Does Your Website Suck?

17 04 2008

During a recent workshop I was asked: “How do you know if your website needs an update?”

[HA! I laughed to myself; of course it needs to be updated!]

Thats when I brought up a favorite site of mine: Web Pages That Suck

At that site you will see a couple of cool checklists if you want a source beside the one I provide below…

Website content should be as warm and wonderful to behold as a loaf of fresh baked bread. Not necessarily everyday updates (even though many sites update to the minute these days), but frequently enough to give your audience relevance to your mission, service and success. While most nonprofit institutions have not gotten savvy to the role of Social Media in trumpeting their mission; there are other concerns that might also interfere with delivering a message to new website viewers. Unfortunately, underfunded webmasters often don’t independently evaluate their design according to these standards:

Access for disabled users

Aesthetic appeal

Authority

Availability

Clarity

Completeness

Concise

Consistency in layout

Customizability

Error support

Engages Users

Freshness

Functionality

Interactivity

Intuitive Interface

Navigability

Organization

Practicality

Predictability

Readable

Scanablity

Subscribe-ability

User-Centered approach

If you use this list to guide you as you look at your site, you might become overwhelmed at the amount of work needed to refresh it–especially where it comes to have your audience interact with your site. Go through every link on every page and ask yourself: “Is this how to represent my organization in the best possible way?”

Don’t fret. Its all part of the ongoing struggle to attract people to your mission & service. Success will come if we all recognize the need to constantly question our digital identity. Now, let us break bread and celebrate your fresh, new website!

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