Visitors won’t spare a thought for a website crammed with disorganized content.
Organize it in such a manner that they remain glued to the site for long.
However, you might be left in an awkward situation while designing a feature-heavy site comprising featured posts, Twitter feeds, RSS content and others.
Let’s weigh all the options where you can manage these designs and keep in mind both the content and features.
Prior to designing a content-rich site, let’s evaluate its features that stand out in comparison to others. What interests the user the most and define its purpose? The answer to these queries could differ from one site to the other.
For instance, McDonald’s website attracts its users with ‘Order Now’ button that lists its products in detail. On the contrary, users don’t prefer to look into the other content related to staff strength, company history or terms of service.
The same is applicable when it comes to blogs. Visitors prefer new content and other featured posts instead. Social media and branding are second in importance.
Let’s analyze these guidelines prior to planning a website:
- Verify what kind of content is essential in the first place. Plan out internal pages, homepage or if you have any mention on special pages.
- Content-rich websites contain elaborate features with regard to each and every page. However, be clear that every type of feature serves a purpose in some way or the other.
- You can organize the entire content based on its importance i.e. hierarchy.
After organizing the content, it can be a lot easier to think of arranging it from the design perspective.
Consider these aspects of how the design will look balanced and can be arranged in the first place:
Get Final Content Ready
Tread cautiously while dealing with your clients. If the design is limited, a simple typo can be adjusted. But the entire process might get complicated if you change it, and make it shorter or longer depending upon the requirement. It is very essential to have your content ready before the design and wireframing process. Many times the client may ask for content first, but changes in content will need to be done at a later stage. To get full approval of the content early on explain to your client why you need it right away and why it will affect the design. Insert in the contract extra fees for not just the extra time needed to effect changes in content, but also for the extra time that will go into revising the design to suit the changes. A simple explanation and agreement is all that is needed to make the client decide on the final content straight away.
Keep It Organized
The moment you finalize the content, it is better you execute it into web designing. Wire-framing holds the key for any form of designing process. However, this phase would require elaborate planning as it takes longer.
Hierarchy Of Type And Layout
Many websites that are feature-rich keep content simple and use visual hierarchy to guide the users’ eyes to what she/he needs. Many factors affect hierarchy but many websites that are heavy in content and that have extra features, take the route that is simpler. They create hierarchy with efficient typography and place content in the layout. Sections at the above left portion are accorded more attention; sections at the portion towards the lower right get less attention, while bigger sections are set up among smaller ones. It’s useful to adopt the F Pattern to place visual hierarchy. You can use typography to explain sections of content and place these in order of importance.
Make Grid-Like Design
All said and done, it is a novel method to stick on large content to a grid where you can manage it effectively or organize it based on the order of importance. Besides, you can separate both the physical and visual areas of the content.
In addition, use the grid framework or set rulers while a designer is engaged in sketching a content-rich page. Firstly, organize it by keeping the marginal and padding rules consistent across the grid without any exceptions.
Directory And Page Structure
An elaborate sitemap is the need of the hour if you have a website that is bulky. In the sitemap, you can find out how pages are inter-connected with each other and thus enabling you to communicate with them. Decide what content interests you for a single page and what can be separated. Both the page as well as directory structure go hand-in-hand.
There are plenty of options especially techniques available at your doorstep. Without disturbing the design element, both developers and web designers are capable of adjusting in more such content.
Display Click Or Hover
Many websites display features on hover or on click. For instance, Twitter and Facebook feed update forms. They demonstrate an input field that is simpler. When activated, send buttons and other options pop up. Besides, the technique applications could even get more creative in due process.
Much depends on the visitors’ request if you could use tabbed content to hide or show the content. Side widgets too use this process. Besides, tabs are primarily used to create necessary data flow to the right tab from the left one. These tabs are used specifically to highlight lots of content and in different purposes.
Tabs are also used in more creative ways. Therefore, don’t limit their use. Tabs are described as an interface method that serves as a purpose to clean-up a feature-heavy site.
In content-rich websites, it showcases popular, grouped and featured content. Practically speaking, users get involved themselves through the website content.
Welcome to the times of content sliders. Like the tabs, content could be fit in a specific place whereby visitors could select whenever it is required. On the other hand, sliders could provide smooth communication. This includes animation that focuses on the attention of people at large.
On the other hand, sliders could include blog posts too.
Content And Menus
One comes across plenty of navigation menus as well as drop down content. To mention at first glance, navigation bar especially White House one covers almost all website content through dropdowns.
By using proper markup, create complete dropdowns and styling wherever it is necessary.
These dropdowns also include imagery and event content and thus makes them even more beneficial:
Removable And Collapsible Boxes
Pay heed to your visitor’s request by exiting out the options of alerts and views. Similarly, you can minimize close alerts and model boxes. If some sections are removed, they can focus on several aspects that will lead to better interactivity and action.
This design at the bottom allows a website to display blog posts meant for skimming purposes where blurb, headline or post images are included. Blurb, headline or post images span out across horizontal width. They feature lots of content within a small space.
Comprising the slider, the front page features four content portions within a single area. It adds interactivity and visual experience. Here we come across several areas of the content through the process of thumbnails with the headline at the bottom, while they display the content’s short portion on the hover.
This website consumes much time especially when it comes to complex navigation that tends to move with content-rich sites. To organize this navigation, various sections are totally separated amid the header from the right side and left side.
On the other hand, calls to action and more links in the content enable users to navigate. Interactive slider, imagery and clean lists are the other design features. Primarily, they can be used to create hierarchy near heavy and complex content.
Livestream content is divided within tabs into various sections. Thus, more such content is managed into even further tabs within each and every section.
Perhaps, visitors might be taken aback to discover a bulky site without any hierarchy. This perturbs designers who would rather stick to both hierarchy norms and design principles. But, the kind of content one likes to watch can be arranged similar to a grid-like form.
In this article, I have explained everything in perspective from the designing aspects while dealing with the content-rich sites to the more useful tools like tabs, sliders and much more that will help you in a more effective way.
Hope this will lift your spirits and looking forward to your feedback by way of comments…