Posted on May 30, 2013 ยท Posted in General

The past few decades have witnessed the dramatic transformation of the World Wide Web. User experience has improved great deal thanks to better technology and modern design philosophies. Webmasters have learned from the mistakes of the past and are now veering away from practices which can hurt their chances of success, including the following:

1. Over-emphasis on SEO

In the desire to rank high on search results, some webmasters have become too dependent on search engine optimization techniques. No one questions the importance of SEO but it should be balanced with effective and quality content. Saturating a page with keywords will not only turn off visitors but may also lead Google to penalize the site for spamming, especially now that search engine technology has become sophisticated enough to detect objectionable tactics. The bottom line is that websites must focus on creating original content that provides real value to attract readers.

2. Information Overload

Old websites often made the mistake of sharing too much information on every page. This intimidated people and turned them away. Besides, very few web surfers have the patience to read a very long article just to get a sense of what the site is about. Humans by nature have a limited attention span. Site visitors will not stay very long if you fail to grab their interest from the start. This means that pages must have clear and succinct copies. If it is necessary to publish lengthy posts, then these have to be divided into sections with appropriate headers to make them easy to scan.

3. Unreadable Text

In the early days of the Web, a lot of sites were guilty of having unreadable text. It was a free for all in terms of design and people would put colorful backgrounds when they feel like it even though these tend to be distracting. What’s worse, some would play around with the text colors and use red, pink, orange, yellow, lime green, and others which hurt the eyes. Typography was not given much thought, with several different fonts on a single page, many of them not very legible. Nowadays, readability is a primary goal of web design, achieved through the consistent use of sensible design elements.

4. Cluttered Layout

Web pages must have immediate visual impact. It should be easy for first-time visitors to grasp how to navigate towards the content they need. For this to happen, extraneous elements should be left out with only the essential components taking center stage. Past websites had been guilty of excess with unflattering images strewn left and right. GIF and Flash animations were tacked onto the page at every opportunity without any real purpose. Instead of enhancing the sites, these merely made them seem cluttered and unappealing. The current movement is towards minimalism and clean layouts with plenty of white spaces between sections to serve as visual breaks.

5. Untested Pages

While a site may look handsome in one computer, it could look hopelessly jumbled in another. Webmasters have to test their creations in multiple platforms to check whether the layout stays consistent despite changes in screen resolution, Internet browser, viewing device, and more. For instance, one might find that a site which fits well in a 24-inch 1080p screen may require side-to-side scrolling when viewed on a small laptop. With the rise of mobile browsing, webmasters must also consider how their pages look on relatively tiny smartphone screens and limited mobile browsers. Creating separate desktop and mobile versions may be considered.

Design and technology will continue to evolve as we learn more about implementing effective schemes. Webmasters must continually learn from the past and question current practices to come up with even better strategies for the future.

Author Bio: Joshua Turner is a writer who creates informative articles in relation to business. In this article, he offers a few website blunders of the past and aims to encourage further study with a American history masters online.