The 2013 17th Webby Awards has been awarded to Tumblr as having the Best User Experience. Other awards included Best in Visual Design in the Aesthetic sense that went to BlackNegative. Best Visual Design in the Functional sense went into Pitchfork’s Cover Stories.
There were other rewards and other awesome websites that were definitely deserving of the awards given to them. However, let’s focus on one of the winners or rather, one of the awards. I’m talking about Tumblr and how it snagged the Best User Experience award. Doesn’t it make you wonder just how exactly did they achieve that?
Maybe you’re also thinking of starting your own website, and thinking about ways web surfers can get excellent web experience with you. The following are tips on how to achieve just that:
1. Make Navigation Simple by Putting Menus on Top
When we read through things we all the time start from the top and make our way down. So, in making a website it’s greatly recommended that you use the top navigation method, which is placing your menu tabs on top.
This makes it the first thing people will see when they access your website. It will optimally make a person’s navigation a lot easier as he can immediately see the different branches and links to more specific topics on your website.
Having your menu displayed like that will make searching and reading a lot easier, unlike when the user still need to read through everything in order to find what he’s really looking for. Now that’s not very enjoyable at all.
Some great websites that use this top navigation method are the National Public Radio and Starbucks websites. You can see for yourself just how easy it is to go through their website, without having to go through absolutely everything.
2. Design Your Navigation Menus Carefully
Aside from placing the menus right, you should also take note that their design is not messy and unattractive. Don’t flood it with too many categories that won’t all be explored by the users. Make it easier for the user to look around your website by using subcategories.
Pick the right background color and text. You might think I’m over exaggerating, but I’m not, every little detail is important in a website including the right background and text. Make sure the different categories are correctly spaced and are not clumped too close together.
Also change the color or state of the selected menu so users won’t have a hard time what part of the menu they are in.
3. Keep the Content Simple and Easy to Understand
Try not to be very technical in the words you use. If you want people to have excellent web experience with your website you will know that people won’t like content stuffed with complicated words.
Use simple words and terms, and if you have to use something technical that usually isn’t in the vocabulary of an ordinary person, provide a definition. Like maybe they can hover over the word with their mouse and find a short definition there. It can help tons with the user, and they will definitely enjoy going around your website.
We are living in an age where people usually depend on the web for information. It is our job as website designers to be able to ensure we provide excellent web experience for users all over the globe. Hopefully these tips will definitely help you make sure people are enjoying surfing the web, and not pulling out their hair because of frustration.