Web sites are not all alike. While the basic usage of a web site is to communicate your message to viewers, it doesn’t mean your site needs multiple pages, sidebars, contact or “about us” pages. The important factor is that the viewer understands what your site is all about within a few seconds upon arrival.
In magazine publishing, any good designer or publisher will tell you the cover needs to be seen and understood within a three to four seconds for efficient newsstand sales. The same goes for markets that had multiple newspapers. The headline had to grab the viewer’s attention almost right away, which explains the still current practice of writing catchy headlines that people will see on a newsstand and purchase out of curiosity.
Single page web sites are to the point, less confusing, easy to focus upon and have an easy call to action. The minimal amount on the one page assures speed and satisfaction for the user. There are a lot of examples one can find in which a single-page site makes sense for certain businesses: if there isn’t a ton of content; if the content is all closely related; the object of the site, like the sale of one specific item is easily achieved in one page; or, in cases where a particular stylistic element and idea works best on a single page.
Major considerations of a one-page site
Do I have a lot of content?
Content-rich sites that have lots of information of differing points and calls-to-action(s)are probably not the best fit for a single-page site. If you have more than a dozen pages worth of information, you’re probably better off with a more traditional, multiple-page structure.
Is lots of content an important part of your marketing?
Do you need to say a lot about yourself, your product or your service? If you are running an ecommerce site, are you selling multiple products with a complicated checkout process?
Am I trying to sell a specific product?
A single page website can be a great solution for selling one product, like a book, an app, a website theme, or similar single products. It makes the consumer experience fast and easy.
Is my content all related?
Trying to put a bunch of unrelated content on a single page is likely just going to confuse your visitor. If you have a bunch of unrelated pages, they’re probably best left as separate pages. Simplicity is the key to making viewers feel comfortable with your site and your message.
What can fit within a screen size?
Not everyone has a cinema display screen. Laptops and even tablets are the most common internet access devices among the public. Even the mobile site for cell phones must be considered for single-page sites. These smaller screens almost demand single-pages to save on navigation but require scrolling. Horizontal scrolling can be very effective to cover multiple content focus one a one-page site.
Will embedding a slide show of content work?
Rather than separate pages of content such as other products, images or services, a slide show can be the round up of multiple content that is similar.
Can content separation be used?
In designing a one-page site, rather than having a new page for a contact, about me, or product identification page, using defined sections can give you a clear message as well as a unique design and enhanced consumer experience. It’s not just lines or headers that separate content. The use of color blocks, large and small type or illustrations and images that will act to visually separate sections.
Is brief better?
A one-page site forces you to have well-written, to-the-point sales information. To a viewer, this is advantageous as it builds a relationship, rather than a large, multiple-page site that will often be considered “too preachy” and indifferent to a consumer as a person.
Is Google ranking better?
With only one page, there is more of a chance for increased Google ranking. The ranking will be applied to the entire site because there is only a single page. You will have more chances attracting search engines which can lead to higher traffic as well.
Focus on quality!
Too often, multiple-page sites get convoluted with unnecessary content, which detracts the viewer and can be confusing and boring or dilute your professional appearance. With a single page website, you will be able to give more attention to the quality of your content and focus on your website without thinking about the other pages of the site.
Easy navigation keeps the consumer on your site!
A great advantage of a one page website is easy navigation. Since there is only one page, users will get to focus on everything in the page. It is an advantage that the users are only a few scrolls or click away from the information they want to know. When a user gets lost in navigation of a site, they will more often than not, abandon the site and find another site.
The web user grows more impatient each and every day. Web speed gets faster every year, devices get more sophisticated and mobile and people are more and more desirous of quick action and satisfaction. The web, has spoiled us as the web moves quicker than life and human actions can and will ever be able to achieve in the real world. Like the virtual “Matrix,” we have created a virtual reality for ourselves and for better or worse, professionals must evolve to meet the needs and desires of the consumer and user. As the old saying goes, in pre-computerized society; in business there is only the quick and the dead. Learn to supply web content quickly!
Suggested articles on this subject:
One Page Love
A gallery of single-page website designs (examples used in this article courtesy of One Page Love).
30 One Page Websites A showcase from Tutorial Blog.
40+ Impressive Single Page Websites A showcase of single page sites from Dzine Blog.
One Page Category The single page design category from DesignBombs.
Single-Page Portfolio Sites An excellent showcase of designs from Web Designer Wall.
88 Single Page Website Designs for Design Inspiration A large showcase from InstantShift.