There's a huge difference between a website with good aesthetics and a website with good performance. However, some business owners confuse these qualities for being one in the same, which is how you can end up with a beautiful (and expensive) website design that produces little to no results for your business.
As a creative-first digital marketing agency with years of experience in the industry, we've seen aesthetics prioritized over the effectiveness of a website design too many times. Even some of the biggest brands out there have made this classic mistake and have had to learn their lesson the hard way. While it may be tempting to load your website design with all of the latest bells and whistles, what matters at the end of the day is if your website functions for your business and supports your goals.
Finding a Balance Between Website Function and Aesthetics
Certainly you want to have an eye-catching website design that encourages your visitors to stick around and explore. However, if visitors become too distracted from the visual components that your website offers, the end result will be a poor user experience. At the same token, if your website is strictly functional and offers little aesthetic appeal, the lack of interesting content can also lead to a negative user experience.
Finding a balance between function and the aesthetic appeal of your website is a challenge for most businesses. Yes, the face value of your brand is more crucial than ever, and it's controlled by the aesthetics that your brand puts forth. However, the role of aesthetics in website design is to grab the attention of your visitors, and it's up to the function of your design to provide the information on your website clearly and intuitively.
Aesthetics and Function Go Hand-in-Hand in User-Friendly Website Design
Instead of putting one up against the other, you need to treat aesthetics and functionality as equals. Both are critical components of a high performing website as you need both the visual appeal and user-friendly functionality to get the desired results.
When someone lands on your website, your choice of aesthetics need to spark immediate interest. You should include captivating, high-resolution images that clearly communicate your core offerings. Accompanying these images should be text that is appropriately sized and legible. Calls to action need to be visible throughout the website and designed to attract visitors' eyes.
Functionality comes into play by offering a user-friendly layout with intuitive navigation to help website visitors easily find the information they're looking for. Including a simple, but clear, lead capture form will allow your business to collect valuable contact information and help to move leads through your conversion funnel.
As you can see, marrying aesthetics with function is your ticket to a website that produces conversions for your business.
Signs Your Website Prioritizes Aesthetics Over Function
How confident are you that your website features a healthy balance of aesthetics and function? If you're not getting the desired results from your business website, there's a good chance that these two critical components are not working together to help you achieve your goals.
More often than not, businesses have a website that prioritize aesthetics over function. While the website may be beautiful, it serves little value to your business if it doesn't produce conversions or help you to accomplish your goals.
Here are some common signs that your website is placing more emphasis on aesthetics than functionality:
1. Visitors aren't sticking around on your website.
When people arrive in your website, they need to be able to quickly have an understanding of what your business entails and what you have to offer. According to a recent Google study, consumers form an opinion of your website within the first 17 to 50 milliseconds of arriving on your homepage. If your website is difficult to navigate or includes distracting visuals, visitors will quickly click elsewhere before investing time on a webpage.
2. You're attracting traffic, but aren't converting leads.
You've invested a lot of money in website design to include captivating visuals to intrigue your audience and keep them interested in your website. However, when it comes down to it, conversions are what matter, and your website isn't producing them.
While your website may be attractive, its design may not be helping to seamlessly guide visitors through the buyer's journey. Maybe your website is lacking compelling landing pages with lead capture forms. Or, if you are including lead capture forms, maybe they're too long and time-consuming for visitors to fill out.
3. You're not asking your visitors to take action.
Shockingly, many businesses neglect to include calls-to-action in their website. Or, if they do, the calls-to-action are not highly visible. If you want your website visitors to take a desired action, you need to spell it out for them and make it easy for them to convert.
Including too many calls-to-action on one webpage is also a design mistake as it distracts your visitors. As a best practice, use a simple, visible CTA button that directs website visitors to a relevant landing page with a short lead capture form.
If you're questioning the effectiveness of your website, we can help. Allow our team of website design professionals at New York Ave to complete a full assessment of your existing website design so that you can learn about areas that need improvement to optimize your conversion rate.
Contact us at New York Ave to achieve a website design that offers a healthy balance of aesthetic appeal and function, thus producing positive results for your business.