Webpage design flaws
Mistakes to avoid
Bill B's AdviceAlways test-view your web designs with a text-only browser like LYNX. If your webpage is not usable by this most basic of all browsers, you will also drive away or offend such users as:
Actually, it's a very good idea to develop all your pages with a
text-based browser, then add necessary graphics later. This will force
you to view your page as a provider of content, as is only right. It
forces you into a top-down design for browser compatibility. First you
create the content, then add graphics, then add layout, then fancy
features. This gives your page "graceful degradation" when broswer
incompatibility issues arise: some browsers can't see the fancy features
but everything else works. Others screw up the layout, but at least the
graphics and text content comes through. Some users won't see the
graphics, but all the text is still there. This is good design, and even
at worst it is still usable by nearly all browser software.
Always include a webmaster's "mailto:" link at the bottom of every page.
(or, to avoid spam, include a form which forwards email, or instead use a
GIF or JPG graphic of your email address which spammer software can't
read.) That way if you accidentally screw something up on your page, some
nice person MAY tell you about it eventually. If there's no obvious way
to contact the page owner, your embarrassing mistake might remain there
On the top page of your site, never use frames, image maps, animations, or gigantic gif/jpegs/audio files. You want to welcome ALL browser types, at least initially. If your top page contains specialized techniques which aren't compatible with all browsers everywhere, then anyone who uses some slightly-incompatible software will immediately leave in disgust. If you have to offend certain users with a frames-heavy, graphics-heavy site, at least hook them in with a good, fast-loading top page. Save the slow or incompatible stuff for deeper menu levels. Your top page should be intentionally text-only (with maybe a few small, fast graphics), and with a link to GRAPHICS VERSION and FRAMES VERSION. Not the other way around!