Common Mistakes Designers Make On The Navigation Bar Buttons

Anirudh Bhardwaj | 22nd February 2018

The navigation bar is an essential element of a mobile application or a website. It also has a direct influence on its UX. Efficiency and usability of a website rely on how easily users access various elements of a website. Navigation buttons help the users to speedily find out the information, they are searching for. It is, therefore, necessary to correctly design these buttons failing on which would impose more work on the users resulting in a bad user experience.

So, as a designer, it is your foremost responsibility to design these buttons correctly if not perfectly. Following are the three common web design mistakes every designer makes while designing the navigation buttons.

Not Highlighting The Selected Button:

It’s a common mistake that designers make while designing the navigation buttons. As a result, when a button is selected, it remains intact even after clicking i.e there is no visual feedback whatsoever. Although it looks like a trivial matter, it may have a bad influence upon the users. If the Navigation button is not highlighted, the users will be lost in the task flow and may forget about their current position on the page.

There are several ways to highlight the navigation button on a webpage. You can use both shape and color but keep in mind that using colors won’t make any difference to the users who are colorblind. The best practice is to underline the clicked button or put a strong outline around the label. Also, make sure it looks different from a call-to-action button in the same navigation bar.

Not Using A Proper Color Contrast:

As a UI/UX designer, you must be picky when it comes to colors. Never use a low color contrast to distinguish the selected button. This is a common mistake made by most designers. The low color contrast makes it difficult for the user to read the text. This disturbs the website hierarchy and slows down the user experience.

Contrarily, the highlighted button should have the highest color contrast so that it’s easily readable at a glance. The same practice should be followed even on the inactive buttons since they are often missed by the users when highlighted with low color contrast.  

An absence of Hover Effects On The Buttons:

You might have noticed on various websites that when you hold your cursor on a navigation button, it produces a hover effect around the button. This kind of effects prompt the user to click on these buttons and account for a brilliant user experience. So if you aren’t implementing these effects in your design, it’s high time you should give it a try.


UX of a website is an important aspect to focus on. As it mainly emphasizes on how good a user experiencing the website. If the design of the navigation bar buttons of a website is not correct then it’ll ruin the user experience. Some common mistakes of designers while creating navigation bar buttons are using proper contrast colors, by not highlighting navigation buttons, and not using hover effects on buttons. If they work on these issues they can provide a better user experience to their users.

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Anirudh Bhardwaj

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