So just as an introduction, my name is Connor Jones. I’ve been a freelance graphic designer and software developer for the past ten plus years. All this practice has given me a solid hold on what makes a website design effective. Nowadays, programming is no longer a roadblock for creating a website. With tools like WordPress and Wix, programming has stopped being a prerequisite to creating a beautifully functional website. Designing your website is also an important part of the Wix SEO process. So make sure you design your website to be both functional and beautiful.
With that said, let’s get into the meat of this article> Here are the best practices for creating a professional looking Wix website.
An often overlooked step when creating any website is the planning phase. Believe it or not, winging it tends to end in a rats nest of navigation and meaningless pages. That’s why it’s best to properly layout your website either on paper or by using software.
Questions to ask yourself in this phase are:
- What do I want viewers of this website to do? Do you want to collect emails, make sales, or just inform users on a subject?
- Who is going to visit? What demographic is visiting my site? A website aimed at women in their mid 40’s is going to look a lot different than one aimed at 20 year old men.
Once you understand these things planning should be fairly simple. Don’t overcomplicate this step, it only needs to be a rough outline of how your website is laid out. Just remember K.I.S.S (Keep It Simple Stupid).
2. Choosing Your Fonts
Next up, is choosing the right fonts for your site. This is a tough one, it took me almost two years to start understanding what makes websites typography good or bad, but I’ll break it down to the most important things to keep in mind.
Make sure the font/fonts you use are consistent with your design. That means avoid using a crazy fantasy font on your professional portfolio, and for the love of god, NO COMIC SANS.
Next up and possibly most importantly is readability. There is a lot to keep in mind for this but in general, try to keep the color of your text contrasting with its background. If you can’t tell if a font is colored incorrectly try crossing your eyes just a tough and see if you can still read it with blurry vision. It’s a cheesy trick, but it works. Now that you have color down we need to choose between serif and sans-serif fonts. Don’t know what that means? That’s okay, serif just means the letters have extra little curves on ends to make small text more readable, think Times New Roman. Sans-serif just means no little curves (Fun Fact: sans literally just means “Without”).
Try and use serif text in large bodies of text, or anywhere that fonts get small. Titles, on the other hand, tend to look better as Sans-serif.
3. Break up text content with visuals
In between headings, and sometimes between paragraphs, putting visual content (IE. Sliders, images, videos) helps break up content and make it far less daunting for visitors. No one wants to read an essay, make it more like a nice picture book or magazine article.
4. Consider using a pre-made template
One of the best things about Wix is its community. There is a massive amount of free and paid premium templates to look at. If all of this seems too daunting, or you just don’t want to spend the time, consider finding a template that fits your design style and layout.
5. ALWAYS Keep users in mind
The number one rule of design is to always keep the end user in mind. If something isn’t easy to use, it doesn’t matter how pretty it is, DON’T USE IT. Nothing is more disappointing than finding a beautifully put together website that feels like a Rubik’s cube when you navigate through it.
You don’t need a degree in User Interface Design to make a nicely functioning web page. Especially with Wix, most of the templates have already taken care of this step for you, all you need to do is not break it.
That’s all I have for now. Keep this page favorited as it will be frequently updated and expanded as time goes on. There are a lot of factors to consider when designing a website but this list gives you all the basic tools you need to create a kick-ass site. Now go forth and create something amazing.