Whether you are a web designer or an online marketer, the first point of call for any online brand is the layout design of their website. It is paramount that brands place a high priority on creating web design layouts that can give visitors the right visual perception.
When a brand goes on to deploy a bad layout design, communicating the standpoint of the company can go wrong. It is also important to point out that badly implemented layout designs can be a huge turn-off for website visitors. Your brand’s marketing scheme can be marred as it would be difficult to take prospects further down the sales funnel.
In the course of this article, we would be elucidating what a web page layout is, the principles that govern layout design, and also, take a dip into the best layout design practices, as per industry standards. Without further mouthing, let us delve in.
What is Web Layout Design?
The layout of a webpage is basically how a brand puts out its visual messages with either sales incentives, visitor-engagement incentives, or brand awareness.
A good web layout design has good elements, and putting together elements in the best manner possible can create a strong visual impression for a brand.
I have been talking about brands for a while now, truth is, having a good layout design does not only apply to them. Blog owners who follow industry practices for page layout design can also accrue some benefits. Some of such benefits include; visitor engagement and visitor retention.
Every successful layout design ever crafted, has an aesthetic relationship with the page elements.
The Advantages of an Effective Layout Design
Many advantages can be accrued from an effective website layout design. In the course of subsequent paragraphs, we would be looking at 5 benefits that a brand can accrue by just having a good layout design.
#1. Purposeful Visuals
A brand can get higher visitor engagement and retention, which can ripple off into higher ROI (return of investment). When a web page has its visual elements set out in a way that appeals to the visage of visitors, brands can take the heat away from design and work on content delivery.
But with bad visuals, the brand would always rely on content to save the day. In some cases, the visuals gotten from webpage layouts are what incites visitors to binge on content. So bad visuals, no content engagement, and with good visuals visitors can engage with your content. Purposeful visuals that visitors engage with can aid a brand’s content marketing strategy.
A good web layout design gives a brand purpose. Purpose-driven visual elements in a web page layout always follow industry standards in web design. For instance; a page should never be overcrowded with images, the text elements should be broken down for clarity, and generally, all visual elements should be evenly spaced.
#2. Layout Design gives a Web Page consistency
With an effective layout design, your brand can achieve consistency across its web pages. When we imply constituency amongst web pages, we mean that layout design makes elements have a visual relationship between each other. For instance, layout design can make a web page have a similar style and fonts. A site that has inconsistency amongst its elements can be viewed by visitors as unprofessional.
In addition, a good layout design can help the brand to gain the recognition that it craves from its audience. With the consistency that a good layout design brings to the table, your audience would know what color, fonts, and other visual elements that it should associate with your brand.
Consistency in the hierarchy of visual elements can make a web page have a high retention rate for web visitors.
#3. A good web page layout design can make your brand built trust with its audience.
Most website visitors find it difficult to trust brands that have a very poor design. A layout design can help a brand to have a good rapport with its audience, who in this case are potential customers (prospects).
You can make the most out of some web development services that can help your brand have a professional touch. There are also companies out there that offer web builder services with cool drag and drop functionality. Also, most CMS (content management systems) like WordPress and Joomla, have plugins like Elementator and Divi that can be used to build effective layouts for blog or site pages. If your brand cannot communicate visuals elements that are not graphically misplaced, your audience would look for another brand to fulfill their order.
From another viewpoint, a website that has a professional look with a good layout design can establish trust amongst its audience.
Understanding the 5 principles of Layout Design
There is a strong correlation with color, typography, texture, and repetition, with a well-optimized layout design. In layout design, there are 5 key principles that any brand or graphic designer should take into account. These layout design principles include; space, proximity, alignment, balance, and hierarchy. In the course of subsequent paragraphs, let us delve into an overview of these 5 layout design principles.
A good layout design would make all the visual elements on your webpage have a strong connection with each other. Placing visual elements together is a good strategy for informing website visitors that they are all related. Visual elements that have no relationship with each other should not be placed together. Proximity is a graphic design principle that can be used to define the purpose of a layout.
Hierarchy in the context of layout design can be defined as the order wherewith elements in a webpage are placed. One of the best ways to implement hierarchy in a layout design is to make good use of size.
In this case, the most extensive visual element that one can use is followed by the second largest visual element and so on. One of the reasons why visual elements are important is that they are usually the first to draw the attention of website visitors.
Another interesting way to implement this layout design principle is to make use of contrast. With the use of contrast, a web designer has no need of manipulating the size of elements to show their hierarchy.
In this case, elements that have the highest contrast tend to stand out among other visual elements. Contrast is not the only to create visual hierarchy, as we would soon point out.
When you manipulate the position of elements on a webpage, you can create a hierarchy.
Space is one of the most important principles that govern the layout of a webpage. With space, you can organize separate visual elements, making them easy for your audience to digest.
Space is also used in a grid layout to fill in any gaps between columns and gutters. Also, space can also be used to draw attention from other visual elements on the same web page.
One of the best practices in creating a landing page; “is to evenly space different elements in a bid to avoid cluttering.”
When a page is cluttered, a webpage would have a layout of elements that are competing for attention from the website visitor.
One other essential element that appeals to the eye of your online brand’s audience is balance. A webpage that has a layout design with little or no balance can be a huge turn-off. Therefore, the best thing for webpage builders or designers is to build pages that have a good symmetry amongst their elements.
The last but not the least principle of layout design is alignment. There are three types of alignment, they are; center alignment, left alignment, and edge alignment. Edge alignment is a use case where elements on a web page are placed at the top, left, right, or bottom of a web page.
Left alignment is a principle that is usually deployed for text because it is normally read from left to right (this principle appeals to the English language).
Center alignment is used for smaller text sections like icons, images, page titles, or other visual elements. With good visual alignment, a graphic designer can achieve a comprehensive webpage workflow.