Creativity is an important part distinguishing your brand in multiple platforms including your website, blog, or even business cards. When it comes to websites there is a line between being creative and negatively impacting the user experience. Here are some components to user experience that need to be considered when creativity is taking over.
Whether you like it or not, there is a certain navigation standard that users have become accustomed to. A top horizontal bar or left vertical bar are typical web design components. Likewise, the logo in the top left corner, search or shopping cart in the top right… These items are typically placed here because user experience is simplified based on previous knowledge.
Making these components unique can be inspiring for a designer, but when you put too many elements out of place you force people to go searching on the page for where to click next. This can be particularly frustrating when users are have something they are looking for that should be in one place and is not.
I recently watched an awesome documentary on fonts called Helvetica (more interesting than you might think). The video interviews designers and their use of very contemporary fonts or the most abstract. Typical Web based fonts like Arial, Times New Roman, and Georgia have been around for years and years. The more recent advent of cloud based resources like Google Fonts have aloud users to use unique fonts that are also legible to search engines.
The issue arises when people use creative fonts that look good from a far but are far from good because people can’t read them. This is an issue that comes up time and time again. Minimalists love ultra thin fonts that can be difficult to read for people with poor eye-site, while others like the curvy, boxy, or rounded fonts that create similar issues depending on their size, kerning, or background color.
Desktop browsers, mobile phone browsers, and now tablet browsers make things challenging for designers to make sure things look good in every situation. Apple still isn’t supporting flash, which has impacted its growth over the past year. The more out-of-the-box your designs become, the harder it can be to satisfy all users. Also consider monitor resolution and how that affects the appearance of your content. The warning here is to make sure that creativity does not impact how your site is viewed in varies browsers.
Overall, designers must take these types of consideration into account when designing awesome websites. There is definitely a line between creativity and user experience that needs to stay in balance.
As a creative professional