Thinking About Design Matters

Published in Web Development on Friday, March 4th, 2005

With the cycle of building comps, mocking up templates, programming and all of the other disciplines that web developers have to cover, it sure is nice getting back into design once in a while.

Thinking about design

This last week I've had the pleasure of working on some simple mock-ups for a series of information heavy sites. Just to get my head out of 'loops and arrays', I went back and re-read some of those 'design matters' blog posts that do the rounds every once in a while.

Andrei - I'm working a lot these days - Herasimchuk's post Design Matters is a great read the second or third time around.

Andrei pops up again (and deals with some gruff) in the 37signals post, Interface Design Tip: Find the Epicenter. While this post deals with interface design, it is something that a lot of us have to deal with when designing client sites (down to the comment forms on blogs).

What are you looking at?

A lot of this comes together for me when looking at the entries in Eyetools Research's Design Matters area, where they show off eye tracking heat maps overlayed on websites that they have tested. I would love to do this on sites that I work on!

Too bad your homepage doesn't suck

Maybe not quite full circle, but part of the puzzle for most of us is marketing, and Cameron Moll's piece Great Homepages Really Suck is a nice one to ground with once in a while.

Thinking about design

No real point to this post. It just feels nice to think about design again - where to put what, how to present the different types of information. Now if only I had the final say in the websites, I'm sure they'd be perfect ;-)

Have any good examples? Share 'em!

To close, feel free to share in the comments any sites that you have encountered recently (or that you just plain like) that make you say "hey, great design".

Comments and Feedback

I completely agree with you that marketing is a big part of a good web design. I've worked off and on for quite awhile for various marketing firms & departments and it's strange because it seems like none of these companies have had good web designs.

The thing to me, it seems like, that you have to think about when designing, is that you have to really concentrate on the target audience. For instance, right now I'm working on a website for a local coffee company and their main clientele are college aged students who live in the neighborhood (they're also six blocks away from the campus). They've been around for about 25 years, though and have some great vintage themes inside the shop itself. So I had to take that and meld it with something that's very college-friendly.

Anyway, you make good points, and I really like the color scheme on your site! It's just really pleasing.

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