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Websites and Web applications have become progressively more complex as our industry's technologies and methodologies advance. What used to be a one-way static medium has evolved into a very rich and interactive experience.
But regardless of how much has changed in the production process, a website's success still hinges on just one thing: how users perceive it. "Does this website give me value? Is it easy to use? Is it pleasant to use?" These are the questions that run through the minds of visitors as they interact with our products, and they form the basis of their decisions on whether to become regular users.
User experience design is all about striving to make them answer "Yes" to all of those questions. This guide aims to familiarize you with the professional discipline of UX design in the context of Web-based systems such as websites and applications. Read more...
Go to any website and you're guaranteed to find one thing: a navigation menu. Navigation menus enable visitors to move from page to page; without them, we would have no way to conveniently explore websites. Perhaps this is why designers, information architects, usability researchers and user experience specialists invest so much time and resources into devising aesthetically pleasing and user-friendly navigation systems.
Website navigation menus generally come in one of two orientations: vertical and horizontal. Horizontal navigation menus display items side by side. Vertical navigation menus stack items on top of each other. In this post, we highlight some remarkable vertical navigation menus, for your inspiration.
The navigation menu is perhaps a website's single most important component. Navigation gives you a window onto the website designer's creative ability to produce a functional yet visually impressive element that's fundamental to most websites. Because of their value to websites, navigation menus are customarily placed in the most visible location of the page, and thus can make a significant impact on the visitor's first impression.
The design of a navigation menu has to be outstanding in order to sustain the user's interest. As the adage goes, "Content is king," but getting to the content requires navigation. In this post, we'll be explore some of the more recent trends in navigation design. We'll look at the aesthetics that recur in today's best Web designs. The focus here is on the visual direction that leading designers are taking.
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Call to action in web design — and in user experience (UX) in particular — is a term used for elements in a web page that solicit an action from the user. The most popular manifestation of call to action in web interfaces comes in the form of clickable buttons that when clicked, perform an action (e.g. "Buy this now!") or lead to a web page with additional information (e.g. "Learn more...") that asks the user to take action.
How can we create effective call to action buttons that grab the user's attention and entice them to click? We'll try to answer this question in this post by sharing some effective design techniques and exploring some examples. Read more...
A module tab is a design pattern where content is separated into different panes, and each pane is viewable one at a time. The user requests content to be displayed by clicking (or in some instances hovering over) the content's corresponding tab control.
Module tabs are seeing an increase of use as websites and web applications push for optimizing web page screen areas without sacrificing the amount of information presented at once. For example, in weblogs, they are used in secondary content sections (such as the sidebar) to present relevant and interesting information such as a listing of blog posts which users can interact with to get to web pages quicker. This inevitably allows for an unobtrusive and compact manner of presenting content.
This article discusses the use of the module tabs design pattern for use in websites and web-based applications. We share with you some best practices to consider when using module tabs, a listing of real-world examples of websites the take advantage of module tabs, as well as tutorials and free downloadable scripts for building and deploying module tabs in your sites. Read more...
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If there is a commonly reoccurring need for a particular solution, there is a great probability that someone has - by now - solved that need and has finished the legwork involved in researching and constructing something that resolves it. At the very least, you will find documentation on general solutions to related problems that will enable you to gain insight on best practices, effective techniques, and real-world examples on the thing you are creating.
A design pattern refers to a reusable and applicable solution to general real-world problems. For example, a solution for navigating around a website is site navigation (a list of links that point to different sections of the site), a solution for displaying content in a compact space are module tabs. There are many ways to tackle a specific requirement - and as a designer - the most important thing you can do is selecting the option that best reflects the needs of your users.
In this article, we share with you the best of the best, cream of the crop sites, galleries, online publications, and libraries devoted to sharing information and exploring concepts pertaining to User Interface design patterns. Use these recommended sources to gain knowledge about a particular UI problem or to gain inspiration and insight on best practices, techniques, and examples of exemplary UI designs. Read more...