User Experience Design, or UX as it’s come to be known, is the new frontier in web design. Put simply, it’s nothing short of a complete revolution in how we design and interact with websites. At the detail-focused end of the UX spectrum is a re-envisioning of site architecture where time, focus and of course dollars play a large part in thinking through and challenging the perceived norms of what it means to navigate and interact with a website.
On the other end of the scale is the conceptual and creative that can extend from very simple ideas to a complete rethink of what a website should be.
In all instances it is a highly specialised creative process, exceptionally detail-oriented and ultimately a more expensive proposition with great payoffs for those that step forth on this road barely traveled.
However, as oft is the case with revolution, the changes at the top filter down to the street with benefits for even the smallest websites.
Imagine tossing a handful of coins on the ground and asking someone to find the single 5c coin in the array. It stands to reason the smaller number of additional coins the easier the task. The more in the mix, the more our eyes need to scan to find what we want.
This is the easiest application of UX as it primarily relates to Home Page Design. This idea suggests two applications:
- The singular item that you want to express to your site visitors
- The number of items that detract from the expression of that singularity
1. The singular item
Using this approach for your Home Page you would seek to define a singular action for your site visitors to take and to simplify that item as extensively as possible. If you intend to send visitors to search for products then ‘Searching’ is the singularity, so rather than utilising a headline and a Call-To-Action (CTA) sending them to your product page you might provide that search directly on the Home page as the primary stand alone item. As an extreme consider Google’s Home Page. Of course their business is one giant singularity but still, when you are on the Google Home Page there is no confusion as what action to take.
2. Allow people to find that singularity
Again, consider the coin analogy. The more items and elements that adorn any given page decrease the singularity developed and defined as above.
Conceptually it’s that simple.
Producing a simple design though isn’t … well… that simple really. Which is where we come in…