All Websites Look The Same, But Are They?

With each passing day, web design and web development are evolving. When you look at many websites these days, the first thought is, “They all look similar”. You’d be right in thinking this – there are often many similarities in the layout, menu style, font choice and use of colours.

These similarities exist because web designers are increasingly understanding the way users interact with websites. WordPress is one of the most popular website design platforms due to its ease of use and template availability. This also means there are many websites who begin their design process with the same template, so the similarities between websites are hard to miss.

Despite these similarities, when we take a closer look under the ‘hood’ of a website, it becomes clear that every website is different. These differences include unique calls-to-action, a visitor’s journey on the website, use of images, addition or removal of different pages, the formal or informal use of language and overall business goals of a website.

There are surface-level similarities between websites and there are unique elements deeper down. So, back to the question – are all websites the same? To which the simple answer is no.

When working on a website you will come across some small and big decisions that will frame your website’s layout and functionality. These decisions are what make your website unique while still following some basic principles.

Websites are a reflection of your brand

Your brand has a unique story, so the elements of your website and how a use interacts with them will be inherently different from your competitors. In other words, no two websites can be the same because they are unique to your brand.

To design a website that stands out, it is important to understand your business and its brand elements. Communicating compelling stories of your brand helps customers align with your offerings. Why does your business exist and what is your backstory?

Websites are designed to meet your business objectives

Every website serves a different purpose to different businesses – where one website is a fully-fledged e-commerce platform, another is used to share free knowledge and information.

A website layout is designed with core objectives in mind, such as increasing sales, improving website traffic or generating more enquiries. The layout and content structure is strategically adapted to bring your brand closer to meeting the objective.

Websites are as much about your customers as your business

In most cases, a business’ website is the first point of contact for customers and every business has a unique customer profile. So, it is important to think of websites from the perspective of your audience. Customers are looking for answers – how can this brand solve my problem easily?

Your target audience is looking for specific information and they want this information with less effort. Your website layout should be designed to provide all your brand information in a way that is best understood by customers, compared to your competitors. Web developers and designers study a customer’s interaction with your website to best design the information hierarchy.

Websites are an ongoing process

To keep your website interesting, modern and unique, it requires regular updating. Tracking visitors’ interaction with your website and gathering analytics on your website’s performance helps keep your website relevant to the changing demands in the market.

A high-performing websites is continually optimised. They track a visitor’s interaction on the internet and deliver personalised experiences that better suit the specific user’s needs, reducing bounce rates and encouraging customers to come back for more. So, websites become unique and offer meaningful differentiation to the user.

No two websites are exactly the same. A website reflects your brand, your personal story, your unique target customers and an ever-changing business landscape. It’s these variations that interact with purpose to produce a unique website.

Do you agree? Let’s talk about it – comment below! 

  • Germaine Muller
  • Director at Futuretheory
  • Germaine is the Co-Founder and Director of Futuretheory. He enjoys delving into and writing about digital, marketing and design.
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