Reading Reflection 4

Nielsen, J. (1999). Designing Web usability.

In summary, a home page should offer three features: a directory of the site’s main content areas (navigation), a summary of the most important news or promotions, and a search feature (p. 168).

I thought this chapter provided good tips concerning what is important for users to see when first looking at a site, and how to emphasize that information. There were a few examples of metaphors used in websites, where some succeed but most don’t. Also, I learned about the term “deep linking”. In addition, some of the tips on navigation I remember being mentioned in class. That is, you’re users should always be able to answer these questions: Where am I? Where have I been? Where can I go? However, I think color conventions of links have changed with changes on the Web. I don’t expect links to be underlined, blue, or purple, as Nielsen recommends. Instead, I merely look for some sort of difference or emphasis on the words.

Neilsen also goes in depth about tips for efficient search features. One concept that stood out to me was the fact that users are less likely to input more words when the search box is smaller. Funny how we restrict ourselves.

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