It’s true that you need to stand out these days and look different from all the rest. The problem is that some designers take it a little too far, and they design you a site that’s so unique it breaks all the rules – and not in a good way. Your stunning site ends up being a confusing experience for visitors.

Designers need to create sites that follow web conventions and usability rules, because these are the ultimate guides to navigating your site quickly and easily. If you break them, you’ll confuse your visitors.

For example, consumers know they’ll generally find an RSS or email opt-in on the top right of a site – it’s always found here. Logos are usually found in the top left of a site, and navigation bars are usually found below header areas.

Shun conventions, and you’ll create a visitor experience that’s similar to walking into an alien world. Nothing is where it’s supposed to be, everything is backwards, and it’s confusing at best.

And what happens?

People leave. Your website becomes crippled and ineffective, all in the name of being unique.


Author: James Chartrand