Intro to Website Design Inspiration
One of the most popular design aesthetics for modern websites is a clean, modern, minimalistic look and feel. For those that have worked with me, a quote I share often is from Mark Twain: “If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter.” Why I love this is not just the irony and humor in the statement. More generally, it resonates. Whether you’re writing a letter, putting together a presentation, or designing a website, keeping things clean, clear, and concise takes effort.
It can be difficult — with all the great ideas in our head, photos we want to share, knowledge we want to disperse, and all the amazing features and benefits of our products — to distill all we want to communicate down into clean, simple, modern, and elegant websites, that are beautiful and easy to use.
At Buddy, this aesthetic is something we focus on and strive toward, and often have our clients ask about.
By comparison, it’s easier to just create a website from a stock template and use off-the-shelf graphics. However, it seems that this approach can result in a cookie-cutter website with images that look like they were pulled from a clip-art gallery.
Fortunately, creating a really beautiful website doesn’t necessarily mean starting from scratch. One technique we use is to first start with finding website design inspiration. That is, we work with our clients to identify existing websites that have a look and feel that they’d like to replicate, that looks great, and that would fit well with the brand identity that they’re trying to establish. This is a common technique for many talented designers and developers.
To make this process easier, fortunately, some great people on the web have helped to curate galleries and resources that are perfect for website design inspiration. While there are many such websites, here are some of the best that we like. These sites have have good examples that are in line with clean, modern, and elegant web design.
First off, Siteinspire refers to itself as “a showcase of the finest web and interactive design.” Practically speaking, it’s a great spot to quickly peruse through a gallery of elegant, modern, clean, and unique designs. These examples don’t look like they were pulled from a website template. A nice feature of SiteInspire is that if you click on any of the design thumbnails to take a closer look, site will also suggest some similar websites to check out for more design ideas.
Up second is Awwwards. According to their website, Awwwards recognizes the talent and effort of the best web designers in the world.” Their portfolio, is, appropriately, a great reference point. While a few designs may be pushing the envelope and perhaps a little too creative for some businesses and brands, there are plenty of really nice modern designs that look great and are inline with modern aesthetics, while maybe being a little less edgy. Fortunately, in the design process, you only need to really find a few good examples sites as a starting point. A good designer and developer can take it from there to customize the design to your liking.
Last but not least, we offer SpeckyBoy. This is the most quick and easy of these three recommendations. The link above is for 30 beautiful examples of minimalism in web design. You can look through these as quickly as you can scroll with your mouse wheel. These are forty different, unique, and custom-tailored aesthetics that look great, and provide you with some ideas about how you might like your website to look.
While there are certainly more website design inspiration galleries out there, these are just a few of the best. And of course, there’s not real obligation to use galleries if you already have a sense of what you like. Or, maybe there’s another organization in your industry, or a competitor who has a website you like, that either you’d like to replicate, or use as a benchmark that your website should be “better than.”
Do any of these sites interest you? Curious to know what would be involved in making your website look like one highlighted in these galleries? Get in touch, we’re happy to listen to what you have in mind! And, if you’d like some additional tips, check out our post on small business web design tips and our video with additional easy tips for improving your website.