What do you think of these web site designs?

Ashley McKee

June 6th, 2007

Most designers know the importance of using fundamental UI principles when creating interface designs. Tutorial Blog recently released a list of the 60 best standards compliant web site designs. The list is in 2 parts:

You can view the first set of 30 here: 30 Great Website Designs (Part1).

designs1

You can view the second set of 30 here: 30 Great Website Designs (Part2).

designs2

I’d like to hear your thoughts on whether or not you think these web sites are usable as well as visually appealing.

11 Responses to “What do you think of these web site designs?”

  1. Nathan Smith Says:

    For my money, the ExpressionEngine site wins, hands down. The others are quite nice as well, but the EE site seems to be the most “usable” from the standpoint of arriving at the site, and immediately being able to find your way around.

  2. blog.dsetia.com» Blog Archive » What do you think of these web site designs? Says:

    [...] You can view the second set of […] Source: [Link] [...]

  3. Stefan Klose Says:

    vorsat looks quite nice and clean. there are several other ones in the list that i enjoy. but most of them are too heavily loaded, too unaccessible and more like colorful print design than informational web design.. that’s a new trend. and i hope it will go away soon. seems like everybody forgot the main principles of developing a web site…. :-(

    am i the only one who sees it like this?

  4. DJ Says:

    For me, it is pretty instructive that none of these sites imho are what I would call well trafficked. Therefore the list isn’t *that* representative of the kind of sites that really play a large role in people’s lives.

  5. Ashley McKee Says:

    I definitely think a few of the designs, while they have cool and interesting graphics, are a little too glitzy, and it takes away from the main content on the page.

  6. Jared Spool Says:

    DJ:

    For me, it is pretty instructive that none of these sites imho are what I would call well trafficked. Therefore the list isn’t *that* representative of the kind of sites that really play a large role in people’s lives.

    Do you think the rules of design change for sites which aren’t well trafficked?

  7. Lucrative Web Design Says:

    4 Website Design Critiques: Kewl Graphics Ain’t Always Cool…

    Ashley McKee at User Interface Engineering posted links to Tutorial Blog’s list of the 60 best standards compliant web site designs. And she asked, whether these web-site designs are usable, as well as visually appealing.
    Well, Ashley. Firstly, l…

  8. DJ Says:

    Hi Jared

    Do you think the rules of design change for sites which aren’t well trafficked?

    Good question ;o)

    The “rules” aren’t necessarily different, however there are a few observations you can make about most of the featured sites which would have an impact on the approach to designing them:

    1. Smaller, niche audiences. Design can be more focussed on particular groups meaning more generic web design rules (silly example: make links blue and underlined) may well not apply. You would hope domain knowledge would be the key rather than generic web usability knowledge.

    2. Less complexity. Brochureware rather than applications. I noticed a few design agency sites, designers portfolios etc. The content appeared quite static. No need to worry about CMS templates. This means designers have an easier time defining the presentation of the content … no need to consider how different content lengths etc would affect usability and presentation.

    3. Less “volume”. With fewer pages, sites can effectively be produced as one project deliverable rather than in smaller functional chunks. It means elements can be finessed rather more than when working on a larger site.

    Perhaps the rules *don’t* change, just the practicalities of getting things done. Does that make sense?

    DJ

  9. UIE Brain Sparks » Blog Archive » WebGuild’s Interview with Luke Wroblewski Says:

    [...] Also, much of what he talks about can be applied to the 60 best standards compliant web site designs I blogged about earlier in the week: Q: Although there are established design and usability best practices and standards, there are also varying standards within companies’ definitions of good design and usability and the role design should play in the product development process. Some companies value form as well as function whereas others appear to value function only. Is form still a valuable element in usability? [...]

  10. Fred Boulton Says:

    With the prevalence of ADSL it seems that there are more print designers getting into Web design and creating HUGE page file sizes. It’s the same with people using Flash graphics on auto load without giving those on slow connections a choice about seeing the Flash or not. I think that designers and developers need to maintain a commitment to producing fast-loading pages with minimal graphics.

    None of the sites discussed appears to address the page size issue.

    My 2cents worth!

  11. Saturday links from the e-mail inbox | clock — watching time, the only true currency Says:

    [...] of standards-compliant website designs. I liked this one, although nothing particularly relevant to current needs. Breeze is attractive. [...]

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