Nobody’s perfect. Everyone commits mistakes from time to time. Within web design, even those who have been coding websites for years can still make some of the most common mistakes while working on a web project.
Save yourself from committing these often troublesome errors by reading our list of the most common web design mistakes. We hope we can help you build an error-free and user-friendly website.
Design Without Quality Content
Web designers often forget the most important aspect in building a website; that a website is all about quality content and not the design itself. Even when you’re building a portfolio website, you’re designing it to showcase the site’s content, not the site’s layout. Always keep in mind what’s going to be on the page and fit the design around the content and not the other way around.
Disorganized File Structure
A well-organized file structure is more for your peace of mind rather than your site visitors’. Keeping your files organized will help you make the necessary updates and finding things a lot easier.
‘Untitled Document’ is probably one of the most common page titles out there. It’s the standard title a WYSIWYG editor will give, and one a lot of people seem to forget to change. This one meta tag can help you get readers from a search engine straight to your website, so don’t forget to put proper page titles so that when they’re scanning down the list of search engine results, it’s easy for them to see what’s on your site.
Adding Splash Pages
Whether it’s Flash or simply a logo with a ‘Click to Enter’ button next to it, a splash page creates that extra step between your visitors and the information they’re after. But what does this page actually add to your visitors’ experience? Yes, it may look nice, but is it really a necessary step that your site has to take?
Horizontal and vertical scrolling are one of the things that a webpage usually needs, but choose one or the other. Having both horizontal and vertical scroll bars on your website makes navigating a page more difficult, and can make the usability of the page too awkward. Do some research and find out what the smallest screen resolution your target market uses, then make sure that the website fits that size. Better yet, make your site fully responsive!
All of the pages on your website should be recognizable as your site. Keeping elements of your layout the same throughout a site will help visitors know that they’re still on the same site. If you keep on changing the layout from page to page, it could create confusion and may cause visitors to navigate away from your site altogether.
Navigation is the key. Without it, other pages on your site cannot be accessed. You must remember these key points to help ensure that your readers will not get confused.
- Keep the main navigation in the same place.
- Avoid using hover effects on anything that’s not a link (except for table cells)
- Avoid using together underlining and color changes within blocks of text to highlight non-links
Headings are vital not just for SEO but also because they help break up various sections. These are two of the most common mistakes that often stem from heading tags:
- Using a heading tag because the default size is just the right size for what you need. Headings are not for design elements; they are structural. If you need to change text for design purposes, avoid using a heading tag – create a style to do it.
- Styling text instead of using a heading – <span> or <p> – is not the same as using <h1>. If something is meant to be a heading, then use the proper heading for it.