Web design is a dynamic and creative discipline that requires both aesthetic sense and technical knowledge. But how can you design a website that is beautiful, functional, and easy to maintain? One possible answer is atomic web design, a method based on the principles of atomic design.
Atomic design is a philosophy introduced by Brad Frost in 2013. He compared web design to chemistry and suggested that a website could be divided into five basic elements:
- Atoms: The smallest units in a website, such as buttons, icons, colors, and typography.
- Molecules: Groups of atoms that form a functional unit, such as a search field or a menu.
- Organisms: Collections of molecules that form larger and more complex parts of a website, such as a header or a footer.
- Templates: Layouts that show how organisms are placed on a page and how they adapt to different screen sizes.
- Pages: Concrete examples of templates with real content and data.
Atomic web design is a practical application of atomic design that uses tools like CSS preprocessors, style guides, and component libraries to create consistent and modular websites. The benefits of atomic web design include:
- It promotes the reuse of code and design elements, reducing development time and maintenance costs.
- It makes it easier to test and debug websites, as you can isolate and change individual components without affecting the whole.
- It creates a common language and understanding between designers and developers, as they can refer to the same elements with the same names.
- It allows for the creation of responsive and adaptive websites that work on all devices and screen sizes.
Atomic web design is not a final solution or a strict rule, but rather a way of thinking about web design. It still requires creativity and flexibility to create a good website, but atomic web design can help structure and organize the process.
If you want to learn more about atomic web design, you can visit Brad Frost's website or read his book Atomic Design.
SaaS and Atomic web design
SaaS systems are Software as a Service, such as CMS, webshop, tools, and similar, delivered as a service over the internet, and often need to adapt to different customers, devices, and usage scenarios.
In SaaS systems with CMS and open-source systems where there is a drag-and-drop function for placing content, atomic web design is good because you can create websites tailored to individual customers even though they use the same tool.
But there are several advantages to considering atomic web design for SaaS systems and open-source systems with drag and drop.
Here are some of the benefits:
- Atomic web design makes it easier to create and maintain SaaS systems because you can reuse the same components across pages and functions, and only need to update them in one place.
- Atomic web design allows you to create different layouts and variations of SaaS systems by assembling components in different ways, without having to code them from scratch each time.
- Atomic web design supports drag-and-drop interaction because the components are small and flexible enough to be moved around and adapted to users' needs and preferences.
- Atomic web design promotes better collaboration between designers and developers because they can speak the same language and share the same building blocks for SaaS systems.
- Atomic web design makes it more cost-effective. By thinking in small, reusable components, you can design a new page more affordably.
- Atomic web design allows for customization of components for individual customers, providing a unique design and look.
- You can use components differently from page to page, creating unique pages with recognizable design.
Flex4B and Atomic web design
Flex4B system is a comprehensive system with CMS, webshop, ticket system, and card system that supports atomic web design. With the drag-and-drop editor, you can use the many components that have been prepared for you, which can be customized according to your wishes and needs.
Unlike most other systems, the Flex4B system supports the creation of components for individual customers. You can thus get specially customized components. Some of the customers who use it include Old Irish Pub and Sommerland Sjælland. Both have created components that fit their design guidelines and target audience.