Many developers often find it strange when they stumble upon a website that’s still left aligned. After all, the most trendy format for a website is to place most of the content in the center, moving focus towards the middle, since it’s often considered to look nicer. However, many companies still remain true to the left aligned website, and there are some solid reasons for doing so.
To start. the left aligned website is much easier for people with varying device sizes to view. It’s similar to how modern responsive websites snap into place, except this doesn’t require any responsive elements, since the content is already shifted to the left, with space towards the right, allowing for some room when a smaller device is used.
It’s also worth noting that many large companies have stuck with the left aligned format because that’s how people have been shown to browse around on websites. Google is one of the best examples, since it reveals its search results to the left. Users already have their mouses towards the upper left hand corner of their screen (punching in a URL,) so it’s only logical that they move the mouse down slightly to begin their clicking. In addition, people are known to read from left to right, so it’s cutting out the work they would otherwise have to do when searching for content that is centered.
Overall, the left aligned format website is still used quite a bit, so let’s take a look at some of the more beautiful left aligned website designs to pull some inspiration from.
30Elm is a home design website, and it leaves quite a bit of white space to the right of its design, allowing for smaller devices to view the website just as well. Everything is shifted to the left, making it quick and easy to click on anything from navigational items to featured case studies.
You’ll even notice that the sign in module is a little faster to get to since it’s not all the way on the other side of the page.
The Kavoon website utilizes the left aligned layout, yet it doesn’t actually look like it’s too drastically shifted to the left. The website has a large graphic towards the right to make it look like most of the content is centered.
However, the navigational menu is smashed to the left of the page, helping people move their mouse to the links without any problems. We particularly enjoy that three language links are sitting in the left hand corner, since that’s most likely what everyone is going to want to click on first.
The ColourPixel website is a great example of how a portfolio can look spectacular with a left aligned design. The developer did a great job of implementing a colorful background, so the right hand side of the site isn’t just a bunch of white space.
The black boxes play well with the alignment as well, since the user’s eyes move from the top left corner down to the right, going with the content that explains about contact information and offerings.
The Duoh site is another one of those examples that looks as if it’s centered, but it’s not. The creative patterns to the right manage to generate an illusion, yet the menu remains to the far left for easy access when people land on the page.
In addition, the portfolio modules and blog articles are all lined up as you scroll down the page, yet they are slightly off center, leaning to the left, expanding on the fact that a left aligned site can actually look quite natural.
Area17 is an interactive agency, and its website takes left aligned layouts to the extreme, using a large grey area towards the right to push most of the content to the left. This doesn’t seem to be a problem though, because it’s clear where visitors should go, and the portfolio images are clean and organized as you scroll down the page.
06. Jon Malkernus
The Jon Malkernus website is yet another portfolio website design that looks great with the left aligned format. The developer uses a black background to show elegance and power, and each of the portfolio thumbnails are the exact same size for an organized and sophisticated look.
Even when you click on one of the images the website remains in the left aligned setup, with related links surrounding each portfolio module to keep visitors on the page for a longer period of time.
The Lucky Stars Tattoo website takes an alternative approach, placing the menu to the right hand side of the website, even though the site is aligned to the left.
This isn’t a problem though, since the left part of the site reveals an inside look of the tattoo parlor, using creativity and realism to give users a glimpse into what they can expect if they were to walk into the store. It’s a nice use of the blank space and a creative take on the left aligned site.
08. Rock Beats Paper
Rock Beats Paper is a web design company, and it features all of its content to the left side of the page, utilizing grey colors to the right, and organizing the portfolio pieces in a nice format. You’ll notice that many left aligned websites push the navigational menu far to the left, showing that they understand why the site is left aligned.
After all, if you’re not trying to make it easier for the user to move around, there isn’t much of a reason to consider the left aligned layout.
Although The Amanda Project site probably uses a little too much white space towards the right hand side, it’s worth noting that the design is still incredible. The playful colors reveal the tone of the blog, and the newsletter subscription form even stands out since it is moved towards the middle of the page.
Each navigational tab is easily accessible, and the user’s eyes move from those links to the logo, which is ideal for branding, in that it reveals information and brand images in a logical sequence.
10. Squid Ink
Squid Ink is a seafood restaurant that combines a left aligned layout with a beautifully placed navigational menu to show customers exactly where they want to go when landing on the page. Menu, recipes and reservation links are right where a user wants them to be, and the background is taken advantage of, with the implementation of a food image, adding some balance to the design.
You’ll also notice that the website has a reservation phone number in the upper right hand corner, showing that the designer understands how to use all of the space on the screen, instead of simply leaving it blank. Along with stunning designs, powerful colors and plenty of pictures of the cuisine, the Squid Ink website is certainly a nice piece of work for inspiration.
11. Photo Comma
Check out the Photo Comma website if you’re interested in finding inspiration from a left aligned page with simplicity involved. Not only does it offer a description for the website right where user eyes fall first, but the gallery moves around when the user scrolls with the mouse.
This makes it a little faster for browsing through the photos, going with the whole right aligned theme of creating a more user friendly interface. We also enjoy that the designer takes advantage of a background image, evening out the visuals and almost convincing the user that the site isn’t left aligned at all.
The Andy Thomas Photography site is a classic example of a left aligned layout. What’s great about this design is that the area to the right, which could generally just show a white or black background, reveals an image from the photo studio.
In addition, the entire navigational menu is mashed to the left of the page, helping visitors find the most relevant information first, while also leading up to the other content that is nicely arranged in a photo gallery as you scroll down the page.
The best part of the website is when you start clicking on other pages, since the space to the right alternates pictures, giving viewers a glimpse into what other work the company can do.
Over to You…
You’ve had a chance to look at some stunning left aligned websites, and now you understand why so many companies are still utilizing the format. If you have any questions, or would like to chime in about why, or why not, left aligned websites still have a place in this world, please leave a comment in the section below.
Otherwise, feel free to bookmark some of these websites for inspiration in the future, when a client wants you to create a left aligned website for functionality purposes.