Are you wondering how to wireframe a website?
Website wireframe and design matter a lot in your website’s success and business growth.
A website wireframe and design are the difference between an average and a great website.
This is a complete overview of the website wireframe and design to improve your website performance.
In this post, you’ll learn the following essential website wireframes and design elements.
- What is a website wireframe and design process?
- Style guide
- Technical SEO
- Content management
- User experience (UI)
If you’re starting a website project, this website wireframe and design guide will help you build an SEO-optimized website wireframe and design to grow your business online.
By the end of this post, you’ll have a clear understanding of the following:
- Difference between the website wireframe and design
- Importance of defining the purpose and goals of the website to create an effective website wireframe and design
- How to identify the website’s different sections and their hierarchy
- Tools required to sketch out the website wireframe and design
Let’s get started!
What is a website wireframe?
A website wireframe is a visual representation of the layout of a website. It is similar to the architect’s drawings before building a house.
You create a website wireframe to organise:
- Content sections
- Calls to action
- Search box
- Responsive wireframes
A goal is to organise the above-listed items to achieve the website’s goals.
North Plains, Oregon is a small, semi-rural city of just over 3,400 residents located 17 miles west of Downtown Portland. Their gradual growth over the years has maintained a small-town atmosphere. The issue faced by the company was that the company’s website was not generating qualified web leads and the company was struggling with a shrinking sales pipeline. The reason was that Northplains’s website lacked CTAs, clear positioning, cohesive UI/UX, or SEO best practices. To top it off, poor mobile responsiveness created a problematic user experience.
As a solution, they completely redesigned and rebranded the website by developing a sleek, conversion-friendly, search-engine-optimized website aimed at engaging target prospects. The approaches they used included: designing a modern look that introduced mobile responsiveness to the site, rebuilding the site architecture to be in line with search engine best practices, and removing ambiguous or fluffy language that caused confusion for prospects.
As result, Within 90 days of website improvements, they had increased quality monthly web conversions from 1-3 per month to over 40 per month. Within 5 months, the Northplains the website had generated over 180 qualified leads and $2M+ of bids in the pipeline. The updated information architecture and SEO-friendly content fueled a surge in organic traffic, while vast improvements to mobile/desktop UX and page speed helped keep users on the site longer.
Website design process
Once the website wireframe is ready, you convert it to nice looking website design.
The website design takes the basic wireframe structure and adds the aesthetic layer, creating a more detailed visual representation of the website’s layout.
Website design elements are:
- Colour scheme
- Images, graphics and icons
It is crucial to understand these website basics to build the best-performing websites to grow your business.
A functioning website wireframe and appealing design are crucial for a website that contributes towards your business goals.
Fathom Companies honed their skills working alongside some of the most well-known brands in the development, investment, and hospitality industries including Hilton, Marriott, and several of the most innovative design firms in the region. The issue faced by the company was lacking the essentials to book the business. Also, the breadth of services wasn’t being showcased which leads to misleading a prospective client.
So, Fathom assumed that a fresh design will help them. They simply upgraded their theme, which would have access to a library of more unique, modern design elements and animations. In addition to redesigning the website, they also focused on rewriting their services section and optimizing their site content and metadata.
As a result, Within the first four weeks alone, Fathom’s new site saw: An 8.56% increase in sessions compared to the previous month, a 12.6% increase in the number of sessions per user compared to the previous month, and a 35.8% increase in average session duration compared to the previous month. As users and search engines alike begin to discover how much the site has improved, it will only yield greater success with time.
A brand is a combination of tangible and intangible elements that represent your business. These elements work in harmony to establish a unique and recognisable brand identity.
A few examples are as follows:
- Website wireframe
- Website design
A consistent brand identity across all marketing materials can create a solid emotional connection with its target audience and stand out.
Rosedale Products, Inc. is a leading technology developer in the field of liquid filtration systems and waste minimization products for customers around the globe. They redesigned the website and created an inviting online experience for customers. But still, they were struggling to convert their visitors into customers. The keywords used to increase traffic when Rosedale’s redesigned site first launched no longer targeting the right customers.
To get conversions, Rosedale decided to start branding on their website. So, they conducted in-depth SEO and PPC content audits and keyword analysis to help get things back on track. They focus on the site content to attract and convert the right customers. Adding part configuration and CAD modeling capabilities to the site made it easier for customers to configure and quote products.
As a result, they get a site with a cleaner, mobile-responsive layout. Detailed drop-down lists in the navigation and clear calls to action significantly improved flow and made the site more user-friendly. A year-over-year comparison showed: Website goal completions increased by 106%, Online conversions increased by 155%, User clicks on the site from paid ads increased by 79%, and PPC click-through rates (CTR) increased by 134%.
