How to avoid common web design mistakes

The number of websites on the Internet is growing each day at an alarming rate.

That means if you’re designing a website to grab the attention of the consumers or the general public, you’ll need to make sure it’s as good as it can be.

web design trends

Unfortunately, many web designers make mistakes that are all too common when building a website. These mistakes can make your site irritating and confusing for readers, many of whom will just move on to another site if yours doesn’t give them what they’re looking for right away.

No Search Bar

Why you need a visible search bar should be obvious when you think about it— somebody looking at your site could be browsing for a particular item, blog entry or piece of information, and they’re not going to want to spend an hour hunting for it.

With a well-placed search bar, people can find what they’re looking for quickly and efficiently. That’s going to result in them bookmarking and coming back to your site because it’s helpful and easy to use.

Search bar placement is particularly important for blogs and sites that aren’t selling anything. Imagine trying to find a specific recipe on a page without a search bar. It would be infuriating, wouldn’t it?

Graphic design for websites

Background Music

Some site and blog owners are still under the impression that background music works to grab the attention of the people browsing their site. While it does grab people’s attention, background music usually only annoys them.

Casual internet users are likely doing something else while they’re looking at your page – listening to music, watching TV or even having a phone conversation. Making them scramble to turn down your background music, which could come blasting out of their multimedia speakers, isn’t the best first impression.

If you must offer background music, allow the user to turn it on instead of it automatically playing when the site is accessed.

Content Chaos

It might seem necessary that the content you put on your website is organized in some reasonable order, allowing your site’s users to browse through information it to find something they’re interested in or looking for; however, many site owners seem to just put content on their page without headings, subheadings, bullet points, etc., all of which make content readable and accessible.

Headings and subheadings are important, but perhaps more important than anything else is simple white space – the space you put between paragraphs and blocks of text. Those make your site readable and easy to view, and without them, people aren’t going to want to stick around on your cluttered, chaotic site for very long at all.

They aren’t likely to come back, either.

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Poor Usability

The readability and legibility of your website is perhaps more important than anything else – except your content, of course. When it comes to your website design, you need to avoid things like bizarre font styles that make it hard for users to read your text (that means no comic sans, ever).

In addition to making your text readable, it’s also important to use a well-organized theme that’s easy to look at. Geometric themes are ideal since they group blocks of text and images in patterns that are easy on the eyes.

You should also avoid extremely contrasting font colors and backgrounds. That aqua on yellow theme might seem interesting at first, but it’s going to get old and tiring to readers really quickly. If you aren’t sure what colors to use, you really can’t go wrong with black text on a white background.

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Designing a website isn’t rocket science, but it isn’t a piece of cake either, especially for beginners. Whether you’re new to site design or a veteran that’s just looking to brush up, avoiding the basic yet common mistakes above is essential to build a successful site.

Marcela De VivoMarcela De Vivo is a freelance writer from Southern California and is the founder of Gryffin MediaShe works with  www.hostpapa.co.uk and provides tips for web design, web hosting and social media marketing to those looking to enhance their site.

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