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When It Comes To Web Design, This Is When Clients’ Logic Goes Right Out The Window

By Erin  |  February 11, 2015  |   Website Design

Teenagers / Middle School Students

The most bizarre thing happens to a large portion of clients when the time comes to explore a new design for their websites.

Many revert to—and stubbornly stick to—a middle school frame of mind.

But first, let me tell you a little bit about me.  In middle school.

Me, in middle school

You couldn't miss me as I walked down the halls in middle school.  

My high-top shoes were hand-covered in glitter (way before it was cool).

I wore a pearl earring in one ear and a long dangling feather earring in the other.

I often wore a rainbow necklace adorned with (fully functional) colored pencils.

I began wearing baggy pants during the days of tight leggings. 

You get the picture. I made a concerted effort to look different than everyone else.

I knew I looked FRIGGIN' AWESOME.

Unfortunately, very few others agreed with me.

Clients often want to be me in middle school

When they begin the process of creating a new website, a pervasive obsession of many companies is, "Our design needs to look completely different from everyone else."

This obsession comes in a variety of flavors.  Sometimes it's "We want to have a website that is incredibly creative and that no one can forget." Sometimes it's "We want a website that has lots of movement and is incredibly exciting."

No matter the words, the theme of desperately wanting to be different is the same.

Here's the problem

You're not in middle school anymore, and neither is your website.

Your website goals likely include targets along the lines of increasing revenue, obtaining a higher volume of leads and customers, and building your business. Insistence on a design entirely unlike everyone else's may not move your business toward your goal at all. 

Think about this for a moment

Be honest.

When you're searching the web for any of the products or services below, do you typically reach out to buy from the companies that have sites which look completely different than the rest?  

  • attorney
  • plumber
  • shoes
  • books
  • architects
  • new restaurant
  • furniture
  • winter jacket
  • glassware
  • smartphone
  • computer
  • eyeglasses
  • sports equipment
  • holiday or birthday gifts
  • doctor
  • event tickets
  • CPA
  • consultant
  • sushi restaurant
  • office products
  • new employee

Are completely creative, totally different web designs a primary factor in your purchasing decisions for these types of products or services?  

If "coolest web design" isn't a primary factor in your decisions, could it be possible it's actually not so critical to those considering your company's products or services?

You're not in middle school anymore.

Though there are of course exceptions, being cool and looking totally different than everyone else likely isn't a main goal you should be focusing on.  

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