Sometimes Web design trends, like responsive design and simplified navigation, are incredibly helpful, but some trends seem a lot like self-congratulation for Web designers. Your website is not for your own personal use. If you have any sense at all, you’re building a website for other people to put to good use. User experience is the business of designing a website for your business that makes life easy for your site visitors. Consider five design trends that cripple user experience.
5 Terrible Web Design Elements for user Experience
- Loading Screens :
Speaking of self-congratulatory design elements, a page loading screen should is at the top of the list. What a loading screen communicates is, “What you’re about to see is going to blow your mind. We just want to prepare you in advance for the awesomeness.” However, what usually ensues is profoundly underwhelming. Minds are not blown, they’re simply stunned by disappointment.
- No Navigation:
For businesses that sell goods and services, navigation is important. Users need to know how to go from point A to point B as quickly and easily as possible or they’ll leave your site and never return. Ditching your navigation, or implementing confusing icon-based navigation, is the quick way to scare away customers. They don’t think you’re being sleek or innovative; they’re actually just confused and annoyed.
- Lack of Responsive Design:
For the uninitiated, responsive design is based on the idea that people are using all sorts of devices to access Web pages. This means that your site should at the very least be easily accessible on laptops, tablets, desktops and smartphones. The transition between devices shouldn’t change the essential user experience. Implement responsive design in a way that makes the user experience seamless.
- Interstitial Messaging:
Some businesses have re-imagined the annoying pop-up ad. Now it’s a little sneakier than it was in 1997. You access a well-designed site — even start reading a valuable article — only to be interrupted by a pop-up ad asking you to sign up for a mailing list or follow some company on Twitter. While some site visitors will oblige, most will be so put off that they’ll instantly reach for the back button.
- Overly Complex Design:
The internal battle for many Web designers comes in the form of subtlety. Not every website needs to be a unique masterpiece that displays all the nuances of the designer’s artistic process; it simply needs to be functional with a bit of style injected into the pages. Colors, text and navigation need to work together to create a beautifully simple and easy Web experience. Nothing thwarts user experience like overly complicated Web design.
The bottom line: Design your website with other people in mind. When you’re putting together your site, ask yourself some tough questions. Would your grandmother be confused by the layout? Are the color, font and navigation easy to look at and use? If the answer to any of these questions isn’t a definite yes, it’s time to go back to the drawing board. The success of your business depends on well thought out design.