We experience it every day—the awkward street sign, packaging lid that just won’t open, the door you don’t know whether to pull or push, etc. On the web, it’s the page with no scroll buttons, social media icons that cover content, illegible fonts, or buttons that are alien to users. If you’re a regular internet user, you’ve probably encountered a bad user experience—maybe even flagged some websites. In this article, we’ll explore the top 5 common UX mistakes in web design and recommendations to avoid it.
A great website should provide an engaging user experience and help site visitors accomplish tasks fast. Unfortunately, web designers often focus on aesthetics, and in most cases, end up relying on trends at the expense of user experience. The result?
Serious UX mistakes are made that make it hard for users to understand the UI and navigate the website—which often leads to high bounce rates. Reduce your bounce rates and increase your site’s conversions by avoiding these common UX mistakes.
Common UX Mistakes in Web Design
1. Prioritizing Aesthetics Over Functionality
A user-friendly website should strike a perfect balance between creativity and functionality. On the aesthetics front, it’s important to personalize your website with creative graphics, aesthetic photos, and interactive design elements. However, this should not be done at the expense of the user experience. Sure, users want creativity. But they also want to navigate your site with ease. And to many people, the latter is the better option.
In terms of functionality, your website’s navigation should be crystal clear and should meet your visitors’ expectations. Likewise, make sure not to overdo functionality to the point of compromising on creativity. As a result, it can be a big UX mistake.
To optimize your site’s functionality while keeping aesthetics in check, it’s best to hire a design professional or work with a user experience design agency. The folks at UX Planet have put up a list of reputable experience design agencies that offer impeccable UI/UX design services that you can check out.
2. Forgetting Mobile Visitors
For the first time in 2016, Google announced that more people were accessing the internet from mobile devices than from desktop. So even if you typically access the internet via laptop, chances are a good number of your customers are accessing your site via mobile.
To that end, it’s good to have a responsive website. Responsive web design is one that automatically adjusts and adapts to any device screen size, be it a smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop. If your site is not responsive, you’re losing a ton of traffic that comes from mobile due to poor user experience.
3. Common UX Mistake: Hard to Read Fonts
These days thin, light fonts are pervasive on numerous websites and mobile apps. Many users are using them because they’re clean, elegant, and trendy. However, thin typefaces are hard to read and cause usability problems, thereby hampering UX.
If users are having a hard time reading content on your website, they will switch to a more legible competitor. Always make sure your fonts are legible. Also, check online for other rules regarding line spacing, font size, and sentence length. Here are some golden rules for line spacing:
- Firstly, optimal font size should be minimum 16pt
- Secondly, small fonts need more spacing
- Limit line length to 70 to 80 characters
- Finally, aim for about 140% to 180% for optimal readability
Text readability should always take precedence to avoid UX mistakes. If users can read texts in your app or website, it doesn’t matter how beautiful the typography is.
4. Not Using Universal Icons
At times, designers want to get creative and use a new icon because it looks fancy. The new icon may be clear to the designer but it’s completely alien to the users. Over time, our eyes have been trained to look for certain cues when navigating online—a magnifying glass for the search tool, a phone icon for the contact number, etc.
Throw an ambiguous icon or button into the mix, like a butterfly icon, and users will get confused. That being said, an ugly icon that everyone knows is better than a beautifully designed icon that no one knows.
5. Common UX Mistake: Designing for you and not for your audience
“One must identify and be aware of what their audience will like to deliver a winning design that will fit the bill. Often, web designers or clients will push for a design direction strictly based on their own preferences and that often results in a design that the actual users will not find usable/attractive.” – Smack Happy Design.
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