The Best Website Layout Ideas for Your Site

Web Design
The Best Website Layout Ideas for Your Site
Article by Jelena Relić
Last Updated: March 08, 2024

Content is king in digital marketing and plays a pivotal role in any website’s success. Still, how the content is presented within a page depends on your website layout, and that has an impact on user experience (UX), readability, and retention, all of which influence whether a visitor takes a desired action. Seasoned web design agencies know this well.

So, which are the best website layout ideas? Is there a one-size-fits-all solution? Let’s find out together.

What Is a Website Layout?

As mentioned, a website layout is a framework or pattern that creates a structure for the information presented on a site. The layout defines the website’s on-page content hierarchy, whether it’s a small business or a non-profit blog, helping visitors navigate the website and convey the platform’s message or purpose the best it can.

Good layout patterns keep the structure clean and understandable for site owners and visitors alike, providing clear navigational pathways and centering the most important site elements.

We’ll now review 10 of the most popular and practical layouts that have served as the core of many brilliant website design ideas.

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Single-Column Layout

This is one of the simplest layouts you can choose for your site, organizing all the information into one column. Your photos, text, and videos are scannable and easy to observe, as every piece of information falls into a single column. They are great for mobile experiences, blogs, newsfeeds, long-form articles, and research papers.

On the other hand, one-grid layouts may limit design creativity and offer limited space. As the space is limited, it’s hard to feature multiple things at once, so it may not grab the attention of visitors. With that in mind, those who want a site for lead generation, for example, would do well to avoid this design.

Grid Layout

Grids are used to categorize information, making the website look organized and easy to scan. This allows for multiple content elements to be distributed equally, usually split in rows and columns, enabling visitors to choose which is more important for them. The grids and all design elements in this layout should also adhere to specific units of measurement regarding size and spacing.

Typically, they are great for sites that are rich in content; plus, they also render pretty well on any device or browser. The ability to populate the site with lots of content also means more opportunities for engagement, making this layout great for vlogs and newspapers.

One downside of grids is that they’re fixed, offering limited options for adjustments and creativity. Also, they might not support dynamic content well, and from a technical standpoint, they may be demanding for beginners to build and maintain.

Magazine Layout

Beyond grid and single-column layouts, it’s worth noting that other, more advanced layouts can be mixtures of several others. One such layout is the magazine layout, which features a dynamic mix of imagery, text, and multimedia organized into visually appealing sections, resembling the layout of a print magazine with attention-grabbing headlines and intuitive navigation.

As such, it might be best used for websites that aren’t primarily focused on highlighting their products and services but rather aim to entertain their users and help them unwind. This layout boasts great visual appeal and enables site owners to populate the pages with different pieces of content, such as text, images, banners, contacts, testimonials, and galleries, in an almost artistic way.

Conversely, these sites may be hard to scan for some users, and making such a layout responsive on every screen may be a challenge. Additionally, it may seem confusing to the readers, who might not be able to identify the info they’re looking for right away. Still, this layout can be really good at retaining visitors, and around 64% of website users think a good website should be able to hold their attention.

Parallax Scrolling

Moving on to more modern design layouts, parallax scrolling creates a 3D effect as you scroll down the site and the content changes. Essentially, the background moves faster than the foreground, which creates a sense of immersion and depth based on optical illusions.

This layout is great for creating specific atmospheres and dynamic experiences. Also, it enables site owners to get away with putting all their content on one page, greatly improving navigation.

On the other hand, these animations may affect loading speed in different browsers. In addition, a content-heavy website may require the user to scroll too much, leading to frustration and abandonment.

Card-Based Layout

Closely tied with Google’s Material Design, the card-based layout is highly responsive and flexible. It’s also known as modular design, and each content unit, like buttons, images, text, and videos, is included in a “module card,” having its own space. The result is a highly coherent and streamlined composition.

The layout makes scanning the content easy, and it opens up several creative possibilities. The cards can be customized with animation and expanded to show more content. The layout is also highly responsive, making the design process simpler to cater to every device.

On the flip side, traditional content hierarchy can be lost, and creating a design that stands out is also challenging.

