“Looks” means a lot, doesn’t matter what is inside – at least at a first glance. We are human beings, and we love to see good-looking things. It pleases us. Whether you take an example of a beautiful dress, a nice car, a colorful gift item or an attractive billboard on the highway, we always appreciate beauty, elegance, and simplicity. Your business website is no different. The better you package it for web audience and increase its approachability, the higher your customer retention is. Good design that is also elegant, acts as an ice-breaker for visitors coming to your website for the first time. Imagine you have received lots of gifts in your birthday party. All gifts are wrapped in colorful packets. Now you wonder which gift item to open first. By choice, you would prefer to un-wrap the items which have the most attractive packaging and bright look. This is because you expect something special to be there when uncovered. This is a human instinct. The same goes for your business website. Given a choice, nobody would like to spend time in browsing a website that looks dull and monotonous. In this article, we will find out what makes a website rank high to its audience, both aesthetically and logically. Building trust is the stepping stone We trust things that we like to trust and feel confident about investing our time on. Trust develops from our visual and emotional feelings about a thing. For a website, its design and engagement factors are the building blocks of trust. Your website should look good enough to make a good first impression to your web audience. They take only milliseconds of time before taking a call whether to stay and learn more about your business. Don’t do what you don’t like to see in others Do you like to interact with a portal that does not catch your eyes? If not, then why would others do the same for your website? A poorly designed website with old content does not really buy customers’ time. Sometimes, website owners are biased with the design of their website. To them, proprietor’s decisions take precedence to visitor’s choice. Many times, website owners are not in a position to differentiate between a good and better design. They consider things for granted because they don’t have the domain knowledge to analyze the scope for improvements. Even worse, some don’t care about the design. To them, quality of content, product information and pricing are more important than UI or design aesthetics. The design is the second priority. All these lead to a poor design experience for the web users. Every design in a site has a purpose Consider what makes you fall in love with your site. Experiment with a variety of outputs and share them with friends to check its engagement score. If you closely monitor each part of your website’s pages you will know that every building block plays a vital role in lead conversion. The purposes of the top menu, header banner, slider, sidebar components or footer links are different in how they relate to various users’ expectations. The design aesthetics for each of these components should be treated with equal importance. The designs of inside product pages or lead conversion pages are even more important. You need to take visitors in confidence before they interact more and take a positive action within your site. Show care for your own business face Your customer will appreciate your effort too. A professionally designed website that is ergonomically tested, builds confidence in a prospect’s mind. It tells them that you care for what you do. And, you try to do the best for your own business. It reflects a positive vibe in prospect’s mind. The thinking is that if a business has done the proper investment of time and money in design, branding and marketing effort, it would also take care of its customer’s best interest. A professionally designed website carries a message of customer satisfaction and customer excellence. The logic is simple. Unless you showcase something really engaging in the first few seconds of customer onboarding, you lose their interest and the business opportunity. No matter what best and how best you do things, your prospects will never come to know about the real worth of your business. If you bring the ‘wow’ factor in your website, your prospects will believe in the quality of your products or services that you promise to offer them. Dress for success It pays off well. Think you have an important meeting to attend. You do everything to make your first impression the best you can. You want to look perfect and presentable to win the deal. So you take out your best suit and shine your shoes for that perfect look. The same goes for your website. If you can dress your website well and make it appear convincing to your prospects, half of your marketing is already done at the very first interaction. It also increases the seriousness of communications for website visitors. People, looking for a product or service online, prefer to spend quality time on the web. The more you facilitate them in searching for the right things at the quickest time, the higher is the probability of conversion. The customers’ stay time also increases followed by repeat visits and repeat business. Follow best-practice design principles A professionally crafted website does not necessarily mean that you need “the Midas touch” to turn it gold. Following some basic design principles can work wonders. Maintain a minimalistic design, work on the user interface and improve upon font, color, texture, graphics and white space. Ensure good use of internal linking to your key product or service pages so that users can easily navigate through the important sections of your website. Keep enough room for the audience to read through the details of a page. Include supporting materials or references to the pages that you want the reader to consult for knowledge gathering. Place the right information block at the right section of your web interface and be vigilant to users’ browsing behavior. Smooth transitions between pages help retain customer’s interest which in turn reduces bounce rate. Use Google analytics tool to your advantage. It provides you with page view reports and user behavior data that you can use to enhance design components of any page. Indulge in A/B testing and improve landing page conversion metrics. Understand what your visitors like in your website, what they don’t. What keeps them engaged and how they want to be engaged. Experiment with little variations in design and UI components. A close observation on effort vs. yield with time would give you an optimum result. Finally, do what suits best to your business and what you can afford to do. Take simple steps towards perfection and achieve smaller goals keeping larger objectives in mind. There is a handful of internet resources that you can consult to learn best design practices. Talk to your web designer, discuss on what to apply and why, and finally review results at regular intervals. Improve things in your way and keep the momentum on. The results are always satiating.