Friday, March 5, 2010

Breadcrumbs in web design

As a web designer my company website is always incomplete, I keep redoing elements of the website to make it more usable. One thing that struck me recently is after a user has gone deep into a site, does he go back to the home page or simply exit? Yeah I know analytics should tell me that, but there is something better.

This simple navigation guide could be the missing ingredient for that usability recipe you have just prepared. For websites that have more than a dozen pages, navigation should be given serious thought if you want your users to stick around. Can you imagine going around disneyland without those "You are here" signboards. Your website needs it too.

Theoretically the browsers back button is supposed to be enough to go back to where you came from. But imagine your user who reads your home page, then to your products page and then to your download page, and then to your forums page, now what?, should he go back every page to check your other products? Nah, he would rather goto youtube for that funny video.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Icons to kick start projects

When you are starting off a new project, as a developer the last things you want to be worried about is icons, and moreover if your graphics design skills stop at the bucket fill tool, we both know its best left to professionals.

Most of the design professionals are expensive guys, especially when you are just starting off a project and have to wait for months for a cheque. But luckily there are a few folks dishing out freebies and of High Quality, that you can wait till your project is in good shape to get your own custom icons. Here is a grand list of freely usable icons. Many of them can be used for commercial projects, do remember to check their license terms.

I think that's the best collection I could find on the web, and enough to get you started and last quite a while.