|Snowgoose produce web sites with
emphasis on speed, usability and clarity, rather than employing
sophisticated graphical elements which actually tend to be detrimental
to the success of a Web site (read this interesting
article from "down under" which offers tips and
validates our design philosophy).
|We pay attention to major research by other
bodies, as well as ourselves, which lead us to create Web sites
which meet the following criteria:
- Text created for 'scanable' on-screen readability and
tailored for search engine awareness.
- Information condensed and prioritised for maximum impact.
- Site page design and graphical layout are kept uncomplicated
to present information about you as clearly and favourably
- Site navigation produced for maximum ease of use.
- Graphics optimised in terms of number of images and image
file size, for maximum downloading speed and web-safe, colour
- Cross-browser, monitor size, p.c. and Mac compatibility
- Meta tag keywords and phrases produced appropriate to
each page's content and optimised for search engine efficiency.
only when wholly appropriate.
Tell It As It Is!
|The above statement is strictly tongue in cheek
;- ) The Internet is still a 'wild west frontier' in which there
are no established ways of carrying out your on-line business.
The methods are constantly evolving. However, below are some
tips and conclusions to research carried out by ourselves and
others which we adhere to when carrying out our own Web design.
|The Internet is an INFORMATION
The internet is not just an entertainment medium. Major
research into what people use the Internet for has come to this
conclusion: The vast majority of users are looking for INFORMATION,
rather than pretty but tiresomely slow graphic-heavy affairs.
The text information is the most important aspect of a web
site - all fonts, layout, navigation and graphics should
be used to project this information as clearly as possible.
Facts are what matter. If someone is looking to book
an accommodation they simply want to want to know the facts
about what is on offer, such as where you are, your rooms, your
food etc., and then be able to submit an easy to fill in form
to tell you their requirements and ask for room availability.
Of course, users will be swayed in their judgement by a well
laid out, attractive site but graphics, animation and irritating
music are much lower on the priority list than most would imagine.
|Speed of download is
a vital factor
Speed of download is more important than the appearance of
your web site. We use html text as much as possible, for
quick downloading. Graphic content and other whistles and bells,
speed of download - only use such innovations where absolutely
|Navigation and Consistency
A menu to all main sections should be available on all pages
of a site with access to further sub-sections then made clear
and simple. Consistency in layout and appearance of all pages
avoids confusion when navigating through a site.
|Search Engines read text,
Text content is important to search engines. A major
aspect of web site design for good search engine 'pick up',
is the wording of text it contains. Search engines crawl through
the net and when they bump into your site they pick out phrases
and words within your (html) text which can be added to its
own database for reference.
When a user types in search "keywords" on a search engine
site it delves into its own database to seek out corresponding
phrases and keywords. If you have not considered search engines
when producing your text, or if you use text in graphic image
form instead of html text, it will be of no benefit to the search
engine and you will be missing out on potential traffic through
|Users cannot read 'aesthetic'
Many Web designers neglect the text content - they have
a tendency to employ small text tucked away in one tiny portion
of the screen so as not to interfere with the 'aesthetic' of
their beautifully laid out graphics on show, i.e. they want
you to appreciate the artwork before reading the info.
They will also edit the text purely to physically fit in this
tiny allotted section, confining it to meaningless vague nonsense.
Text colours tend to be set to blend in with the colour scheme
of the page rather than for ease of actually reading.
Even worse, they may also employ a font that suits the style
of the imagery but is actually painful on the eyes.
|Avoid framed sites
Search Engines don't like Framed Sites. They only index
the individual pages used to build the complete frame setup.
When a user of a search engine stumbles across one of these
pages and it has no navigation links to other pages there is
no straightforward means of getting to the rest of the site.
Framed sites are awkward to bookmark. Usually only the
Homepage, containing the frame setup, is straightforward to
add to your 'Favourites' - other sections and pages of interest
have to be accessed individually, outside of the frame setup,
to achieve this.
Framed site display varies greatly on different monitor screens
and Web browsers. Larger monitors can have masses of blank
space whilst users on small monitors may have to scroll from
right to left just to see the menu section.
Only very large sites with numerous pages and a database
system should even consider using frames, as its only real
advantages are easier Web editing and slightly quicker download
of individual pages.
Many of the largest and most popular sites do not use frames,
|Sophisticated and radical
layouts do not work
It has been found that in this information medium a familiar
standard page layout is the most effective. A heading at
the top, with a brief business statement alongside and links
to other pages down the side, or across the top, are what users
are used to and they do not want to waste valuable time in working
out how any innovative new button arrangement actually works.
|Links to other information
Any comments you wish to make regarding the above
content, either negative or positve, please e-mail us and we will attempt
to make a prompt response, and it may be featured on our site. Please
note we cannnot guarantee a reply to requests for employment.