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Five ways to streamline your website

It seems human nature for people to go back to basics when things become cluttered and complex. Website designing is no exception. Before, internet users were wowed by flashy website designs. However, as the online space become crowded and as the users' attention span shortened, website designers are now simplifying websites to make them more user-friendly.
Prioritising efficiency and functionality is one of the top website designing trends today. For website owners who are still stuck in the old-world design principle that "more is more," here are five easy steps to kick-off the simplification process for your site.

1. Clearly establish your business goals

The main reason why a number of websites can't streamline their websites is because they don't know what they want their sites to achieve. Is it to build brand equity? Is to inform your audience? Is it to capture emails? Is it to make sales? If you have multiple goals, how do you tier them according to priority?

Only by knowing your targets and business goals can you identify which components are necessary and which are just add-ons.

2. Determine the essential components that influence results

For those who have been doing marketing for a long time, you've probably heard of the Pareto Principle. For the benefit of those who are not familiar with it, the Pareto Principle basically states that 80% of your businesses or marketing outcomes directly result from only 20% of all your tactics and strategies. This is why it's also called the 80-20 rule. Anything beyond the 20% is embellishment or add-on.

From the list of goals you established in Step 1, determine which components on website actually help achieve these goals. For example, if your business objective is to increase engagement and improve sales, the necessary elements can include your sign-up form, social proof and testimonials, your social buttons and your blog.

3. Eliminate unnecessary pages

Unless you're running a dynamic website for an enterprise, there's no reason for you to have hundreds of pages. This will not only confuse visitors on what you really want them to do, it will bring down your site's performance as well as cause navigational problems for your audience.

Experienced web designers would recommend a lean list of pages you need depending on your business objectives. Don't put pages on your site just because your competitors have them or because you saw these pages on another site and wanted to imitate them. Remember, the more focused your website is, the more effective it would be in fulfilling your goals.

4. Move more content above the fold

Don't expect that your site visitors have all the time in the world to browse your site. With all the other options out there, visiting your site is only one of the many items on their "internet browsing itinerary."

That being said, it is imperative that you put your site's most important content above the fold so you can convey your message and show your call to action without the need for your visitors to scroll down. This will also help simplify your site. Since you've already shown what's important, it would be less tempting to put unnecessary elements below the fold and on other pages.

5. Restrain yourself when using colours

Unless you're selling rainbows or colouring pens, you should limit your use of colours. It's very easy to fall into the trap to create website designs using multiple colours. Remember, colour use, just like anything in web site designing should be geared towards building your brand and amplifying your message.

Simplicity, they say, is beauty. It's a little cliché but it's definitely one of the top web designing trends this year. How about you? What are your tips on streamlining a website design?
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About Subhash Chandra

Subhash Chandra is an SEO & Social Media Consultant at TisIndia, in Noida (UP), India. TIS India is a leading web design development and social media marketing company offers innovative web solutions to world-wide clients.