9 UX Design Myths (and What We Actually Think About Them)

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UI/UX Design Lead
Jul 30, 2021

No matter what industry you’re a part of, there seem to be established myths that perpetuate over time, and website design is no different. 

In launching any new website, the user experience can be smooth and seamless or bring on complications for those visiting. Whether you’re a designer yourself or are interested in a new site for your business, Integrity’s expert web design team is here to give you some clarity and dismantle a handful of common UX design myths

What are some common misconceptions about UX design?

  1. You can skip testing if you’re a design pro.

Never. When a website, a new product, or update has been launched, expert reviews and user testing are useful and necessary. While design experts may adopt and allow general UX best practices to guide them in the design process, they are not the users. It’s the users’ actions and user data that drive the design. 

User testing reveals how users act or how they respond which may not be how you expected. Users may navigate with ease in areas you thought would cause problems or, vice versa, they could have difficulty moving through what you thought was a simple design. This is why Integrity implements a processed quality assurance (or QA) step in our web projects where outside team members can test the site and poke holes in the design, as needed.

  1. “Simple” is the same thing as “minimal.”

A simplified and easy-to-use experience is not the same thing as a minimal style. Simplicity relies on understanding the complexities of a site, such as the different features and how they are intertwined. A “simple” design does not remove visual elements; it’s simply less complicated.

Minimalism is a design style, but removing elements to make designs minimal can cause problems. And if the web design is oversimplified, it can impede the user experience and may not provide the user with enough information. Fewer buttons, descriptions, links, and more can cause miscommunication or misguidance. 

  1. Human preferences are the only things that matter.

Users do not always know what they will need, especially as it relates to what they will do in the future. So, while you should listen to your users, it’s best to be aware of spontaneous and evolving user behavior. 

Utilizing data and user behavior analytics to support your new product, application, or site changes is paramount. It is also reliable data when designing features or functionality. While it is important to ask users what they think — and you should take the time to map out potential user journeys —  that’s not the only source of information to consider in designing a user experience. Ongoing analytics is going to be crucial to ensuring your website design is meeting site visitors’ needs.

  1. If the site is usable, you don’t need to worry about aesthetics.

Pleasing aesthetics do play a role in usability. People believe attractive things are easy to use, and a users’ experience is guided by emotions. When someone is attracted to a design, it creates a positive feeling or response and gives them the confidence to navigate your website.

Enticing and attractive designs typically perform better as they elevate your brand and give your design an advantage against competition because users are more engaged and eager to navigate your website. For instance, web animation can help increase engagement and is very popular in UX/UI design — it enhances the aesthetics. With any aspect of design elements though, it should be used to improve the user’s experience, not to just simply exist or be cool.    

  1. You can easily design a website without content.

Content is key in driving website design. In an ideal web project, the content should be written first because the design is built upon the information that needs to be communicated

Using real, quality content instead of filler copy like lorem ipsum allows a UI/UX designer to better factor the message into their design. When it comes time to present a design, real copy can also give clients a better sense of how the design and content work together.  

  1. The homepage is your most important page.

The homepage in itself may not be the most important page, but it does act as a kind of traffic control center. If users end up on the homepage, they should quickly be able to find what they are looking for and get a great first impression of your site and brand. 

But more and more, users are being brought into websites from search engines and landing on internal pages, where most of the content lives (this is especially the case if your SEO strategy is working the way it should). Data trends show page views for the homepage continue to drop because users spend most of their time on the internal pages, so focusing on the content and user experience and interface design on these pages is important as well as the homepage design.

  1. Search will solve a website's navigation problems.

Search fields on a website can come into use, but having proper navigation is more important. Our UX/UI designers utilize common information architecture best practices and naming conventions to help users understand how to navigate the website. 

Users typically scan website content for keywords they are looking for instead of taking the time to locate the search field, type in the query, and scan through the results which can be more frustrating than navigating through a properly designed website. Some users will use the search field if they aren’t able to find what they are looking for by just navigating the website or if they’re searching for specific products. But instead of relying heavily upon a search field, focus on a proper navigation and scannable content instead.

  1. White space is wasted space.

White space is not wasted space. There are reasons why space is added around graphics or images. Making sure margins, padding and gutters are utilized properly and optimizing line-spacing and letter-spacing to allow for easier readability. White space also includes space between columns. 

All of these white space areas guide users on the page, leave room for the content and design to breathe, and are essential for balance. Having white space can also create a feeling of modernity and sophistication.  

  1. UX should always use the latest technology and solutions. 

UX/UI design is dependent on information architecture, user research, wireframing, and other observed elements. UX design works in tandem with technology, but its solutions are based on human behavior and their interactions.

At Integrity, we are technology agnostic and base the technology on the needs of the project. We focus on providing data-driven solutions for your web design to optimize your user’s experience for the needs of your project. UX/UI design is about making a website not just good-looking but also a highly functional and useful tool. 

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Looking for a St. Louis web design team that can make your site compliant, functional, and beautiful? Integrity’s full-service design/build agency is here to help. Drop us a line today.

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