There is a misconception between the designers that the website should be full of elements, in order to create an impression on the visitor. But, in reality the designs that are simple and to the point remain the longest in this industry. When we reduce the design to only the most important elements, it is known as “Minimalism”. In today’s post, we will be discussing how to achieve minimalism in your web design. This is one of the many techniques when designing a creative web site. Not every designer knows the art of reducing the web design to only the most essential elements but, this technique can be mastered.
Websites that have minimalism in their design always stand out from thousands of other websites that are full of content with no breathing space in it. The minimalism concept is all about keeping things as simple and easy as you can. Focusing on the important content only can improve the effectiveness and purpose of your web site. Reducing the un-important part from your website will assist users to the actual data and in return you will get the trust of your visitors. Presenting your content, images, information in the most simple and effective way is what minimalism is all about. Below are some great ideas to help you out in designing a minimalism website for your project.
Idea of Minimalism
Minimalism is a not a new concept and is around for centuries. As the world is becoming digital, this idea is getting more attention. Visitors don’t have enough time to search the whole site for their data, keeping everything simple for them is the idea behind this concept. With thousands of other websites available, visitors can very easily jump from your website if they are welcomed with a page that is full of un-necessary designs and content. Therefore, the best solution to keeping the visitor stay on your page is by understanding the key requirements of your visitors. Minimalism works by placing your content orderly and in such a way that it is easily readable to the visitor. A web page with lot of typography and negative spacing but, few images and clickable button are least preferred by the visitors. A good strategy is all what designers need to create minimalism in their web design. Ideas such as; adding negative space and reducing the un-important elements from the web page is from where you should start.
Executing a Minimal Design
Designers should have a complete focus while executing a minimal design. The whole concept is about conveying your message to the visitors in a simple and clear way. Having a project plan is always helpful when you are going to present large information contents in a minimal style of designing. This can easily go wrong if you don’t have a plan in your mind. Closely consider about what your site is going to present to the visitors and how you will be presenting it. If your site has more than one purpose, than you have to design it in a unique way to be attractive. Once you have got the idea, now it’s time to deeply think about the essential information that should be present on your website. Organize that information in a systematic order so that it can be easily searched by the visitor. When you execute the minimal design, you will be amazed at the amount of information that is actually required by the user and the amount of information that most of the designers put on their websites without knowing their importance.
The Color Scheme
Colors play a key role when you have a minimal web design. Usually black and white are the chosen colors in minimal designing but, there is no limit to be creative. Using a beautiful and balanced color scheme can add a unique touch to the web design. Designers mostly use the color combination of black and white because, these colors can be easily matched with the image of the brand while leaving a wide space for any accent color. The more unique you are in choosing colors, the more effective your web design will turn out to be. Remember it’s not about which color you use, it’s about how you use it. You can use a permanent color in the background to create a certain emotion. It will set the tone of your website, on the other hand you can use accent colors to display the most important content or highlight the features in your website. Accent colors should be carefully used so that, visitor are not drawn to masses of information at a time. Minimal web design is not limited to any particular color. Every color that you use in it will present the sites feeling to the visitors. From simple black and white to an energetic and bold color scheme, each one of it has its own importance.
Benefit of Typography
Minimal web designs naturally emphasis on the content due to the reduction of un-important information. This makes the use of a good typography more important. When your web site is free from unnecessary information, then all the focus is diverted to the simplicity of the typography in your website. Content should always be the main focus of any designer who is working on minimal web design. Although, things like; newsletter signup boxes, feeds etc. are good for a feedback but, they should be avoided as much as you can. When we talk about the fundamental concept of minimal design, these things are not included in it.
Headers and paragraph text are the two main things included in typography. You can use a good amount of negative space in both. If your content is good, it will defiantly stand out from others. When margin is added in the header, it automatically separates the rest of the text. Adding various properties in header such as; underlines, italics etc. is a good idea. Paragraphs contain a huge amount of text in them. The best way is to make them easily readable for your visitors by increasing the font size and adding negative space between the lines. It is recommend that you keep the font colors dark from the background but, not too dark so that they are easy for the eyes to read. You can always experiment with the color scheme until you find the best choice for your web design.
