A website can have colors, text, images, illustrations, and several other elements. Among all these elements, you’ll also find icons of varying styles. Icons may seem insignificant to you, but they play an important role in websites and apps. The term icon is derived from the Greek word ‘eikon’, which literally translates as ‘image’.
Icons are among the elements widely used in this digital age. However, their roots go back to the ancient times. The importance of iconography can be understood from the fact that they were used in different human civilizations. Icons provide information visually without any distractions and this is their fundamental purpose.
They describe functions
Words can be used to explain the functions of a particular section of an app or a website. This is the most direct approach, but can easily put off many users. They may lose focus with too much text and skip the message entirely.
Adding icons, therefore, would be a truly effective approach for describing the functions. They bring a fun element to the section and also visually explain the message to users. The people going through the section can easily relate to the icon and understand the explanation without much efforts.
They explain processes
A website or an app can have several functionalities that require the users to take certain actions. Most of the times, such actions need to be taken in a step-by-step manner. Each of these steps can be represented visually in a brilliant way with the use of icons.
This also eliminates the need to use lengthy texts to explain the process. Many websites and apps use a combination of audio and icons to facilitate better understanding of a process.
They help users in filling web forms
One of the best ways to establish a great relationship with your customer is by using web forms. The time spent on attracting users to the website or app must be complemented with efforts to retain them. One of the effective ways to create a great user experience is including web forms.
Such forms must not contain any random questions, as they can make the user leave immediately. The questions must be relevant and accompanied by icons at the right places. The idea behind this is to get the web form completed instantly and with ease.
They facilitate easy navigation
As they are highly effective in explaining concepts visually, icons can also be used to make website navigation easier. They’re often used as distinctive elements that are easier to locate on a website or an app. Once the user is able to locate the icon, he or she can be easily given the desired information.
For example, let’s take a business that offers four different services. It can have the four services listed on its website’s homepage with each having a specific icon. When you click on one of the icons, you’ll be able to understand what the service is all about.
They enhance the look of websites or apps
Icons can add some style to the websites or apps. Many different styles of icons are available today. Among them are the ones that use shadows, reliefs, and planes. Some are linear while there are others that have 3D effects. When a specific icon is used on a website or app, it adds personality to the overall design. When using icons, it is important to see that they fit the website’s or app’s aesthetics perfectly.