A great website consists of many different pieces that work together to provide a great user experience. These pieces include visual design, content, navigation, call to action, credibility, and responsive design. Why are these elements so essential? Let's break it down.
Design is a fairly broad term when it comes to experiencing a website. There's a lot that goes into making a website design that I would consider "good." Elements of design include layout, color, typography, mood, interactions, animations, and more. Because all of these are visual elements (and websites are visual representations of your business/brand), these elements must work with your brand. Poor execution of design elements will provide users with a negative experience.
Content is also crucial to creating a great website. You can have a beautiful website with crappy content, but chances are, that site will not rank well with search engines. Content is what helps people understand what services or products your business provides. It also allows users to experience your brand in a way that goes deeper than visual representation. Good content can improve someone's experience of a website exponentially.
Navigation is how users get through your website. For most sites, this is a simple navigation bar in the header and footer of the website. However, I also see navigation working well in other places as well. Taking a unique approach to this element of a website can help users have a much better experience.
Call to Action is one of the elements that can create a unique navigation experience. However, the main goal of a call to action is to get users from point a to point b. This element's job is to make the sale or get users to learn more or even to get users to contact you. This element is crucial to getting your customers the information that they need.
Credibility is critical for many reasons. A great website is one that builds trust between your brand/business and your customers. Customers are much more likely to reach out to you or buy your product if they trust that you have authority. In addition to this, search engines prioritize websites that have content that builds trust and authority. If you can prove to the web that you are a reliable resource, your website will do well.
Responsive Design used to be a buzzword that agencies would use to make sales. Well, now it's just a standard element for website design. Responsive sites work on mobile devices, tablets, desktops, and any other screen necessary. It can be a challenge to create a website that does this. I design my websites mobile-first, which ensures a quality end product on all devices.
Of course, there are a lot more pieces to this puzzle, but these six elements are the backbone, in my opinion. If you have a website that checks all of these boxes, it's a great site.