Retailers are using sneaky web design to catch you out

Web design
(Image credit: Merchant Machine)

Online shopping offers massive benefits in terms of choice and efficiency, but we can't deny that there are downsides that the savvy consumer needs to navigate. We've all come across misleading language, hidden costs or confusing subscription offers, and these are just a few examples of the 'dark patterns' that retailers sneak into their user experience (UX) design.

A new report has revealed the most common types of dark patterns that online retailers use – even reputable big names. These practices can try to lead you into buying something you don't want or try to make it difficult for you to compare prices to know if you're getting a real deal (one of the reasons we conduct a lot of research when compiling our own buying guides and features like the best Apple deals).

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Joe Foley

Joe is a regular freelance journalist and editor at Creative Bloq. He writes news, features and buying guides and keeps track of the best equipment and software for creatives, from video editing programs to monitors and accessories. A veteran news writer and photographer, he now works as a project manager at the London and Buenos Aires-based design, production and branding agency Hermana Creatives. There he manages a team of designers, photographers and video editors who specialise in producing visual content and design assets for the hospitality sector. He also dances Argentine tango.