Overloading a page with too many elements (especially a homepage) provides visual overload for visitors, which can scare them away. Whitespace is kind of like taking a deep breath. Leaving whitespace provides the visual break that people need to spend more time on your site without being overwhelmed.
Convey a Clean Appearance
Think about the difference between a newspaper sales flier with advertisements jammed in side-by-side versus a chic home furnishings store with white walls and shiny trendy décor. This is basically the difference between having a website chocked full of too many elements and a website that utilizes whitespace appropriately. Simply put, whitespace makes a design look clean and modern. As a marketer you want to portray your brand in a way that’s professional and whitespace is the perfect way to do that!
Draw Attention to an Individual Item
Too much stuff on a website creates a confusing and convoluted sales funnel because visitors can’t be sure what they should click on or how to get to what they’re looking for. This can result in a higher bounce rate and lower conversion rate, neither of which are something that a marketer wants! Using whitespace allows you to draw attention to the most important element on each page and create a logical traffic flow across your site.
Create Distinctions between Items
Using whitespace is important for product or service plan comparison pages because it can help visitors to organize their thoughts around each option and properly evaluate them. Whitespace can be an effective way to create distinction between items as well to promote your most popular offerings.
Allow for Screen Size Adjustments
Responsive web design is more popular than ever before because smartphones and other mobile devices are so ubiquitous these days. Whitespace goes a long way in allowing designs to adjust to different screen sizes without compromising the overall look. The more stuff you have on each page the more things you have to worry about moving around as screen sizes shrink. Whitespace lets your design condense and shift as needed and still look great and remain highly functional for visitors.
Kate Pierce is the owner of LionShark Digital Marketing LLC, a West Michigan internet marketing company. Her areas of expertise include Paid Search, Search Engine Optimization, Social Media, Web Consulting for small businesses, Copywriting and Local Online Marketing. She lives in the Grand Rapids area with her husband and enjoys cooking, watching sports and spending time outdoors. Like a true digital marketing expert (i.e. geek), she loves talking about marketing theory and SEM trends… so don’t say you weren’t warned!