Unless you’re an artist, it can be hard to identify good visual design. When it’s good it just “feels right” and when it’s bad, well, it might just make you want to turn away. According to Usability.gov:
“A successful visual design does not take away from the content on the page or function. Instead, it enhances it by engaging users and helping to build trust and interest in the brand.”
Usability.gov goes on to identify several basic elements to consider when creating a successful website user interface, which include:
- unity – everything feels like it belongs together
- contrast – making items stand out
- hierarchy – organizing your site so that more important elements have more prominence.
An effective website showcases the brand and identity of the organization it represents. What does yours say to your digital visitors? Check out the examples below or see how Vision's team of graphic designers will work with you to transform your website's look and feel.
Using Unity Effectively
The city of Gillette Wyoming effectively uses its key colors of blue and green throughout their design, as well is in their photography, to make the site feel unified and consistent.
The city of Mankato, Minnesota also leverages key colors throughout the website design with contrasting accent colors to bring attention to important areas of the site.
Using Contrast Effectively
Western Virginia Water Authority does a great job of focusing users’ attention on the action buttons in the middle of the page by using contrasting background colors.
The city of North Ogden City, Utah uses bold red navigation bars to stand out from the muted blues and browns of the background image.
Using Hierarchy Effectively
The city of Ames, Iowa immediately directs residents to the most important action by using bold, color-coded action buttons, but also allows for secondary paths through top navigation buttons and additional content below the buttons.
Kings County, California makes it easy for residents to find the most requested information on the right hand side of the page, and displays more detailed content in the middle section.
Take a Look at Your Site
When you look at your organization’s website, ask yourself, does it feel right? Do the design elements feel unified? Do important elements stand-out through the use of contrast and hierarchical design?
Sometimes having an outside opinion can help. If you need a fresh perspective on your site, contact us! Vision offers free website evaluation services that can help illuminate potential issues and suggest opportunities to improve. Even if a full redesign is not in your immediate plans, these discoveries often lead to incremental changes that can help even your existing site more effectively represent your community.