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In the simplest terms, UI relates to the visual aspect of a user’s experience of a website. This includes navigation, menus, buttons, images and more.
Great UI has the potential to improve a user’s experience of a website, and consequently their attitude towards the brand or business.
Successful UI design can be the difference between a website that makes an impact and one that fails to hit the mark.
The following common UI mistakes should be avoided at all costs:
A website’s navigation should be simple and easy to use.
If a user can’t find their way through the website easily, or has to spend too long searching for something, they’ll become frustrated and leave the website.
It should be immediately obvious to users how they move through the website. Menus and calls-to-action should be clear and prominent, and the hierarchy of pages should make sense.
Make sure links are clearly worded and relevant, so that users know where they’ll end up if they click on them.
When a user interacts with a website, they expect some kind of response.
Let’s say, for example, they have to wait for a page to load. Should you leave them to sit there watching a blank page, wondering how long it’s going to take?
No, of course not. Give them an animation to watch, or some text to read. This will reassure and entertain them, as well as reducing their perceived wait time.
Same goes for things like enquiry forms or buttons. Let the user know their enquiry has been received with a ‘thank you’ message. Let them know their click has been registered with a small animation.
People don’t like to be ignored - so make sure your website gives feedback!
It can be overbearing to arrive on a website and immediately be confronted by a wall of text. Most users either won’t bother to read it at all, or will attempt and then give up.
A clean, uncluttered design with plenty of negative space is much more visually appealing and easier to digest. Too much text gets in the way of this.
Say what you need to say in as few words as possible. If you do have some longer sections of text, break it up into shorter, spaced-out paragraphs.
Poor website performance - that is, slow load time - can have a huge impact on a website’s success.
Research shows that 46% of users would be unlikely to return to a website they had trouble accessing in the past, and 33% are less likely to purchase from a website if they experience poor site performance.
Luckily, there are plenty of things you can do to improve your website’s performance. Check out this blog post we wrote about it.
A website’s design should be consistent throughout. This can include the colour scheme, typefaces, navigation, interactions and other design elements.
Similar elements should behave in similar ways throughout. For example, if a product image gets larger when you hover over it, then all similar product images should do the same.
If you use a red arrow to navigate onto the next page, then you should use the same red arrow on all pages. This way, a user will recognise it each time and know how to interact with it.
With almost 40% of all global web pages now served to mobile, designing for multiple devices is essential.
Your website should be comfortably viewable on any screen. If it’s not, you’re going to turn off a lot of users.
Make sure your content can adjust to fit desktop, tablet and mobile, and test it out to ensure it’s easy to use on all of them.
There are plenty of websites that test mobile responsiveness, so make sure your website is up to scratch.
As we mentioned before, it should be easy for users to find their way around your website. This means they should be able to reach what they’re looking for in as few clicks as possible.
Remember, the more steps a user has to go through to reach their destination, the more chances they have to get bored and jump ship.
Consolidate similar content on a single page wherever possible. For example, rather than putting ten products on ten separate pages, so that users have to click and wait for each one to load, put all ten on the same page. Much easier!
Good UI design should be seamless and unnoticeable - it should simply make the website a pleasure to use.
If a website has good UI, users will be more likely to trust it and return to it. This in turn is likely to increase conversions.
Keep these common UI mistakes in mind when designing your next website to make sure you don’t fall into any of these traps. Good luck!
Great user interface design is important in any project. We make sure our clients audiences find using their websites as easy as possible. Have a look at our services and get in touch if you have a project in mind.
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