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Usability

Usable Web Sites Can Be Cool, Too. Way Cool.

Here’s where we admit it: many websites that are “cool” are not very usable. Web site usability is finally coming into its own now, and it’s about time. For years folks have focused on “cool” and not “usable” much to the detriment of their business.

But what we’ve known all along, and what turns out to be true with almost anything in life, is that one needs to balance form and function. Your web site is no different. It needs to be usable and attractive at the same time. Why does that seem to be such a surprise?

Usability Gurus and P.T. Barnum

You’ll find any number of people preaching their web design beliefs on the Internet. We all have a cheap podium. It really is up to your desires as a client. You can deliver to your audience pure information at lightning speed with no pizazz (a newspaper comes to mind). You can deliver movie-quality Flash games and who knows what else. Or you can settle somewhere in between.

We don’t claim to be usability gurus. There are plenty of those running around already — most with their own boring sites. We can, however, claim to be the kind of folks who are aware of usability as an important issue in your website’s interface design. We practice user-centered design. We have performed usability tests on this website to make it as user friendly as possible, and we can do the same for you. We have a membership in the Washington, D.C. Usability Professional’s Association, and we attend meetings to stay abreast of current trends in website usability.

It’s obvious your website needs to be usable, but as P.T. Barnum said, “First you have to get them into the tent.” I just hope he made the flaps to the tent easy to open...

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