Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Look! Jakob's Looking Out for Everyone

Well, you can't keep a man like Jakob Nielsen down, and he advocates you shouldn't keep Web users of lower literacy down either.

If you didn't have enough reason already to cut out the superfluous graphics, text blocks and design frills, Jakob gives you a really easy one: an estimated 30 percent of Web users can't handle it.

Campaign websites, just like those of our favorite pharmaceutical corporation, Pfizer, benefit from making text short, priortizing information and getting right to the point on their sites. What's fascinating, but not surprising, about the study Nielsen sites is that easier, more usable sites lead to happier, more successful users. And that means happier, more successful clients.

But, when everyone's happy and successful, nobody's happier or more successful than Jakob.


SEPARight said...

Good post about a good article! I was pleased to see that all users benefited from improved literacy usability.

If you put yourself in the shoes of the user, you generally just want to get straight to the point when you’re online. There are exceptions, of course. Nielsen’s tips to improve that usability are great guidelines to help achieve this.

Sarah Pearl said...

I think it is good to realize how less literate people use the internet. But using these tactics on all political websites is not always good. If you keep text very short and only post information that is a priority doesn't that lead to less informed voters? Is it good if voters make their decisions based on snit-bits of information? I think this could be dangerous! Maybe Jakob should keep flying!

I really like that picture...

Mister Toaster said...

Good point, Sarah. I think what our fearless leader, Jakob, is saying is that the most important information should come first. This doesn't limit our opportunity to click for more depth about a particular issue. This really is a journalistic concept that maximizes the information gathered by the reader. In the end, if readers are getting lost in your sea of text, then how much more informed will they be?