When you’re designing your first website, it can be easy to get carried away. There are a lot of design elements that look good as a sample or sound great in theory, but in practice they look awful. Don’t fall into the trap of insisting that whatever YOU come up with is perfect. Let others give you input and critique your site so can make adjustments and ensure a pleasant viewing experience for your customers. Before you begin designing, here are a few mistakes to watch out for that will make visitors want to steer clear of your business.
1. Too Big Banner
Having a banner at the top of your page with a logo or design to highlight the name of your website or blog can be a really cute addition to your site, but make sure it stays small. A massive banner that is so large it requires scrolling down the page just to get to your content is a really annoying design that aggravate your viewers instead of impressing them.
2. Animations and Moving Graphics
Making pictures and buttons spin was a really neat trick to do in your elementary school PowerPoint presentation, but on a professional website animated graphics usually end up looking tacky. Not only that, but they are very “heavy” files that take forever to load and can delay your entire website rom loading in a timely manner. Slow loading times are terrible for site traffic.
3. Auto Play Music or Sound Effects
If there’s one way to make someone hit their back button and never look back, it’s startling them with unexpected music or sounds when they open up a webpage. Unless a viewer has clicked the play arrow on a video or music player, your website should be silent. Unwelcome music is annoying at best, especially if there’s no way to pause it or turn it off. Do yourself and your audience a favor and keep auto music players off of your business’s page.
4. Colorful Backgrounds
While they look very pretty in theory, colorful and patterned backgrounds rarely work well or efficiently on a live website or blog. Even if you can find a non-abrasive color that stands out well against the image, it will still detract from your content and serve to overwhelm the reader’s senses. If you find or create a pattern that you are completely in love with, try making it a border or incorporating it into your graphics instead of using it as a background.
5. Too Many Full Color Photos
An attractive design is a great quality for your website, and you can certainly have a colorful site layout, but be careful not to go overboard with your photos. Full color photos of businesses, people, and even food, are very overwhelming when clustered together or stamped all over a single page. Instead, distribute your photos tastefully across your website, break them up with text.