Interface design is an intriguing and widely diverse world. There are as many ways to make a text box as there are designers on the planet.

I like getting to a site and seeing a new, original way to design a web site's navigation. However, I cannot stand interfaces that confuse me.

Here are the two most confusing types:

  • There are so many buttons, links, and other gizmos trying to grab my attention that I cannot choose where I should go next.
  • The design metaphor is so obscure I can't even find where to click next. 

Those pages feel like no one outside the design team saw them before they were published. It's as if the design team spent so much time tweaking and refining their work, they lost sight of the reason for the page's existence. 

That doesn't mean a web page or system interface can't have a lot going on. It must be clear what's the next step. When on gets to AceProject's web page, they see this:

There are a lot of links in there, and a lot of text. However, the most prominent buttons in the page say STEP 1, STEP 2, STEP 3. It's obvious we want you to try the demo first, then create a free account, then purchase a subscription. 

The best design is not the most beautiful

The best design is the most effective. It gets people to do what you want them to do.