PublishTest and refine your voice.

‘What’ Must Come Before ‘How’

Unfortunately, many people (including lots of developers) confuse storyboarding with wireframing, or they believe that because they are storyboarding they have already done a wireframe. Nothing could be further from the truth! Storyboarding is the process of creating drafts of your Web pages and laying them out in logical sequence to create a map of […]

Behind the Scenes: The Making of a Website

In my article Navigating Through Analysis Paralysis, I discussed how we use navigation to engage and persuade our visitors to steer their way to a mutually beneficial goal — the sale. The questions that remain are these: How do we determine exactly where we want them to head, and how do we map out the […]

Is Your Web Site Qualified to Sell?

I’ve discussed the consumer psychology behind the buying process and five-step selling process and how these processes merge. To put this knowledge into practice, you must first understand how these two processes integrate. Matching the exploration phase to your site’s ability to qualify is a critical element of e-commerce. The exploration phase is when a […]

Are You Designing for Usability or Sales? Part 1

A handful of people misunderstood my thoughts about usability when I recently asked, “Does Usability Actually Sell Anything?” I’m a big advocate of usability as a tactic. In fact, I’ve written about usability countless times in this column and my company’s newsletter. We certainly don’t want to place obstacles in front of users. However, for […]

Developing Your Website Shouldn’t Be Rocket Science

A sad fact: 70 percent of development projects fail. Of those that succeed, 80 percent of total costs come after the release. You know what I mean. Aren’t you the one who just told your tech team, who are almost done with the project, to add that new, cutting-edge feature? Failures don’t happen by accident. […]

The Color of Money (and Your Site)

What do conversion rate marketers chitchat about? Recently, Mike Sack, chief product officer of Inceptor, and I were discussing We were wondering about a series of changes it’s made to its “Add to Shopping Cart” buttons and how it might be affecting its conversions. Amazon has been testing the text on the button for […]

Are We There Yet?

Humans aren’t very good at calculating how long things take. Think about your kids moaning in the back seat on a long trip. Or the last time you told somebody you needed just 5 more minutes to finish a project — and by the time you looked at the clock, 20 minutes had passed. The […]

Does Usability Actually Sell Anything?

Recently my ClickZ colleague Sean Carton asked, “Are Usability Experts Any Use?” I’ve written before about the need to go beyond usability and focus on persuasive architecture. Nevertheless, Sean’s column struck a very public nerve. In recent threads on the I-Sales and I-Design lists, Jared Spool of User Interface Engineering (UIE) posted that he felt […]

Designing for Action

We’ve examined wireframing, the phase of Persuasive Architecture that lets us define what we need to do. Let’s move on to storyboarding, where we start defining how we accomplish the what. If you want your project to be completed on budget, on time, and on purpose, you need to proceed through each phase and its […]

Are People Getting Stuck in Your GUI?

One of my past articles about navigation closed with, “When you make it easy for your visitors to find what they want to buy quickly and intuitively, more of them will convert.” I’ve never discussed graphical user interface (GUI) much in this space, but it goes hand in hand with navigation. Follow this analogy, and […]