Led by a general belief Less is More, minimalism as a term is often used to describe something plain and simple. But is there more to this term?
We live in a digital era where the value of a product is measured by the attention it receives. People are buried with choices and lavish designs. Lately, companies are constantly looking for new approaches to reach the audience.
In this article, we are going to discuss using minimalism in design.
What is Minimalism?
According to Collins dictionary, Minimalism is defined as a style in which a small number of very simple things are used to create a particular effect. This can create a misconception that designs of this style lack creativity and captivating experiences.
However, it is the opposite. The main philosophy of minimalism is to emphasize what matters and what is essential. This can be applied in any sphere of life. For instance, we can find it in architecture, art, music, lifestyle, or design.
Minimalism gained popularity in art and design in the early 1970s. Artists mainly focused on simple geometric figures and lines, organizing everything to serve its purpose. As minimalism evolved, artists realized that to reach the core quality you need to strip off lavish design.
Minimalism in design
This style inspired web designers in the early 2000s to create elegant and fine web designs. The aim was to shift focus to the essential parts of the site and provide the best user experience.
Now, these designs aren’t just appealing to the users. They are also practical, fast loading, organized, and easy to interact with.
Here is a shortlist of some of the key advantages of using minimalism in design:
Fast Load Time
Now we all know the negative effects of a bounce rate. According to recent statistics, 53% of mobile users will leave the site if it takes more than 3 seconds to load. You can avoid this if you use a minimalist design since it has fewer things to load.
Focus is on the Content
The reason why someone visited your website is that they are looking for information. Having fewer things on your website will help users find information faster. Additionally, your site will look more organized and clear.
When making a website, we consider users on different devices. Minimalist design comes in handy with responsive web design because it already includes grids and wireframes. Therefore, there is a higher chance that users will have the same experience on both mobile and computer.
Another important point when using minimalism in design is organizing the elements. To reach simplicity and preserve the quality, designers need to know how much content is necessary to convey a clear and precise message.
Some of the most common features of a minimalist UI design are:
- Bare essentials
- Increased negative space
- Typography is the key tool for expression
- Minimalistic color design
- Flat patterns and textures
- Images that match both content and style
It is essential to find the right balance between these elements. Therefore, web designers should plan how to combine these elements to make content stand out.
The basic approach of using minimalism in design is to include only the essential elements. That means removing all elements that are not essential for a website to function. Some of the essential elements are:
This helps drive users’ attention to the content on the page. Also, they are not distracted by colorful and flashy content.
Increased Negative Space
Negative space is also known as the backbone of minimalist design. That refers to an empty area of an interface. Negative space is left on purpose to shift users’ attention to the content.
However, there are a few things to consider when planning a negative space.
Firstly, make sure that it doesn’t disturb the visual hierarchy of the page.
Secondly, don’t make users scroll for no reason.
Finally, pay attention that it doesn’t affect the interaction cost.
Typography is the key tool for expression
When using minimalism in design, you notice that choosing the right typography has a central role. It helps set the tone of the site as well as convey the message. Also, it is a powerful tool to compensate for the lack of images and videos.
Use typography to create hierarchy and emphasize what’s important. Make sure that you balance typography with the rest of the website.
Minimalistic color design
Colors are powerful tools in minimalism design. It creates visual interests and dictates users’ attention.
Minimalist design usually includes two or three colors. They are usually shades of monochromatic or accent colors.
You can use them to highlight important aspects. Also, use contrasts for signaling colors when you want to induce action.
Importantly, make sure to establish the color choice before you begin the process. It will allow you to organize the elements and separate the important ones.
Flat patterns and textures
Flat patterns and textures are components of a flat design. These designs are a digital representation of an object in simple and realistic elements. This is another key element in minimalistic designs because it doesn’t have any highlights, shadows, or textures.
Add flat design when using minimalism in web design to create balance among icons, buttons, and illustrations on the site.
Images that match both content and style
It is wrong to think that minimalistic design use images at all. Images can be a powerful tool when you choose them wisely.
Often you will see minimalistic web pages that use a background photo. This means that the image will shape users’ impression of the website. For that reason, before choosing the picture, you should consider some of these points:
- What is the purpose of the image?
- Is the text relevant and readable?
- How is this going to impact the performance?
Keep in mind your minimalist design, and don’t go for images that are too flashy.
This article covers some of the most important elements of using minimalism in design.
Minimalist is easy to maintain, doesn’t take ages to load, and looks well-organized. Despite a large number of advantages, this design isn’t always the right choice for all websites. Before going for it, sit down and determine the purpose of your website.
If you choose to use this style in your project, remember Less is More.