Bassoon Song: Websites by Joel

Articles about Website Usability

I wrote a few articles—and I hope to write more—not only for for small business people looking for a web developer, but for those of you wanting to use some of the popular tools and build your own websites. Even mid-size companies often employ an entire department working full time on developing and maintaining the company website, especially when the company engages in any sort of e-commerce. Small businesses, sole proprietorship, and smaller non-profits simply don't have the resources available to compete. I hope to provide a bit of information to help smaller organizations out.

  • Search Engine Optimization: Neither Mystery nor Magic
    Search engine is more a function of great content, good writing, and common sense than mumbo jumbo hocus pocus about keyword density, alternate text for images and magically gaming the system. Once you set your target market, or niche, write your content accordingly.
  • Your Website Needs an Effective Call to Action
    What do you want your web visitors to do? Most of simply want to turn them into leads for potential customers or potential donors if you run a non-profit. A call to action is a clear link/button/path for your visitors to follow.
  • Websites, Popular Themes, and Cookie Cutters
    A lot of small business websites look just like many other small business websites. The popular themes that so many people are using are not always the best options, and some of that lovely eye candy may turn people away from—rather than draw people into—your website.

Articles by Other Authors

  • Splash Pages: Do We Really Need Them?
    You go to a website and see a flashy full screen image, the name of the site, and a prominent link/button that says “Enter.” Despite the flash, pizzazz, and eye candy, splash pages are basically an annoyance to the user. Although this article is ten years old, the information is just as relevant today. It will tell you why splash pages are an annoyance, but make a convincing case for 12 situations in which you really should use them, despite the annoyance. (Article by Sven Lennartz for Smashing Magazine

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