Minimalistic site design: features, advantages and disadvantages
In the past few years, web design alternately reigned as either a flat style, now skeuomorphism, now material, now flat again … All these styles have one feature: they either come, then they leave. What can be said about minimalism. In web design, this trend has been practiced for a long time and very successfully, promoting laconicism and simplicity. But what to say, this style has long “attacked” all spheres of our life: architecture, journalism, painting, etc.
In order to introduce you to art in the style of “minimalism” I present to your attention the painting “Blue Age” by the famous French artist Yves Klein, who is the founder of monochrome painting. Style is one of the aspects of design. With it, you can also pass on the company’s distinctions of the company, its competitive advantages. Some novice web designers contemptuously refer to boring pages and begin to create “cool masterpieces”, embodying a bunch of stylistic refinements.
This is how informational sites come into being, adorned with dazzlingly beautiful, but inappropriate screensavers, or e-commerce sites that resemble acid disco. Naturally, such web jargon harms the main purpose of the site and is incomprehensible to its target visitor. Do not repeat such mistakes!
The minimalistic design of the site only at first glance seems primitive. Therefore, many web designers believe that it is very simple to implement. However, this is an erroneous point of view.
But what about Malevich with his “Black Square”, you ask? I explain: it is painted by mixing several types of paints, among which there was no black (it was better to learn at school :)). This is also minimalism, though not monochrome.
Style vs. Design
Many web designers (and most of them do not exceed 30 years of age) mistakenly believe that style and design are one and the same. And these are completely different things. Design is a way to ensure communication with the user at various levels. He helps people do what they came to the site for.
In fact, even a professional web designer is not so easy to think through the details of a convenient and logical structure, find the right images, typography and other elements that help convey the basic idea of the site to the user.
Minimalism in web design is especially welcomed by visitors to e-commerce sites. One of the reasons people look into online shopping is to save time. Of course, they will appreciate the efficient navigation and fast loading of web pages.
A small fact: online stores lose 4 out of 10 potential buyers just because their pages load too slowly!
So, we smoothly approached the advantages and disadvantages of minimalistic web design, whips and gingerbread. Let’s start with the whips.
The disadvantages of minimalism in site design
Despite the fact that the concept sounds pretty cool, it does not mean that it has no flaws.
First, this is not easy to achieve. The fact is that the development of minimalistic design takes as much time, effort and money as the development of the usual (if not more). Therefore, this type of design is not suitable for sites that seek to reduce their time and costs;
secondly, the issue of glut. When the site is at a minimum, even the smallest error can significantly affect its reputation. If you try on the role of “minimalist”, get ready for criticism and viewing under a magnifying glass;
thirdly, there is always the risk of removing more than necessary and losing some really important elements. If you hit hard on the belief in minimalism – you can end up with a site that looks cheap and unfinished. True, it is easy to fix – add, for example, a few stylish touches or rich content;
fourth, it will limit you. Over time, your site will grow, and a large amount of content is the worst enemy of minimalist design. You will fight for each new element, especially if it does not fit into the established structure. There are many legendary sites that have made an indelible impression on users, and it will be very, very difficult for you to beat them. Remember the Nickeldeon logo, and you will understand what I’m talking about.
Why you should still choose minimal design
Agree, minimalism in website design looks stylish. Anyway, at the top of the list of priorities, people always have an aesthetic component;
simple and clear navigation is the first step to successful communication with visitors. They feel accustomed if they know where to find something, and where they are at the moment;
The main focus is on the content – it is he who should first of all attract the attention of visitors. “Yes!” Big and bold typography. “No!” Annoying ads and advertisements;
Fast loading of web pages of a minimalistic site, as opposed to resources overloaded with images and videos. Each of us at least once visited the site, which could not be loaded “for centuries”. Annoying, right?
The important is immediately visible. Accents are central to minimalism. Imagine that the user’s view is a high-precision laser. A minimalistic contrast tone catches the eye much faster than a page with a bunch of colorful blunders. For example, you enter a completely white room with one red table — what do you notice first?
In other words, the user does not need a large selection. Then he will click on the link that you need. As an example, give the company Gengo.
On the main page we see the almost complete lack of choice. It is immediately clear what the next step will make the visitor. Although, if we go into the extremes of minimalism, the top four links can also be removed.
Let’s sum up
If you plan to develop a minimalist site design, keep in mind that you will have to get rid of most of the text, applications, buttons and navigation elements. In general, from everything that enhances the functionality. In the end, there should be only the most essential thing – that without which the site cannot function at all.
You will have to think carefully about all the details that will make your child shine even without decorative and entertaining elements. Be prepared to go to the point when the site will have nothing to delete, but at the same time it will have a nice appearance and high functionality.
Minimalism in website design is a practical and reasonable solution, as long as it meets the functional and aesthetic needs of your business. Before implementation, read more in detail with the rules of web development in this style. You can do this with the help of specialized video courses on web design, or you can by stuffing cones and creating inefficient resources.
And do not forget that even a great design can not replace high-quality marketing and customer service. Take feedback seriously, because user feedback is the best way to find solutions. Implement one change at a time, so that visitors feel as comfortable as possible and not bewildered at the sight of drastic updates.