10 Usability Principles to guide you through the

29 Sep
  1. Motivate 
    Design your site to meet specific user needs and goals. Use motivators to draw different user “personae” into specific parts of your site.
  2. User task flow 
    Who are your users? What are their tasks and online environment? For a site to be usable, page flow must match workflow.
  3. Architecture – it’s 80% of usability 
    Build an efficient navigational structure. Remember – if they can’t find it in 3 clicks, they’re gone.
  4. Affordance means obvious 
    Make controls understandable. Avoid confusion between emblems, banners, and buttons.
  5. Replicate 
    Why reinvent the wheel? Use ergonomically designed templates for the most common 8-12 pages.
  6. Usability test along the way 
    Test early in design using low-fidelity prototypes. Don’t wait until the end when it’s too late.Know the technology limitations Identify and optimize for target browsers and user hardware. Test HTML, JavaScript, etc. for compatibility.
  7. Know the technology limitations
    Identify and optimize for target browsers and user hardware.Test HTML, JavaScript, etc for compatibility.
  8. Know user tolerances 
    Users are impatient. Design for a 2-10 second maximum download. Reuse header graphics so they can load from cache. Avoid excessive scrolling.
  9. Multimedia – be discriminating 
    Good animation attracts attention to specific information, then stops. Too much movement distracts, slowing reading and comprehension.
  10. Use a stats package 
    Monitor traffic through your site. Which pages pique user interest? Which pages make users leave? Adjust your site accordingly.
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