What can we learn about good web design from bad websites? What not to do! Check out these cringe-worthy examples so you know what to avoid.
Right now the number of users actively online is at 4.1 billion. That number is set to explode by double-digit percentage growth in the next half-decade.
Therein lies the importance of having an awesome website. It lets customers feel confident about doing business with you. It lets colleagues respect your professionalism. It makes friends think that you’re doing well in life.
While we have a lot of blog posts filled with tips on how you can make stellar looking blogs and websites, in this article we will take a slightly different approach to educating you.
Here, we will look at 8 examples of astonishingly bad websites, discuss where they went wrong and learn from their mistakes!
Do you like The Hunger Games series? We certainly do.
Given the popularity of Suzanne Collins’ franchise, you would think that she would invest in having a more professional online presence by hiring a professional development firm like SmashStack. Maybe she thinks she has nothing to prove anymore?
We can only speculate.
What we know for sure though is that this website’s overuse of white space, odd center-floated photograph at the top of the page and a right-justified menu all conspire together among many other things to make this bad website one to forget.
Yale is one of the most prestigious schools in the country boasting ultra-low acceptance rates and prestigious alumni. If any of those prestigious alumni are web developers, they might want to donate their services to the school’s art wing.
Immediately when you go to the page you see a bright yellow tiled background which jars users rather than welcoming them in. Then, to contrast the bright background, we get grey boxes with erratically formatted text that make you feel like you’re on a scam site rather than on the Yale page you were searching for.
Rest assured this is a real Yale website.
We get it. Conspiracy websites aren’t supposed to be good. They’re supposed to be as nutty as their creators.
Why is that though!?
You’d think that if a conspiracy theorist were trying to get somebody to buy into what they’re saying, they’d want to present it a little more credibly.
Maybe conventional taste in design is a conspiracy this website is trying to bust…
Whether or not that’s true, all our small minds can do is jump to the conclusion that from its bad background to its website description that you need a magnifying glass to read at the top of the page, Waking People up With Truth is definitely among the top bad websites.
We’ll admit, this website is not all that bad. It has a nice full-screen video in its banner position, a clear menu at the top of the page… it definitely checks some boxes.
The reason why we’ve flagged it among our bad websites is because of its simple yet important miss on color.
The use of blue at the top of the page invokes feelings not of style but of something more generic or unrelated like a beach.
This website would benefit big time by recoloring its menu section with something darker. That darker palette would make the site feel more sophisticated and on-brand with a hair styling organization.
Electrifying times is a website that’s supposed to be all about the latest and greatest in electric cars. Unfortunately, it looks like a website from the early 2000’s advertising a local carnival.
Not only is the site non-responsive, it also uses animations to draw people’s attention to new articles and ultimately does ZERO to inspire confidence in consumers that this is a credible source when it comes to electric vehicles.
Have you ever wanted to find a website dedicated to telling you about Irish shipwrecks? We didn’t think so.
As it turns out, the more niche your topic of interest is, the worst the websites you find providing the information you need get.
While this site almost qualifies as a passable minimalist motif, it loses the chance of being acceptable thanks to its textured background and the fact that you have to click on a picture of a ship to enter the actual site.
Only bad websites make you solve puzzles to access their contents.
Here’s a bad website for the history books. Never have we seen a site overwhelm users with TMI more than this site does.
Explaining where this site went wrong seems pointless. Just navigate to it and prepare to go cross-eyed.
This is one of the only bad websites that have given us nightmares. We’re thinking that the site’s intent is to be unwelcoming, confusing, and then (if you dare enter the purple door) unbearable.
Still, whether its intent was to be bad or not, there’s no denying that the site’s alienating use of animation does more to scare users away than it does to welcome anybody in.
Wrapping Up 8 Cringe-Worthy Bad Websites
Having a good website is a must in today’s digital-focused age. Still, bad websites do serve an important role online…
They educate you on what not to do with your site.
In order to get started creating an excellent blog or website, we recommend going through our list of sites above and taking note of what it is they did wrong. While we took a light tone in our approach to critiquing these sites, be sure to really pay attention to the feelings the site’s we’ve mentioned leave you with.
Did they leave you feeling like the webmaster was unprofessional? Did they leave you feeling overwhelmed?
It’s those feelings that you should look to avoid with the design aesthetics you lean on during the creation of your site!
For more of the best and most entertaining blogging tips on the web, check out more of our content on BloggingTips.com!
