Benefits and Drawbacks of Icons in Web Design

  • by Lija Parveen

November 5, 2020
Web Design

Just take a look across the web, from Facebook to Instagram to email, you will find icons in place of texts or to support the text. The purpose of an icon is to convey the message through commonly understood language.

For decades, icons have been used for communicating an idea to the users. Mostly, icons are symbols or pictures that are incorporated into web design. However, using too many or incorrect icons can cause more damage than good. A web design company can help you incorporate icons into your web design. So, it is important to pay attention to selecting a company for web design as you do for an  SEO company.

Are you thinking what are the benefits of using icons? You are in the right place. In this post, we will be talking about the pros and cons of icons in web design.

Pro: Decreases the size of the Web Page

One of the benefits of icons is that it helps in reducing the size of the web page. In comparison to the images, the document size of the icon is very less. That is why you can use icons instead of pictures. Also, it will decrease the loading time of web pages, meaning people will not have to wait for a long time. It is because there will be just one HTTP request for all the icons.

Con: Less Detailed Than Images

When it comes to drawbacks, icons are not so detailed. For icons, you are unable to use plenty of colors. If you want to have a detailed logo, you have to use SVG or images.

Pro: Changing Colors is Easy

Another great thing about icons is that you can change the colors without any hassle. If you think the icon colors are not working for the website, you can change it and see what works best.

Con: Meaning Can Be Misunderstood

A huge problem with icons is that people might not be able to infer the meaning as you want them to. Factors like personal and cultural associations can change the way they interpret the meaning of an icon. No doubt, it can also be in a disastrous way.

If people are not familiar with an icon, they can deduce the meaning based upon their past experiences. However, it can even be against or for you.

Pro: Improves UI

With the help of an icon, you can make the web design more appealing and eye-catching. Icons are perfect for grabbing attention and at the same time, can be recognized instantly. However, it must not be too flashy as it will divert the attention away from the intended place.

Moreover, icons enable visitors to engage without any distractions. That is how it improves focus and user interface.

Con: Cultural Restriction

When it comes to designing icons, you have to consider international audiences as well. There is a chance that people might have issues in translating. The connotation of an icon can widely vary across cultures and creates ambiguity.

For instance, the eye icon indicates views. In North American culture, it is a great icon since there is no pre-existing meaning. Unfortunately, in some countries, it is considered negative. It can mean the eye of sickness or the evil eye.

Pro: Resizing Is Easy

Unlike images, icons can be resized without compromising quality. Even after you decrease or increase the size of the icon, it will be sharp and clear.

Con: Might Increase Clutter

Having too many small things can be very distracting. It might divert the focus of the visitors from the main point. When you overuse the icons, it will obscure your message. So, you must use them tactfully and precisely. Make sure it conveys the right message.

Final Word

To sum it up, icons are an essential element of web design. It is a great way to convey your message without taking too much space. Icons decrease the size of the webpage, increasing the loading speed of the page. Unfortunately, you have to be careful when creating icons. An icon can have different meanings in different cultures. This can cause a problem when visitors infer the meaning of the icon. Not to worry, with the help of a web designer in New York, you can use icons the right way. Read more about the logo maker at Designhill.