Tips for DIY Designing your site so that people want to come back

Content is totally king, but your content won’t mean much if nobody can read it. A good balance of white space, color, and typography work together to make your content easy to digest.

When designing for the web you need to account for the vast array of devices that will be accessing your website, from laptops to phones. Web design isn’t about how unique you can be with your application of color and font, but about how well the people using your website are able to actually use your website. Making a website these days can be done overnight, but a good site that puts thought into how to structure the content and present a cohesive image takes time and knowledge.

If you’re heading down the DIY route for your website, whether with WordPress or Squarespace, there are a few things important design rules you should keep in mind when designing your site.

If you have a lot of colors in your branding, keep your website colors very simple so your photos and graphics can show off your complete color scheme.

Color schemes

Your choice of color is one of the most important decisions you can make in your branding, and translating those colors to a website can sometimes be difficult.

You always want to choose high contrast colors for text and backgrounds. Dark text on a light background offers the best legibility which is why you don’t see a lot of dark websites. If you have a lot of colors in your branding, keep your website colors very simple so your photos and graphics can show off your complete color scheme.

If you have a lot of colors in your branding, keep your website colors very simple so your photos and graphics can show off your complete color scheme. Use pops of color for links and buttons, but keep the rest neutral so that your content can shine.

Black and white schemes are popular for this reason. You can add your own touch by adding a bit of blue to your black or using a pale cream instead of stark white, just make sure to choose a font color that has enough contrast to match.

Fonts & typography

The fonts you use to present content on your website are also very important to the way visitors experience your site.

The main body font size should be no less than 16px, and I recommend 18px or 20px to make your website even easier to read. Two font faces are generally the max in any design project, but especially on the web when you also have to consider the external resources being loaded when you use web fonts.

Popups suck. There's a reason they don't let the perfume lady hit you at the entrance. 😝

Popups are evil

Popups suck and I don’t care if they’re the highest converting thing in the world. Your visitors hate you every time they have to take the extra effort to “x” out of your stupid offer (your offer probably isn’t stupid, but it doesn’t matter because at that moment: it’s stupid no matter what it is). 😝

And there are other high-converting placements for your lead magnets and opt-in forms, ones that don’t make your visitors flinch. There’s a reason they don’t let the over-aggressive perfume lady hit you at the entrance. (You’d turn around and leave, especially if you weren’t coming in for perfume).

Popups are far less evil when they only pop on exit intent, but bombarding a visitor with one as soon as they hit your site is just a bad experience.

Happy visitors = happy customers

There’s a lot that goes into knowing how to design for the web, but these follow these few simple rules to instantly improve your website’s user experience. After all, isn’t providing customers with an amazing experience the name of the game?

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Natasha

Natasha Cozad is a web & branding designer & developer with nearly 20 years of experience building beautiful websites & brands.

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