We take a look at the 8 web design mistakes you need to avoid making, if you want your site to be a total success!

1. Opening internal pages in new windows

Opening a new window for every page takes up valuable memory on a users PC, slows down their computer/phone and makes the entire user experience extremely complicated. users have the option to open pages in a new tab if they wish, don’t decide for them. An exception to this rule is if you’re linking to something that takes you away from the navigation of the site. This can be a link to an entirely different website or a PDF, this allows them to view the linked content whilst staying on your page.

2. Contact detail visibility

You should offer users multiple ways to contact you, especially if you are selling a product or a service. Aside from a contact page, you should also have details such as your e-mail address and telephone number in your header and footer, meaning they’re always visible to the user no matter where they are on your site.

3. Not linking to social networks

A large majority of businesses will have their own Facebook/Twitter page, many freelancers will also have LinkedIn accounts that you want the site user to see. Users should be able to navigate from your site to your social media with ease, driving customers to your website via your Facebook page will only be effective if you make it easy for users to move from one to the other seamlessly. If done correctly, this can increase your site traffic ten-fold.

4. Outdated Information

This one is fairly simple, how is someone going to be able to contact you if you don’t have your current phone number or email address on the site? This also applies to offers or services that you no longer provide, leaving these on your site could cause potential problems.

5. Broken Links

Any link that leads to an “Error 404” needs to be removed or redirected to a page that actually exists. Test your site weekly to make sure all links work as stated. It may even be worth having a “Contact the Owner/Webmaster” button so users can alert you if they come across a broken link.

6. Poor Navigation

In today’s fast-paced world, people don’t have time to search around a site looking how to get to the next page. They’ll simply leave your site and go somewhere else. Make sure there is a visible navigation bar on each page that allows visitors access to everywhere they need to go. Add a site map to your footer to give users a birds eye view of all the pages on your site.

7. Slow Server Times

Slow loading pages are near inexcusable with professional sites nowadays. Online shoppers will only wait for 4 seconds for a page to load before going to another site (from this study). Slow loading times can also be down to the size of images on your site or certain add ons you’ve installed. Try resizing images down to the bare minimum and watch your site load in half the time…

8. Excessive font styles or colours

Keep your site consistent. Using an uncomfortable range of colours, styles or sizes can make a page look cluttered and disorganised. It’s also important to make sure the site is readable on Mobile devices and tablets as most people will be accessing your site from these mediums.

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