Bad design in 2009?

February 16, 2009

Bad design? If it's not broken, why fix it? Let the customers do the judging.

This is a fun little feature from the Los Angeles Times titled “Bad Design Trends We Hope Die In 2009.” 

Click on the story and browse through about a dozen design trends that have been deemed bad by so-called experts. You'll learn that sleigh beds and granite counter tops are passé, and gain insight on what you should really be using in home décor.

At first glance, you might want to consider applying some of the suggested concepts in your designs, at home and in marketing materials. It’s a good idea for some companies — those that strive to remain at the forefront of sales trends.

Other companies should largely ignore this article. Consumers don't always listen to the experts — they buy what they like, and there are plenty of people who like granite counter tops, sleigh beds, stainless steel appliances and other “bad” design concepts.

Should a company that makes $10 million annually in heavy curtain sales decide to make a drastic change in operations just because a so-called expert dislikes heavy curtains?

The true measurement of a design is whether it can be sold for a profit. If the stainless steel appliance industry has buyers, why change? If enough people want to buy granite counter tops, why replace it with something else?

It's wise to be cognizant of transitioning trends, but it's even wiser to recognize market niches. Colored laminates might outsell granite counter tops 10 to one, but that is irrelevant if granite counter tops are still salable.

Listen to your customers, not experts. It is your customers who will tell you what they really want.

What do your customers want? Is it conventional, or does it stray from the norm?

Brian's picture

About Brian Morris

Brian Morris serves in various capacities as a freelance writer, content developer and public relations specialist for growing small businesses. When he’s not writing, he can be found on the racquetball court - usually getting his tail kicked by guys 20 years older.

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