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Consider the usability of your high-end design website

Wayne McMaster

29 December 2016

Usability is often overlooked when considering the design of high-end interior website. Its all too common to front-load the design efforts of the site purely with aesthetic (subjective) values. But we need to consider other important factors in the successful website, namely: readability, navigation, pattern consistency, accessibility, searchability, and internal distractions.

Readability

In general, your site is easy to read when typographical styles are limited and text is high-contrast, tis can be an issue with the current trend for 'grey's and subtlety.

Navigation  

Your site is simple to navigate when navigation menus are designed for context. We do not recommend that mobile design conventions be used when the site is displayed on “desktop”-sized viewports, nor do we believe that a one-size-fits-all design convention is always best. Navigation menus allow for “peek-browsing.” Drop-down menus allow a user to visually explore the content of a section without having to navigate away from the page they are currently viewing. This is an informational advantage, and contributes to the overall usability of a website.
Where you are on the site is important, no matter where you are. Menus should use visual cues to indicate a sense of place, breadcrumbs are still an important feature.

Pattern

Your site is consistent in its patterns when link styles and buttons are consistent in their design and use, hover states follow a predictable pattern and layout conventions (e.g. lists and grids) are used in a consistent and logical ways

Accessibility

Your site is accessible in a variety of contexts and to a variety of devices when you use responsive design to alter the layout of your pages as screen sizes change; as a rule of thumb we would advise 'mobile-only sites' to compensate for good design through responsive function.

Searchable

Your site is considered searchable if you have a search tool is available on every page and the search results are organized and labeled in a useful way

Internal Distractions

Your site is considered free of internal distractions pages use minimal (or no) animation effects and 'video & audio' do not auto-play.

With all these factors considered, you help to provide your visitors and prospects a web experience that enhances your brand, and set you apart from your competitors in the high-end intrerior industry.

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