Creativity is a double-edged sword for web designers. Some artists gave birth to pages that are more abstract than practical when trying to create websites much more original. Obviously, this process needs a dose of ingenuity, but it is important to stay true to certain design rules which are now considered standard.
If you have just started creating websites or you just want to check if yours complies with the laws of usability and good taste, the following list of web design mistakes will help you avoid many pitfalls.
Let’s take an example: the titles of your tabs are all in capital letters excepting the last two recently added (see the image below). You don’t have to be a web designer to understand that this mistake totally ruins the professional look of your site. Consistency requires a set of rules. The corporate identity and the style guide must be applied to the entire website. Make sure that colors, fonts and all graphic elements match and respect the identity of your brand.
How can you do this: review your website systematically before making any changes in order to avoid the stylistic contradictions. Maintain your original graphics and stick to the visual identity that you have set initially.
Don’t use a poor visibility
Why sharpening your pen for hours if your readers need a eye-glass to read your prose? Your message passes mainly through what you are writing and it is essential to be coherent at first glance. In average, internet users read less than a third of the texts presented on websites. Readability is not a luxury, but a necessity.
What can you do: select fonts appropriate for your website. Make sure color contrasts put your text in value. Using bullet lists may also be proper to facilitate reading. Finally, and most importantly – ask for the advice of a third party to confirm that it is possible to read coherently. This will also help you to verify the precision of your texts, which can always be heplful.
Don’t make references to broken or wrong links
It is common to click on websites and see links that let us a little skeptical. A visitor who clicks on a broken or wrong link is going to be dissapointed and will eventually leave the website. So be careful to guide your visitors.
The solution: check carefully from time to time that all of your links are functional and lead to relevant sources. Review your internal and external links (which naturally open in new tabs) and clear up your connections once and for all.
Your footer leaves much to be desired
Long scrolling is certainly a trend but creating a long page it’s not a brilliant idea. There is no need to place the footer a thousand miles from all the information just for extending the web page. Every inch of the design has its importance.
What can you improve: make sure your footer is not that far from design elements on every page of your site.
Use only high-quality images
A pixelated or blurry photograph can blow away the design in a blink of an eye. Optimize your images in a way in which they appear properly will help you prove your professionalism – especially if they are pictures of your products.
If it happens to come across pictures with a questionable quality, click on it and select the small trash can icon. Deleting pictures can be painful but keeping them it’s definitely a bad idea.
Highlight what’s important
If you have an online store, it is important to ensure your shopping cart is visible and stand out from the rest of the information. Do not take the risk of losing customers.
In order to do this, highlight your cart by putting it at the top right of your site. A useful technique is also to set the header (where your cart is located) so it scrolls with the page.
Do not impose your music
Whether you’re a fan of classical music or pop music, it’s for the best to not force your visitors to listen to your favourite music. Think about it: surfers who navigate the Web with their music in ears, or worse, falling on your website in a public place, are likely to be bothered by your imposed sounds. Some will close the page reflexively before even giving a chance to the songs.
So we propose you to DO create a player, but also a pause button and highlight it, unless your site is an online station radio or if you are a musician.
Build a better user experience
Before you start creating your menu, prioritize your content in order to have an overview of what you want to present. Once this work is accomplished, it will be much easier to structure your menu.
Use animations thoughtfully
So yes, animations are particularly useful tools that can easily help boost your design of your website. But when you use them improperly, you ruin the visual aspect. Your website should reflect your professionalism. Decide which elements need to be in motion and remove the animation from the others. You can also slow down the speed of your animations to calm the visual tension.
A perfect example for improving user experience through animation effects is: www.spacecraftforall.com/
Finally: make revisions
A website, like a car, needs a little revision from time to time. With the help of a technical check, you make sure everything is working properly and that all information is recent.