5 Web Design Trends that Were Once Cool But Aren’t Anymore

Thursday - August 22nd, 2013

Written by: Tristan Pelligrino

5 Web Design Trends that Were Once Cool But Aren’t Anymore

Web design trends evolve at neck-breaking pace, giving designers an incredible amount of work to do, simply to keep their websites looking and functioning as they should. While some web designs make comebacks, or even solidify themselves as staples in any design situation, most trends fade quickly – never to return. If you have an older website or haven’t updated it recently, double check that your site isn’t committing one of these transgressions!


  1. Custom mouse cursors. While custom mouse cursors such as Mickey Mouse, frogs, and random trinkets were once impressive, it’s been universally accepted that the traditional mouse pointer is here to stay. Plus, a custom cursor can detract from the professionalism of your business, no matter how creative your idea is.
  2. Not enough white space. When websites were first created, it was common for businesses to cram as much information as possible into a small space. After all, you would want to give potential customers as much information as possible, right? This web design truth is a little counterintuitive, but white space – or negative space – is what gives you the opportunity to highlight key pieces of information. In other words, your web design will benefit from blank spaces or large areas without any content. Contrary to what the name implies, these blank areas don’t have to be white – just devoid of any content. Other benefits of white space include:
  • Easily guiding your customers through your online sales funnel
  • Making your website more memorable, as you can easily emphasize key pieces of content and information
  • Improving user-friendliness and allowing intuitiveness to guide visitors
  1. Confusing navigation schemes. Following the same logic which encourages white space usage, you want your navigation scheme to be as user-friendly and intuitive as possible. Complicated navigation will confuse visitors and even damage click-through rates, as consumers will leave if they cannot easily browse your site. To solve this problem, use consistent navigation, and consider using large page markers and categories to make your navigation clear. This includes the:
  • Home page
  • About page
  • Products page
  • And much more!
  1. Bevel and Emboss. If you’re familiar with basic Photoshop Effects, the chances are that you’ve used Bevel and Emboss to add a sense of boldness and realism to your design. Unfortunately, as cool as this effect is, it now evokes web design of the late 90s and early 2000s. Today’s logo and website designs are focused on minimalism. Customers now expect simple, uniform edges and beautiful text that really emphasize your professional look.
  2. Too much cursive. While you’ll want to incorporate beautiful text in your web design, beware of too much cursive. Big blocks of cursive text are distracting and can subtract from the value of your content. There are so many font options available, so if you want to focus on beautiful typography, try using attractive print text instead of the fancy flourishes that cursive provides. This isn’t to say that there’s anything wrong with cursive, but just like anything else, using it in moderation is key.

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