Recently, a good friend of mine launched a new website to showcase his design portfolio (you can see the website by clicking here). When he showed me the website, I was immediately struck by the minimalist design. In a time when websites are becoming overloaded with banners, buttons, advertisements, forms, widgets, and other distractions, this website cut all the crap and focused on only what was most important.
And you know what? It forced me to actually engage with the website and dig deeper into it. Most times, I get so frustrated with websites that I visit because they’re poorly laid out and there’s just too much junk to sift through to find what I need.
I’ve always been a proponent of minimalism in design. More designers should take the phrase “less is more” to heart, if you ask me. A well-designed, minimalist website eliminates distractions, loads quickly, makes it easier for visitors to find what they need, helps your content really stand out, and is just easier to use.
If you’re going for the minimalist look on your website, here are 4 key things to keep in mind.
- Eliminate all unnecessary elements—Minimalism is all about focusing only on the bare necessities. If something isn’t critical to getting the message across or making the website easier to use, it needs to go. Figure out what the most important thing is on the page, direct focus toward that, and scratch out anything that distracts from this.
- Don’t sacrifice usability—Of course, there’s a thin line between good and bad minimalist web design. Sometimes, you can take too much away from the design, making your website difficult to navigate. Make sure your visitors don’t have to think too hard when using your website. It should be readily apparent where they need to go on your website, and your navigation should be clearly visible.
- Apply minimalist principles to your content—The minimalist approach should carry over to all aspects of your website, including your content. That’s not to say that you need to obsess over word counts. It’s simply to get you in the mindset that you’re making sure every word on your website serves a purpose and is absolutely necessary. In other words, cut the fluff.
- Use your minimalist design to draw the eye to your main message—The whole point of eliminating unnecessary elements from your website is to get rid of the distractions so visitors will focus on your main message. With that in mind, make sure your design forces visitors to look right where you want them to—whether that’s to a call to action, a sales message, or a button you want them to click to go deeper on your website.
What are some other key principles of minimalist web design? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment.