The Site Slinger Blog

Web Development, Design, and everything PSD to HTML
By Jeremy H.

The Benefits of Flat Design

If you’ve paid attention to what is happening online, you’ve probably heard the term “flat design” – but what is flat design, exactly? Flat design, which is often touted as the future of web design, is a trendy, minimalistic design aesthetic that eschews more complicated design techniques for a more simplified, classic appearance.

Flat design is easy to identify when you spot it; it is often described as clean, and it incorporates straight, crisp edges, bright colors, and 2D illustrations (hence, the name “flat”). Not only is flat design appealing to the eye and easy to read, it also is known for its emphasis on usability and user-friendliness, and it is a great choice for anyone who wants their website to be easy to use for all of its visitors.

If you are planning to design a new website and are trying to decide what type of design is right for you, check out the list below. It contains many of the benefits you will reap if you choose to design with flat design.

Flat Design Example

1. Great for usability.

It’s just a fact that messages communicated simply and clearly are more easily digested by a viewer. Thus, flat design trumps in terms of usability, since it shuns complicated design elements and excess decoration for the bare essentials – just what the user needs to grasp or see to make the site function. Sites with flat design choose functionality while espousing modern style.

2. Better for Small Screens.

In today’s digital age, people are accessing the Internet via a huge range of devices – from desktops to laptops to tablets to mobile phones. Flat design is helpful because it tends to be both aesthetically pleasing and functional when adapted for a smaller screen. The reason flat design adapts well is because it incorporates a lot of white space and often uses large, clear buttons — which tends to “work,” and appear clear, even when viewed on a smaller screen or device. The latest developments with iPhone have even incorporated flat design, finally.

Flat Design Example

 3. Alleviate Technical Issues.

Flat design can alleviate common technical website issues.  Websites designed with flat design require fewer images to design, and they also need far less complicated coding, which often results in faster loading times and a site with less risk for glitches.

 4. Better SEO.

A site’s SEO ranking determines how high it appears in search engine results – which in turn increases the likelihood of new customers finding it. There are countless variables that go into calculating a site’s ranking, but one important one is a website’s speed (Basically, faster websites have higher rankings). When a site uses fewer images and smaller images, it takes a lot shorter time to load – which means, in general, that a site designed with flat design will have a shorter loading time and a higher SEO ranking.

5. Focus on content.

One of the best benefits of flat design is that it puts the website’s focus on content or function and not merely its design. You don’t want people visiting your site only because it looks cool or because they want to play with all of its bells and whistles – only to leave after appreciating its style and design. A flat-designed website’s simplicity makes clear its sole purpose, ensuring that people who visit, use its functions or complete a business transaction  – ultimately making your site a tool that serves solely to help you increase your business or cause.

Flat Design Icons

Image(s) source: All images in this post were obtained via Creative Commons license from Pixels Daily.

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