The World Wide Web is no longer filled with sim­ple, sta­t­ic web pages. Advances in tech­nol­o­gy and web­site devel­op­ment allow users to cre­ate inter­ac­tive, mean­ing­ful, and dynam­ic web­sites. While there are hun­dreds of step-by-step ref­er­ences to help you cre­ative­ly devel­op your web­site, few­er resources are telling you what not to do. You may be imple­ment­ing best prac­tices, but know­ing what not to do is just as impor­tant as know­ing what to do.

Believe it or not, one cru­cial aspect of web devel­op­ment, espe­cial­ly in 2019, is not jump­ing onto every trend you see. While it’s essen­tial to stay com­pet­i­tive in terms of your website’s func­tion­al­i­ty, eCom­merce tools, and SEO prac­tices, hav­ing some insight into what trends mat­ter and what trends need to be left behind is cru­cial.

The first step is keep­ing your web­site active. If your business’s web­site is sta­t­ic, you’re los­ing traf­fic and increas­ing your bounce rate. Here are a few oth­er things to keep in mind.

Be Wary of the JavaScript Framework Bandwagons

Vue, Angu­lar, and React are a few of the most pop­u­lar JavaScript frame­works avail­able today, but many novice web devel­op­ers are mak­ing the mis­take of div­ing into these sys­tems with­out first cul­ti­vat­ing stronger roots in basic JavaScript. A good rule of thumb for any web devel­op­er is to know JavaScript like the back of your hand. Learn­ing pop­u­lar JavaScript frame­works can undoubt­ed­ly enhance the mar­ketabil­i­ty of your skillset, but only with a firm under­stand­ing of the nuts and bolts of JavaScript.

Stop Using Bootstrap

Boot­strap may enable the quick and pain­less build­ing of sim­ple UI struc­tures, but it offers lit­tle beyond basic func­tion­al­i­ty in a cook­ie-cut­ter pack­age. Many fresh web devel­op­ers rely on Boot­strap as an easy tool to style a web-based appli­ca­tion, but most employ­ers of web devel­op­ment teams take this over­re­liance on Boot­strap as a fail­ure to under­stand site per­for­mance and the basics of CSS. CSS Flexbox and Grid are fan­tas­tic tools for learn­ing respon­sive lay­outs and the basics of CSS.

Stop Designing for Desktop Only

Too many web devel­op­ers get tun­nel vision when it comes to design­ing for users. Most web traf­fic hap­pens on mobile devices, and web devel­op­ers are find­ing the great­est suc­cess with respon­sive design. In the ear­ly days of web devel­op­ment for mobile plat­forms, many com­pa­nies ran two iter­a­tions of their web­sites: one for desk­top and lap­top brows­ing with a full-size mon­i­tor and anoth­er for mobile devices. Now that smart­phones have evolved into hand­held com­put­ers and mul­ti­me­dia devices, it is much eas­i­er to devel­op web­site and web con­tent tai­lored to smart­phone users.

Respon­sive design allows you to devel­op web­sites that fluc­tu­ate in appear­ance based on the device a user prefers. Don’t both­er design­ing an entire­ly new mobile site, and don’t fall into the trap of assum­ing all of your web traf­fic is going to be from mobile plat­forms in the future.

Avoid Authentication without Authorization

Authen­ti­ca­tion” and “autho­riza­tion” means two dif­fer­ent things in web devel­op­ment; authen­ti­ca­tion refers to con­firm­ing a user’s iden­ti­ty while autho­riza­tion refers to what access the iden­ti­fied user has. For exam­ple, a web­site may host login cre­den­tials for ten users, but four of those users have admin­is­tra­tor access to the site. Authen­ti­ca­tion ver­i­fies each user’s login cre­den­tials, and the autho­riza­tion set­tings for each user deter­mines the users’ lev­els of access to the web­site and admin­is­tra­tor tools.

Nev­er treat authen­ti­ca­tion and autho­riza­tion as inter­change­able; they may be two sides of the same coin in terms of web­site access, but they mean very dif­fer­ent things. Ensur­ing sol­id process­es and cod­ing for both is the best kind of pro­tec­tion against brute force attacks and oth­er mali­cious threats to your web­site.

