Ever landed on a website that made you scratch your head in confusion? 

Bad websites are everywhere: they make it difficult to find the information you need or navigate to the place you want to go. 

Bad website design can end up costing you money in lost sales and conversions, so it’s important to not overlook the importance of a well-functioning website. 

Thankfully, there are a few things you can do to fight poor website design. You need to pay attention to:

  • User experience. Things like speed, poor navigation, broken internal links, overall usability, mobile responsiveness, and website security all affect the user experience. 
  • Visual design. Image quality, overall design and color contrast, choice of typography, website layout, and use of animations all contribute to a visually appealing (or unappealing) interface.
  • Copywriting. Good copy helps you make sure your website has a clear message and is optimized for search engines. 

20 examples of website design you should avoid

Still not sure what to look out for? 

Here are 20 bad website examples that help you recognize and stay away from web design choices that could end up costing you in the long run. 

Suzanne Collins Books website leaves a lot to be desired.

You would assume that the author of the Hunger Games series would have a website exempt from design mistakes? Think again.

When it comes to examples of bad websites, Collins’ website is too often listed as one. But there’s a good reason for it. While the site somewhat works on a mobile device, a lot of the content shifts and moves in ways that leave room for improvement.

The site structure is very plain, with no clear call-to-action sections. In fact, all the links to other websites are almost hidden in a sidebar with no clear function. There are no contact details available, not even a contact form or a comment section for feedback.

At a glance, you might think you’ve time-traveled to the 90s when you land on the official website of Pacific Northwest X-Ray. We don’t want to be harsh, but it’s, unfortunately, the worst example of a bad website with an overall bad design.

It doesn’t take much advancing technology to upgrade this low-quality website into a better, more modern new website.

By creating a dedicated landing page, using solid colors instead of outdated gradients, and having a clear navigation menu, the website would already improve its user experience by a ton.

The thing is, Pacific Northwest X-Ray Inc gives the visitor no reason to browse the website or familiarize themselves with the services offered.

The landing page has no copy about the company, what they do or what they offer. The only thing the user can do is choose between searching for products or clicking on a set of links that lead to some of the product pages.

The moment you land on Tag Team Signs, you’ll notice that bigger is not always better.

From the get-go, it’s not fully clear what the company is selling, as the bright red base color and huge heading font size attack the eye.

What’s worse, if you’re browsing the website on different devices, you’ll soon notice that the huge titles take up most of the space and leave mobile users frustrated, to say the least.

Like many bad websites, this one isn’t inherently awful: it has a navigation menu that’s relatively straightforward, contact forms, separate pages for different functions, and a coherent color scheme.

But it’s the details that bring Tag Team Signs’s one-page website down. The fonts are too big and the colors too bright, and there’s a mismatch between which website sections are deemed as important.

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