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November 16, 2011

Tests show it only takes 20 seconds before visitors to a website give up and click away if they can't find what they're searching for. Jim believes "usability" is key to website success. "Unfortunately, not all people who claim to design 'user-friendly' websites deliver on that promise," said Jim.

Then he showed specific examples of what works and what doesn't work on actual business websites. Like the value of using intuitive "back buttons" for simple navigation compared to confusing "keyboard shortcuts." Choosing a font size that people can scan/read without a magnifying glass. And on a big-budget, "back-to-work" website, not leaving visitors clueless about where to find the job they were looking for. Putting usability first is the reason why Huberspace web designs mean business.

Jim pointed out how fancy, script-style fonts on an Indian restaurant website look like Greek to users. Lesson: "Don't get cute with fonts, especially in navigation menus."

Jim pointed out how fancy, script-style fonts on an Indian restaurant website look like Greek to users. Lesson: "Don't get cute with fonts, especially in navigation menus."

Jim was the "spotlight" speaker at Loudoun Network Alliance (LNA), a LeadShare networking group within the Loudoun County Chamber of Commerce. The luncheon was at Eggspectations in the Village at Leesburg.