Criteria for effective website design

In looking to create a criteria for effective website design, the following are criteria that I find important in a website:

  1. Does the site work properly? That is do the links work and are documents that are meant to be there, there? I get frustrated quickly with a site if the above is not occurring.
  2.  Does the site deliver the product or service that it intends to?
  3. Does the site offer a rich user experience?
  4. In support of other Web 2.0 applications, are there clear links to social networking and media tools and do these tools provide a link back to the website?

To road test my criteria, I took a look at our local library website http://www.umrl.com.au/default.htm to see if it meets my criteria. The site works properly and there did not appear to be any broken links, so that meets criteria 1. The site provides information about the libraries that make up the network. I can search the catalogue and there was a tag cloud of most recent searches which is a nice addition.

The front page has quick links to other pages and has high graphic content to make the site engaging. There does not appear to be any scope to customise the site to show the content I want so it is not cutting edge in that regard.

What struck me most about the site was that a link to the library’s Facebook page was nowhere to be seen. It was only by chance did I stumble upon it when I went back to the page and it was showing in the banner at the top of the page.

I think this is a rather big design floor for the site. It would be very easy to miss the link to Facebook all together. It would be interesting to see how many visits to the Facebook page they get. I am sure if they put an easily found link they would get a higher hit rate.

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~ by dassocmed on August 13, 2012.

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