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Split-Screen Layout

This layout style encompasses both vertical and horizontal split screens with two or more components appearing at the same time. Typically, a vertical split screen will emphasize the importance of each component across specific areas, giving opportunities for quick decision-making for enhanced website engagement.

In contrast, the following example integrates vertical and horizontal splits within a single page. While the vertical split doesn't prompt immediate choices, it instead enhances one experience through the other.

Hero Image Layout

This layout gets its name from the “hero image,” centering around it. By default, the layout uses a big hero image and text overlays, which dominate the entire framework. A good example would be Apple’s iPhone landing pages.

As the name implies, hero image layouts are great for sites and pages that focus on specific products, keeping the visitor’s attention on them at all times. As such, they might not be the best design approach for sites that aim to convey several pieces of equally important information.

Asymmetrical Layout

This layout bends the rules of symmetry and introduces a sense of active space to make the design and backdrop livelier. As such, it can easily pique visual interest and create a sense of differentiation, enabling designers to use creative solutions to implement vital content elements on a page.

That being said, asymmetrical layouts can be challenging to get right, as it is often difficult to lose the balance of visual flow and information hierarchy, which may impact readability as well.

Timeline Layout

This layout is primarily used to present information or event sequences in a visually appealing, structured way. The timeline web design layout presents content chronologically along a horizontal or vertical axis, resembling a linear progression of events or information. The info is highly organized, rich in visuals, and, most importantly, structured in a way that’s easy to digest.

The layout may follow a simple vertical pattern, presenting event sequences chronologically. These are great for progress tracking or personal and brand histories. You also have chronological timeline layouts that follow a strict, linear format and step-based timelines that create manageable steps for each workflow or process. These are ideal for tutorials, forms, or different project workflows.

Fixed Sidebar or Sticky Sidebar Layout

A fixed or sticky sidebar layout means the menu options are usually in a vertical column on the site's left (sometimes the right) side or the top of the page. The sidebar is always visible and static, so visitors can access it without scrolling.

As sidebars aren’t exactly comprehensive layouts, they usually go well with other layouts that enable a lot of content, such as grids or single-page designs. They are also great for responsive layouts because they ensure constant access to vital navigation elements and contact info on every screen.

In practical terms, fixed sidebars enhance the user experience on educational websites, for example, by providing quick access to course navigation and additional resources. Similarly, on corporate or business websites, they facilitate user engagement and conversions by keeping essential contact information, service offerings, and call-to-action buttons visible at all times.

At first glance, these fixed elements seem like a win-win option, as navigation is always accessible. Still, they can hide parts of the content, especially if the navigation menu is fixed at the top. Reducing the menu’s size can help, but part of the content will always be hidden.


If content is the king in digital marketing, then a layout is definitely the throne that serves as the structure. Each of the layout options we’ve mentioned above can greatly influence user engagement and experience.

Understanding the strengths and possible drawbacks of each layout enables site owners and designers to create immersive sites and pages that grab the attention of audiences and convey that site’s message clearly and coherently. And even as user expectations change with the evolving technology, one thing remains the same: visual appeal and intuitive layouts and designs are and will be a cornerstone to success.


1. What is a Good Website Layout?

Essentially, a good website layout is a framework that enables designers to create a balance between functionality and aesthetics. A good framework is easy to navigate and ensures that there’s a visual and information hierarchy on the pages. Also, good layouts should be responsive, accessible, scalable, fast-loading, and user-friendly.

2. How Do I Choose a Website Layout?

When choosing a website layout, you should have a clear idea of what goals you want to achieve, who you are creating the website for and a solid idea of the content you want to post.

You should also address functionality, responsiveness, visual aesthetics, navigation, and scalability. Addressing all these aspects should be best left to professionals, so consider reaching out to a seasoned designer team who can get you on the right track.

3. How Can I Ensure My Website Layout Is Mobile-Friendly and Responsive?

The best way to get started is by choosing a responsive framework that automatically adjusts your content to screen sizes and device types. Use CSS media queries to create custom variations for different screens, with possible layout and content simplifications. Also, optimize your images and perform thorough manual testing to look for potential issues.

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