Welcome to the World of Web Design
Designing websites is like almost every other tech job out there, if done correctly no one will notice, but if it is done poorly then everyone will know. But what is web design? It’s the creative process and pre-planning behind constructing a website. It can determine if a website is viewed as trustworthy or even if it is worth the time of the viewer. Even if you know nothing about web design, you will still judge any website you go on based off of your own standards of what you think looks “good.”
Before this class, I knew very little about web design. Sure, when I was younger I would dabble in HTML and try to create websites using a variety of tools for free on the internet, but I never really got far with them. I never really saw making a website as a process, rather than just throwing random things together hoping they look decent.
Web Design versus Web Development
What makes web design different from web development? Even those these two are closely related, they both still have their own differences. Before I started my own research on web design, I though that web design was just all the aesthetics in a web site, viewing design and development as decor and architecture respectively. After researching it further, it seems to me that web design and development are more akin to blueprints and construction. Web design is where the ideas are drawn out on a piece of paper. The development portion is where the site comes to life and functionality in it. Also web design is heavily user focused. The designer wants to make sure that anyone who uses the website is able to with ease and with as little complications as possible.
What is Involved with Web Design?
Some further research on web design brought me to a few basics on what components that it is made of. According to tree frog (https://www.treefrog.ca/what-is-web-design) web design includes things such as layout, color, graphics, fonts, and content. They say that websites need to not only be visually aesthetic, but more importantly, the page should be able to be comprehended by the users.
Even though design is visual based, for websites it is much more than that. Ara website design (http://www.arawebsitedesign.com/what_is_website_design_66.htm) also talks about how design is usually focused on the visual appeal. However, they state that website design is much more involved than that. Web designers also need to look at usability, navigation logic, and user habits. Not only do they need the site to look good, the user needs to find information as fast as possible for the site to be successful.
Impact of Poor Web Design
What if a site’s design is not good but all the information is still there? Well if this was the case, the user probably would not stick around long to find out. Poor web design will make a site look unprofessional and untrustworthy to a user. One of the articles assigned in class (https://www.nngroup.com/articles/trustworthy-design/) shows just how important good web design can be. Poor web design makes a site look unprofessional and it will be a cause of concern for users of the site since it could look like someone haphazardly made the site in just a few minutes. This apparent lack of effort makes a site seem untrustworthy and unreliable since it looks like there was not much care put into it.
This is a tricky thing to answer, since web design is completely subjective. Sure it can be said that certain sites can look bad, but it could work for the site Different user groups can view a site in certain ways that are completely different. While the younger generations might like a site that is completely modern with fancy interactive portions, the older generation might find it complicated and scary. Even still, something that works for one site will probably not even work for another. Most sites could not pull off what craigslist does, which can only be described as a complete lack of design. But craigslist is a well known and popular site, even with its atrocious design. Because of how subject it can be, web design has no real clear formula. The only way to know if a site has good design is with trial and error.
In conclusion, web design is one of the most important aspects of a website, but is often overlooked by people. It is an strong invisible force that dictates if a site is deemed trustworthy or modern, instead of untrustworthy and backwards. As I continue in my web design class, I hope to gain a better understanding of what makes a website good or bad, and what I can do in order to create a well designed website.