Much like newspaper publications and magazines, mastheads in a digital world serve as an attention-grabbing introduction to a web page. Imagine picking up a newspaper with no headlines; what would be the draw to read it? Digital mastheads serve as headlines, navigational guides, and an introduction to your brand.
Mastheads should highlight the most important information, navigation, and branding efforts, by embracing simplicity and bold messaging. They should not, however, be approached with a cookie-cutter design. Mastheads are no longer rectangular header images with standard layouts; like all web design, they should embrace the image of your brand and can be creative while simple and effective. Today’s masthead designs include fluidity and character that integrates into the rest of the web design for a cohesive flow.
While mastheads are not always necessary, they are a great traffic driving and converting tool for businesses. Keep mastheads at the top of the page, include branded colors and imagery, limit font to one or two styles and ensure they are bold enough to read quickly, include the most important navigational elements, and a CTA to engage users. Ensure that headers contain compelling verbiage that will pull readers in. Remember that often, mastheads and other headers are the deciding factors for readers on whether they will look further into the web page. This means you have a short window of time in which to captivate them, so drive traffic by showing the user your value through this introduction to the business. Including the most important elements of your business and the webpage’s purpose by highlighting important points of navigation and CTAs will help your masthead to impact conversions as well.
When incorporating a masthead in design, ensure the page is fully optimized for mobile use and that the masthead renders on mobile devices the same way it does on desktops to avoid any negative impact on the user’s experience. Test the masthead out as a user before going live. Is the message clear? Does the masthead represent your brand? Is the verbiage compelling? Is what to do and where to go next intuitive? Be sure your masthead adds value and not just more code and visuals, to make your masthead work for your business.
Avatar New York is an innovating, award-winning web design firm dedicated to providing clients with responsive websites that help grow brands and convert visitors to customers. With an expertise in web development, branding, cloud hosting, mobile app development, and CMS and e-commerce solutions, Avatar New York's top tier designers have the ability to create intelligent websites for any type of business.