Sometimes when I look at a website, an app or even a magazine cover I instantly get the feeling that this looks very nice - it has a good design. But why do I feel this way? What actually is good design?
To shed some light on the matter, I asked my co-worker Tefa – one of our UX designers. She told me about the use of grids in design and how this creates a better design. Let me share the three most important things I learned from our talk:
1. Good design is no coincidence, it’s logic.
In the past, it has been long discussed what makes a great design and it was found to be based on rational criteria. One example is the use of grid in design; it is used as a logical way to organise different kinds of information. It helps to construct the text and the visual elements in a system which is intuitive for the user to understand. If there is no grid used, you will immediately notice it, because text columns somehow seem too long, or the pictures are not the right size. Using grids ensures clear hierarchies and consistency over the whole solution. Nowadays using grids is even more important than ever to make text and pictures scalable (responsive). No magic, just logic.
2. Grid boosts your content
To be fair, if you have nothing to say, a good grid will not make your content magically go viral, BUT a good design can help your content get the attention it deserves.
It is scientifically proven that information that is presented using a grid will not only be read more easily and quickly, it will also be better understood and be retained longer in one’s memory. So, when you decide on the width of a column determines whether the user is going to read it and hopefully keep on reading or not. A pleasant rhythm of reading enables the reader to relax and concentrate on the content. This is especially important nowadays, because of the constant information overload we face.
3. Grid saves you time & money
Using a grid system means that you can resolve a (visual) problem in less time and lower cost. Why? Because it means that you have already designed a template for every type of information you want to add later on. It helps you decide on the size of the visual elements of the website e.g. through the hierarchy, which further helps you to understand the optimal size of images and texts.
So, there is no magic behind good design, but a well-defined grid. Furthermore, a good design is not only eye-catching but can really help you with the rest of your content marketing strategy; so if you don’t use grids yet, it is definitely time to do so!