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Simpler Might Be Better

May 18, 2011 17:35:40.000

Lots of websites go in for complex designs that make use of Ajax, CSS, and things like Flash to animate content, hide it behind expanding sections, and otherwise "prettify" things. Om Malik points out that there's still a place for simple and to the point - witness the Drudge Report, which drives more traffic to news sites than Facebook and Twitter combined:

He also set a paradigm for web design that still stands to this day. Critics who call his site ugly miss the point. It’s easy to navigate, doesn’t hide important information under sub-sections, and has a minimalist approach to layout. It’s also data-driven. Visit the Drudge Report several times in a day and you’ll see how he tweaks headlines and moves articles around to get the optimal configuration.

Another site that does something similar - Real Clear Politics (and their associated sites that cover other topics). Pretty is fine, but if people can't find your content, then you've made a very basic mistake. Food for thought...

posted by James Robertson

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