If you have ever, at any point in your life, searched in google, “web design principles,” then you’re most likely somewhat familiar with this type of thinking: “Wow! Designing websites are so easy nowadays! We have high-tech browsers, incredibly fast internet speeds, and much more. Now we don’t have to deal with the limitations that designers in the past had to struggle with.”
This could be true from the perspective of a person who is already quite at ease with the basics of web design. However, this is not absolute. Now, if terms such as “Super Google Web Fonts” and “A responsive grid system designed by CSS” seem foreign to your brain, then there is still very much to learn. Here’s a couple basic web-design principles that all designers should probably know.
The ultrabasic grid systems
Since forever, in the times of the first century, it can be seen that the ancient codex used a grid system strikingly similar to those of ours today. In fact, the grid system determines how we read. Of course, hundreds upon hundreds of different types of grid systems have been invented, re-invented, altered, and much more. The fact is, they all stay the same, pretty much. So, try thinking of it like this: the way images and text are positioned in books, magazines, and newspapers have all been almost directly transferred to the outlays of the internet. Sometimes, people get the not-so-bright idea that you can be ‘creative’ and avoid using a grid of this type. Unfortunately, those happen to be the websites that are never even read.
Fortunately for us, there are thousands of pre-made systems of grids that we can use and borrow for our benefit. They are all responsive, and of course, easily compatible with the most popular languages of coding.
The visual hierarchy. Yes, people have an order to their reading. It is a highly known fact that in almost all cultures, people tend to prefer reading left to right. Furthermore, it is also a known fact that within these methods, there is a pretty complex set of rules that people sub-consciously use when reading. This is very true, especially on the internet, when people are more-so scanning pages, as opposed to reading them thoroughly. Believe me; people want to be able to scan through chunks of text easily and quickly. This way they can access the important bits of information easier and skip the stuff they don’t care about all that very much.
Please use fonts that are “web-safe.” Back in the olden times, a very sparse selection of fonts was allowed on the web. Today, the selection is increasing at a faster rate. If you tried to use a font that just wasn’t available, the visitor on the web-site would just end up seeing a bunch of random meaningless symbols that didn’t add up to anything at all. It is highly advisable that you check online first to make sure that the font you want to use is completely safe online and will work with the look of your website.