Most people think of web design as having a lot to do with making a website look attractive, and they wouldn’t be wrong. After all, a great-looking website does catch the attention of people, a big plus if you’re promoting your business, which is probably why you have a website in the first place.
Web design, however, does more than just make your website look pretty. It also plays a crucial role in your content marketing strategy.
You can post the most interesting and engaging content, but if your web design leaves so much to be desired visually, you can forget about people wanting to read it. After all, people do judge books by its cover, and a website that’s wanting on the design front makes for a very unappealing cover, regardless of the value of its content.
Then again, a visually attractive website does not a content marketing-friendly web design make, at least not automatically. Taking in your content has to be comfortable for your visitors too, or they will bounce off to another website that features the same topic but presented within a web design that makes consuming your posts more convenient.
So what are the elements that directly contribute to a content marketing-friendly web design? Here are six of them.
Without a doubt, a beautifully-designed website is eye candy for many. Unfortunately, it can also prove to be a distraction, especially when the content you’re trying to showcase is nestled somewhere behind some elaborate design elements.
For your content to be consumed the way you want, you need to minimize the distractions that obscure it. It will also help if your web design has a more neutral background, regardless of the overall color scheme of your site. If your site has a blog (which it must have), a transparent or white background will make it easier for your visitors to read the quality content that you’re offering.
The fonts you choose to use for your articles can spell the difference between readable content and content that makes people uncomfortable enough to stay away.
You see, people like to read something with letters they can actually read. Unfortunately, some websites use typography that’s too small as to render them unreadable. Readers, in general, don’t like squinting or concentrating extra hard just to be able to read your content.
If you want your visitors to stay and explore your website and its content, we recommend that you size them properly. Of course, you must use bigger typography for your headings, but fonts at 14 pt should be good enough for the body text.
Your content may be compelling, but your reader has to get to it first before it can have that effect on them. When your site is pregnant with content, you have to ensure easy access to all of them, which can be done with a straightforward navigation setup.
Drop-down menus, search bars, hamburger menus, and a sitemap are all excellent web design elements that allow your visitors to jump from one piece of content to another with just a single click. The easier it is to navigate your website, the better the chances of your content getting consumed.
Visual appeal doesn’t mean the content has to look gorgeous once incorporated into the web design. “Visually appealing” here refers to content that looks engaging enough to actually read, like in the case of a post whose body text has short paragraphs, bulleted or numbered lists, illustrations, or anything that won’t make everything look like a great wall of text.
Yes, content that looks like a monolith isn’t likely to make people excited about reading it. Put up an article with very long paragraphs, and visitors will already get bored just by looking at it.
So keep those paragraphs short, break up your content using bullets, numbers, or lists, and use headlines properly to make your writing look orderly and disciplined.
You can have all the elements mentioned above in place, and you still won’t get enough people to consume your content if loading it up takes an eternity.
In a world where page load speed means everything, “eternity” here means four seconds or more. That means the pages that carry your content must not take more than three seconds to load. Anything longer than that, and you can say goodbye to visitors who almost always seem to be in a hurry.
Optimizing your images and minimizing the use of custom fonts are just some of the web design tweaks you can make to speed up your page loading and make your site friendlier to content marketing.
Since more and more people are consuming content on their devices, it would give your content marketing efforts a boost if your website is mobile-friendly. For now, adopting a responsive web design should do the trick; it’ll make your content look good enough on phones and tablets to read.
All the elements above have one thing in common: they’re all in consideration of your visitors and readers. So design your site with them in mind. Make consuming your content more comfortable and enjoyable for them, and see your content and digital marketing efforts produce better results.