Infinite scroll is great! sometimes…

June 16th, 2013

I like infinite scroll, but only in the right situation, and only when it’s done right. And dammit, it’s often not done right.

When to use it
Is your site the sort of place where, most of the time, people are glancing over a bunch of information in a list, without the need to actually click on anything? It is time critical information that will be worthless in a couple of days. Then infinite scroll is good. Twitter is a nice example. But if your site is a place where you have lot of stuff, that I actually have to click on to view more, then please think very hard about implementing infinite scroll. 1. Just because you have a lot of shit doesn’t mean I want all of it in a list. Make it sortable and searchable and then let me decide if and, more importantly, when I want more. 2. If you just keep throwing more information in my face I’m going to click less on your links. Just because you actually keep adding more information to the page that I’m already on.

How to use it
For the love of god don’t show me the content before it’s all loaded and let me start scrolling, only to jump me back up to where I was when you started loading stuff (Or to some random place on the page – Yes, I’m looking at you, flickr). It’s just bad, and so, so annoying if you are on a slow loading connection (Apparently a 7/2 mbit now fits that description – who knew?), you get thrown around like the nerdy kids lunchbag. It’s actually so annoying that I’m honestly thinking about finding a new place for my pictures.

So to end: Infinite scroll – please use it with caution.

Make your website sticky!

April 14th, 2010

Peanut butter and jelly. So tasty, so sweet and so sticky! Make your website like that and you are on your way to having a successful website. A Sticky website is a website that keep visitors around for longer, that make them view more pages and a website that get them to come back for more. It should be said that this will be a good thing for most websites but not for all. / CC BY 2.0

So let’s have a look at how you can make your website more sticky. I’m going to look at some of the things you can do, if you have a content site, like a blog, but you can use it across other types of websites as well.
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Give your visitors a good first impression

January 30th, 2010

First impressions, they are a bitch ain’t they? Everybody has had a bad day when they are not looking their best at a party or an event. And then there’s that feeling. The feeling that no matter what you say, no matter what you do, people are going to keep looking at you funny, like you are not the fastest moped on the harbour, like you are a loser. Guess what, people can give your website that look too.
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Doh! Usability tip #3 Make it easy to compare your products

September 27th, 2009

Have you ever been to a website and had a hard time finding the product that would be the best for your needs? Have you checked lately that you aren’t making the same mistake on your own site? You really should. It might be really easy for you to decide which product is the best, but are you part of your own target audience? Often you won’t be. I have a few examples for you from the web hosting business. A business where people need to compare different packages.

Let’s start with one of the worst examples I could find. Laughing Squid

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Doh! Usability tip #2 Stop loosing signups, use inline validation of forms!

September 1st, 2009

Doh! Usability Tips / CC BY 2.0

Does your website have sign up forms? Are the validated as the user enters their data? They should be. There is nothing worse than signing up for a forum, a web app or an online service, pressing the Sign up or buy button and then seeing a little red line saying your phone number is too short, or your user name is taken. Or, god forbid, getting prompted by an annoying little popup box.
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