Less is more—even on websites

Mar 21, 2013

If you want to get your message across, it’s best to take away as many distractions as you can. You want the message to catch and hold the eye of the reader. This maxim is an important concept in the development of branding, advertising, and websites.

Take a good look at your Web site. Ask the questions below to see if customers and visitors are receiving the message that you have for them.

  1. Does each page have a particular goal or purpose? Do you want them to purchase a particular product? Sign up for E-newsletters or special offers? Fill out an interactive form? Click through for more information? If the page is jam-packed with all the information you ever wanted to know about the product, but you want the reader to think PURCHASE, it’s time to apply the less is more principle. Your website isn’t a college lecture series. It’s a pathway to a goal.
  2. If you were doing a presentation or teaching a class, you might prepare a handout for students including your important takeaways. Do your website pages do this? Is it easy for readers to focus on the key purposes on the page?
  3. Too many distractions? Focus on essentials. Throw all the cool extras away—that graphic that is so cool that it draws all the attention, the fancy widgets, anything that distracts from the purpose of the page. Start with a blank page, figure out the goal, and add only those items that bring readers to that point.
  4. Divide and conquer. If this feels like a massive project, break it into smaller pieces. Pick one page and give yourself a deadline to do a makeover on just that page. Then the next page and the next. You’ll be surprised at how effective your website will become one page at a time.

Less is more is not only a good goal for each page of your website, but it is a way of working to help you reach that goal.

Our thanks to smallbizsurvival.com for key concepts used in this article.


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