A staple and a mainstay in websites, tabs and tiles have always been a popular design choice. Their popularity and usability have even increased with the prevalence of mobile internet usage today. Here we look at their uses.
Tabs are most commonly found in the header or footer ribbons of websites with each one labelled to bring the user to a certain page. They are clear, spaced out well and simple to use – a single click brings the user to the page associated with the tab title. Each tab usually contains a single word so they also play a big part in keeping websites design clean, simple and clutter-free.
Quite like the website tab; tiles similarly act as a clear and singular point that brings the user to the corresponding page with a single click. However, tiles are usually much bigger and contain picture/video content or lines of written text. Tiles can also be arranged to display in grid formations or in any way that you would like (or depending on how skilled your web designer is!).
Usage on Desktop Websites
As you can see from their respective explanations above, it is clear why tabs and tiles are popularly seen on desktop websites and used in their design. Even though website design skillsets and creative ideas continue to grow and prosper, clients and users alike still gravitate towards the simple tab and tile interface for ease of use. You will especially find with minimal and simplistic designs that they are used to direct the website user exactly where they need to go. In an age of arguable information overload and visual assault (especially when browsing online), these humble facets stand out for their fuss-free application and accessibility. New users of your website will be able to effortlessly navigate your pages and seasoned users will know exactly where to go and what to click to find their desired content.
Usage of Mobile Websites
In more recent years tabs and tiles have experienced a resurgence of popularity and appreciation on mobile devices due to their limited screen size compared to desktop. This is because their clear usage fits perfectly on mobile screens and can be stacked one after the other to present themselves to the mobile user as they scroll down the screen. Both tabs and tiles in this regard see their strengths as simplistic but effective design elements shine. As mobile websites can sometimes be condensed versions of desktop websites; it is telling that tabs and tiles thrive and survive in this environment due to their straightforward and user-friendly effectiveness.
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