Good web designers need to overcome web design challenges
Do you think that web designing is a straight forward job?
After all, there are so many website builders in the market, which make it seems so easy to publish a professional-looking website.
However to produce a really good website (from a high-level point of view), requires many years of experience, in-depth thought-flow, and carefully made strategic decisions to navigate around web design challenges, which most probably only a good & highly experienced web designer can help to achieve.
In web design projects, there are many areas where dilemmas can occur and the decision-making process will become more complex.
Web Design Challenge #1: Dilemma of Design
The most common dilemma is managing the expectation of design between various stakeholders.
At times, the client will have ever-changing needs on the expectation of the design; especially when the client is not 1 person, but a team of people.
If a creative or branding agency is involved, they usually come up with very creative ideas that may not be the most user friendly.
Stakeholders fail to understand that websites are simply designed for the consumption of information by their web visitors/clients/leads.
This is the dilemma.
Unless if the strategic intent is solely for making an impression for a certain audience, the main purpose of websites is actually meant for the targeted visitors to retrieve information.
Remember clients do not buy just because your website is fanciful
Normal website visitors just want 2 things, what you offer and can you be trusted?
In most cases, a good website does not need to be very fanciful.
It just needs to look professional and have helpful information for the visitors to guide them in the decision-making process of buying the products or services.
Unless you are a huge brand
In my opinion, only huge brands should invest in websites with fanciful designs that can sacrifice usability due to:
- There is less need to establish trust from web visitors for such businesses as the trust has already been established;
- Web-users for such websites are usually more motivated to find the information they need even if the information is not so easy to be found. They are willing to spend more effort to find what they need to know.
Web Design Challenge #2: Dilemma of Mobile Users
For creative designers who do not have experience with mobile websites, sometimes they neglected the fact that mobile responsive website is very important in the current era of mobile-centric information-seeking behavior.
They cannot expect the developer to “magically downsize” everything from the website version to the mobile version and still expect all information to be there and the creative elements undisturbed.
Creative designers will have to start thinking in “blocks” so they are able to effectively compartmentalize their designs in boxes, which will make it very easy and fluid for the design to collapse into the mobile view.
Stakeholders should also decide, which information can be hidden for the mobile view so mobile viewers do not have to look at too many things.
From various researches, it has been “proven” that mobile users usually have only 8 seconds of attention span when viewing your website.
Web Design Challenge #3: Dilemma of SEO
Keyword Density, Number of Words, The Amount of Time Users Spent on Your Page are various factors that are well-known to affect your SEO rankings.
The dilemma comes in when we know that users actually do not have the patience to read through so many words and sometimes the creative design of the website page does not allow the population of so many words.
So on one hand, it is good to have more words on your web page, on another hand, not having so many words are actually good too; thus introducing the dilemma.
A good SEO consultant who understands web design will be the perfect help to solve this tricky problem.
Web Design Challenge #4: Dilemma of Maintenance
A good website is a website that has current information and is being constantly maintained by trained personnel.
The dilemma comes in when the developer is deciding how should a website be developed; even for a WordPress website.
From the developer point of view, if everything is custom coded (like a pure ACF powered WordPress website), the website will be blazing fast and less error-prone.
However, this will also mean that the client will have less control over the update.
If they need any changes to the design elements of the website, they will need to constantly engage the developer for such simple updates.
This problem can be solved by using Page Builders, which are simple enough for non-savvy users to do simple updates and make design changes to non-template level elements.
However, some developers are cautious towards using Page Builders as they are known to introduce some code bloats and have the potential of conflicting with other plugins.
The key is to decide, which one is more important.
Managing The Dilemmas
The hard truth is, there is no perfect solution, especially when the cost is a considerable factor when thinking about managing all these dilemmas. And that is also why I called them dilemmas instead of problems.
A good web designer will have to communicate and manage the process of web designing and find the best-balanced point among all dilemmas to produce a website that serves the needs of the clients.
Critical factors that can influence the decisions can be:
- The budget and timeline of the web design project
- The skill level of the client’s staff
- The need for SEO
- The strategic intention of the website
A Good Web Designer Thinks and overcomes web design challenges
In my opinion, a good web designer is not equal to someone who simply has designed a lot of websites.
A good web designer has to be someone who thinks a lot and reflects on the process of web designing after every project, to learn from the mistakes made and things which can be improved on.
A good web designer will become better and better at communicating and managing web design challenges. In the long run, such web designers will be able to provide their value and worth to clients.