There are many theories out there about just what makes for a good or successful website design. One commonly held belief is that pretty sites and low conversion rates go hand in hand. But could this possibly be true? Could all that effort put into the appearance of your plastic surgery website simply be for naught?
Web designers of this opinion will stress optimization, navigation, content and the like over color and design. It is true that a pretty site doesn’t always equate to high conversion rates and, in fact, can perform poorly. After all, some of the most beautiful things in life don’t always turn out as we’d expect, take cubic zirconia for instance. But it is also true that a site focusing on everything but appearance doesn’t necessarily equate to high conversion rates either.
In truth, all of these element are of equal importance in web design. Great optimization will get visitors to your site and great content and easy navigation will keep them there. However, there have been studies conducted proving that the appearance of a site is very important in determining a user’s perception of that site. In fact, many studies show that it is the first factor to influence a user. It’s been said that a website has four or five seconds to grab a person’s attention. In those four or five seconds, it’s not the optimization or the navigation that users are looking at, it’s the site’s overall design and appearance. If a site’s design isn’t appealing in the user’s eyes, they will go elsewhere, regardless of how well optimized your site it, how easy your navigation or how valuable your content.
On the same token, a flashy and arresting website may induce a visitor to stay after those first four or five seconds, but if they don’t find what they’re looking for in your content or can’t find it because of your poor navigation, they will eventually leave and will never come back. The key is to find a good balance between all the important elements of web design. A site must be well-optimized for users to find it, and it must be user-friendly and easy to use. Pages much load fast, content must be valuable, and the purpose of your site must be obvious and clear. Visitors must be able to contact you in a secure way. And, despite what others may say, your site must be appealing and attractive to the user.