More and more websites are using  Whitespace designs, lets have a look at what it and why it works. Studies have shown that you have 7 seconds to make an impression with your website, I would actually debate that number could be lower however if you think of the most popular website on the planet Google, what is the first thing that you see? 

Is it the Google Logo(brand recognition), is it the Search Box(the function) or is it the white space?  Using the white space removes the distraction. Before Google there was a rang of search engines, there still is, many people seem to forget that, there is Yahoo, MSN, Ask Jeeves and infact dozens more. So why does Google have an 80%+ market share in the search engine market.

Well apart from the fact that its fast, accurate and insanely up-to-date, it gives the user exactly what they want with no distractions, it doesn’t prompt the user to read the latest sensationalised news headline, it doesnt ask them to login and check their email, and it doesn’t remove the focus from the search.

This screenshot above of yahoo in contrast while it does provide the same functionality as Google it also has lots of other distractions which studies have shown people don’t enjoy.   The page is ‘too busy’ it distracts the user from reaching the end goal, and invites them to check email or read a news article, see what is trending and even play games.

So now given all of that information ask yourself about your website, either a website you have or you are planning, is it too busy?  Does it cause distraction for the end user, are they impeded unnecessarily from reaching there end goal?  If you answered yes to any of these questions you might want to rethink your plan.

Have a look at the following example from dgtlnk

Which article is more enticing to ready? The article on the right hand side is more broken up and has more white space therefore the mind will become for attracted to it, because it is easier to process.  It can be difficult at time to balance between having lots of words for  SEO and having nice bite sized chunks for readers to easily read, understand and follow your website.

 

 

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