Tips for Writers and Designers

When it comes to communication via the Internet, several things must be considered to ensure the message gets across to the audience in the manner which it was intended. The key components to communicating through the Internet are design, arrangement, and writing.

Design

  1. When designing email or websites, be sure to use colors and fonts that are easy to read.

  2. For both email and websites, keep plenty of white space in the design to aid in readability.

  3. For websites, keep navigational structure easy to understand and follow. Avoid hiding pages too far away from their main page.

  4. Consider the mind of the target audience while also considering goals of the communication.

Website Tips provides helpful information on design considerations.

Website Magazine offers many articles covering many different aspects of design.

Website Helpers provides a set of design do's and dont's.

Spank Interactive, an animation website, is a prime example of good design.

The World's Worst Website was designed to intently show aspects of bad website design.

Bright Hub's Web Development channel offers many articles on design tips to help improve a website.

Arrangement

  1. For both email and websites, keep plenty of white space in the design to aid in readability.

  2. For email, arrange the most important information to be seen first.

  3. For websites, arrange attention grabbers and important information to be seen first.

Website Gear shares the characteristics of a good layout.

Aussie Scrapbooking offers tips for making photo adjustments so they fit better into a layout.

Buzz In offers examples of good arrangements and bad arrangements.

Answer Bag provides advice for good email layouts.

Free Templates and Layouts provides good arrangements to use at no cost.

Writing

  1. Write with a clear, concise, vocabulary. Keep it simple and avoid filler.

  2. Remember to write for your audience, and in the case of websites, remember the search engines, too.

  3. In the case of email correspondence, get to the point. Be sure to BCC all recipients or use a mailer services for mailing lists that are too large to protect the privacy of all recipients.

  4. Break up the information for easy scanning.

Dartmouth offers information on writing for the web.

Website Tips provides help writing content for websites.

Use It provides a collection of resources on writing for the web and understanding how users read.

Quality Service tells users what to avoid when writing email.

Dennis Jerz offers tips for writing email effectively.

Charles Kessler & Associates shows things to consider when writing email.

Bruce Clay shows good web content examples.

Use It shows four bad web content examples.

It is difficult to find the right balance between the design, arrangement, and writing of any Internet communication, but with careful planning, research and thought, communicating through the Internet can be more effective than other forms. Take a look at web pages that suck to see more of what not to do.