Creating a great user experience means creating great content. But just like designing a website is more than picking colors and fonts, a content strategy is more than copywriting individual pages. Both design and content require a strategic understanding of user expectation, usability, and business goals.
Why is Content Strategy Important?
Gone are the days of “brochure” sites where a business can put up a few web pages about their products and services, then forget they have a website. As consumers increasingly turn to doing research and making purchases online, a business website often functions as both first impression and key lead generator. All content that is produced for...
Adobe recently held an event in San Francisco as part of their Create the Web tour. The tour (and this event in San Francisco) focuses on how Adobe is helping the web move forward, and shows off its cool new Edge product suite that's full of new tools and technologies that enable web designers and developers to create the experiences that push the boundaries of what is possible on the web.
We were recently inspired by Salesforce’s annual “Dreamforce” conference to show how important it is for Drupal websites to integrate with Salesforce. The most common use case for integrating Salesforce with a Drupal site is something like this: Visitors fill out a contact webform on a Drupal website. The data from the form submission is transmitted to Salesforce, where it’s stored as a new record (or "lead" in CRM terms).
How to handle big datasets in Drupal is often an overlooked dimension when discussing how to scale Drupal. People typically worry how to scale Drupal's handling of web traffic, but largely ignore discussing what happens when you are faced with loading large amounts of data all at once.
The Drupal core has a built-in assumption that menus and vocabularies are small. Pushing these built-in limits causes problems. Loading all of the data within a module can also cause problems. Particularly with taxonomy and menus. For example, look at these functions:
Marker Seven specializes in designing great user experiences. Recently, our resident User Experience expert (Meagan Timney), gave an impressive talk (“Rethinking Design for Digital Editions”) at INKE CFP: Beyond Accessibility: Textual Studies in the 21st Century (INKE is a multi-national, multi-disciplinary research initiative, funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and partnering organizations, to study, develop, and implement digital environments for reading and research www.inke.ca) at the University of Victoria, where she talked about how important design is in the future of digital reading experiences.
At Marker Seven, we take user experience very seriously. That’s why, when we were presented with the opportunity to attend (virtually) Dani Nordin’s O’Reilly Webinar, “Bringing strategic UX to Drupal projects” (http://oreillynet.com/pub/e/2330), we excitedly gathered in the conference room and fired up the presentation on our big screen. Dani’s insightful talk on strategizing user experience engendered a discussion amongst the M7 team about what we do, and more importantly, why we do it.
For both our internal teams and our clients, we recognize the...
"Make it Mom Friendly"
Anyone over the age of 25 or so likely has a mom somewhat similar to mine. She is able to send emails, and maybe search google a bit, but overall she isn't the most tech savvy person in your life. But that's ok, mom is good at other things; she makes great cookies, she always has your happiness in mind, you know, mom stuff. So why does it matter? Why am I posting about moms? Well, as it turns out there are a lot of people who manage content for their company website, or otherwise interact with the products we produce that might be a little more tech savvy than mom, but they're still not "rocket surgeons."
They know enough about computers and the internet to do their job, but when you give them a shiny new tool they...
The Benefits of Redundancy in Web Design
The word ‘redundant’ has a largely negative connotation. A lot of people view redundancy as unnecessary, and in fact, Merriam Webster defines the word as “exceeding what is necessary or normal”, or “superfluous”.
In an era where conciseness is highly praised, it may seem paradoxical to say that redundancy can be a great thing, but it can. Allow me to illustrate.
Keeping a similar layout and design across a website allows users to navigate with ease. In the same sense, using a similar content template for articles, or other important content allows users to quickly recognize the type of content and its value.
Provide Feedback for Link States
Every link, even an image link, has four states: default, hover, active, and...
The number of clicks required to reach information on a website has long been touted as a rule that every good User Experience Designer needs to follow. We’ve been told that information should be reachable within just three clicks. Well, here’s an alternate view: maybe counting clicks doesn’t matter that much after all.
Rather than spending so much time and energy abiding by the old “3-Click Rule”, I propose that we modernize this theory a bit. UX Designers and other web professionals should begin to focus more on something called “...