Website style guide
A style guide is a document that outlines the design and branding guidelines for a website. The style guide serves as a reference for designers, developers, and other stakeholders.
A website style guide helps ensure consistency and coherence in the website’s design.
Here are some elements that must be included in a website style guide.
- Website’s logo
- Colour palette,
- Other branding elements
The style guide should outline how these elements should be used throughout the website.
The style guide may include guidelines for the layout and structure of the website’s pages, including the placement of:
- Navigation menus
- Content areas
The style guide may include guidelines for the website’s typography, including the:
- Font size
- Line spacing
This can help ensure the text is easily read and consistent across the website.
The style guide may include guidelines for the website:
- Colour palette (primary and secondary)
- Associated colour codes
This can help ensure the website’s colour scheme is consistent and on-brand.
The style guide may include guidelines for the use of:
- other visual elements on the website
- Including their size, style, and placement.
The style guide may include guidelines for designing an accessible website, including guidelines for:
- Contrast ratios
- Font size
- Other accessibility considerations
Overall, a website style guide should provide clear and detailed guidelines for the website’s design and branding elements to ensure consistency and coherence.
It can help ensure the website’s design is on-brand, visually appealing, and easy to navigate.
Stack Plastics is a custom plastic injection molding company serving the consumer, medical, and aerospace markets. They provide complete end-to-end medical injection molding services for projects that require design, engineering, molding, and much more. The challenge faced by this company was to attract organic traffic and get goal conversions. Also, they failed to meet the demands of their rapidly growing business. Even though their site had great content, the navigation made it difficult for customers to find information quickly.
Stack Plastics decided to create a fresh, mobile-responsive site redesign. Reaching their marketing goals would also require implementing a digital marketing strategy focused on increasing organic traffic and converting qualified leads. They get their website redesigned with a cleaner, mobile-responsive layout. Detailed drop-down lists in the navigation and clear calls to action significantly improved flow and made the site more user-friendly.
As a result, Stack Plastics generated $250,000 in new revenue 60 days post-launch. Within the first year: Organic traffic increased by 50%, Organic goal completions jumped up 49%, and New users and sessions increased by nearly 50%.
Technical SEO includes optimizing a website’s technical elements, such as code, structure, and performance, to improve its search engine ranking and visibility.
Although website wireframe is primarily focused on the layout and structure of a website, they can indirectly affect technical SEO by influencing how the website is built and structured.
A well-designed wireframe can help ensure that the website is structured in a way that is optimized for technical SEO.
For example, the wireframe can include the placement of essential elements such as header tags, internal linking structure, and the location of primary content areas, impacting how search engines crawl and index the website.
Here are some reasons why Technical SEO is so important:
- Increase reach across all channels: Technical SEO helps to optimize the content as per standards. If your content is created according to the standards then it’s easy to discover, index, and display your website on any search engine. Which leads to an increase in potential sales and engagement.
- Increase search engine ranking: Technical SEO helps to make the content of your website more understandable. If any search engine easily understands your content then you have a much better chance of appearing higher in search results. Also, you can feature within the “People also ask” and “Featured snippets” section.
- Improved display and layout across social media: Technical SEO ensures there is a consistent message across all channels. Also, it automates the image field to be used for your social media image preview. It gives you full control over what people will see on social media when your pages are returned.
Additionally, a clear and well-organized wireframe can ensure that the website’s content and information architecture are structured logically and easily to navigate, which can also contribute to positive user experience and indirectly impact SEO.
However, it’s important to note that a website wireframe is only one element of the website development process. Many other technical SEO factors must be considered when building and optimizing a website.
These include site speed, mobile responsiveness, meta tags, schema markup, and more.
The Kitchen Door connects you with commissary kitchen spaces that are available for rent. So whether you are a chef, caterer, baker, food truck, or any other food entrepreneur, The Kitchen Door will help you find an extraordinary place where you can cook, legally! The challenge faced by them was the website only received a minuscule amount of organic traffic – primarily focused on the brand. Besides the homepage and a handful of individual kitchen pages, no other pages were indexed.
A deep technical audit of the website shows: only a few of the pages were crawlable, they don’t know which keywords were important, the page content was too thin, and no true way to measure SEO. To resolve these issues, the approaches they used were, to improve the technical architecture of the site which includes optimizing internal linking and enabling Canonical tags, optimizing the keywords, adding more content by following the standards, and constantly tracking and testing new tactics when looking at technical SEO.
As a result, The Kitchen Door observed a 26X increase in just 8 months which leads to generating more traffic and revenue for the business.
