Web 2.0 – Web Design Has a New Name

Web 2.0 design is a buzz word that has meaning behind it.  If you have a site with a Web 2.0 design, then you probably have round corners, gradients, reflections, clean layout, and white space.

Simplicity is the key goal for Web 2.0 design. You want to keep your navigation, layout, and content as simple possible.  Your features only should include what is required for the user.  Keep plenty of white space and a balance of images and text.  Keeping your site simple will help your usability.

Your navigation is one of the most important features on your site.  Keep this as straightforward as possible.  Try to make it large, bold, and clean.  In regard to text – make it easy to read, and allow the user to know exactly what they are going to find.  Also make some type of motion or mouse over with your hyperlinks.  This helps users differentiate what is text and what is a hyperlink.

Web 2.0 designs concentrate more on color.  For backgrounds soft, pastels and neutral colors are a great choice.  Your colors are what attract your users to your site.  Also you can use your colors to focus your users to a specific place on your site.  Gradients also fall into this category. Gradients are a good way to blend colors into the soft fade of your white space or your background.  Gradients also are used for navigation backgrounds, text boxes, and icons.

Icons are becoming more and more popular.  However, please note, this does not mean you have to use more.  Developers are using bigger and stronger icons.  These icons have been used with text to help make a clear and visual response.  Users are very visual people.  An icon with a picture of a shopping cart for example will quickly tell your visitor this icon is where you can access the shopping cart.  This idea is effective with navigation, as well.

White space is omnipresent!  Busy sites are slowly being redesigned.  Many of the big ecommerce stores are even sliming down their homepages and giving them more white space.  This is positive for the user and your usability.  Giving your page plenty of white space will give you a cleaner and more professional look.  It will make your site easier to use.

There are more techniques and elements that are included in the movement of Web 2.0 design. The biggest element to watch for is simplicity.  Nothing is written in stone and none of these suggestions have to be followed.  However, why don’t you try something new and see what happens, it might be your next big thing!

*Did You Know — The term “Web 2.0” was coined by Darcy DiNucci in 1999.  Her use of the term deals mainly with web design and aesthetics; she argues that the web is “fragmenting” due to the widespread use of portable web-ready devices.  Her term is aimed at designers, reminding them to code for an ever-increasing variety of hardware.

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