|Gathering successful examples is|
a great way to start
And that means, sometimes, you will hire someone to do a better job than you would. Or maybe you just don't have the time and need it done fast. Or even further, sometimes it needs to be cute, and let's face it, it is yet to be born a software developer who grasps the concepts of cuteness.
That said, we're in the process of hiring a web designing company to refurbish our web site.
The Marketing and Creative Director (MCD) has scheduled a meeting between me and the designer, because, from their conversations, some technical details surfaced, and I am supposed to interface them in this matter.
I recognize that criticizing design is one of my weaknesses, however, I might as well meander in the usability issues given that, to the least, I am a well experienced "user" of websites.
I gathered, in a short time, a couple of references that are quite good and that I summarize below.
Top Five Web Design Mistakes Small Businesses Make
1) Poor navigation: people visit your site for specific information, and if they cannot find it they will quickly go elsewhere, leaving with the impression that your business is disorganized in more than just its website.
2) No clear calls to action: if you aren’t leading users to commit to an action (buy a product, contact you or subscribe, for example), then you are losing them.
|Choosing colours may be|
the most dificult task
4) Content: people visit your website for its content, and how that is structured is a huge factor in its success or failure.
5) Clutter: challenge every item on each page and ask, “Does it really need to be there? Does it serve a specific purpose? Can I live without it?”. Even the greatest content can become lost in a mess of words and graphics, so de-cluttering is essential.
Preparing Your Web Content for iPad
1) Test your web site in iPad, iPhone and desktop. Update user agent detection code if necessary
2) Use W3C standards instead of plugins. Prefer HTML5. (and by plugins, yes, we mean Flash and Java)
3) Check viewport settings. Do not hardcode width elements
4) Modify code that relies on CSS fixed positioning. These do not work *as expected* on iPhone and iPad, because the viewport is the window and window size is set to the size of the physical screen and is, therefore, not resizable on these devices.
5) Prepare for touch interface. Most importantly: avoid hovering actions or any other *typical mouse* related features.
6) Use textareas instead of contenteditable elements.