What is a single-page Website?
The definition of a single-page website is quite straightforward; it is a web site which uses only one HTML page. When all website content is placed on one page, click on a navigation link forwards users to an HTML anchor on this single page.
When to use a single-page Site
One-page websites are responsive and provide better mobile UX, but they are not SEO-friendly. You won’t be able to index several web pages with various keywords and meta descriptions, which will negatively impact organic traffic performance and your website’s online visibility.
Single-page site web design brings both benefits and disadvantages. On the one hand, this website type gives UI/UX designers freedom in terms of layouts and visual effects. But on the other hand, many users might not be impressed with single-page design alternatives because of complicated navigation they aren’t accustomed to.
The listing of single-page website pros and cons can be continued; the thing is, business owners must outline their long-term goals and predict their target audience’s expectations before opting for a one-page.
A single-page Design can be used for:
- Personal sites
- Resume pages
- One-time events
- Landing pages
- Brochure websites
- Single-product sites
- Best design practices for single-page websites
- Break text into sections
If you have decided to go for a single-page site, probably you do not have a lot of text to display; differently, you’d go to get a multi-page option. But, having a small amount of textual content does not automatically prevent you from overwhelming users with advice. You still have to come up with clear and easy-to-follow visual arrangement. Lead your visitors through the story by breaking up your content into sections by way of different header styles, background colors, overlays, etc. Reinforce nicely written texts with nicely crafted visual effects to ensure that your site visitors don’t stop scrolling until there’s nowhere to scroll.
Work on a visual hierarchy
We have already covered ways to effectively organize UI content in one of our previous articles. To recap, one of visual hierarchy tools used for web design are size, colour, contrast, proximity, and repetition.
It’s generally thought that the F-pattern is more applicable to a large amount of textual content, while the Z-pattern suits pages which are not so heavily focused on copy. Since a single-page website comprises numerous sections, try to use both these patterns for different sections to be able to diversify the website structure. But do not overdo it with patterns; allow the elements on your page breathe. With negative space, you’re ready to draw people’s attention to the components that ought to be noticeable.
The thing about single-page visual hierarchy is that it needs to be concise yet encouraging. Think again before you go for one or a different page structure and remember that there’s just 1 page to scroll.
Based on your site character and conversion target, or lack thereof, you may or may not benefit from parallax scrolling. Here’s a list of factors you should consider before applying parallax into a one-page site:
Picture layers and cartoons slow down page loading. Are your site visitors patient enough to wait until the webpage is loaded or would they rather leave it and search for better options?
Many people don’t find websites with parallax effect user-friendly. Avoid applying this design trend to selling and informative pages. Especially if you’re expecting repeat visitors or aim to convert.
Parallax isn’t generally recommended for mobile sites. Of course, programmers can perform tricks with it or just turn it off on mobile devices but the question is whether you really need to make this effort.
You may ask why parallax remains one of our best practices despite this list of disadvantages. Well, because you may still benefit from this design technique should you use it carefully. And to do so, you really should know your audience. If you are designing a website for individuals who are not used to elaborate designs, you’d better stay away from parallax. However, it can be a fantastic solution for portfolios, corporate sites, and some landing pages.
Add alternative navigation
Single-page sites are all about scrolling and sometimes about endless scrolling, making people feel on your page as though they’re in the middle of nowhere. If your site has a complex structure and contains a whole bunch of blocks, you should think of alternative navigation. Let people quickly jump to the section they need with sticky menus: make them horizontal, vertical, slightly transparent, or replace them with icons. Use anchor links and a back-to-top button to keep the UX pleasant and intuitive.
Include a call to action
Single-page websites are fantastic for calls to action. Because of their structure, bookmarking sites are more focused than with multi-page ones. If the website was originally created for one particular purpose (contact form submission, mobile app download or email signup), you need to construct your design around it. Make the call to action noticeable in color and form and encourage users to carry out the desired action.
Single-page site design heavily depends on business targets and target audiences. And before you go for any design practice, you need to find out who is coming to your site and why.