Avoiding Common Web Design Mistakes

Avoiding Common Web Design Mistakes

by Zima

Avoid Common Web Design Mistakes

I think it is watching me.

The great thing about SkaDate Dating Software is that it comes prepackaged like a Mac, so you can buy it, install it, and start working. You don’t have to be an IKEA-trained scientist to assemble all the parts and design elements yourself. But you can.

That’s right; although many of our clients choose to pick a ready free dating site template from the myriad of available options, some opt to let their creative side go all out. This can be done by hiring a programmer to play with our CSS, looking for a specialist on the SkaDateCS, or ordering a custom design from us.

And that’s where danger lurks. You might think that the concept you envisioned is brilliant, perfect, and unique, but I bet that’s exactly what was on the minds of people who came up with the logo and mascots for the London Olympics. That and cash, of course. Anyway, without wasting any more of the precious pre-week-end time, let’s look into five steps to overcome common web design mistakes often made by beginning site owners.

Clarity

Remember that scene in Hangover, when main characters wake up in the morning and can’t figure out where the hell they are and what’s going on? That’s what site visitors feel when they enter a portal, which fails to immediately and clearly explain what it is about. The difference is that the guys couldn’t leave Vegas, while site visitors can. And will.

It is generally advised to tell your guests right away that dating on your site is reserved strictly for ex-biker scissor salesmen from Guadalupe. Or your local community. Also consider putting forward some information about the services and features available on the site. In this age of fleeting attention spans, an upfontness like that could work to your advantage. And of course the Clarity of your website should go hand in hand with…

Navigation

SkaDate Dating Script is written in the way to avoid potential navigation troubles, so think twice before making changes in this area. But if it’s something absolutely unavoidable, be sure to put some extra effort into making navigation as user-friendly as possible. There is nothing more frustrating for a dating site visitor than the confusion of where to click next.

You’d think that no one in their right mind can consciously make user interface and navigation difficult. Surprisingly though it happens all the time. Most often this comes from the desire to create a unique and aesthetically appealing site. It is good and all, unless this desire overshadows common sense.  Users come to you for a specific purpose. So it’s generally not nice to drive them insane by making navigation a hide-and-seek game. Which also leads us to…

Readability

So, you’ve clearly stated the site’s purpose and implemented a user-friendly navigation. All this effort can be for nothing if the network’s content is unreadable. Luckily, by the second decade of the XXI century the web started to move away from the ‘blinking text’ trends.

Avoiding Common Web Design Mistakes

Oh, I see…

However, due to the sheer amount of readily available ridiculous fonts sprinkled across the Internet, many site owners loose their minds when it comes to presenting written content.

I’ll go out on a limb and speculate that if there is some text on the website, it is actually meant to be read by visitors. Making it pretty but illegible will lead to the same frustration induced by those ridiculous captchas. Oh, and while we are on the topic of visibility, let’s consider…

Visualization

More specifically, I’m referring to colors and contrast. We’ve already talked about the meaning of colors in one of the previous posts, but there’s obviously more to it. Ask any web design veteran, and they will tell you that appropriate color combination is what immediately separates professional looking sites from the amateur ones. Pro Tip: pick a couple of colors as the main theme and stick with them. Just make sure they are not poisonous green and neon pink.

And don’t forget about contrast. It can be used to great effect if you need to draw attention to specific areas of the website. Not to mention the added bonus of letting visitors actually see what’s going on. By the way, this is where we have to go back to readability. Check out Contrast Rebellion; they make the point much better than I ever could.

Now, all of the aforementioned points boil down to one simple but key understanding…

Customer-oriented Design

What’s important to realize is that your site is selling a product (or rather a service), so while it might be tempting to tell the world about your inner Picasso, the urge is better left for a personal blog.

Just accept it – you don’t make a website for yourself. Well, you do – you’ll make money with it, sure. But here’s a kicker – it’s what your visitors like that counts. If they wont like the design, they’ll leave, it’s that simple.

I know that deep down inside all of us are secretly fans of Jackson Pollock. But it’s not the reason to turn a dating site into one of his paintings. A better approach is to make the dating site pay for putting that Ocean Greyness on our wall. Working hard on an appealing design is a first step towards achieving this goal. Or you can just take a much easier way and use our professional and free template.

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