Designing a website can be a process of trial and error, but for some designers, those errors cost real world time, and real world money, which is why they should be avoided whenever possible. In this list, we’ll go over a few common mistakes with web design, and how, and why, they should be avoided.
- Your organization is a mess. This can come down to the type of CMS you use, to the actual on-site navigation that you’ve put in place, but in either event, your lack of organization can slow or even kill a project if you aren’t careful. Broken links count against your SEO scores on a whole assortment of search engines, and even more importantly, users hate them. If you’ve got a broken link to a product, or you’re missing important links that can guide users toward destinations they came for, it’s going to hurt the entire flow of the site. The easiest way to fix it is to use CMS-appropriate add on or tool to actually see which pages link to those that you want to direct users to. If you have a product page, with no links to it, that needs to be corrected.
- Your site isn’t mobile friendly. There’s really no excuse not to have a mobile solution in 2015. If you aren’t using responsive design, you should at least have a mobile version of your site that users can be redirected to– although the trend toward responsive design would inform new site creators to start fresh with that in mind. You can’t go back and retrofit a site to be responsive, but you can add the mobile domain as mentioned. For some sites, mobile traffic can account for anywhere from 50% to as much as 80% of all incoming traffic. If you think ignoring that many visitors is alright, you’re probably in the wrong business.
- Your site might be too trendy. It’s important to know your audience and to design with them in mind. If you’re designing a site that uses all of the bells and whistles that you’ve been reading about online, but the site itself isn’t for anything more than a dentist, is it really the right place for ideas like parallax design? Even if it is, are you using it appropriately for the given audience? Sometimes it’s easy to be lazy, and forego following design trends, and it can be just as easy to go overboard and make a site far more complex, and bandwidth heavy, than it needs to be. Streamlining the site and the user’s experience is more important than showing off.
The common trend here is to make the site better for the people that are using it; don’t just cater to your search engine optimization. By making the experience better for the real human beings that are on the site, you’ll naturally get more traffic, more shares, and a better return on that investment.