Flash (in the pan)

Prompted by a visit to a restaurant web site just now, a few tips for those of you who run web sites, or would like to. Perhaps to create a photo business, or to grow an existing one? Here’s Michael’s Top Four Tips.

TIP ONE: No Adobe Flash. For four reasons:

  1. Adobe Flash is all about how “great” you are – but the site needs to be totally about how the customer will benefit, instead.  Telling people you are great is not good. They should conclude this for themselves.
  2. Those with an iPhone or iPad, i.e. a large chunk of the population, will not be able to see your site at all. Bye bye, clients!
  3. The idea of a site that says “Wait…..” while some counter counts to 100 is anathema to you being there for your client. Do not make the client wait.
  4. Another big one: Flash sites cannot be indexed by search engines.

TIP TWO: No music. Sound distracts. And the song you choose will annoy half your viewers. And slow the site on its initial load. Yes, you can turn sound off, but why make your client jump through hoops? Unless you are Air Canada, you cannot get away with that.

TIP THREE: No tumbleweed-blogs. If your site gives the viewer the impression it is being updated regularly, update it regularly. A blog that is updated every now and then is deadly. Set an expectation – then exceed it. I promise to blog daily – for now- and I achieve or exceed that. If forced by time constraints I go to a lower frequency that would be fine – in that case I would say “at least twice weekly” and then ensure I do three or four times weekly. Under-promise, over-deliver.

TIP FOUR: Keep it simple. Simplicity rules! Simple font choices. White space. Simple design. Complexity is bad. Your client is not there for you – it is the other way around, and simplicity keeps the client on your site.



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