1 Successful Blogger Assumption that Needs to Go
I see a lot of bloggers who make excuses as to why they fail.
Some outside condition or circumstance holds sway over these folks.
But even worse; said bloggers tend to say successful bloggers did not have to face any hardship or traumatic circumstances on their way to becoming established, pro bloggers.
I cannot tell a lie; I made a similar assumption as a new blogger. I believed millionaire bloggers took an easy journey while bum me had to face obstacles millionaires never had to face.
I discuss why you need to let this assumption go to build a successful blog:
I live a dream life.
Spending months or years in places like Fiji, Bali, Thailand and Costa Rica, I have seen some of the most spectacular places on earth.
But I faced many obstacles along the way. I ran into financial hardships. OK; let me rephrase that. I lost all of my money LOL! I also had a difficult time with family at points during my blogging journey, some of whom questioned my decisions.
Blogging confused me. Being an entrepreneur baffled me. I became terribly frustrated with my blogging trajectory a few times during my blogging career.
My mom has suffered through a terminal illness while I built my blog. I battled depression earlier during my blogging career.
But here I am. Blogging From Paradise.
Established, pro bloggers usually face and embrace far more difficult obstacles on our blogging journey. Doing so makes us more fearless which helps us grow like a weed while most bloggers feel weighed down by fear, doubt and anxiety.
I can almost guarantee you that assuming successful bloggers had an easy, bump-free, smooth journey is a root cause of your blogging struggles. Even if you succeed on some level you stunt your blogging growth by assuming successful bloggers had it easy while you have it much harder.
Not true, guys.
Diving deeper into obstacles and strong fears, you begin to see why nudging into these energies feels highly unpleasant but also helps you develop a type of fearlessness. Being more fearless than the average blogger helps you create prolifically, build new connections and most of all, you avoid panicking and being shaken out when your blogging results don’t seem to be growing too much.
My life became easier after I nudged into deep blogging and life fears because after these unpleasant but brief experiences, I no longer feared burning out, being criticized or failing. Letting go those 3 chief fears made me work more persistently, more energized and more focused than most bloggers, promoting my success.
Excuses Are For Losers
Excuses are for losers. If you make excuses that you cannot succeed because you face difficult obstacles that top bloggers did not have to face, you only hurt yourself because the statement is untrue.
You lose traffic and profits because you don’t do the uncomfortable but freeing things successful bloggers do to succeed.
Guys; this journey is fun and quite fascinating. Sometimes this blogging journey feels scary. Move forward through scary moments. Do not make excuses. Do not explain away your struggles and failures because you assume successful bloggers would not have succeeded if they did not face the same struggles, because this assumption is untrue.
You probably have yet to face the really deep, scary fears we all need to face before gaining blogging success so release your excuses, move forward based on your passion, be generous, open and willing to do whatever it takes to succeed.
Blogging gets easier if you cease making excuses and start getting things done.
Why Bloggers Need to Start Paying More Attention to Your Pay Stubs
It’s payday, and you’re ready to go out and celebrate with your coworkers, friends, and family. For bloggers and internet marketers, the concept of a ‘paycheck’ might be something totally new — or something they actually issue to themselves on a monthly basis. However, even for those in the workplace, fewer people are getting actual paychecks and paystubs, as automation is now key.
If you’re asking, “What is a pay stub?,” then congratulations on getting paid via direct deposit. As of 2016, 82 percent of American workers received their paychecks that way.
With direct deposit, you only have to check your bank account to make sure the money was credited. You should still receive a payroll stub from your employer, though, and you need to pay attention to it.
Read on to find out more about why paycheck stubs are important — even for bloggers.
What is Gross vs. Net Pay?
The biggest and most obvious thing displayed on a pay stub is the amount of money you made. But looking at your pay stub also allows you to figure out how you made that money.
There are two types of pay displayed on that stub: gross pay and net pay. The gross wages are the overall amount of income you earned over that pay period, regardless of if it’s biweekly or monthly.
Do you get paid hourly? If so, you would take the number of hours you worked and multiply that by your hourly rate. Both of those things should also appear on your paycheck stubs.
In the world of blogging and affiliate marketing, you might be getting paid a $100 commission on every new hosting referral made, but after taxes, you could be looking at another 30% cut in actual profit made.
As an example, let’s say a worker named Bob makes $20 an hour and worked precisely 80 hours the last two weeks. That means the “gross pay” amount on his check should be $1,600.
