The internet is open to more now than it has ever been, apple stores are filled with people older in years asking some young tekkie kid with a hole in his ear how to sync their email and their Ipad or how to ring their kids in Australia using ‘facepalm’ or something. Where Amazon was once a revolution in shopping you now can and probably do order almost all of everything online. You’re online, I’m online and, most importantly, your customers are online.
By it’s very nature the internet is constantly changing. The speed with which new ideas and fads can spread throughout the internet and the fact that it is constantly being edited and added to by billions of contributors means that for those who are not the most plugged in it is hard to keep up. The cutting edge of the internet is a fascinating, exciting and inventive place. It is also, however, not where most internet users reside. Most internet users reside around the middle, they have good knowledge of how familiar websites work and can get things done. Cutting edge website design however may leave them feeling a little confused, and perhaps a bit excluded. Put simply: not to keen (or even able) to open their wallets.
For instance, the picture above is from the beautiful and innovative website of (as you can probably read) Mahedine Yahia, a 20 year old designer from Paris. The website is quite incredible and acts as a portfolio and resume for this young designer. The website rolls of the mouse as you slip through a picture of paris and into the work of the man himself. It is a truly cutting edge piece of design. Now this is perfect for Mahedine’s target audience who will be young design industry workers who are in touch with front line innovation in web design. The design also (very cleverly) acts as an advert for his work and his creativity, style and skill as he is a designer. So all very good. His audience though is not the average audience, and for business who have a perhaps more ‘average’ audience may often find themselves in the predicament of not knowing how cool to go.
This is a predicament that business owners commissioning a new website must be mindful of and web design companies have to admit. Many web designers will have studied exciting web design and be in touch with the cutting edge of design on the internet and as the internet is all about contributing they will want to contribute to that cutting edge. But the cutting edge is not always whats best for the the customer and the customers business. If you’r selling water cooler’s to nursing homes in the Humberside region you don’t want some cosmic wonderland website design like our friend Mr Yahia up there. You maybe just want a simple, standard, easy to use and slightly boring website.
The point is this: sometimes ‘innovation’ is just ‘ineffective’.