In visual art, minimalism was an extreme abstract art movement in the 1960’s in which artists created works comprising only of simple geometric shapes, such as a rectangle on a canvas, and later some artists made a statement with using a completely blank canvas, which was arguably too minimal. Today, more broadly, minimalism uses uncomplicated objects with a design that is aesthetically pleasing and functional, and art that is uncomplicated, such as single line drawings and ornamented geometric shapes.
In graphic design, minimalism was first popularized by the Bauhaus school in pre-war Germany, then later in the Dutch De Stijl (The Style) movement and Russian Constructivism. Minimalism was employed as a visual strategy using geometric abstractions to present information in an impactful and stylistic manner, often seen on posters of the time, as shown on the poster below from 1923.
Adopting a minimal design for your business website might seem like making an uninspired choice, but minimal designs aren’t necessarily boring, they’re actually great for conveying your message to your audience as fast as possible, and they provide several advantages over more content-rich options.
Although it might be surprising to hear, but the practice of graphic design is founded on organizing information to be easily understood by the audience, and websites are the perfect example of this principle. Users of websites generally spend only a few seconds scanning a page before deciding if it’s for them or not so making a good first impression is paramount. Read on for some reasons why minimal, or simple, designs are a great design choice and a frequent choice for websites:
Enhanced User Experience
Minimal designs focus on providing a simple and clear interface for users, the call to action and navigation make it easy for the user to navigate the site and find what they are seeking. This gives users a great user experience. This is achieved by the designers by carefully considering what to include and what not to include, and through this process the designer establishes what matters and eliminates unnecessary elements and distractions. The design is left with a clean and intuitive interface that is easily navigated and users are able to easily get what they want with minimal confusion and distraction, which also encourages them to stay for longer.
Faster Load Times
Typically, minimal or simple designs involve loading fewer media-rich visual elements, such as large image files, which means that the overall file sizes needed to load your web pages are reduced. This optimization leads to faster loading times, improving the overall performance of your website. Fast-loading pages enhance user satisfaction, minimize bounce rates, and contribute to better search engine rankings because search engines value websites that can be loaded fast. Having user-friendly navigation and menus, with well-structured content can enhance the SEO of your website and be easier for search engines to “crawl” for indexing.
Users who visit your website want to know what you have and find what they’re seeking within moments, that is, in five seconds or less! A minimal design makes it much easier for your users to find what they’re looking for quickly by giving your content ample space for readability, and reducing visual clutter. Ample white space is important for any design, but it is a hallmark of minimal designs, it increases legibility and improves the overall experience of the user reading on your website.
Better Mobile Experience
The majority of website users are on mobile devices, so providing a good experience on mobile is essential. With that in mind, using a minimal design can be a great choice as they often a good choice for adapting a consistent feel for the different screen sizes for different devices.
Despite how it may sound, simplicity don’t need to be “boring.” In fact, minimal website designs are a wonderful way to harness simplicity to create elegant designs that captivate the audience and display the website’s information in a straightforward and easily understood format. It’s essential to strike the right balance between ornament and usability when creating website designs. You want your website to be aesthetically pleasing and aligned with your brand. useful to your users and functional.
If you’d like some visual inspiration for simple web designs, that are unexpectedly beautiful in their simplicity, we like this great roundup from DesignRush of inspired yet simple website designs, read more.