I’ve just stumbled across an article on Webcredible’s site, saying that now web usability is common place, web credibility is the ‘new’ differentiating factor between websites. Why the quote marks? Because I’ve just realised the article’s from 2004, after posting it to Twitter. Oops.
However, the comment still stands. People DO judge an organisation’s credibility based on its website (don’t you?). People form an opinion in an instant when visiting a new site, taking it with them when they leave, probably never to return again if it’s not good. You only get one chance, two if you’re lucky.
One of the criteria listed in the article is ‘Your website needs to have an air of professionalism and confidence’. How to get this? According to Webcredible, ‘crisp, professional layout with sharp graphics…free information…no dead links…an automated confirmation email when someone contacts you’.
The writer acknowledges that there are ‘many more’. I think there’s a glaring omission here though, which is more important than the other poor little items relegated to the ‘many more’ group. Well-written, error-free, interesting and relevant copy!
What’s more credible to you: a site that’s littered with spelling errors and articles stuffed with key words or a site that’s easy-to-read with uninterrupted, easy-to-understand text?
I’d say the answer’s obvious.