When it comes to web designing, one should be careful about what to do and what not. However, most of the times, we see quite the opposite. Sometimes people make some mistakes that can be avoided. These mistakes can have a damaging effect on a custom web design, and hence should be avoided.
• Do not confuse the visitor. The visitor should be able to know within seconds what your site offers. Catching the attention of visitors is what you should aim at. The visitors have the tendency to switch to other sites immediately and so you have hardly few seconds to impress them.
• Make sure that the content is not non scannable. The visitors should be able to scan through the entire content easily. Make the content easily search-able by adding bullet points, subheaders and lists.
• Avoid using fancy fonts that make text unreadable. No doubt some fonts lend a sophisticated look to your website. However, they are not readable. Now if you fail to fulfill the main objective, that is, delivering the message clearly to the visitors, that would defeat the very purpose of developing a website.
• Do not use very small fonts. Make sure that the visitors can read the text comfortably. Custom website designing is all about making it user friendly.
• Do not open new browser windows. Leave it to the user where he wants the links to open. The user can easily come back to your site, if he wants to, by clicking on the ‘back’ button.
• Do not re-size user’s browser windows. Let the user be in control of his browser. By doing that you may mess up things for user and eventually end up losing your credibility.
• Do not ask for a registration from visitors unless it is really necessary. Remember that visitors browse around to get information. So do not force them to register and provide other information like email address etc unless it is absolutely necessary.
• Do not force subscriptions on customers. When they register on your site, do not subscribe them to newsletters etc automatically.
• Avoid making too much use of flash. It not only increases the load time of your website but also annoys the visitors. Restrict its use for only those features that are not supported by static pages.
• Do not use background music. It can be really annoying. It may even make visitors leave your site immediately.
• If you have some good audio file, let the user play it. Do not force the audio in visitors.
• Avoid cluttering your site with badges. In fact, the use of badges makes a site look very unprofessional. If there are any awards or recognition badges, you should place them on ‘about us’ page.
• Avoid using a homepage that launches the real website. This is because the lesser the number of steps required for the user to access your content, the better.
• Make sure that you include your contact details. A website without any contact details is of no use. You may lose important feedback this way.
• Do not break the back button. This is one of the very basic principles of usability. Opening new browser windows will break it.
• Do not use blinking text.
• Do not use complex URL structures. It is better to use a simple and keyword-based URL structures as it improves the search engine rankings as well as makes it easier for the reader to identify the content of your pages.
• Use CSS tables instead of HTML tables for your web application development. HTML tables were basically used to create page layouts. CSS is not only faster but also more reliable. It offers a number of features.
• Do not use drop down menus. Ensure that the user is able to see all the navigation options straightway.
• Do not mix ads within the content. Using it for the long run can reduce your readership base.
• Do not cloak links. The user should be able to see where the link is pointing on the status bar of his browser.
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