Having problems with your latest web design project? Here are 7 of the most common problems that plague web developers and some ways to overcome them:

Usability

Web developers are often so involved in a project that they can’t anticipate how real users will interact with the site. Because of this, tasks may be harder to accomplish than anticipated, and users may not be able to find the information they need.

Solution – Begin with the end in mind. Use UML diagrams to model use cases and lay out every step of the process. During the design phase and in every stage thereafter, ask users to test the site using real-world tasks and take notes on any changes that need to be made.

Accessibility

It’s estimated that around 10-20% of the population in most countries has some type of disability. If accessibility isn’t a priority, your site may be unusable for a large part of your audience.

Solution – Study and implement accessibility best practices. Wherever possible, allow people to make their own decisions regarding font sizes and color schemes. Provide information to help people understand and navigate your site.

Cross-browser compatibility

Making your website work across all browsers and versions is easier said than done.

Solution – Find workarounds. If you create a cool transition in HTML5, be sure that the site will still render in non-HTML5 compatible browsers. Test your site often to make sure that changes are usable in all browsers.

Mobile traffic

Mobile traffic is set to outstrip desktop traffic by 2015. If you are not optimizing for mobile users, you could be losing users and sales.

Solution – Use responsive web design to serve the right version of the page to the right users. Think about what information your mobile users are looking for and deliver it quickly.

Site speed

Nearly half of users expect a site to load in 2 seconds or less, and they tend to abandon sites that take longer than 3 seconds to load.

Solution – Load only what you need. Use external style sheets and JavaScript files and be sure to serve only what’s needed. Optimize your images for the web, and check for redirect issues.

Security

If your users can’t trust that their information is secure, they won’t use your site.

Solution – Be proactive. Use secure connections to submit and transfer data. Monitor inbound and outbound traffic for threats.

Trying to do everything at once –Many web developers don’t spend enough time on the beginning stages of a web project and go straight into implementation. This can lead to problems, as new requirements are discovered or brought up later.

Use an iterative process. Start with discovery, planning, wireframing, and designing and get as many of the details and potential problems nailed down as you can before moving on.
What are your biggest web design challenges? Share with us in the comments.

7 web development challenges and how to make them work for you

Author bioSarah Montgomery is a marketing manager at Lucid Software. When she’s not helping webmasters discover the latest in planning and wireframing tools, you can usually find her on the ski slopes. Reach her on Twitter at @lucidchart or @lucidpress.