How to be Function Focused in Design

How to be Function Focused in Design

Photo by Alvaro Reyes on Unsplash

It is easy to get wrapped up in figuring out how a website should look. It may be important to put in all your efforts into making things pretty. After all, the people who are using your site wants to use something that is visually appealing. However, when it comes to designing a website, there are more things that come into play other than how an interface looks. 

Design is not how something looks, but more importantly, how it works. A website can look pretty and pleasant, but if a user cannot work it, the negative effects will be unforgiving. When designers are creating interfaces, it can be extremely difficult to turn away from a design that may appear underwhelming.

There are many web designers that are incredibly visual focused. It is not a bad thing to be visually oriented but it does make it a bit harder to keep functionality in mind. It can make a designer’s job a bit difficult when coming up with a solution. Learning how to be a bit more function focused can greatly enhance your skills as a designer. 

Keep Your Goals in Mind 

Be sure that every design decision you make align well with your goals. When getting involved with the micro aspect of your design, it is common for critical goals to slip away. You would not want to waste time designing elements that will not help you or your users. Remember that you are creating a solution to an important problem.

Truly Understand Your Users 

You are a designer that is creating a tool for others to use. You should know how the website should look, feel, and work. The problem is, your users come from different backgrounds in terms of technological experience. They can easily interact with your design in a way that is not intended. It is important to learn about what their tendencies are in terms of what they are looking for and how they would like to be given the information. By learning and understanding, it can be very useful for your design.

Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash

Perform User Testing 

Websites are typically used more than once by different types of people. An experience can be broken in ways that you would least expect. Something that can help you stay focused on the functionality of your design is by having multiple users test and navigate your design. You can learn a lot by studying and receiving feedback on how your design should work and what improvements are needed.

Learn the Traditional Flows and Steps of Your Users 

You will figure out quickly that there are things your design needs to assist the user. Your design may be visually appealing but can it work well in guiding the users to what they are looking for? What are some UX trends that are floating around that may help people look for similar goals? Part of web design is figuring out how your users will browse your site and understanding why. 

Make Your Design Unbreakable

If users are consistently encountering a friction point in your layout, your design is broken. What are ways that you can effectively guide users to where they need to be? It is very easy to miss crucial steps one could take when viewing your website. For example, if you find that users enjoy viewing products even after placing an order on your site, it would be a great idea to create an element available after checkout so that users can browse products that they can purchase in the future. Fulfilling such need can often be overlooked when planning and designing.

Photo by Alvaro Reyes on Unsplash

Keep Your Design Simple 

You may have an abundance of ideas for a design that may incorporate lots of features.. Your audience however, will not care about any of it if it comes at the expense of getting in the way of their goals. What is important is keeping your website simple enough to where navigation is seamless, and your users are satisfied when they click off of your site. 


Design is a visual based industry. It is incredibly easy to get caught up in the details of such to the point where vulnerabilities can rise from overlooking. The important thing when designing layouts is taking account of the user experience and making sure that your layout works well for users.