January 2004 Newsletter

What should be in your Website Design Request?

**** 4specs Links

12 Website Design Decisions - Your Business or Organization Will Need to Make Correctly (or you'll have to do it all over within a year) - an interesting article by Dr. Ralph F. Wilson, E-Commerce Consultant that covers much of the talk I am giving at CSI. A different perspective than my talk, and I do not agree with all of his points; you decide which is best for you path.

**** The 4specs Perspective

What are some of the items that should be in your website design request - be it for an outside consultant or an inside IT department?

First, let's look at the poor results that can result from incomplete website design requests:

Here are the basic items I propose should be in your website design request:

Let's look at your website designer's objectives (somewhat sarcastically):

Jakob Nielsen is a well known consultant on website usability. His UseIt Colmun is a great resource. [In 2013 renamed and link changed] His December 22, 2003 newsletter article entitled Top Ten Web Design Mistakes of 2003 covers much of the same information in my CSI Talk. Here is a quote from Jakob Nielsen from another article:

…[A] "company that wants to waste money on an unworkable website can easily find designers eager to take the money in exchange for a beautiful, if useless, site." - Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox #200

For 2004 I propose you work towards to a simpler web design with focus on usability for the design architect and specifier. Rather than starting with a splash page and a fancy home page on your website, start with your 3-ring binder and develop the website from there. Everything in the binder should be easily found on your website.


Colin Gilboy
Publisher - 4specs
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