Thursday, September 22, 2016

Datacenter Scale

Internet Gutter: WikiHow To Be Anything

WikiHow To Be Anything
Online is a strange and terrifying place. It’s enabled us to connect with one another, advance the causes of science and culture, and unite the world with a glowing net of data. It’s […] Read more

The (not so) secret lives of Supergirl

Supergirl might be Superman’s cousin, but with 60 plus years of stories, and a TV show under her belt, she is no one-hit wonder. So if you’re new to the character or even a longtime fan, […] Read more

Gakuen Handsome is ugly as sin on purpose

“Oh, yay! Another boys’ love (BL) game! I can’t wait to get started and look at all the pretty guys– Wait. What the hell is this.” Gakuen Handsome takes the pretty boy trope […] Read more

Lethal Weapon works surprisingly well as a television show

Damon Wayans and Clayne Crawford as Roger Murtaugh and Martin Riggs in FOX's Lethal Weapon. (Photo: Screenshot via FOX)
Murtaugh and Riggs hit the small screen but does it connect? Read more

Your own replica of the Voyager golden record is just a Kickstarter pledge away

Some 40 years ago, NASA launched the Voyager spacecraft on a mission to explore the outer solar system. Voyager 1 and 2 performed flybys of several planets, but they’re more famous for the […] Read more

Shout Expecto Patronum and discover your Patronus on Pottermore

A lot of the enjoyment about Harry Potter stems from how J.K. Rowling uses the characters’ unique personalities to form distinct groups. Whether it’s the house you would be sorted into or your wand, […] Read more

The first image from Jumanji was released and we have some questions

The first look at the new Jumanji film, which is currently shooting, was released this week and some elements raised even more questions. Kevin Hart released the first image from the set on his Instagram Tuesday, […] Read more

Samsung, LG, and Vizio accused of exploiting TV energy tests

Volkswagen has faced a lot of criticism, a lot of angry customers, and is required to pay some huge fines because they cheated on emissions testing both in the US and across Europe. […] Read more

Paramount teases us with 5 mini Ghost in the Shell trailers

A movie whose rights were acquired by Steven Spielberg, is being produced by his company DreamWorks Pictures, and stars Scarlett Johansson in its lead role, is enough to sell a lot of people […] Read more

YouTube Heroes gets volunteers moderating videos for points and perks

Google has just launched a new volunteer community it is calling YouTube Heroes, which aims to bridge the gap between YouTube’s automated video monitoring systems and getting a real person making decisions about […] Read more

Malicious USB drives are being dropped into Aussie mailboxes

If someone shoved their discarded chewing gum in your mailbox, you wouldn’t pick it up and start chewing would you? No, of course you wouldn’t. So if you happened to open your mailbox […] Read more

7 Ways to Design Your Blog to Improve UX

Your website may be a place for clients to find out basic information about your business, or it may constitute the entirety of your business’s presence in the world. Whether your website is for advertising, selling or a bit of both, you need to focus on user experience if you want to keep clients on your site. Users who find a site confusing or hard to navigate aren’t likely to return, and that can hurt your profits in the long run. Want to keep users engaged and make it easy for them to find what they want? Then, remember to focus on these seven essentials of improving user experience:

1. Position the most important stuff above the fold.

The phrase “above the fold” is an old newspaper phrase, which refers to having the top stories above the fold in the newspaper. In the online world, this phrase refers to everything that’s immediately visible on the page before the user starts clicking or scrolling. While making you site, identify the most essential pieces of information you want to share and make sure those details are above the fold.

For example, if your website is there to support your brick and mortar location, your address, phone number and similar details need to be above the fold. That makes it easy for users to find your site and immediately find the information they are seeking. Conversely, if you run an ecommerce site, you may want a search box, a description of your current sale and a photo of your best product above the fold.

2. Use white space wisely.

White space is another old print media term, and it refers literally to the white space in a newspaper or magazine layout. On your website, white space can be any color. It is simply space that isn’t filled with text or images.

Use white space wisely. Too much white space fills areas you could be using to promote products or services, while not enough white space results in a site that feels overly busy and cluttered. If a site is too cluttered, users are likely to feel overwhelmed and confused, not the emotions you are trying to elicit in most cases.

3. Consult with the pros.

Finding the perfect balance between text, images and white space as well as deciding what to put above the fold can be difficult, especially if you are new to the world of web page design. To help yourself navigate those issues easily, consult with a professional.

Some of your marketing funds should be earmarked for website development issues such as improving user experience. When you have a professional fine-tune your site, it can improve UX, which in turn keeps users on the page longer, increasing the chance that they will take action such as making a purchase or coming to your shop. When you have funds to focus on user experience, it is an investment into your company and its long term potential for growth, brand recognition and profits.

4. Optimize your site for mobile users.

As any design consultant will tell you, optimizing your site for mobile users is critical. A huge portion of the people who visit any site do so on their phones or tablets. If your site isn’t optimized, accessing it on a phone will be like looking at a huge site through a tiny window. Users will have to do a lot of uncomfortable scrolling, enlarging and looking around just to find the tiniest details.

In contrast, if your site is mobile optimized, the user sees the above-the-fold information displayed on their little screen the instant they pull up your website, and the rest of the UX features you’ve created will also shift slightly so that they work on a mobile.

5. Differentiate hyperlinks.

Whether a client is accessing your site on their mobile phone or their laptop, they need to be able to quickly identify the hyperlinks. Hyperlinks must be differentiated from the rest of the elements on the page through color, size, font and other details, and they should stand out in a way that intuitively says “click me, click me”. Additionally, to instinctively encourage flow, hyperlinks should utilize actions words.

6. Monitor your page loading speed.

When someone clicks on a hyperlink, they want the next page to load immediately. Even people who remember the days of dial up, aren’t willing to go back there. Now, people need pages to load instantly, and if they don’t, the user is likely to jump on another site.

There are multiple free and easy-to-use tools online that can analyze the loading speed of your website. These tools tell you how long the page takes to load, and they help you identify bottlenecks so that you can alter your page accordingly. Run these checks periodically so you know what your users are experiencing.

7. Be consistent from page to page.

As someone uses your website, they get used to your set up. They start to anticipate where to click or the most effective ways to navigate the site. To streamline the learning experience, all of your pages should be consistent.

Consistency from page to page helps your website to look professional, but it also optimizes user experience as it lets users take what they learned from one page and apply it to the next. Sites that lack consistency from page to page can be harder to navigate and less aesthetically appealing overall.

Crafting a website involves so many elements. You have to think about color, balance, information, graphics, text and countless other things, but arguably, one of the most important things to consider is user experience. If users cannot navigate your site, any bells and whistles it has will be rendered impotent. Remember, your site exists for your users — without them, it has no purpose.

Users should be your main priority while creating your site.

The post 7 Ways to Design Your Blog to Improve UX appeared first on SpyreStudios.

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