What if Bob has an annual salary of $50,000 instead of an hourly wage? Then he would need to divide $50,000 by the total number of paydays in the year. If he’s paid every two weeks, then that adds up to 26 annual pay periods.
Net pay is how much money you’re actually going to see in your bank account after various deductions get applied. Those deductions can include things like taxes, health insurance, and your 401(k).
When looking at your payroll stub, you’ll also see a space for something called “Employer Contributions.” What does that mean?
If you work a full-time job with benefits, then your employer pays for a significant portion of your health insurance. You might pay $50 every two weeks, but your employee might pay the other $100. This will be on your stub as “health insurance” or maybe “medical.”
If you’re lucky enough to work at a company that provides 401(k) matching for your retirement, then that will be under “Employer Contributions” as well.
Generating pay stubs used to be more complicated, but nowadays, companies can use an online pay stub generator. It may take a while to create a pay stub for everyone in the building, but the actual process isn’t nearly as arduous as it could be.
Most Bloggers Will Probably Ask ‘What is a Pay Stub?’
Answering the question “What is a pay stub?” is critical, but it isn’t all you’ll need to do to stay on top of your finances. More often then not, pay stubs are still being used, but since we are living in an electronic age, it’s usually all happening behind the scenes.
Avoid the temptation to throw away your pay stub as soon as you look at it. Keeping your pay check records will help you look for any patterns or problems at work. It’s also the best way to provide proof of income.
Don’t forget to put some of that paycheck in a savings account, too. For more on that topic, be sure to check out our top finance and stock market blogs to follow online.
Why All Blogging Metrics Are Vanity Metrics
Made ya look, right guys?
I did a Facebook Live Broadcast recently discussing this concept.
Check it out here:
All blogging metrics are vanity metrics because you check any blogging metrics to see how YOU are doing. Who cares? What about your readers? How are your readers doing? How are you helping your readers? How are you assisting your readers? If I see one of my videos nabbed a few hundred views I realize my video nabbed a few hundred views but this is entirely unrelated to how my readers are doing, because numbers and human beings are different concepts. Numbers are inanimate objects. Humans are humans.
I love to blog. I know how I am doing when blogging because I feel passionate about blogging. Do I need to look at a number on a screen to verify that I feel passionate about blogging? Nope. Any time I check a metric I think about how I am doing but checking numbers on a screen has nothing to do with how my readers are doing.
I serve my readers not by checking stats but by writing this guest post. I serve my readers not by checking metrics but by creating a video. I serve my readers by commenting on their blogs and by promoting my readers, not by trying to get bigger and bigger numbers after poring over metrics for minutes or hours on end.
All metrics are vanity metrics because all metrics are about you; you never check metrics to see how your readers are doing but you do check metrics to see how you are doing.
Stats Can Serve a Useful Purpose If……
….you spend a few seconds or a few minutes gauging stats, to see if you want to head in a different direction.
Emphasis on seconds or minutes, guys. Stats can be a little stopover, indicating you may need to let go an activity or maybe you need to expand an activity. Beyond those few seconds or minutes, give the rest of your attention and energy to creating helpful content and building meaningful connections.
Stats never bought my eBook so I do not check metrics. People buy my eBook so I do serve people every day, for hours a day.
Stats are all about you and service is all about other people.
Stop obsessing over how you are doing. Exit survival mode. Exit self-service mode.
Focus on other human beings. Write your next blog post. Create a video. Comment genuinely on a blog, personalizing the comment after reading the blog post. Promote another blogger on social media or via your blog. Be a servant; not a stat checker.
Develop some skills and meet a ton of people daily. That is my blogging mantra.
If you don’t focus heavily on blogging outcomes/stats and trust advice from seasoned pro bloggers you will see increasing success eventually. If you believe in yourself and help people and hone your skills through persistent practice you will succeed through your patient generosity. No need to obsess over numbers because obsessing over numbers is obsessing over yourself. Obsessing over yourself is a recipe for failure because you will run a cyber diary and sell nothing by focusing on yourself; you need to serve human beings to grow your business, not yourself.
Be patient. Be persistent. Be generous. Create and connect. Don’t obsess over stats. If you follow your passion – and you better – you know exactly how you are doing. You’re doing great! No need to verify that feeling with numbers on a screen. You’re good. Ask other folks how they are doing and serve them. Help solve their problems.
Get out of your head into a life of service.
Blogging success will be yours.
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