Don’t Make These Mistakes: What You Can Learn from the Worst Websites Ever
Don’t Make These Mistakes: What You Can Learn from the Worst Websites
You need a graphic designer, that’s obvious. Want to know why? Without one you could end up on a “worst websites” list. Avoid the embarrassment, hire a designer
These days a good website is essential for good business. It has been predicted that 17% of retail business will be done online by 2022. Over one-tenth is already done online.
Unfortunately, some websites out there don’t quite cut it. The good news is that we can all learn from mistakes, which is why we’ve compiled a list of some of the worst websites out there. In the paragraphs below, we’ll talk about why some of these websites fail and how you can do better.
1. Color Scheme
There are a lot of potential mistakes when it comes to the colour scheme. The best advice is to pick a few colours and stick to them. Too much white space will make the website seem boring, but there’s nothing wrong with a little.
One site that uses a little too much white is suzannecollinsbooks.com. With a white background, the website comes off as boring, which is sad, because the books it advertises are anything but. A little bit of colour would definitely liven things up.
On the subject of colour, muted is probably your best choice. Again, there’s nothing wrong with bright colours, and when used correctly, they can bring attention to important parts of your website. However, too much of them can give people headaches and generally turn them off to your site.
Using a darker background, and then bright colours to point out important links or information is a good place to start.
One of the quickest ways to ruin a website is by over-saturating it with links, blocks of text, images, or really anything. However, the best way to cure clutter isn’t necessarily by cutting down, though that helps, but by organising.
Regardless of how many, or how few, links and pictures you have, people should be able to find what they’re looking for without too much trouble. To do this, some of the most successful websites use a drop-down menu, with the main points lined up on the top.
3. Unrelated/Unprofessional Material
Believe it or not, there was a time when the US House of Representatives made this mistake. They have since cleared up the issue, but, suffice it to say, memes are not for everyone.
Why the website designer decided putting memes on a government website was a good idea, we may never know, but it made it much harder to take them seriously. For some reason, politicians can’t seem to figure out how to relate to young people, and this page was just another step in a long trail of embarrassing incidents.
4. Tiny Print
For a website to be effective, it has to be readable, and some sites fail that outright. One common reason for this is that the font is too small.
This can be an issue on its own, though it’s often another symptom of clutter. Putting too many pictures and links can cause you to run out of room for text.
5. Outdated Material
An issue that can quickly earn you a spot among the worst websites out there is not updating the contents. If a website is allowed to go too long without being reviewed, it can result in false information and links to sites that no longer exist. Regardless of what kind of website you’re running, you’ll need to maintain it.
Weirdly enough, one great example of this isn’t a website, but a movie–Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park. The film was made in 1993, and was based on a book by Michael Crichton, which used scientific ideas that were, at the time, plausible.
The story of the movie is that dinosaurs are brought back to life using fossilised DNA. We now know that DNA decays over time, and would be long gone by the time modern-day rolled around.
Among other discoveries we’ve made are that T-Rex probably couldn’t run very fast, had very good vision, so staying still could get you killed, and was covered with feathers. Most dinosaurs were.
Now, there’s a whole host of websites and articles dedicated to things the movie got wrong.
6. Poor Spelling and Grammar
This one is more of a personal pet peeve, but it still bears mentioning, because nothing destroys credibility faster than having too many spelling and grammar errors.
People tend to judge by their first impressions, so we’ll abandon a lot of websites that have a lot of inaccuracies, like spelling or even little factoids.
Let’s say you stumble across an article by a prominent brain surgeon, except that the article has several words spelled wrong. All the Latin terms are right, the logic might seem sound, but the bad spelling makes you question whether this guy is actually a brain surgeon.
How, you may ask, are spelling and medicine at all related? They’re not, really, but that doesn’t stop people by judging reliability in all subjects by skill in one.
We also do the opposite. If we’re reading that same neuroscience article, but this time everything is spelled and punctuated correctly, many of us will automatically assume this man is reliable, even though we can’t personally verify his skill in medicine. It’s a strange assumption, but we make it all the time.
Learning from the Worst Websites Out There
There are bad websites in every corner of the internet, and they’re bad for any number of reasons. If you want to avoid having your website ranked as one of the worst websites in existence, there are a few things you’ll want to avoid.
Keeping the website organised and free of dizzying colour schemes can do a lot. Also, any text on the site should be big enough to read. Finally, all of your material should be professional and accurate. It should also be up to date and spelled correctly.
Graphic design is another thing that can help your website get on top. If you want to know more about the importance of graphic design, we can help.