content, you make it easy for search engines and users to embark upon the desired links. Otherwise, if everything is buried deep down, with each click leading to only few useful links, will make the website less visible on search engines.
It is important for web owners to keep track of their search data and number of clicks. This will assist them in analyzing what customers felt when they landed on their sites. The more the number of clicks and the more turning over of pages means that the visitor was looking for something specific but your landing did not provide him with the necessary links. In such cases creating internal navigation function for a website would be very beneficial. It would take the visitor directly to the product or service he was looking for, increasing your website’s standing.
Hyper-Realistic designs are no more In
As an early website design trend, web developers had started focusing on some hyper-realistic graphics for websites so as to make visitors feel more real world like. But eventually with the rise of mobile internet and apps, hyper realistic designs of the websites are facing many challenges. These graphics are not quite optimized for multiple screens and platforms and take a long loading time. Moreover, transforming such design into responsive apps could prove to be a nightmare.
Mobile users demand responsive and fast loading web pages. They don’t want clues on how to use content in the digital world, thus it makes the plain design a necessity today.
Employ grid designs
Grid designs further add to the benefits of a flat design website. Grid design is very responsive itself. It properly organizes content and conveys meaning to the audience in a simple and understandable way.
Avoid difficult to manipulate features
Websites should make use of only those attributes and features which can be manipulated for mobile screens or touch screens. For this purpose, fly-outs, sliders and other trickery embellishments must be avoided. The website interface should be aesthetically attractive and functionally effective on all platforms and screens.
Bold colors must be used
Flat websites make use of bold, contrasting and solid colors instead of muted ones. This allows bordering the different sections and providing useful information, for instance a particular color shrugging at certain type of message or information.
Don’t experiment with fonts
For clean designs, typography should be picked very wisely. Your website should not be bragging about various font styles or designs you are capable of using. You should add typography of the sort that adds to the beauty of your website and conveys the message without causing any ambiguities.
There is no one or right answer to whether Flat design should be preferred or the Deep design. It totally depends on how the website is expected to operate. Clean websites are more catchy, simple to use and functionally effective. If you have specific and distinct categories then you should consider a plain website and get out of the customers’ way. But if you have too many categories or items to offer then it cannot be boiled down on a single page; you should reconsider your overall web architecture.