The ’90s was a decade of exciting changes. Above all, we saw the rise of an intriguing concept called the ‘Information Superhighway’ or World Wide Web as it later became known. In conjunction, the personal computer became increasingly accessible. Mobile games consoles, such as Gameboy, began proliferating, each with continually improving graphics. Also, medical advances saw the advent of cloning (remember Dolly the sheep?) and stem cell research. TV was dominated by Bay Watch, The X-files and Friends. Incredibly, Google wasn’t established until 1998. Some businesses were quick to embrace the internet and soon began launching their own very 90’s-style websites. Chock-full of garish fonts, tiled backgrounds and animations, they mostly resembled a dog’s dinner compared to today’s more sophisticated designs. However, some 90’s tropes have persisted. So, let’s have a look at some of them and see if you’re due for a website overhaul.
A Website Overhaul to ‘De-Mullet’ Your Site
With today’s ever-shrinking attention spans, we must engage and hold the attention of visitors within a few seconds. That means providing clear, easy to access, relevant information presented in a clean and appealing design. In other words, the opposite of a ‘90s website! Examples of ’90s design attributes that must be culled with a website overhaul include:
- Landing pages that declare ‘You are here, click to Enter’. Solution? Delete.
- Assorted wacky fonts including the obligatory Comic Sans and a smattering of Ding Bats. Solution? Find one font that fits your style and stick with it throughout.
- Tiled backgrounds using photos that make text impossible to read. Solution? Solid coloured backgrounds that complement text colour.
- Animated text that whizzes across the page. Undoubtedly a feature that was popular just because it was novel and could be done. Solution? Stop it. Animation and dynamic features can be introduced in much more appealing ways.
- This is the Motherload of ‘90s ‘chuck everything at it’ website design – contrasting, obnoxious colour palettes, sparkling star animations, whooshing sound effects, especially after clicking a pulsating button, and general visual chaos. Solution? Complete website overhaul!