In the words of Mr Gates, content is undoubtedly a king online.
However, creating and managing your content effectively is a big challenge.
While a wireframe doesn’t include actual content, however, it plays a vital role in website content management in the following ways:
- Planning content placement. A website wireframe helps content creators visualise the content placement.
- Organising content. Defining the location and hierarchy of different elements on each web page, a wireframe can help content managers organise content logically and quickly. This can improve user experience and make it easier for visitors to find the information they want.
- Streamlining content creation. A website wireframe can simplify content creation by providing a clear framework for content creators to work within.
- Ensuring consistency. A website wireframe can ensure consistency across different pages and sections by providing a clear template for how content should be organised and presented. This helps maintain a cohesive look and feel throughout the website, enhancing the user experience.
Website wireframe plays a crucial role in website content management by providing a framework for organising, planning, and creating content that aligns with the website’s structure and design.
The College of Central Florida provides opportunities for students to pursue careers in fields they love. CF has grown to become the higher education hub for Marion, Citrus, and Levy counties. The College of Central Florida recognized that website visits from mobile devices were increasing year over year. They wanted to make sure that their site was inclusive for all people in the community, current and future students, faculty, and those requiring adaptive.
Fitting all of their pieces together was not an easy ask. They have third-party tools that alsointegrate with their site, including their college catalog and accessibility view. They needed all of these pieces to work together. The approach used by them was: Website redesign with easy-to-navigate functionality and proper management of content to make it accessible for all.
As a result, the feedback was incredible Wow. The bounce rate dropped to 8.14%, pages per session were increased to 7.72%, average session duration was increased by 2.95% and Siteimprove (accessibility partner) stats are all positive.
A sitemap is a hierarchical list of all the pages on a website, organised logically and structured manner.
A sitemap is an essential tool for website designers and developers during the website wireframe and design creation process.
Here are some of the critical roles that sitemaps play:
- Planning website structure. A sitemap helps website designers and developers plan the website’s structure by identifying all the pages that need to be included and organising them into a logical hierarchy. This helps ensure that the website is easy to navigate and that users can find the information they need quickly and easily.
- Providing a blueprint for wireframes and design. The sitemap provides a blueprint for the website wireframe and design by outlining the content and functionality that needs to be included on each page. This can help designers create wireframes and mockups that align with the website’s overall structure and goals.
- Improving user experience. A well-organised sitemap can improve the user experience by making it easy for visitors to find the information they need; by ensuring that the website is structured logically and easy to follow, designers and developers can create an intuitive and user-friendly website.
- Optimising for search engines. A sitemap can also help to optimise the website for search engines by providing a clear and organised structure that search engine crawlers can follow. This helps ensure that all the pages on the website are correctly indexed and that the website appears in search results for relevant keywords.
A sitemap plays a vital role in website wireframes and design creation by providing a clear and organised blueprint for the website’s structure, content, and functionality. Using a sitemap to plan and design the website, designers and developers can create a website that is easy to navigate, user-friendly, and optimised for search engines.
For 25 years, Eliassen Group has been staffing and consulting leaders, perfectly matching capable and talented people with successful companies. Unfortunately, their website hadn’t kept up with their evolving business. An aging and inflexible technology foundation made changes difficult to implement and resulted in stale content.
Eliassen Group serves two primary markets—consultants and clients, and their content needs are very different. The website needed to constantly guide visitors to the content they would find relevant and valuable. To solve their problem, they are empowered to focus on content creation and its management, SEO, and boosting conversions.
As a result, they observed a 25% increase in website visits thanks to improved SEO and a 40% increase in session duration due to better information architecture and content. The Bounce rate was reduced by a staggering 87% due to improved relevance and paths for each persona.
Navigation is a critical component of any website, and it is essential to consider it when creating a website wireframe and design.
Do you know, 37% of users say that poor navigation and design cause them to leave websites
Good navigation allows visitors to search your website with ease. It helps the visitors to search your site for longer with confidence that they are at the right place.
Here are some reasons why navigation is so important:
- User experience: Navigation is one of the most important factors in creating a positive user experience. Visitors to a website need to be able to find the information they’re looking for quickly and easily, and navigation plays a critical role in enabling that. By creating an intuitive and user-friendly navigation system, designers can help visitors quickly find the content they need, reducing frustration and improving engagement.
- Organization: Navigation helps to organize the content on a website into logical categories and hierarchies. This makes it easier for visitors to understand the website’s structure and find the necessary information. By carefully considering navigation during the website wireframe and design phase, designers can ensure that the website is easy to navigate and that the content is well-organized.
