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I heard something horrible at a networking event. This particular event focused on helping website designers and developers help answer questions from business owners and non-technical people who are looking to have their own website. While the idea of such a tech-savvy group might be horrifying to some, that wasn’t what horrified me.
When people came and showed their websites and asked for feedback, the answers were almost universal from my colleagues group. Whenever someone asked for help, the answers would be about things like accessibility compliance, what plugins to use, why their choice of a particular plugin was good or bad, how they should worry for PageSpeed scores and a great list of deeply overwhelming technical terms for the layman.
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This hyper-focus on the technical feedback of websites is precisely the problem of current web design and development. It’s not that things like accessibility, how quickly a page loads, and how a site is built don’t matter (and frankly, it matters a lot), it’s that they don’t matter at all when a key component hasn’t been. addressed.
It’s the only thing that makes most websites fail before they have a chance to reach a potential customer: how the website communicates.
Basically, a website is a communication tool. They serve no other purpose than to help spread information from one person or entity to another person or entity. In other words, without a person at the other end to read, watch, or listen to the website itself, it is useless.
The sole purpose of a website is to communicate something to another person
After all, an algorithm doesn’t really care about the content or the nature of a site. The algorithm will only do what was preprogrammed.
However, when it comes to teaching web design and development, very little is actually taught about how a website communicates through both the written text and the accompanying images. At best, there are usability studies that revolve around the principles of UX and UI, but rarely appear as a business website, for example.
The whole focus is on the technical development of the website: the underlying technologies that allow you to create the site, such as making different types of design, structure of programming languages and the like.
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Education in website design and development ignores communication design
Consequently, since all the education and knowledge around websites relates to deeply technical topics needed to build the sites themselves, and almost none focus on the design of media communication, it is not surprising that most of websites are bad.
Also, it is not surprising that most people are frustrated when it comes to finding answers to improve their websites. After all, when you search Google for anything on the subject, you’ll only find more technical answers about things you “need to do” to have a good website and none that have anything to do with the actual conversation you’re having. website with someone reading it. .
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The next time you try to improve your website, instead of focusing on a technical improvement, do this – read it aloud to someone. Whether or not it confuses the person you’re reading, you know you have a communication problem.
So fix the communication. Writes and displays better writing, video, and pictures to support communication. Then you can worry about any technical issues you may have.