Site layout
About how to use the "void" in the design of the site
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Michael CEO&Founder


Printed 2025-05-20

A good website design is the result of careful planning and analysis. You and I have only about 10 seconds to create an attractive impression for site visitors, so it is very important to pay attention to each individual graphic or textual design element. One of the great tricks is to use empty space. In this article, we'll look at how to use the free space during turnkey website development



What is such an empty space? 

Free space is not a popular and underrated site layout element, although it is one of the most valuable assets of a web designer. Free space is, in fact, that part of the page that is left blank or unallocated. Simply put, this is the space between columns, graphics, text, images, fields, and a number of other elements scattered throughout the page. This space remains untouched to make the site layout more readable and easier to read. 

Background as a design element

Back in 1930, the famous Swiss typographer Jan Chiholde wrote that empty space is an active design element, and not just a useless background. In accordance with its principles, we now consider white space as a vital component of web design and use it in our interests when developing a site. 

Empty space should be seen as an active element, not a passive background - Jan Chiholde, 1930

The effect of space on usability

Free fields play a key role, allowing the designer Determine which page elements should be highlighted as the most important. They also create a more pleasing to the eye layout, thereby giving visitors the opportunity to stay on the site for a longer time. Here's a list of ways that free space can help you create a high-quality website design :

  • Highlight Calls to Action ( CTA): space gives CTA ability to "breathe." Using the space in the right proportion to the content, you can direct visitors to various links and buttons on the page. Framing CTAs with spaces can dramatically increase conversions. 
  • Improved understanding: According to a recent study, empty space can increase text understanding by about 20%. Using the indentation between paragraphs and around text blocks, you can help users understand the essence of the content. 
  • "Keeping your site clean." Often too much is done to create a site that can impress visitors. Regardless of whether it comes to choosing an interesting layout layout, unusual color schemes or fonts, all this must be correctly applied and connected together, and for this again space is needed. It's not at all necessary that your site will become “bare” or empty. When used correctly, free fields will add a sense of elegance and individuality to your site. 
  • Clean spaces make the site layout more pleasant to look at: they serve as an excellent tool for creating a harmonious and balanced layout. Here are some screenshots from Mark Boulton's great article, “A List Apart.” The screenshot below shows an example of text that is typed without spaces:

Too cramped: the site layout is clearly running out of space


In this screenshot, everything looks pretty cramped. Therefore, you need to add free space to create more comfort and balance. If you just add fields, change the font type and increase the line spacing, the same text fragment will now look like this:


 Already better: site layout is fixed using free fields


< p> Logical grouping Information also becomes easier with the use of free space: it happens that it is necessary to group names, categories, and so on. Empty fields will help achieve this goal. By simply adding spaces between different lists, you can easily separate groups. Here is a screenshot that shows the use of fields to layout site elements that fall into two categories: fruits and cars:


 Using free fields to separate semantic groups


Errors in use

Users usually scroll pages to the end: this is often ignored when using empty space in website design. It is important to remember that it is actually impossible to find out where the “fold” of the page is, beyond which the person will not scroll. Therefore, it makes no sense to get involved in a game of guessing. Do not overdo it with an empty place: the user can decide that he has already reached the end of the page. 

Adding too much content. Regardless of the goal you intend to achieve with the site, adding too much content will rarely help achieve it. This can adversely affect the layout of the site even when using clean space. But instead of deleting some of the content, try to cut it or hide it smartly, without prejudice to the meaning that needs to be conveyed on the site. 

Conclusion

Free space is undoubtedly the most important tool for creating the correct layout of the site. If you eliminate the contradictions between designers and website owners (who usually don't like “emptiness”), this space works for you, distinguishing the site from the crowd. 


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