Web Design Dealbreakers: Avoid These 5 Mistakes

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We can’t deny the fact that the internet is a highly competitive place. With so many people and businesses spending lots of money and time on search engine optimisation and digital marketing, it is getting harder to attract traffic to websites, taking into consideration that your website has been built by a world class Singapore website design agency. 

Given the high competition and the difficulty of attracting traffic to one’s site, you might think that all webmasters in the world do everything within their power to provide good user experience and try to retain each hard-won client, but that isn’t the case. 

Most of us know that there are some unpleasant web design habits that seem to come up over and over again. Here are the top 5 web design dealbreakers to avoid

Too Much Popup Clutter

Most of us have had the experience of clicking a link in our Google search results and being redirected to a web page that seems to be doing everything possible to stop you from reading the actual content.

Within a few seconds, a screen-filling popup appears along with the cookie agreement policy. This gives you at least two things that you’re supposed to click on before you can access the content on the web page.

Combine this with the “this site would like to send you notifications” popup and you’ve nothing but a cluttered screen full of popups requesting you to take various actions.  This is irrelevant, and it hinders access to the content that you were trying to reach in the first place.

The use of popups on websites continues to be a highly divisive topic with some web designers and advertisers claiming that they rely on pop-ups to increase conversion rates.

No matter how you feel about them, we can probably all agree that most pop-ups are done badly. Although they may serve a specific purpose, delivering too many of them at once leads to a poor user experience that is likely to result in high bounce rates.

Slow Website

 We are living in a world where the internet is synonymous with instant gratification since almost everybody owns a super-powered smartphone or PC.  Internet users can access any content on any search engine within a few seconds.

Even if you want to contact a friend or family member in another country thousands of miles away, you can do so quickly on various communication platforms such as Facebook, Whatsapp, and Skype.

All of us love speed and responsiveness and so when you click on a search result, and the page takes a few minutes loading, it can seem like an eternity. Therefore, if the original click was motivated by nothing more than curiosity, you will likely close the tab and move onto something else.

Typically, every additional second or minute spent loading a web page costs you a significant number of users. Google has also established that more than half of mobile users will abandon a site that takes longer than three seconds to load.

After six seconds it is almost a guarantee that they’ll close the site and look for information somewhere else. Therefore, as you design your website, you need to take care of its loading speed to avoid losing valuable traffic.

Too Much Animation

Animation looks great on a website, but things change if it is overused. Although you might want to use some nice transitions, transforms, and appearances to breathe life into an otherwise static website, you need to be careful not to overdo it.

Animation is a spice to be used sparingly to avoid distracting the users. Ideally, any animation should support and draw attention to your call-to-action button or any other key content on the website. 

Slightly animated introductory screens are excellent attention-grabbers when a visitor first arrives on your site but don’t make them sit through the same animation every time they want to transition between various pages.

Typically, the function of different website elements shouldn’t be dictated by their aesthetic presentation. Too much animation will cause users to be disappointed since it gets in the way of what they are trying to accomplish.

Some animations can also cause accessibility problems leading to a high bounce rate. Designing a site with a lot of moving parts or flashing content can sometimes make it difficult for users to concentrate on the main content.

Auto-Play Media

No discussion on web design dealbreakers would be complete without mentioning auto-play media.  It has become common for some designers to include auto-play videos, music, and GIFs on their sites.

There is a way of doing this tastefully so that you don’t interfere with usability, but so often, this concept is misused.

Today, many sites put an HD video playing next to the body text of a blog post or an article. In most cases, the video is irrelevant to the content found on the page, and if you try to close it, it quickly reappears. This can cause unnecessary distraction and force the user look for information elsewhere. 

Even worse, many websites tend to preface these videos with automated adverts, which can be catastrophic.

One improvement with modern browsers such as Google Chrome has been moving towards only allowing auto-play on videos that are either muted or silent hence reducing the frequency of extremely annoying user experience of having to deal with unsolicited audio played at you.

Mobile Unfriendliness

 It is 2019, and most web designers still seem to treat the mobile version of a site as an afterthought. It isn’t surprising to find a mobile website that is formatted strangely and misaligned. Such issues can send the wrong message to your target audience.

 Users will see you as someone who doesn’t take time to go over the little details that matter. Today, catering for mobile users is the most important part of web design.

Statista reports that approximately 52% of all internet traffic happens on mobile, which shows that desktop browsing is slowly fading away.

Coupled with Google’s algorithm update in March 2018 that prioritises mobile-first indexing, you have no reason to neglect the mobile experience of your site. In fact, a mobile unfriendly website can hurt your SEO effort.

Summary

Ultimately all the issues we’ve discussed in this post relate to bad UX design, which is an essential design element. Before you go live, ask yourself whether you’ve included anything in your design that may hinder users in finding what they are looking for on your website.

If your answer is yes, rectify it straight away. Remember that attracting users to your site is no mean feat and it only makes sense to reward those who do arrive with the best user experience so that they become loyal and even refer their friends and relatives to your site.

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