UX Common Pitfalls – 1

Before Building Your Website

With the touchscreen devices booming these days, user experience becomes even a more challenging as changing with what the user is expecting from visiting a website. At the time of writing this blog, 70 million in the USA alone are using tablets as their primary device for browsing. Apparently have seeing how the tablet usage has been increasing more and more, UX designers have to rethink their approaches for building their websites, and accordingly have to put some of the things into considerations so that Front-end developers won’t have to develop particular scripts for dealing with tablets vs. normal computer usage. Here are some of the common pitfalls UX have in creating new websites, these common pitfalls will be described in details along here and coming blogs:

  1. Ignorance of tablet usage stats
  2. Sticking to older approaches of fanciness
  3. Relying on Flash to convey a message
  4. Jumping straight into design
  5. Creating overly explained prototypes and wireframes
  6. Depending heavily on carousels and galleries where users can easily get lost into the overwhelming content
  7. Forgetting accessibility users as part of the design
  8. Excessive usage of colors when conveying their thoughts to graphic designers
  9. Excessive number of links on the site
  10. Ignoring speed and caching
  11. Not studying the web analytics of your site
  12. Unclear value proposition
  13. Lack of focus
  14. Not considering usability testing
  15. Problems with forms

So now that these points are being listed, let’s go ahead and explore what issues:

1. Ignorance of tablet usage stats

So this one is very common and whenever the UX designer is being asked about the tablets, they’d normally answer: “It is not in scope” and starts mentioning the budget constraints. In fact, usually you don’t need a separate budget for a site to look friendly and with pleasant user experience on both tablets and computers. You just have to rid yourself of older UX approaches and embrace the future. The number of users today using tablets is massively increasing and it will increase significantly if not double by the time you finish your website. You don’t want to revisit your site again after few months to redo most of its functionality to fit tablet users, ask front-end developers to rewrite their code to fit in there for users with tablets as well as ask other developers to start user-agent detection of devices to start addressing compatibility. Read the stats and understand the tablets are booming these days and users are heavily relying on it. “experts say that the tablet will be used more than the smartphone[which have now pushed PC out of the first place of ranking in some countries] for internet searches in the near future (by 2013)“. –Worldwide Tablet Usage Statistics Bearing this in mind, you should consider that it is more convenient for users to pay online bill while browsing on their iPads or make a bank money transfer on their touchpad while talking with a friend over coffee. You should, hence, rethink your design to fit into the tablets and touchscreen world rather than revisiting your site’s compatibility issues after it is done. Just because it was not in scope while you first created it. You should also never depend on your current site statistics of how many tablets are accessing your site, since users may not have been able to access it because your current site is NOT tablet-friendly. Therefore, your primary statistics is how major websites are being accessed and what are the popular web statistics of devices in general. That’s mainly because you want to fit your site to be accessed to as much audience as possible without much of compatibility issues or recoding for different compatibility issues. Here are some sites I find useful for stats of the web:

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