I have been building web applications for 15 years. Technologies have come and gone, but simple and clean design will always make a web user comfortable.
One of the biggest mistakes that corporations make is trying to replace good content with visuals in order to create value that is not there already. In most cases, sites that are unwilling to put the effort into the underlying products, services or content will ultimately fail no matter what the site looks like.
My philosophy has always been simply:
- Know why you want a site (think of people walking into your store, do you want them browsing or buying?)
- Create compelling content (you can’t hide for long behind a flashy site)
- Make the content simple to use and readable (do not overload the senses)
- Know what you want your content to do for your customer
- Use the content to lead your customer to the goal (purchase, self-service)
With this in mind a site will always succeed when it either creates a meaningful relationship with the customer or enhances the relationship established by other channels. Often times, companies are too concerned with “keeping them on the site”. This model works for some sites that are information driven with an advertising revenue model, but most “destination” sites need to be up-front with what they offer. If the site doesn’t show its value within minutes, the experience is over.
The customer might be there to research a product, get an expert opinion, learn about your company, or complete a transaction. If you are not meeting these important customer needs, then you are losing value through your website.
Though I am not a programmer by title, I know how to leverage most languages and know their capability for delivering applications. My main focus is user-centered design, front-end development, practical information structure, easy-to-use tools and high value applications.