9 Common Misconceptions About Web Design
Getting a website built the first time is loaded with misconceptions about web design, the process and the results, find out what to expect.
Thinking about building your first website? Read this post first, so that you can get an understanding of the most common misconceptions about web design before you get in over your head.
There’s no shortage of online tools to get a website built, anyone can do it, right? Well, sure, anyone can build their own website. However, the truth is that there’s much more to web design than meets the eye.
There are several factors to consider, such as graphics, navigation, interactive ability, and branding. And that’s before you even build and manage any content! A quality website will blend the best elements of functionality and creativity for an attractive yet user-friendly page.
Below, we break down the nine biggest misconceptions about web design and how they impact the people managing the sites.
1. Web Design Is Easy
Like I mentioned above, there are plenty of tools to get a website up and running without coding. These tools are getting better and better too. The simple truth is that at some point in the process you’re going to need to edit, change, or fix something that’s going to require code.
Even with the best drag and drop CMS systems like WordPress or BigCommerce, a high percentage of small business owners have trouble operating or maintaining their own sites.
There’s also a non-visual component of a website that designers understand. Customer psychology and responsive behavior clearly indicate what type of design works best for the content offered.
2. Web Design Is Overpriced
You get what you pay for with websites. For a seamless look and impeccable function, it’s best to trust a professional who knows what they’re creating. Whether an intricate network of interactivity or a site with minimal web design, there are components that the average layperson may not have the skills to build from the ground up.
After all, the goal is customer engagement. A good web designer can put together a site that’s more than one big advertisement, directing clicks and enticing business in the most streamlined fashion.
Remember, you’re also paying the designer for their time, and a quality website takes time to build.
3. Web Design Is Accessible to Anyone
It’s tempting to think that you can do your own creative setup, and some of that is true. With approachable sites like Wix and WordPress, much of the content is at your fingertips, given enough time to sit down with it. But why leave a thriving business to an amateur – even if that amateur is yourself?
There are essential functional elements that are better off being left to the pros. If techy glitches aren’t something you are comfortable handling on your own, then you’re asking for trouble when a customer runs into a snag, and you don’t have a designer’s expertise to fall back on.
4. A Well-Designed Website Attracts Its Own Traffic
“If you build it, they will come” is a popular quote.
However, it’s not necessarily true. Unless your SEO score on your site is already reasonably high, the chances of someone stumbling across your website that’s just sitting there are low to zero.
The next step after building content is to advertise it effectively. This step could take various forms depending on your business—research keywords and SEO to push your site higher in randomized internet searches. Create memorable content with eye-catching headlines (but not clickbait). If there’s a blog component, invite someone to guest write a column and bring their own audience.
These days, social media is probably the #1 way to drive engagement. Set up a Facebook, Instagram, or (depending on how “hip” your content is) a Snapchat profile to generate traffic to your website, which is less focused on advertising and more on converting to tangible business.
5. The Key Part of Web Design Is the Homepage
There’s much more to a nicely-functioning website than what first meets the eye. A stunning homepage is a good landing point, but then the visitor needs to be able to navigate quickly to the content they’re searching for. Smooth functionality is crucial to keeping potential customers engaged.
That said, a homepage does set a first impression. Make sure yours has the appropriate features to wow first-time visitors.
6. Web Design Is Only for Online Businesses
You may believe that your storefront location draws in plenty of customers. Or maybe word-of-mouth is strong enough that you can thrive on referrals. Though these are both helpful, they’re not reliable enough long-term that you don’t need an online presence.
Every thriving business needs a landing pad on the Web. Advertising, social media, and online purchasing all redirect to websites, and if your business doesn’t have one, you’re missing out on enormous potential.
In fact, your online marketing presence is perhaps the best way you’ll reach customers in the modern era. Don’t skip it!
7. Appearance Over Functionality
Yes, an aesthetically-pleasing website is a big plus for your business. However, customers are there for a purpose. All the attractive graphics and strategic colors mean nothing if they can’t navigate to what they’re looking for and find answers.
Don’t forget the importance of the mobile interface! It’s estimated that half of the web traffic comes from smartphone users – and by 2025, that number will expand to over 75%.
8. An Interactive Component Is Crucial
Sure, it’s nice for potential customers to be able to communicate through the website. Sometimes it’s practically necessary for the business, too. For example, a calorie counter on a site meant to sell dieting tools is super helpful.
However, if it pushes you beyond your resources to design something that’s this level of fancy, don’t do it. Staying minimalist is always an option, provided the content you have is engaging, helpful, and easy to use. Most visitors prefer something sleek and straightforward over too much input that doesn’t give results.
9. Web Design Is a One-Time Process
So you’ve put in the time and money, hired a web designer, and finally have the content and look you want. Now what?
There are plenty of misconceptions about web design, but the launch it a forget about it theory is probably the biggest.
The answer is not to just sit and wait. There’s plenty of competition out there for your business, and it’s easy to find with a simple Internet search. If your site looks outdated, visitors will be more likely to move on – and you’ve lost that conversion.
Keep adding content, such as blog posts, new arrivals, or helpful tools to elevate your site in search results. Periodic updates ensure that your customers are getting accurate information, as well as providing recent updates so your page doesn’t look dead to incoming traffic.
By avoiding these common misconceptions about web design, you’ll be sure to build something attractive, functional, and effective for your business. Professional web design