Recommended Reading: Guide To Responsive Typography in Web Design
Designing your Layout
Designing a unique layout is always an exciting part for any designer and especially if you are working on minimalism, it becomes more interesting. Designers have the complete freedom to showcase their creativity and forget about the column layouts. Although there are few things that designers should consider such as; meeting your end goals, providing an easy readability, and making the content easy to skim through. You can also find many inspirations regarding the layout design as a help before you start. The world is becoming more varied as the web design industry is moving to its future. If your layout design is making it difficult for the visitors to search for the content they need, than you should consider your design as a failure. It requires a great effort and devotion to create a brilliant minimal design that is easy to navigate.
Power of Negative Spacing
Using the negative space properly in content shows your skills as a designer. Negative space becomes more important when you are reducing the unnecessary content from your webpage. Designers use it as a tool to create uniqueness in their design. Spaces work as a visual guide for the visitors to easily understand about those items that are most important on the site. For example, when you put anything alone on your webpage it will automatically attract the attention of the visitors thus making it special. Negative spacing is also helpful in grouping small content with each other so that your design looks stronger. Spaces that are given between the content provides a breathing space for the visitors and give a relaxing feeling to the eyes and brain of reader. Designers some time think that negative space should be utilized with graphics and content but, it can also result in a clutter and un-organized design.
Keeping a Balance
The focus should be on the content, typography and negative space doesn’t mean that your website should be not having images and graphics in it. When there is not a lot of text on your website, it gives more weight to the images and graphics. Images can be very eye-catching when you have a good amount of negative space in your website with a beautiful collection of color scheme. In order to do this, you should keep a balance in your web elements. You should carefully analyze whether your content is supporting the image that you have placed there. Because, adding images and graphics for filling the space creates a bad impression and is very helpful in destroying your contents importance. Always make sure that images you have added are relevant with the content. Some designers also add different charts and pictures to make the site look neat and clean which is a very good idea. Adding charts and graphics are considered a more disciplined way of demonstrating your message than using photographs of verbal explanation when you are going for a minimalism in your web design.
Removing Unwanted Elements
Spending some extra bit of time while planning the goal of your website will save you from adding unwanted elements on the first place. You should carefully analyze the importance of every element in your website and try to figure out if you really need it. You can easily get confuse about what to add and what to eliminate so, keep yourself focused all the time while making the web design. Taking help from different online sources that provide the service of locating those elements that are not used by the visitors is also a good idea. You will surely get the idea about what elements are more preferred by the visitors and which element should be placed at what location. Creating a simple web design always creates a good impression of your design and demonstrates your message to the visitors in a simple yet creative way.
Designing and usability work perfect with each other if you can execute them correctly. Web sites that are easy to use and have a minimal design are the ones with longest future. Visitor will surely stick to a website where he/she can search for their content in no time. Visitors find browsing to be very fun when they can navigate on the site very easily. Usability is nothing without creativity so; keep experimenting with different techniques and styles to get the best out of it. Usability provides the ease of finding the content that visitors require which in return earns a respect and trust for your website.
Also Read: 20 Useful Usability Tips for Web Designers
While providing usability, there are different things that you should remember such as; providing clickable links that can be easily identified, clickable logo that goes back to home, providing a go to back button, avoiding pop-up windows, and indicating the page to the user etc. Basic rules that many designers don’t take seriously while they are designing web sites are; providing a consistent navigation to the user, making the content easily readable, clearly defining the heading, using modern codes in creating websites, and making cross-compatible website for all browsers.
What actually matters is that you properly understand what you will achieve by making a minimal web design. It is not necessary to always go with the minimal web design for your designing project. Some designs require graphics and good amount of content for the visitors. I would recommend that you emphasize on the information that you want to communicate in the minimalistic way. It will guide you better than any other thing. I hope you find this post useful for you. You can also share your own ideas that you think would be helpful for other designers by commenting below.