Within the digital space, if there is one segment that is continuing to elicit interest for creativity and skills, it is web design. Thanks to the digital revolution that has taken place over the last few years, code manipulation is much easier for programmers. This has enabled them to equip the computer to handle far more than just text. You thus have vivid photographs, audio, video and other simulated images that can be used within a web site to attract visitors and keep them there.
Graphic as well as web designers today have a lot more colours to play with as well. They can also make use of visual textures ranging from smooth glass to ethereal fog and also conceive shapes that were not in the realm of imagination some years back. 3D animation too is now possible thus giving the designer sufficient variety and scope to give full vent to his creativity and skills. They are now free to use a combination of all of the above elements and present an output as a web site with pages that are not only visually pleasing but also can be put up quickly.
Having said the above, successful online businesses are not all about only attractive web designs. The external appearance does play a role but just like a solid building has more to it than its external façade, a good web design needs to concentrate on other functionalities as well in addition to its looks if it has to make an impression on search engines.
Web design includes features like anchors, a nice silo structure, easy navigation, content and SEO. That does not mean it should be a complicated piece of work either. You just need to strike the right balance and keep in mind that it should at all time be user friendly. Regular and interesting content will always remain king and will keep visitors coming back to the site.
Anchor links for instance enables visitors to access the information quickly without having to sift through other stuff. The right integration will take them to the text or image associated with that link immediately. A good silo structure presents a broad overview of the site to the visitor with sidebar links so that visitors can again go to the topic of their choice and not keep searching within the site for anything.
Navigation links also provide visitors quicker access to relevant web pages. When you add features like the comment and customer review sections along with a contact form, you are laying the foundation for healthy interaction with your visitors and they can give honest feedback about your site and how you can improve it.
Finally adding relevant and up dated content using appropriate keywords will ensure that search engines notice your site and make it easy for it to be found. This is part of search engine optimisation and plays a major role in enabling you to get free organic traffic to your site.
Note: Martin Crutchley is a U.K.-based coffee lover and technology/marketing blogger with an interest in all things creative.