KISS! (Keep It Simple, Silly!)
The most successful marketing designs of the twenty-first century have been stripped of unnecessary elements to draw focus on the core of the ad. This trend relates to your WordPress site as well; take away distracting and unnecessary elements to draw attention to your content. Think of the new PepsiCo™ advertisements: simple ads that draw your focus to the new can design and elicit a feeling of thirst. This is how you should approach your site, no matter the type. Create your site around your content, so your viewer is drawn to it instead of an external link or picture.
Different colors elicit different emotions. White backgrounds bring a feeling of sterility to a website. Red and pink tend to be active or feminine colors respectively, and blue or green tend to be masculine or peaceful ones. Black tends to be seen as aggressive. What emotion do you want your viewer to be feeling when they look at your site? If you are promoting your up-and-coming garage gym a black and red sports WordPress theme might be just what you’re looking for to pump up your audience. If you host a blog catering to women, softer colors might be in order. Just remember when designing your blog not just to choose what looks snazzy; choose how you want your audience to feel when they enter your space.
Not Too Much Movement
Don’t get me wrong, Flash™ is fun! Designing graphics which are unique to your website is a great way to draw attention to your site and entertain you visitors. Too much, however, can be a drain on users’ computer memory and attention. Since tabbed browsing is the norm these days, most people have many windows and several applications open at any one time. If they come to your site and are immediately bogged down by the multiple animations or videos, they may just close it out instead of waiting for their browser to resolve it. Use graphics as a tool, but do not rely on them too much. Oh, and before I forget: NEVER USE A SOUNDTRACK! There is nothing worse than browsing the web only to be blasted by an unexpected soundtrack; worse, it may make the viewer mistake your site for a pop-up ad.
Keep Your Content Organized
Simple organizational skills go a long way on a small website. If you try to jam-pack your landing page with too much content, it will overwhelm the viewer and much will be missed. If, on the other hand you are too Spartan and leave only a few morsels of information on each page, your viewer may get sick of clicking on link after link. The key is balance; use the different pages to organize your site but leave a good chunk of consumable information on each one. Each page should be designed as a timed experience. Unless it’s intended as being an informative article or entry, don’t make a page a five-minute reading experience.
Stay tuned for our next article on how to up your WordPress game!
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