- SEO: Navigation is also crucial for search engine optimization (SEO). Search engines use the navigation to understand a website’s structure and determine the importance and relevance of different pages. By creating a clear and organized navigation system, designers can help to improve the website’s SEO and visibility in search results.
- Accessibility: Navigation is critical for ensuring the website is accessible to all users, including those with disabilities. By creating a navigation system that is easy to use and that can be accessed using assistive technology, designers can ensure that the website is inclusive and accessible to all.
- Visit duration: When a site is easy to navigate, it encourages the website visitors to stay longer, explore and learn about the organization. Also, when users who effortlessly find products or services on your website, they need are more likely to purchase them.
In summary, navigation is a critical component of any website, and it is essential to consider it carefully when creating a website wireframe and design. By creating an intuitive and user-friendly navigation system, designers can improve user experience, organization, SEO, and accessibility.
The RADCO Companies is an opportunistic real estate investment company specializing in the acquisition and optimization of commercial real estate including multifamily, hospitality, new development, and more. Their goal was to achieve two goals: give prospective investors a complete overview of RADCO’s properties, and give employees access to pertinent information. However, their website’s outdated design, frustrating usability, and odd prioritization of content created hurdles for both target users.
After an extensive discovery session, they analyzed and developed an SEO-friendly site. Strategies followed to achieve their goals were: Rebuilding site architecture to meet search engine best practices while simplifying the website’s navigation experience, Overhauling the website with a new design that matched the energy and modern essence of RADCO’s brand, and Implementing a range of technical SEO tools for better searchability and better reporting.
As a result, The new website delivered a fresh user experience that not only opened up RADCO’s portfolio to prospective investors but also augmented their site for search engine visibility — all while solidifying the RADCO visual brand.
UI (User Interface) is essential to website design and wireframing. It helps to meet user expectations. Also, it supports the effective functionality of your site.
According to Forbes, good UI design can raise the site’s conversion rates up to 200%.
Do you know, one of the top reasons why a website enjoys high traffic is the quality of UI design? You can combine quality content, your products or services, and UI to get the recipe for loyal and numerous customers.
Here are some reasons why UI is important:
- User Experience: UI design plays a significant role in determining the overall user experience. By creating a visually appealing and intuitive interface, designers can make it easier for visitors to use the website and find the necessary information. A good UI design can also build trust and credibility with visitors, improving their overall impression of the website.
- Branding: UI design is an essential component of branding, as it helps to create a consistent look and feel for the website. Designers can reinforce the website’s brand and identity using consistent design elements such as colors, typography, and imagery.
- Navigation: UI design also plays a critical role in determining the navigation of a website. By using appropriate visual cues and elements such as buttons, links, and menus, designers can make it easier for visitors to navigate the website and find the information they need.
- Accessibility: UI design is also vital for ensuring the website is accessible to all users, including those with disabilities. By using appropriate contrast, font sizes, and other design elements, designers can create a website that is easier to use for everyone.
- Traffic: UI design plays an important role to drive traffic on the website. Make your website easy to use, understandable, and error-free with a simple and eye catchy design to grab the user’s intention.
According to the survey, the improved user experience along with the pleasing interface, it is known that 67% of websites are growing very rapidly.
Amazon is an American multinational technology company focusing on e-commerce, cloud computing, online advertising, digital streaming, and artificial intelligence. You can browse & discover millions of products here. Most generations rank Amazon’s user experience as the most appealing and appreciate this accessible and functional website.
No doubt, designing user experiences for multiple generations is a challenge. But, Amazon succeeds by offering a minimal, search-oriented user interface (UI) that accommodates both digital natives and internet newcomers. UI strategies adopted by amazon to become a successful e-commerce website are easy navigation and searching options, an easy drop-down menu, similar items of a product and recommended products, customer review filters, user-tailored content, one-click ordering, smooth payment gateways, and much more.
Probably you have shopped on Amazon and experienced that it is easy to use. This easy usability brought in $258.22 billion in 2018, which is 49% of the total amount of the country’s online expenditure in a year. It is also said that users spent 84.5% of the total usage on the company’s app and 15.5% on the browser version. This says a lot about how much people prefer the app for convenience.
In summary, UI design is critical to website wireframing and design. It helps to improve the overall user experience, reinforce branding, determine navigation, and ensure accessibility. By carefully considering UI design during the wireframing and design process, designers can create a website that is visually appealing, easy to use, and accessible to all users.
Hats off to you for reading a complete post, and I hope your understanding of how to wireframe a website has improved.
By implementing the website’s wireframe fundamental elements, I hope you can build a strong foundation for your website that’ll help you grow your business.
Did I manage to answer your question? If not, please let me know so I can improve it.
You can share your feedback by sending me an email. 👊🙏
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