The header and footer are typically the top and bottom sections, respectively, that remain the same- no matter which webpage a visitor navigates to. The header and footer of a website typically define its style and design and contain links to other pages, the website’s logo or title and contact information.
But there still exist various minute aspects that have to be considered when it comes to placing what and where exactly. Let’s check it out, nevertheless.
A website header is located at the top of each page and serves several important functions. This is more than just a place for your logo; it is part of the consistent user experience shared by all good websites. The design of a header may vary from site to site, but the core elements that determine how a site is navigated and experienced remain consistent.
This section is typically consistent across all pages on the website; however, some designs give the home page a slightly different header appearance to draw attention to featured areas of the site. Overall, a good header improves the usability of your website, establishes your brand, and creates a consistent browsing experience throughout your website.
Why are Headers Important?
Various reasons why headers are important are mentioned below
- The navigation bar will appear on every page of your website, but the first section beneath it will most likely change depending on the purpose of the page. The consistent navigation bar is ideal for displaying your logo (and, if applicable, your tagline), as this will reinforce your branding. A good logo designer can assist you in creating a logo that will make your header even more memorable.
- When people visit your website, you want them to do something, whether it’s downloaded a demo of your software, make a purchase, or share the article they’re reading. A call to action, such as “sign up” or “download free demo,” on your header reminds the user to interact with the content you’re providing.
- Any search information you may be looking for is placed in the header section. There exist firms with lengthy websites containing really crucial information. And since the users are deprived of any confusion, there includes a search option in the header line.
- You might be used to headers without even realizing it. This is because your header section works as a navigation bar that includes all the main sections that the entire website is supposed to cover. So, when you go to a firm’s home page, you can jump right to the main section and the other sources from the header.
- Fixed or floating headers are also possible. Fixed headers remain at the top of the page; they are fixed in place and do not move with your browser’s viewport as you scroll down.
- As you scroll, a floating header appears. Depending on the design, this header may become more compact as the scroll progresses. This enables someone to quickly navigate to another area of the site after reading all the way to the bottom of the page without having to scroll back up.
The basic elements that a header includes are
- Identity / Logo
- Navigation (Main Menu)
- Title of the page
- Shopping Cart (E-commerce Site)
- Login / Exit
- Link to User Profile
- Information Notifications (if applicable)
This section of your website is located at the bottom of your web pages and, like your header, is usually present on every page of your website. This is typically where your site’s contact information, social media links, and copyright information can be found. Remember to double-check, as you did with your header, that it appears on every page of your website.
Why are Footers Important?
- They provide site visitors with one more opportunity to complete the desired action. If you want people to sign up for your mailing list, view a product demo, or contact you, inviting them at the end of a scroll is an effective call to action, similar to CTAs at the end of advertisements.
- They show how to stay involved in the future. By including navigation links in the footer, you allow site visitors to continue exploring without having to scroll back up.
- They provide necessary access to important information but should not be given top billing (i.e. your copyright info, privacy statements and legal disclaimers).
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Some basic elements that a footer includes are
- Links to useful resources
- Map of the Website
- Internal Organizational Brands
- Customer involvement (email newsletters and social media)
The Bottom Line
The header and footer of a website are two of the most instantly recognizable elements of your website. As a result, they should be designed and placed with care, especially since it is there to convey your branding and overall messaging. Whether you use a simple icon or a more complex toolbar, your website header and footer should serve a purpose and serve a function. Above all, it should welcome visitors and set the tone for the rest of the user experience.