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A common mistake made by Web Designers and Developers is that they start building the web site based on their own need rather than the actual need of the site's actual users. A good tenet to remember is: Designers are Not the Users. As a web designer, we understand and have intimate knowledge of the web site. We know where things are and our computers are updated and running at optimum performance, proper screen resolution and have the latest plug-ins. We have to keep in mind that the actual users of the web site will not have the same intimate knowledge of the web site as we do, so it makes logical sense to know our target market a little more closely when designing your web site. Given the importance of the users interests and desires, it might be enticing to simply ask the user to design the web site the way they want it. Consider another basic web design tenet: Users are Not Designers.

Design From the Users Point of View

The key to a successful and usable web design is to always design from the users point of view. User-Centered Design is a commonly used term given to design that puts the user first.

Design for your target market average user, but address their differences.

Who is the common or typical user? Is there an Average Joe and Jane Internet User for whom we should design our sites? Probably not. But we should consider their commonalities, average traits, cognitive and physical abilities and most importantly, that each user is still an individual. A web site may seem easy for one user to navigate while it might be hard for another. Its a fact, we cannot build a web site that will please everyone or meet the needs of ALL users. Designers should take into account the relevant difference between users while focusing on the commonolities.


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