Content marketing and website design go hand in hand for as long as marketers can remember. One cannot be effective without the other and the entire digital marketing strategy can fail if not enough attention is directed towards these elements. Today, the user-centered design requires knowledge from multiple fields, from visual design to programming and psychology. The whole purpose of this iterative process is to improve the overall user experience, which will be influenced by values and views, functionality and aesthetics altogether. Obtaining that seamless experience is not an easy process, and it involves content marketing aspects and website design aspects combined.
How to combine content marketing with website design to create the perfect user experience
Making content pleasurable to peruse
The quality of the published content, as well as how it is visually exposed to the visitors of the website, is going to generate the first opinion they have regarding your brand. Both content marketing and website design determine the visitors’ judgments related to the website’s quality, authority, and trustworthiness. Besides making the content easy to find through the use of a clear-cut navigation setup, website owners should focus on making the information look like a valuable resource to the visitors. People will not consider the information serviceable and professional if it is not presented in a good light, which would make it comfortable for them to assimilate.
In order to make a content marketing strategy work, one must invest time and attention into minimizing distractions and tracing a focus line that visitors can follow while they scan the website. This is exactly what website design is supposed to do – make reading a satisfying, contented experience for the user. In simpler words, combining elements in content marketing with the ones in website design leads to an all-inclusive user experience. Decluttering the website and adding a neutral background are paramount conditions to make the content pleasurable to peruse.
Making content comprehensible
The second step in achieving the seamless user experience refers to readability. The content can reach visitors the proper way only if it is presented accordingly. No matter how good content is, it will go to waste unless it is beautifully conferred. There are certain website design elements that influence how comprehensible a website is. Among these elements, the crucial ones are typography and page layout. Making the design scalable for all screen sizes is also a necessity that cannot be missed if today’s requirements in terms of technology are considered.
Fonts can express ideas differently. Readability can be obstructed by using the wrong font and this will only make the user leave the website in a matter of seconds. Sans Serif fonts should be used alongside with Serif fonts, for a visually pleasing effect. A typography-related detail that is more relevant in this situation is represented by size. The size of the font must be carefully selected to make the reading experience pleasurable for the visitor. If the font is too small, the content is no longer accessible for the user who is very likely to believe that the source is improper for his needs.
The page layout is the one element that guides the eyes of the visitor throughout the existent content. Depending on the content volume, it can be sectioned into one, two or even three columns. Making a decision should be influenced by the website’s design and purpose. Shorter paragraphs and bullet-point lists help readers assimilate information easier. Because readers want to find what they are looking for as fast as possible, headline density should be high. Disciplined content can be scanned, read and comprehended quickly.
Website design and the Halo Effect
People may believe that the website is boring or unprofessional just by peeking at it for a second. This is called the Halo Effect and it is often used in psychology. As mentioned before, combining content and web design is a multidisciplinary art, proven by the application of the Halo Effect in designing a website. This effect refers to a cognitive bias that happens when the first impression towards something occurs. If a person believes that a website looks good, he will immediately assume that the content is high-quality. The overall impression of the website will impact the evaluation of other elements that are related to it. This is the motivation behind presenting content by respecting the philosophy of art and beauty.
The semi-flat design seems to be the focal point of this year’s website design trends. 3D design that involves numerous details, shadows, and other overly-technical elements can make the website slower, which may affect the user experience. Concentrating on usability while making the website look aesthetically pleasing is a requirement. Text must be adaptable, images must be compressed (yet high-quality), the menu should be minimized for the best navigating experience on all devices.
Color palettes should be selected according to the brand’s purpose, not according to current trends. The logo always dictates the color scheme, which is definitory for the entire website’s design. This is why tremendous consideration must be devoted when putting together the logo. An eventual rebranding can confuse visitors who might not recognize the website any longer. This confusion can make people lose their trust in the website as an informational source, that was arduously built before. Creating an exceptional logo is the first step in a long process that will delineate how successful the website is in its entirety.
The reader’s experience on a website can turn from good to great by simply respecting a series of rules. In some cases, the quality of the published content is not decisive because aesthetic matters take its place. Even though the content may have mercantile purposes, presenting it in the right manner will generate the desired results. Visuals weigh substantially more than website owners believe, and conducting all efforts in the direction of combining valuable content with splendid website design will definitely make a difference.