Website Usability: Keep it Simple
Mar 02, 2012
One of the most common problems on websites, and one of the most easily avoidable, is usability. Usability encompasses many aspects of a site: organization, ease of navigation, visibility of important information, loading speed, etc. Basically, anything that affects how somebody interacts with your site (and how easy that interaction is) can fall under the "usability" umbrella.
There are many ways to improve a site's usability, but I've included three basic tips below that will give you a good foundation on which to build each page on your site.
- Don't try to fit too much information on a single page. A lot of times, you'll have so much great information to share that your first instint will be to put as much as possible on each page. Resist this urge. Limit the textual content on each page to a few short paragraphs at most (pages that require too much scrolling actually get abandoned pretty quickly). Highlight the most important points about that page's topic and don't oversaturate the page with a large amount of text that people won't read anyway. If people spend more than 30 seconds reading text on a page, you're lucky. Keep that in mind when creating content on your pages.
- Keep the navigation bars on every page consistent. Make sure that your navigation bar always stays in the same spot on each page and contains the same links. It will only serve to confuse your customers if they visit a page and try to navigate elsewhere only to find that the navigation bar has moved or has new links in a different order.
- Keep images to a minimum whenever possible. It's no secret that alluring images and graphics can enhance a website's aesthetics, but too many of them can have a negative impact on a site's loading speed. Above all other usability issues, a slow loading speed can be the quickest way to get somebody to leave your site. Images are fine, but make sure their file sizes aren't too large and they aren't causing your site to load slowly. Finally, avoid Flash animation as much as you can.
In addition to these three basic tips, you can always find checklists to use to make sure your site's usability is functioning smoothly. A simple Google search for "website usability checklist" will get you started with plenty of options.
: Call to a member function getUserUserBio() on null in /home/wyoming/public_html/packages/problog/helpers/blogify.php
on line 370