Updating an Outdated Look

Certain Web site themes over the years have become the telltale signs of a site's age. These Web page elements still exist but have mostly disappeared from the Web:

  • Pages with a black background and white text
  • Frames that section the information into distinct areas on the screen
  • The Under Construction graphic, with a stick figure digging a ditch
  • Graphical buttons without associated text labels
  • Animated GIFs (pictures) and scrolling text along the bottom of the screen
  • Splash screens (animated pictures) or Flash graphics that you have to watch before the home page is displayed

You have no way to accurately predict the next big trend in Web design. Therefore, after you launch your Web site, keep an eye out for newer design trends and decide on a regular time interval to update any outdated design issues for your site. Consider it spring cleaning for your site: Throw out the old designs and try on some new ones.

images If you're ever wondering where certain design techniques are becoming outdated, check out five or ten of your favorite Web sites. The design technique disappearing from those sites is an early indication that your site is in need of a change.

Giving your designs a purpose

When you evaluate the design elements of your Web site, keep the following question in mind:

Does my Web site effectively communicate my business message?

Every design decision ...

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