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Distinctive Design: A Practical Guide to a Useful, Beautiful Web by Alexander Dawson

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Chapter 10: Focusing Facets of Findability

Outside influences affecting distinctive design

Creating an ideal, distinctive design encompasses more than deciding what to place on pages and fit into code. The way you increase visibility affects the likelihood of users finding your site, understanding your interfaces, and becoming site regulars.

In this chapter, I examine the external influences that dominate the digital landscape. I explain how users sit firmly in control of the web as well as how search engines affect design. I round off the chapter, and book, with some helpful hints that you can follow to justify using the design rules in this book, should such an occasion ever arise.

A Game of Give and Take

Producing a distinctive design requires you to examine how your site and service operate and how you present your content to the public. The visibility (and the quirky variable called findability) of your pages and the on-page assets you provide have dominance over how distinctive a site becomes, but it’s become more important than ever to also recognize the influence that outside forces have on distinction.

From within your sites, you have the power to control the visibility of certain objects. You can also use conventions to customize an experience for your audience’s needs by considering factors such as accessibility and findability. Being able to create or design a site gives you some level of control and responsibility as you build an experience in the hope that visitors ...

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