With a concise brand you stand out and are remembered by your customers. Brand elements such as logos, colors and fonts must be used uniformly and conform to the brand on all communication channels, especially on the web. In this article I have compiled the five most important tips you should consider when branding your website.
1. Forget the Optics for the Beginning
A visually appealing Internet presence is a great thing no question. The visitors of your website, however, are primarily looking for information. What do you offer at what price? Where is your office and how can you best be contacted? How big is your company and which references can you show?
Your website is a tool to present your company and your offers in a clear and understandable way. So before you lose yourself too much in questions about colors and shapes, concentrate on the basic structure of your site. This should functionally and customer-oriented bring the most important functions of your Internet appearance to the point.
2. Stay Humble
Once you know what you want to position where on your website, it’s time to design the content. Choose colors, fonts for headers and body, buttons and form fields so that they harmonize with the rest of your brand. For this purpose, a design guide is a great help, which contains the most important elements of the brand and defines rules of application.
Important: Stay modest! There are an infinite number of great fonts and color combinations, but your website should first and foremost be consistent and brand-compliant. Limit yourself to a few design elements for the layout of the different areas of your website. The principle “less is more” applies.
3. Gymnastics for Your Logo
Your logo should be as visible on your smartphone as it is on a 27-inch desktop screen. It must fit into the small square favicon box as well as into the image file of a social link. With one single jpg image, you won’t achieve this goal. For the Internet your logo must become flexible, or in technical jargon “responsive”.
If you display your logo very small, text can quickly become unreadable. In this case, adjust the proportions of the name and logo or leave out individual elements of the logo completely. Use the logo in the desktop header in a wide format and in the mobile menu reduced to the essentials, for example the name of your company without the corresponding slogan. But always make sure that you do not enlarge or shrink the logo disproportionately. Proceed with sensitivity!
4. Photos as Part of Your Brand
Images are an important element of your brand identity, which often receives too little attention. Consciously selected and high-quality photos not only underline the content of your website, they are also part of the brand image.
Make sure that the photos used are consistent and match your brand. Before you place the pictures on your website, collect all of them in a folder and compare them. If your photos show people, ask yourself whether they fit your target group. Make sure you have a consistent hue — does it match the colors you use for text, backgrounds, and buttons? Which part of a photo should still be visible on the smartphone screen in portrait format and over which part of a background image do you place a page title?
5. Stock vs. Custom
Today you can get many design elements off the shelf, from type to photos to a completely designed website. With only little money or even free of charge you can publish a ready-made web presence under your desired domain and need to adapt only text and logo. Sounds great, doesn’t it?
Unfortunately there is a problem: A generic website also makes your brand feel generic. What’s the point of your own website if you don’t stand out from the competition and present your unique brand identity coherently on the web? You can inform about your offers, but nobody will listen to you if you don’t stand out among thousands of similarly designed websites. Even in times of Wix and Squarespace it is worth the effort to represent your unique brand on the net.
About us — Namo Studio
Roman Kasinski is managing director of Namo Studio for brand strategy and development. Namo is an owner-run branding agency based in Bern, Switzerland. More information can be found at www.namo.studio.