Functional web design

Why we shouldn't get caught up with the pretty things

2020 has been a hell of a year so far. Quite literally. So I’ve recently been taking comfort in the fact that every year comes to an end eventually. And what happens at the end of every year? Christmas. This is my justification for writing about Christmas presents in June. 


When I was a kid, there was a certain kind of present I was incredibly excited to unpack. They were big, wrapped in beautiful paper and sometimes they had a bow on top. Only something truly amazing could be worthy of such impeccable wrappage. At some point I learned that with unwrapping a gift in the present of the person who got it for you, comes a very certain kind of expectation: the obligation to like it. 


“Oh, that’s amazing. I’ve always wanted this!”. Be honest. You’ve said the words and didn’t mean them.


This is all good and well, you may say, but why are you talking about this. In June. 


Well, I’m trying to make a point about functional web design and didn’t want to wait till Christmas. So bare with me. 


The amazing thing about a website is that it is the only place online that is entirely under your control. You can play God! What information goes where? Should it be funny or on the serious side? Should the button be cornflower-blue or sunset-orange? It’s all in your hands. 


It is very easy to get caught up with the pretty details of things. I can spend hours deciding on colour schemes and fonts and all these other things that make a website look the part. 


But design is only one half of the equation. The packaging of the parcel if you will. What’s just as important if not more so are the content and the functionality of it. Your website could be the biggest present under the Christmas tree - with a bow on top. You don’t want people to open it and go "Oh, that's... great." with a fake smile on the outside and that sad sad feeling of crushed expectations on the inside. 


Yes, design is important, but functionality is what really distinguishes a website. 


Make your website the present that you open and suddenly you find that all your sorrows and worries have gone away. No, not a time machine to when this pandemic is over. I’m talking about something that takes care of all these little jobs that need doing, but nobody really enjoys. Like adding people to your mailing list or scheduling phone calls, selling courses and taking payments.


There are plenty of jobs your website can do for you, they just need to be set up. Let me know if you want some help with making your website the biggest present under the Christmas tree. In June.

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