15 Inspiring Websites with Great White Space Examples
Great White space Examples: Have you ever had a mind block just staring at your screen trying to absorb too much information all crammed into one small space? You know that feeling.
What online readers want is a picture that makes them feel calm, relaxed, and more willing to read the article accompanying it? That is the effective use of white space.
What is White Space?
White space is often referred to as negative space. It is the portion of a page left unmarked- Wikipedia.
Or we can simply call it “empty space.” It doesn’t necessarily have to be white, it can be of any color, and you can also have a picture or different textures.
Our brains easily get cognitive fatigue when too much information is crammed into one place and presented all at once. That’s the feeling you get when looking at phone books.
Blank areas are used in business cards, documents, art, websites, banners and so many other things to make them more visually appealing. The tip is in learning how to use them effectively and still convey your message.
Have a look at the two examples below from Digital Ink:
Your brain immediately related to the article on the right, correct? The difference is in the fact that the right article is more aesthetically pleasing.
The one on the left looks crammed, the columns are crowded with too many words and the overall layout has “overused” the space. It’s not an article you feel you’d skim through quickly.
Always remember: The simpler the design, the more approachable it looks for the reader.
Let’s have a look at another example from Printwand:
What do you notice? Both have blank areas but how have they been used? The business card on the left has stuffed all the information in one area making it difficult to decipher.
You wouldn’t want to hand out such a business card to clients. They’d probably get tired trying to figure out what your phone number is and never call back!
The card on the right uses negative space well. The elements are well laid out and easy to make sense out of.
Do you see where we’re going with this? It’s not all about having space, it’s also about layout and making sure the people viewing your content can make sense of it.
White Space and Web Design
When creating your website, you want your visitors to enjoy their time there and actually read your content. For both to happen, you need to know how to use white space effectively.
People only spare minutes or even just seconds to look through your website. Those seconds need to count! The key is simplicity.
White space is vital when creating your website. Not only is it pleasing to the eye, it is also important for conversion optimization.
When used effectively, your website is turned into a user-friendly zone; easily navigable, comprehensive and conversion-friendly.
Using whitespace to highlight or emphasize important elements on a website increased visitor comprehension by almost 20%. - Human Factors International research.
Point to note; White space doesn’t only mean leaving out chunks of space. Your design is also crucial.
You can use many elements in your webpage; text, pictures, videos, the key is how you design and use the minimal space.
First Things First
You need to decide what is important and what isn’t. Once you have your objective, it’s easier to create the focal point on your website and not overcrowd it.
Take a look at these two website layouts
The point of focus area in the two is the call to action button (CTA). On the left, the button has no breathing space, it is overcrowded with text and margins.
It is supposed to be the user’s center of attention but with the layout, the user is prone to get distracted.
The CTA button on the right is more accessible. You can easily see that it is the focal point of the website.
TIP: When creating your website, do not put too many elements above your fold (the website area that appears before users start scrolling). It often gives it a crowded look and can be a put off.
15 websites using whitespace effectively
White space Examples: Shopify
What is Shopify’s objective? To get users to sign up for a free trial and their does exactly that.
Notice that their main navigation is tucked away and that there’s plenty of space around their sign-up form so that it’s the first thing visitors notice.
White space Examples: Everlane
White space doesn’t literally mean white. Everlane has used pictures and colors perfectly. The photograph shows the clothes perfectly and the call to “shop now” is placed strategically.
You couldn’t possibly miss it! It’s elegant, serene and not pushy in the least.
White space Examples: Wistia
One could say that there are too many elements on Wistia’s home page, but using white space also means separating your call to action from the rest of the elements.
The video platform Wistia does this exceptionally well; the “better video hosting- get started” remains the focal point despite the elements.
White space Examples: We Like Small
We like small, a digital agency, proves that motion can be used as white space. The arrangement on the page is sleek and doesn’t make you feel like there’s too much going on despite the demo reel playing in the background.
only three textual elements: the logo, the menu and the slogan all well-spaced the call to action to play their 2016 reel is focal.
White space Examples: Simpla
Just like its name suggests, Simpla has used a “simple” white space technique- minimalism.
A large area of the site has been left unmarked below the logo and navigation along with a short paragraph and arrow encouraging users to keep scrolling to learn more about Simpla. The overall look is one of simple sophistication.
White space Examples: Harvard Art Museums
When you think of the Harvard art museums, you think of antique paintings but a look at their website shows a picture of modern simplicity.
They have literally used “white space” to offer a background for the paintings. Nothing distracts the user from the art; even the site’s navigation is hidden away and only appears when the user hovers their mouse above it.
White space Examples: Burnkit
Sometimes you want to put a lot of information on your homepage, but how do you do it without overwhelming the user? Pad everything with a lot of white space.
Burnkit features blog content, key excerpts from the agency's portfolio of client work, and behind-the-scenes looks at the agency's culture all on the home page. You can however notice that they feature all this but the homepage still looks and feels airy.
White space Examples: Medium
The focus on Medium’s home page is the center column “stop managing your remote workers as if they work on site”. It then shows notes from people who have clapped or commented as social proof.
This easily leads the readers to navigate the site on what they should read next.
White space Examples: Moze
Do we need to explain this one?
White space Examples: Granna
When you visit Granna’s website, you immediately see the simple luxury they are trying to sell. Even with the text in the background, the focus remains on the products they are selling, the sinks and basins.
On the top right corner is a direct link to the specific product the user wishes to view and there’s also information on the varieties available. At a quick glance, you’re able to know what they offer in what varieties from steel to chrome.
White space Examples: CRRT
Some would say creative developers, CRRT have used “black space”. Their design is simple and straightforward.
They have highlighted how they focus on “writing code and building cool stuff.” The navigation arrow at the bottom allows the user to easily scroll to see the cool stuff they’ve built.
White space Examples: Lionel Durimel
This is a website that uses well-structured typography and white space uniquely. It is sophisticated and doesn’t look crowded despite the large letters.
White space Examples: Flarin.com
This is a good concept for blogs. It’s friendly, passes the message in one sentence to the target audience- design lovers. The “about, work, contacts” tabs are also very visible.
White space Examples: Big Horror Athens
Big horror Athens has used a creative tagline as their focus point. The “messy” white space matches the catchy tagline and after reading it, you’d definitely want to know what the website is all about.
White space Examples: Volta footwear
The shoe, the “shop now”, their goal- Focus on hybrid engineering; all are perfectly placed. Volta footwear has used negative space well on the website that the user is left with nothing else to do but “shop now!”
White space is a key factor that any web designer should consider when creating a website.
There are so many variables that can be employed to perfection that don’t suppress your designing flair.
What to remember is to keep it simple, focus on your website’s objective and of course, do not overwhelm your visitors!