Welcome to another awesome series on web development and optimization. I work with many developers and businesses, coaching them along the way in regard to web design. Once done, they are left with tweaking their websites, but they always provide me with a breakdown of what’s working or what’s not. For example, over the years, many of my clients have opened their own web design companies and are doing very well, offering customizable service to people all over the world. Some of the information they provide is awesome because it’s a learning process for me at the same time. Today, I want to discuss the common errors many designers are making when working with clients to build their blog or website. These are some errors I learned about over the last 2 months and would like to share them with you.
I’ve split this entire lesson into 3 series and would love your feedback afterward.
The Search Box
Because this is the most common element on a website, it’s important we pay close attention to it. It’s well known many themes, once installed in WordPress, will automatically have a search box, but you have to think if it’s perfect for your visitors. The search box is great way to find information quickly on a website and if it’s NOT attractive or easy to use, it can reduce engagement. We often think about a search box and conclude it should have two basic elements: input field and submit. However, I’m here to tell you, this element plays a more crucial role and you have to make sure it works perfectly.
Many designers forget that the input field could be too short or the text might not display correctly. Many blogs have a submit button that doesn’t look like a button and reduces user engagement. Keep this important fact in mind…
When users arrive on a blog and can’t engage with the navigational bar because it’s too distracting or confusing, then they’ll rely on your search box to find information for them. It’s important the search box is optimized and provides the content people are looking for.
Many times, as designers, we tweak things so they look perfect to us, but we forget how font styles can be different among browsers. For example, when I switched my font on one of my blogs to “Rockwell”, it looked great on my screen, but horrible on mobile phones and other browsers. You have to keep in mind that there are only a handful of fonts that most browsers are compatible with. Next, you have to keep mobile users in mind because they are increasingly growing each year and your blog must be readable to them. You have to keep font color and site in mind so no matter what platform a visitor uses to arrive on your blog, they’ll be able to engage with your content with no problem. Here’s what happens a majority of times…
We have a huge selection of fonts and often get caught up making the page look good for us on our browsers. This restricts the scope for others and lowers engagement. It’s important to keep certain factors in mind so when you complete your website design, it’s compatible for everyone. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Compatible font style
- Compatible color
- Compatible size
- Check browser compatibility
- Check mobile compatibility
Wrapping It Up…
This is the conclusion to part 1. We looked at two important errors developers make when designing a blog so it’s important to keep these things in mind. In the next series, we’ll be looking at such factors like navigational menu, clutter, call-to-actions, etc. Because many errors we’ll be discussing are the result of developer preference, it’s important to discuss what to do to make sure you are designing a website for every type of platform and visitor.