If the Internet has wired the world in a network, websites are the ‘face’ of that network through which data such as video, text and audio can be exchanged, in addition to carrying out communications and transactions of all kinds. As websites form the front end of this huge network (servers and communications paraphernalia being the back end), their appearance should not appear to be cluttered or unattractive. The reasons for websites to be better looking are:
- Websites are the first real interface between customers and network, and should be designed in an easy to understand manner
- Websites with too much info appear cluttered and face system latency
- Well designed websites derive better customer eyeballs than insipid ones
- To face increased competition in the digital space, websites have to be concise, attractive, relevant correct, and easy to navigate
The digital world is choc a bloc with billions of websites that cater to practically every field under the sky. And with more and more companies, institutions, individuals and government departments joining the network, competition is on the rise. As a corollary to increased competition, it is but natural that all eyes are set on that elusive customer traffic. It has been observed through various surveys that a majority of customers prefer visiting websites that are:
- High on the search engine list
- Visually appealing
- Easy to understand
- Specific to the search category with relevant information
Given the importance of the above mentioned reasons in garnering better customer traffic, website design in India as a specialised hub based discipline has gained traction. The term ‘website design’ encompasses a broad sweep of design elements, protocols, use of proprietary software and markup languages, content writing and editing, interface structuring, testing, search engine optimization and marketing. Here, the importance of testing especially user acceptance testing should not be underestimated, for the same would figure out the ease of navigation or the lack of it from the users’ perspective.
Things to avoid in a website design process
Absence of a search box: Instead of browsing through the entire website, users prefer searching for specific information, and in the absence of a search option, will find the website lacking in focus.
Difficulty in navigation: If customers face difficulties in finding links and search buttons, they are sure to get frustrated. In such a scenario, they would simply move to the competing site(s) that offer better navigation.
Too flashy homepage: The homepage of a website makes the first impression, and it goes without saying that a visually appealing one would entice users. However, there is a thin line between being visually appealing and flashy. A homepage with too many graphics, links, flashy fonts and content will be a non starter from the users’ perspective.
Absence of relevant info: Well organised, relevant and correct information in a website has the potential to draw customer traffic in a big way. As there are plenty of competing sites eyeing for customers, the absence of relevant information in a website can mar its prospects.
Scope of website design in India
With India being posited as one of the top software hubs in the world, website design related business has shown a marked increase. In fact, numerous companies, institutes and individuals are engaged in website design in India. The vast pool of trained manpower available at a fraction of cost vis-a-vis its overseas counterpart has made India into an attractive destination. And with a multitude of engineering colleges churning out trained manpower by the day, the worldwide demand for software professionals trained in website design and related areas can be easily met by India.