The COVID-19 pandemic was the final straw that pushed many people all over the world into doing things online as much or more than they do in-person.
Business operations look a lot different than they did in previous years, and technology keeps changing. It’s time to update your business’s website if you haven’t within the last few months.
Web Design Tips: Do’s and Don’ts for 2021
If you’d like to look at lists of web design tips or studies, there is no shortage of books, journals, and other resources online for you to peruse. As helpful as those tools are, chances are good that you have a lot on your plate right now and can’t take the time to slog through dense documents.
Check out our brief “do’s and don’ts” list of web design tips below to find out all you need to know before you start updating your website.
Do: Focus on Accessibility
Disability advocates on the internet pushed for accessible web design since the internet’s early days. People with visual and auditory impairments, motor disabilities, and sensory processing disorders, among others, all struggle to use webpages designed without them in mind.
Social justice movements are on the rise right now after far too many years of inaction. Disability advocacy is no exception. Accessibility must be part of any advice for website design in 2021.
It’s the ethical thing to do, and the law demands it; authorities often extend the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to business sites. If you want to be kind to fellow world citizens or want to stay out of trouble, add access features.
There’s also a simpler reason to design accessible websites—profit! When your site is hard or impossible to navigate and frustrating, you drive away from countless potential clients. They can’t use your site and, worse, they leave with the impression that you don’t care about them.
Access features also make sites easier and more comfortable to use for people who could navigate the site without them. An intuitive site design that’s easy on the eyes and has tools to aid readers is sure to help your organization.
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That being said, now you can see that website design should not be outsourced to the first agency you might encounter with. It would be best if you were mindfully conscious about what does it take to design and build a website that converts users.
Don’t: Use Many Flashy Colors and Graphics
One of the most basic web design mistakes is trying to draw folks in with flashy colors and graphics. In some ways, this relates to the last tip about accessibility. That kind of web design is hard to navigate and look at for many people.
If you use a lot of fast gifs and strobe-like effects, you could give some people headaches or worse—seizures. Sure, some people might like it, and you could draw them in. Many others will grow to resent your website and business.
You may want a site design that’s colorful, vivid, and striking above all else to represent your organization or set a mood. That’s acceptable, but if you do this, at least offer a clear button visitors can click to make the theme less bold.
Do: Make Hyperlinks Obvious to Visitors
Hyperlinks—known as links, for short—keep the internet running. Without them, all websites are their own little islands and web traffic comes to a halt.
Links direct clients to products and services, donation pages, travel directions, and business partners. They’re the backbone of many advertising services and affiliate programs that people rely on for essential income. Savvy online businesspeople know website design best practice in 2021 involves careful planning and search engine optimization (SEO) tactics.
Still, it’s easy to miss some obvious steps to success when designing a website. Some businesses put big money and many hours into SEO, placing every link with generating traffic in mind. Yet, many find they don’t get any traffic or make money after all that work.
Why does this happen to people who know the basics of web design? They forget to make their hyperlinks obvious to site users.
If you don’t make links a much different color from the rest of the text, people will gloss right over them. Sometimes, designers note the need to set unclicked links apart but don’t pay enough attention to the color of clicked links. If clicked links get lost in the text when visitors return for more information or to finalize a buy, they may head elsewhere to satisfy their needs.
It’s easy to solve this issue and takes no more than a few seconds. All you need to do is pay close attention to the colors you use and make sure it’s not hard to tell them apart.
Don’t: Forget to Test Your Site’s Links
Another everyday mistake people make with links on their websites is going live before testing links. Web design is a messy process no matter how experienced you are or how much planning you do. Mistakes happen, and you might place some incorrect or broken links.
Scrolling through each webpage you make, opening each link in a new tab or window, before publishing is an effort worth making to avoid this.
Some visitors don’t think twice about broken links. For others, a couple of bad ones is enough to send them elsewhere. It leads people to think your site is unreliable and that it may be outdated.
Having quality hyperlinks that function is an easy way for anyone to achieve a professional look. The few minutes you save by not taking this final step isn’t worth losing potential clients.
One more thing to keep in mind is that this isn’t a one-and-done step. You should check your links on every page you publish.
Failing to revisit pages, and check the links, every once in a while guarantees you’ll have broken links down the line. Webpages go out of commission, change owners, and break down constantly.
If you don’t check in on the links you post now and then, your site’s quality degrades over time.
Take Your Business to the Next Level With Web Design Tips and More
These essential web design tips will make your site more accessible and user-friendly. Taking the time to update and fix your site will help you bring in new clientele for years to come.
If you want to take your business and finance practices to the next level, you’re in the right place.
More great business advice for creative professionals like you is a mere click away. Read another article on our website to boost your journey up the ladder of success.
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