9 Web Design Mistakes You Should Avoid Now

Graphic design is essentially an art and a powerful tool of communication. For a business, it is a crucial marketing element that can make or break your business. Obviously, creativity is a key factor in order to effectively and strategically communicate your message, especially in an intensely competitive market. But sometimes, designers forget that they are creating a website for a target audience that the design fails to underscore its intended purpose.

 

Keeping in mind that your design must be able to flawlessly convey your message, the same can be said on how you can avoid committing mistakes in your creative process. Here are 9 web design blunders that you must steer clear from:

 

Miscommunication or lapses in creative brief

We have been emphasizing the importance of communication from the get-go. Design mistakes can be avoided if all the details have been laid out before you even start the project. A creative brief (or definition) is the first step in the process. If the client has provided a comprehensive brief, then the designer can already form an abstract early on.

 

Establish an open channel that will allow either party to ask/receive feedback and make inquiries along the way without hesitation. Don’t forget to keep your client up-to-date with the progress. Even though you are on schedule and you feel that things are going smoothly, your client may feel ignored. A progress report isn’t just a mark of professionalism, it also shows initiative.

 

Poor readability

All the knowledge in the world is useless if nobody can read your content properly. An effective web design is not limited to use of colors and space and having an impressive interface, but a massive portion of it is selecting the right font. Poor judgment in this area alone can lead to failure.

 

Choose the color, type, weight, and spacing that best fit the overall theme (you can test various color schemes using Adobe Kuler). Show restraint in choosing your font, preferably a maximum of two.

 

Ineffective navigation

Your website navigation must be seamless. Users should be able to find their way within your website easily and conveniently. It must be intuitive and consistent. The layout should be visually pleasant and not overwhelming. Spend time in optimizing your search box and ensure it is well-placed, along with your call-to-action (CTA).

 

Overdesigning

The U.S. Navy’s design principle endures: K.I.S.S. or “Keep it simple, stupid!” Business or company websites, in particular, require clarity and should convey efficiency and professionalism. Too many images can be distracting – select what can best illustrate your message. If you are using animation, ask yourself first: is it absolutely necessary? If it helps reinforce your brand, and will not greatly affect buffering time, then proceed cautiously.

 

Also relevant is considering which social share buttons to include and where to place them. Select which ones will best increase site traffic, such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.

 

Not taking advantage of white space

Striking a healthy balance between visual elements and white space guides your consumer’s eye exactly where you want them to be. Do not be tempted to fill out that negative space with unnecessary and distracting details that takes the focus away from your central message.

 

Maintaining that space encourages the user to explore more, increase content legibility, highlights functions that require urgency (e.g. call-to-action), and separates unrelated graphics to improve the overall layout.

 

Mismatched/wrong design formats

Saving a file sounds so simple, yet it is one of the most overlooked steps in an efficient design process. A lot of design software allows users to save in different file formats and extensions, but knowing which one is the required type for your design is just as important as finishing your work.

 

Think about how and where the finished product will be used. Does it need to be in vector format? How should it be compressed? These will guide you in deciding how your file should be saved.

 

Skimping on software and images

Investing on professional software is not a luxury if it yields more benefits than drawbacks such as limited features common with free programs or design software. Think about the sales opportunity you could have taken advantage of and the amount of work you could have done with an efficient, industry-standard program.

 

Stock photography is a quick, affordable option but if you can spare it, better to invest in purchasing photographs that guarantee exclusive use in any capacity. It provides a unique touch to your brand and more importantly, you can save yourself from potential headache usually caused by copyright issues.

 

Stop it with the auto-play music

This is only cool if you’re still stuck in 2006.

But really, not only will it slow your website down (eats up your bandwidth), it’s obtrusive. It doesn’t suggest professionalism at all. Besides, there’s a high chance that you might not share the same music taste with your website visitors.

 

If you need further proof, the number one worst website in 2006 was, you know it, MySpace.

 

Not testing

This cannot be overstated: test, test, and always test. Just as much as you ensure your web copy is proofread and edited before publishing, apply the same scrutiny with your website. Is it optimized for all browsers and mobile devices? Is your layout consistent? Does your contact or registration form work? Have you checked for dead links? Have you applied the correct tags and descriptions? Are your images in high resolution?

 

But also remember: testing your website is not a one-time thing. Make it a habit to routinely check your website and update when necessary.

 

 

To make sure your website is functioning smoothly and the design flawless, get help from the experts! MicroCreatives is a creative design agency that specializes in graphic and web design, web development, and content writing.


No Comments Leave a comment

Leave a Reply