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Web design versus functionality issues

In Web Design | on April, 15, 2011 | by | 0 Comments

Web design versus functionality is one of the hottest debates in the contemporary web designing community. There are those people who come from the school of thought that places the aesthetic appeal of the design above everything else figuring that this would attract customers. The other school of thought states that functionality takes precedence over the aesthetic appeal of the design. If you have some experience in designing, you probably know that you can never be the judge of such a case as it is impossible to get all designers to agree to one thing. After, if every designer’s idea was put in one website, you would not believe the mess that would result.

There are several issues that arise from the web design versus the functionality debate. First and foremost, every designer needs to get it into his head that just because you can do anything on a website does not mean you should go ahead and do that. The web design community does have some rules which though you are not obligated to follow, might cost you a fortune for ignoring them.

When a client needs a website built, they usually have an idea of what they want more so if it is not their first website. If you are dealing with a new client, they might not have an idea of what will work and they will take your advice as the designer for gospel truth. The one thing you must remember is to give them something that will work for their business idea and not the crazy idea that you want to actualize. That is of course if you want to see the customer return or refer more people.

The second thing you need to remember is to avoid jargon. This is especially important if the targeted audience of the website cuts across all ages. Most internet users will not have the patience to scroll through irrelevant images and links to access what they want. If that happens, they will just navigate away from your page and look for a friendlier one.  If you need to include information that may not be important for some clients, offer those who do not need that information a skip button. Also, minimize the use of flash and images for the pages to load faster. Suffice to say, let your feel that they have control over what they are accessing on the site that you design.

Just because aesthetic appeal in most cases reduces the functionality of a page does not mean that it should be totally absent. Even the most serious clients will want to see a little bit of life on your design as beautiful is appreciated by everyone. If your target clients are the teenagers and young adults, you can go easy on the corporate look and add more flash and images as they are likely to be appreciated by this group of people. Most of them will also have the patience to wait for the page to load as they usually browse the internet for fun.

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