Today I’d like to talk about an aspect of the user experience many of us don’t think about or aren’t typically asked to think about outside of our technical or design rolls. That aspect is simply what I call the “what you say” part of a website. Some would call it the “call to action”. Now don’t stop reading just yet! I know that you “tech-types” might be thinking “Oh boy. More ‘marketing speak’ I don’t have any need of knowing!” Believe me. This is good information for anyone from an author I’ve been following for a while. His name is Seth Godin and the article I’m referring to is “Big promises can lead to better experiences“. Like much of what Seth writes, it’s straightforward, practical and a good quick read you’ll walk away from feeling smarter and better equipped. In his article Seth reminds us that “Human beings have better experiences when they expect to have a better experience.” He’s referring to the expectations we create from the promises we make to our customers. Being brave and making big promises (not little, not great – just big ones you can keep) makes for big expectations that turn into good experiences.
I am pleased to find an article about responsive web design that actually steps back a little to emphasize some important principles often overlooked with the excitement of a popular and trendy topic. Steven Bradley at Smashing Magazine wrote a great article titled “How To Maintain Hierarchy Through Content Choreography“. Give it a read. It’s a great practical reminder of how to keep the user’s content needs at the forefront of your responsive layout.
In previous posts I’ve focused on my precious resource of timeless books that I rely on for many projects. By now I hope you’ve started a list of websites as well. If you haven’t yet here’s a website you can start off with: http://www.nngroup.com/articles/, Jakob Nielsen’s articles on Usability and Web Design. Jakob has been a key proponent and educator of usability for a long time. I think you’ll learn many things from him.