The Importance of Web Design Consistency


September 26, 2017

There always needs to be consistency with the different design elements of a website.
Meeting expectations
Being a unique website is important in the world of web design, with hundreds of millions of active websites available to users at any given time. Any big New York, London, Miami or Toronto web design company will stress to new companies the importance of standing out in the crowd. Web design specialists will also point out the importance of meeting customers’ expectations.
The line might be thin between being unique and being just like other websites, but it is there. Find ways to stand out with design elements, colors, graphics and fonts instead of puzzling together a whole new interface. Website users are used to an unwritten rule regarding where to click to find certain places such as the menu or contact info. It is often said that it’s best not to fix something if it isn’t broken, and this formula isn’t broken!
This doesn’t mean you can’t take a few risks here and there, however, adding a menu to what might be a better location on your site. Nevertheless, you’ll want to be sure to find ways to help users get to this menu on their own so they do not feel defeated by the website. User-friendly is the key term to keep in mind here.
Links and layouts
Consistency is similarly important when it comes to clickable titles and links. If something looks like it should be clickable, make it clickable! Imagine having a brightly colored icon on one page that takes you to a different page. Now imagine a similarly brightly colored icon that does nothing when clicked on a different page. Consistency from page to page on the site—not just within one section—is important.
This type of consistency is most easily achieved with an eye-catching and understandable layout. From hamburger menus to tab bars, whichever layout you choose on the initial page should be similar throughout the site. A user shouldn’t need to re-learn how to navigate the site with every click. In fact, the opposite should occur: it should get easier and more intuitive to use the longer they are visiting the site.
Use repetition
Repetition is at the basis of all consistency, right? Repeat colors, phrases and icons throughout the website to begin training users right away. The more familiar a webpage is to them, the longer they will stay. If they quickly get the hang of how your site is laid out through repetitive motions and clicking, it can only benefit you and the user. Of course, each page should have different and exciting content to make the click worth it, but it’s also important to keep some things predictable.
When it comes to web design, it’s good to stand out, but walking that line of standing out and fitting in is vital to staying on the user-friendly side of things. Being consistent in design, color, style, and menus allows for a superb website user experience every time.