Hooked: How to engage your website audience in one second or less

You have less than one second to make the right impression. Almost immediately after landing on your website users will make an uninformed, mostly subconscious judgment about what type of organization they’re interacting with. This initial judgment will largely be influenced by layout, design, and visual tone. It will not only influence the rest of […]

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Why Your Website Doesn’t Generate Leads (and how to fix it)

You’re homepage is beautifully designed. It’s clear all the ways you can help. You’ve articulated why someone should hire you. You’ve validated your claims through case studies and testimonials, yet… You’re not getting the volume of leads you need. Sure they trickle in every month, but it’s not enough to grow your business. What are […]

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Does your website need to be beautiful?

When I first started designing websites in the 1990s, I focused most of my attention on creating striking visuals. In my defense, I was typically designing gaming website with only the occasional local business… but my goal was always to design a site that looked “cool.” In the early 2000s I stumbled across a website […]

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Fight or Flight: Which Emotion Does Your Website Evoke?

Are you a logical individual? Do you carefully consider all options before making a decision? Are opinions shaped primarily through facts and reasoning? If you answered yes to these questions, you’d be wrong. We are all emotional beings, and our emotions are the root cause of our thoughts and behaviors. Our logical, conscious thoughts simply […]

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10 Design Principles to Reduce Cognitive Load

If you’re not familiar with cognitive load and how it impacts interface design, it’s worth reviewing our previous blog post. If you’re already convinced cognitive load is important, the next step is addressing it. Reducing cognitive load is accomplished by reducing or offloading mental effort (which are similar but different concepts.) Reducing mental effort is […]

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The Three Levels of Emotional Design

To design positive emotional experiences you must understand human emotion. The subject of emotions is complex largely because everything we do is either influenced by, or directly caused by, emotion. Factor in the range and capacity different individuals have for emotion, add in the fact most emotions occur subconsciously, and round this out with the […]

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What is cognitive load and why does it matter in web and interface design?

Successful design manages cognitive load. Cognitive load is a technical term for “mental effort,” more specifically it’s the total amount of mental effort required for a given task. Completing any task requires some level of mental effort. This includes learning new information, analyzing stimuli, and working with short and long-term memory. Mental energy which has […]

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Emotional Design Model – Designing Enjoyable Interactions

The vast range of design styles should be an indicator of just how different personal preferences can be. A style characterized by high gloss and polish may be loved by one group and hated by another. The design could be viscerally appealing and behaviorally enjoyable and still result in this outcome. Remember logic assigns meaning […]

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The Psychology of Grid Based Layouts in Design

Grids are a fundamental design tool that have been used since the modernization of visual design. Using a grid is such a de-facto standard that you may have never stopped to think about why grids improve your designs. I’d like to explore the psychology behind grids. Let’s start by examining what happens if you design […]

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Emotional Web Design

If you have designed a site that addressed five of the six layers of design you have surpassed most sites on the web. Even great designers will fail to address the first five layers in a design. Stopping here however, would ignore one of the fundamental aspects of being human, having emotions. Emotion is the […]

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