Bad Design8 Common Mistakes
What not to do:

  • Backgrounds
    Busy, distracting backgrounds that make the text hard to read
  • Text
    Text that is too small
    Text crowding against the edges or images
    Text that stretches all the way across the page
    Paragraphs of type in all caps, bold, and/or italics
    Underlined text that is not a link
  • Graphics
    Large graphics that take forever to load
    Meaningless or useless graphics
    Missing graphics
  • Blinking and Animations
    Anything that blinks, especially text
    Multiple things that blink
    Rainbow lines, particularly ones that animate
    Under construction signs, especially of little men working
    Animations that never stop
  • Navigation
    Links that are not clear where they will take you
    Dead links
    Unclear navigation; overly complex navigation
    Frame scroll bars in the middle of a page
    Orphan pages (no links back to where they came from)
  • General Design
    Counters on pages – who cares?
    Having to scroll sideways
    Important home page content that is not visible without scrolling down
    No focal point on the page; too many focal points on the page
    Cluttered, not enough alignment
    Lack of contrast (in color, text, to create a hierarchy of information)
    Pages that look okay in one browser but not in another

8 Common Mistakes

Adapted from the 2004 Vincent Flanders “Web Designs That Suck.” Click here to go to his web site and view the entire report.

Believing people care about your company.
A man from Mars can't figure out what your web site is about in less than 4 seconds.
Navigational failure.
Using Mystery-Meat Navigation.
Site Lacks Caffeine Content.
Forgetting the purpose of text.
Misusing Flash.
Making people listen to music.

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