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Commentary on Four Websites

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Introduction

Commentary on Four Websites By Katy Bergson In this essay I shall be considering the effectiveness of four websites. I shall be looking particularly at where and what the creators have put on the site. Also the way pictures, writing, colour and graphics are used. They probably spent a long time designing and putting it together. I will try and pick out the main decisions and choices they have made. This will help us understand more about language used to welcome and invite. The sites I have chosen to look at are Amazon (the UK site), BBC online, Cornwallis School and Sky sports. The sites all have different purposes and are designed to that particular genre's specification. Amazon is a site aiming to sell. BBC online is more about information but it is also promoting its channels. Cornwallis School Site is there to give information about that school. Finally Sky Sports is giving information while at the same time promoting itself (like BBC online). The content of the sites is obviously quite varied but much more striking than that, is the design of them. All four websites have chosen to lay out their sites in very different ways. The design of a site is incredibly important. If a site is not to the viewers liking, they would leave. This is especially important with Amazon because they depend on people staying on the site and feeling happy with it (so then they are drawn to an offer). ...read more.

Middle

At the bottom of the screen are some more links in a plain white box. The first page of this site is pretty simple. The aim is to draw people into the important pages. The window is set out so you can find your way round quickly and efficiently. Thirdly, I shall look at BBC online. This displays its title in the middle of the page; in plain black and blue colours. To the right of this is a small bot (or search device). This site is again divided into three columns. The left side is being used as a navigation bar. This lists possible links you may want to use. The centre column has three choice pages (for browsers). The titles are bigger in a different colour and stand out more. Underneath is a picture and a brief description. The descriptions use chatty language like "say Pants to poverty". At the bottom of each one is the category it goes under. The final column is quick links, divided into five sections and a link. The sections are things like news, weather and sport. They are all in a different title colour. In the top left hand corner there is the date and a text only option. Finally, let's look at sky sport. The main background is white but they have also used blue to divide up the page. The navigation bar is in the blue left hand strip. ...read more.

Conclusion

The site has a big advert at the top. This is less for the viewer's benefit and much more for making money. Again the site has gone for neutral colours a dark blue and white:- Surveys have shown this to be one of the more popular colours for men. The focus is much more on text and links than pictures. This is because sports images are less clear. From quickly looking, you would find it harder to pick out one football player from another (and the same applies to most sports). The web pole is inviting the viewer to interact and feel a part of the site. I therefore conclude that big-name websites as a rule, nearly always use plain backgrounds. This makes it easier to divide the page up with colour. The navigation bar is usually on the left hand side because this feels more natural to have it in a margin there. Pictures can be used effectively to say a lot about the site without the viewer having to read anything. They can grab the attention of viewers or turn them away. The title doesn't need to be big and in fact, it is not looked at long enough to need to be "in your face". A site should put the most important feature in the centre of the page because that's where it is most likely to be looked at. Overall, from looking at all theses sites you can see how critical it is to apply good design, if the site is to succeed in its aims. ...read more.

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