Wednesday, March 19, 2008

8 Usability Check-Points You Should Be Aware Of

  1. You don’t use pop-ups.

    Pop-ups interrupt the browsing session of the visitors and require an instant feedback. Respect your visitors.
  2. You don’t change users’ window size.

    The same argument as the one against pop-ups holds. Some browsers, e.g.
    Internet Explorer, saves the browser dimensions and uses them for
    further browser sessions.
    “it’s just plain inconsiderate to assume that you know better than the
    user how their software environment should be configured?”
  3. You don’t use too small font sizes.

    Long passages are harder to read, and to read brief sentences readers
    need more time. It holds also for links, buttons, forms, search boxes
    and other elements. Good news — in Web 2.0 the opposite is the case.
  4. You don’t have unclear link text.

    Links have to be precise and lead to the destination they describe. Ambiguous link descriptions should be avoided.
  5. You don’t have dead links.

    There are too many of them anyway; why would you want to point your visitors to a dead end?
  6. You have at most one animation per page.

    If blinking images are wide-spread through the site, it’s extremely
    hard to focus on one single site element. Give your visitors an
    opportunity to perceive your content. Using animated ads, don’t place
    them right along your articles.
  7. You make it easy to contact you.

    Maybe because you just don’t want to be contacted, but If visitors do
    want to get in touch with you, but can’t find any contact information,
    you lose their interest and trust. Disastrous for online-shopping, a
    missed opportunity for the rest.
  8. Your links open in the same window.

    Visitors want to have control over everything what happens in their
    browser. If they’d like to open a link in a new window they will. If
    they don’t want to, they won’t. If your links open in a new window you
    make the decision which is not your decision to make.

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