Since the start of the Internet era, the landscape of technology has continued to evolve and be an ever-changing force. Over the past couple of years, this shift has been most noticeable in the fact that technology is being formatted to focus on the person using a specific product. The book, “Don’t Make Me Think, Revisited: A Common Sense to Web Usability” by Steve Krug, does a wonderful job at teaching the key principles to creating and maintain a successful website or app.
Krug’s main principle is based on making sure that the overall product is as user friendly as possible, in order for a variety of individuals to have the opportunity to use it with ease. Throughout the book, Krug constantly references the importance of being able to utilize and know these principles yourself, so you can implement them on various projects that you may work on down the road. This particular book also does a fantastic job at giving examples of different approaches to use, in order to make your website or app as user friendly as possible.
Based off of what I learned from the book, there are several factors that I would consider and implement when designing a website. The first thing I would center my website around would be doing my best to construct my website in a way that doesn’t make the user think too much. Throughout his book, Krug says that a website should be incredibly self-evident, obvious, and pretty self-explanatory. Any and all buttons on the website should be clickable, and be easy to read and process. Other items like the search bar should also be incredibly simple and easy to use.
The next thing I took away from Krug’s book, was that the creator of the website must design said website with the purpose that its user will most likely be scanning the material on the page, and not intensely reading it. In the book, Krug talks about, through observation, how some people typically glance and the text, scan it really fast, and then click on the first thing that catches their interest, which is called satisficing. Therefore, it is important that you structure your website with this fact in mind in order to make it more user-friendly. You can do this through ways like creating a clear hierarchy of content, breaking up the page into clearly defined areas, making it obvious in regards to which buttons are clickable, and minimizing noise.
Navigation on a website is also an incredibly key component to its success. It’s important for the creator of a website to leave breadcrumbs for the user, so everything is relatively easy to follow. Navigation needs to appear on one of the sides of the page and should always include the site ID, a way home, a search bar, sections, and utilities. Your navigations should also do a good job at answering questions like the site the user is on, the page the user is on, the major sections of the site and the options available. Your home page should also do a solid job at conveying the big picture, and getting its message across to the user.
All in all, Krug’s book was a great tool for learning how to create a successful website, and I would highly recommend that people who are considering building one to take a look at this book.