What!? I must be crazy, Websites are all about design and technology! Right? Well actually, for most companies Websites are about driving a business result and adding to the bottom line. This is true for just about ALL Websites. The goal is to meet the needs of users, or why else would it exist? The ultimate goal is to not let design or technology get in the way!
So, why all the fuss about design and technology? The folks that work in the Internet community are usually design and technology professionals. There influence is key to what happens online and the user can often be left out in the dark, or more likely left lost on the Web as they try to find that valuable piece of content on a Website. Oftentimes, the needs of the users clash with the work of designers and technology people.
Now here is the catch, and it is a big catch. If you are working on the Web you need to see your role as a designer or programmer to enhance the user experience. It sounds like common sense right? But it does not work that way. The designer’s and technology people’s ego thinks it is all about their work and what they do. It is not unusual for clients or company managers to promote this by focusing too much on design elements and technology, rather than what the user wants.
The user wants to experience a pleasant looking site with nice graphics and images, that do not get in the way of their real goals, which is the pursuit of Web content that meets their needs. Think like a user and design sites with their needs first.