Summary: The more elements your website has, the more complicated it will look to your visitors. Done correctly, The “Art of Less” can help you create a cleaner website which translates into visitors staying longer.
Art of Less = Simplicity
Effective websites all have several fundamental characteristics:
- Easy to understand
- Easy to use
- Nice to look at (easy on the eyes)
It is pointless to cram too much onto a website if it only frustrates and irritates visitors.
Complexity is distracting and worse yet, confusing. Simple sites designed with the visitor in mind deliver all the necessary information quickly.
Simple websites replace clutter with clarity, and achieve maximum effectiveness with minimum means.
Simplicity is about subtracting the complex and adding the meaningful. It is about making something easier to understand and use.
A well thought out website is a mechanism that creates a bond with the visitor – simple websites use a specific arrangement to encourage visitor engagement.
Google Study Results on Simplicity
Google researchers found that website visitors judge a website within 1/50th to 1/20th of a second. The study also revealed 4 very important determinations:
- Website visitors decide VERY quickly if a website is beautiful or not.
- Visually complex websites are consistently judged as less beautiful than simple websites.
- Websites with a simple visual design were rated as beautiful across the board.
- Website visitors prefer websites that allow them to instinctively know where everything is, what their options are, and what actions they need to take.
Bottom line, the study found the more simple the design, the better.
In another study conducted by University of Maryland, Harvard, and University of Colorado, researchers found that universally, the more visually complex a website was the lower its visual appeal was.
Top 9 Art of Less Tips
- Don’t add elements just because WordPress lets you. Apply this to your content, visuals, and features.
- Delete any elements that don’t add meaningful information. The more elements your website has the more elements your visitors need to think about. Condense your website to only its most necessary elements.
- Before deleting features and elements – consider your visitors’ needs and attempt to make things as quick and simple as possible.
- Limit the number of colors. Consider using one or two accent colors.
- Consider using a lot more white space.
- Use larger typefaces.
- Use grid layouts to organize website content.
- Dramatically reduced navigation elements.
- Flat designs are faster. Many website WAY over use gradients, shadows, and special effects. Consider making your website as flat as possible.