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Smartphone search results; search usability; future-friendly content

Changes in rankings of smartphone search results Building mobile-optimised websites Google have announced changes they have made to the way they rank search results for users of smartphones. Google will penalise websites that do not meet their recommendations for building mobile-optimised websites. Among the most notable points from these: Google recommends using a responsive web…

3 July 2013Resource archive

Keeping a lid on ever-growing web content

Anyone can add. It takes a professional to take away It is tempting to think that adding content to a website is harmless. After all, the marginal cost of adding another webpage is almost zero. Except that the more content the website contains, the more difficult it becomes for the user to find what they…

26 June 2013Resource archive

Learning lessons from public bodies’ websites

There is a bit of a theme to this week’s articles – how public bodies’ websites are performing. Here we see one organisation doing a fantastic job, and one organisation doing a terrible job. Then there is a report on Unistats, which is more directly relevant to us. Gov.uk: how geeks opened up government – video…

19 June 2013Resource archive

The usability of photos and URLs

Usability mistakes to avoid when using photos in your website There is often a temptation to use photos to brighten up a page without giving much thought to whether it helps serve a real purpose, or whether it might even be detrimental to the page. This article contains several useful tips about how to use…

12 June 2013Resource archive

Multiscreen; writing for the web

Windows on the web This article is about multiscreen, the increasingly common phenomenon whereby web users begin a task on one device and complete it on another. It is interesting to note that the most common device to start a task on is now a smartphone. This is a big reminder of how important mobile…

5 June 2013Resource archive

Accessibility

This week’s theme is accessibility – making the web easy to use for all. Seniors as web users Jakob Nielsen’s latest ‘Alertbox’ usability report. We probably don’t have many users aged 65 and over, but we do have a few, and it is interesting to see this study and compare it with Jakob Nielsen’s recent…

29 May 2013Resource archive

Social media and Tumblr

Teens, social media, and privacy This is quite lengthy, but may be of interest to those with an interest in social media and how young people behave online. Universities turn to Tumblr to reach prospective students The social networking and blogging platform Tumblr is quite popular among young users, and this week Yahoo bought it…

23 May 2013Social Media

Redesign projects

The theme of this week’s links is redesign projects. Redesigns are painful. Users find it unsettling when a familiar website radically changes its design, even if the new design is a great improvement. But organisations insist on periodical redesigns. A website is launched to much fanfare, but often the organisation then loses interest, leaving the…

16 May 2013Projects

Personas; decentralised web publishing; the web turns 20 (again)

Here is this week’s selection of articles and resources. Don’t let user experience design methods die Some debate on user experience design methods such as personas and user journeys. Rian van der Merwe argues that such techniques are useful for large organisations. At large organizations, not everyone is focused on and has an understanding of…

2 May 2013Resource archive

Gov.uk wins design award; usability for teenagers

I have begun to share interesting articles, along with my comments, with some staff members internally. It has been suggested that it would be good to publish these on the web team blog as well. So here they are. Government Digital Service design principles Government Digital Service content principles This week Gov.uk won the Design…

19 April 2013Resource archive