Don’t Box Yourself Into an MVP Scaling Problem

One com­mon trend today is for com­pa­nies to enter the mar­ket with a min­i­mum viable prod­uct, or MVP. Get­ting to mar­ket with only an MVP helps com­pa­nies stay com­pet­i­tive by reach­ing the mar­ket as soon as phys­i­cal­ly pos­si­ble, but many web devel­op­ers fall into the trap of cod­ing for the cur­rent MVP trend and not plan­ning for the future. For exam­ple, let’s imag­ine you start devel­op­ing your web­site and host user con­tent direct­ly on your serv­er. Even­tu­al­ly, the site will grow, and your net­work will need to expand to new servers, open­ing the door to syn­chro­niza­tion issues and 404 errors. Avoid this by imple­ment­ing a remote stor­age solu­tion at the out­set; it only takes a few more hours of work and can save a tremen­dous amount of future has­sle.

Don’t Get Complacent with Google SEO

Google com­mands the lion’s share of all inter­net search­es, and too many web devel­op­ers for­get to stay updat­ed with the lat­est algo­rithm changes. Even small adjust­ments to the Google search algo­rithm can have a dra­mat­ic impact on a website’s search engine opti­miza­tion (SEO) set­tings. The best mod­ern web devel­op­ers work close­ly with SEO teams, always research SEO best prac­tices, and pub­lish strong con­tent to boost search engine rank­ings.

Don’t take a “set it and for­get it” approach to SEO dur­ing devel­op­ment; involve your SEO and mar­ket­ing teams dur­ing the ini­tial phas­es of web devel­op­ment so you can more eas­i­ly address algo­rithm changes in the future.

Don’t Get Complacent with Google SEO

Don’t Develop Tunnel Vision with Your Applications or Build from Scratch

Instead of box­ing your­self into a web devel­op­ment “style” or a spe­cif­ic niche, invest in appli­ca­tions that are use­able, flex­i­ble, and ver­sa­tile – and that keep users in mind. Many web devel­op­ers fall into the trap of fail­ing to design for the user’s per­spec­tive. If your site looks good but is con­fus­ing to nav­i­gate, expect your bounce rate to grow.

Don’t Jump on the “Latest and Greatest” Software Applications

Web devel­op­ment is a boom­ing indus­try, and ven­dors and ser­vice providers are con­tin­u­al­ly offer­ing new prod­ucts that promise to take the stress and has­sle out of web devel­op­ment. Before try­ing out the lat­est oper­at­ing sys­tem, visu­al stu­dio appli­ca­tion, or JavaScript frame­work, take time to hone your core skills and wait for oth­ers to dis­cov­er all the bugs and com­pat­i­bil­i­ty issues new soft­ware appli­ca­tions always tend to have.

Start with a reli­able tech­nol­o­gy stack of appli­ca­tions you know and pro­grams with ongo­ing sup­port from their devel­op­ers. If new soft­ware gains trac­tion over a few months or years and devel­ops a sol­id rep­u­ta­tion as a reli­able addi­tion to a web developer’s toolk­it, then you can safe­ly take time to inves­ti­gate it.

Don’t Value Presentation Over Performance

A beau­ti­ful web­site may be ide­al, but vis­i­tors to your site won’t linger for long if the nuts and bolts of the site are con­fus­ing. Sim­i­lar­ly, don’t make your users wait; mod­ern inter­net users are grow­ing increas­ing­ly intol­er­ant of slow-load­ing web­pages. Always devel­op with opti­mal per­for­mance as your top pri­or­i­ty, then go back and fuss over the aes­thet­ics.

Get Help When You Need It

If you’ve reached the lim­it of your exper­tise, don’t make the mis­take of try­ing to wing it. Your web­site is often the first way users find you, so it’s unwise to gam­ble on its func­tion­al­i­ty. Talk with an expert.

Every year, new trends and fads over­take the web devel­op­ment indus­try, mis­lead­ing many novice devel­op­ers into wast­ing time, resources, and ener­gy on untest­ed appli­ca­tions, unsteady frame­works, and inef­fec­tive design trends. Avoid these behav­iors and cul­ti­vate a strong core skill set as a web devel­op­er. The lat­est web devel­op­ment trends may hold some promise, but it is always best to hone core skills before exper­i­ment­ing with emerg­ing design and devel­op­ment trends.

SOURCE: Read Write