Simplicity is hard to achieve; what’s seemingly simple is actually well-thought-out. This not only applies to the way you live but also to the websites you run! Simplicity in design and form ensures that complex ideas or content get communicated effortlessly. Visitors tend to stay on your website longer as they are rewarded with a rich user experience, which in turn means better conversion rates.
Studies back the idea that simplicity in design brings rich rewards. A Google study some years back found out that users consistently ranked simply designed websites as more beautiful than the complexly designed ones. Also, the time that they took to judge was in the 1/50th to 1/20th second range. What does that say? Websites with simple designs make an impact in no time. First impressions matter, and they are often registered in split seconds. Responsive websites that are designed to load faster and seamlessly both on tablets and mobile devices have higher conversion rates.
A/B testing to solve the simple vs complex dilemma
So, how does one know which websites have greater conversion rates, you ask. Simple, it is A/B testing where you can use two variables of different elements of a website and test both with random users. This could be the call to action (CTA), page loading time, visuals used and their resolution, navigation etc. This testing will show that a page with a simple design loads faster, offers better UX and UI and therefore converts more often than not.
So, what makes simple design a win-win on the conversion front?
• When there’s just one CTA on the home page, for instance, users don’t have to struggle much about what action is required of them. Either they commit or not, and there’s no ambiguity, which leads to a higher chance at conversion.
• A simple design offers no or very few distractions. Sometimes when there is too much to handle on the website, users tend to lose patience and abandon the site. Minimal design and relevant content will lead to higher conversion rates.
• More white space in design is an indication of minimalism and simplicity, and users like to interact and engage with a website that allows them some breathing space, and not hurt their eye.
• Do away with pop-up messages that urge a user to opt for a course or sign up for a newsletter. These lead to frustration on the part of the users and bounce rates could only increase.
• Too much clutter on the website, say a red blinking box that says ‘Hurry’ or screaming headlines gives the feeling of it being a spammy one. A minimal, professionally designed website ensures trust and reliability, and your audience is likely to take you more seriously. Once you build trust, the chances of conversion also increase.
• Speaking from a behavioural psychology perspective, people typically like to visit sites where their instinct guides them on where to find what, and what action needs to be taken. Familiarity lends a sense of comfort and security; users don’t like to be challenged. The moment there’s a challenge, chances are you lose out on engagement.
• Simple design gets you a higher search ranking because Google favours simplicity in design and hierarchy.
With so many things in favour of a simple website, what’s stopping you from keeping your website simple! Go for it, then.