Build Your Site: KISS - Keep It Simple Stupid.

By · Feb 19, 2004 ·
    KISS - Keep It Simple Stupid.

    Below is a small collection of useful tips that will greatly improve the success of your web site. At the very least, I hope it opens your eyes to the world of usability

    Include engaging content

    • A site should have fresh content. You have 10 seconds to get the user's attention.
    The upper half of the screen is most visible to the user.

    • Use this area for important content. This includes, navigation, menu links, and/or descriptive information.
    Consistency and focus is important throughout a web site.

    • If a splash page is centered, make sure all your pages are centered. If the menu is on top, make sure the menu is on top on all pages.
    Design a site with your target on mind.

    • Do you know the objectives and market segment your site is aiming for?

      Gather detailed profiles of your 'market'. For example, if you're aiming towards people over 50 years old. Do you know and understand their behaviors, needs, and wants? Do you know...
      • the average person at this age has a monitor resolution of 800*600?
      • the older a person is the more blind they become?
      • the older a person is the smarter they become?
      NOTE: This is not a message to ignore everyone else. A good design will attract people from all sides. This is a message to emphasize key features that may or may not be required for your target segment.
    The visual design of a web site will only make a small difference when it comes to usability.

    • Do not spend to much time on eye candy. However, this does not mean you should ignore it. Show your personality and distinguish your site from others.
    Never assume people know what a site is about.

    • The purpose and benefits of web site should be clear and visible.
    Links should be clear and visible on web site.

    • Consistency would greatly help ... eg, if a link is blue and underlined make sure it stays like this on all links; do not mix and match. Use "title" attribute on all links. Never assume a user knows that an image is a button. eg. an image standing on it's own.
    Navigation should be restricted to a small number of links.

    • It should have clear and descriptive links and should be consistent. Never leave people guessing.
    Proofread your content for typographical errors.

    • Check for typos, grammar, broken links, and buggy scripts.
    Include white space in the page layout.

    • People are more inclined to read if content is not clutter and long. Use white space to break apart content. Just imagine if this page was one big paragraph with no space. How would you react to it?
    You can create a better experience for you and your end users.
    Understanding how people "react" to your site can help generate more traffic. By analyzing your site's log files you can track your audience, learn which pages are most popular, and identify technical problems.

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