If In Doubt Throw It Out!

by Todd Hooge

All SEO Articles

This article from The Mender (Issue 7),
Metamend's Web Site Optimization and Marketing Newsletter.


Once in a while, you create something so fantastic for your website that you have no choice but to sit back and marvel in your genius. But what happens, say, if you start getting comments like, "Looks good, but what does it DO?", or even worse, "Looks bad, and it's supposed to do what exactly?"

If it's not possible (using your genius-like powers of persuasion) to come to a unanimous decision with your critics, what do you do? Do you persist anyway, hoping they will eventually bend? Or do you give up, hands in the air, and throw a tantrum? I think the answer lies somewhere in the middle.

In the restaurant industry, there is a little saying in the kitchen, "If in doubt, throw it out!" My opinion is that same logic applies to most aspects of website design. This doesn't mean throw out the whole idea entirely. With graphics and aesthetics, it's hard to convince people what looks good. Often times just changing the color or font size is enough to convince even the toughest critics. It's usually something you "knew" was going to be a problem anyway.

In my opinion, it's far better to give the person who is flipping the bill the benefit of the doubt. You will most likely culture a better relationship with them if you just listen, and they will trust you more. If, on the other hand, you are doing exactly what the client asks for and they still don't like it after two or three attempts, then I always use the above rule... I refer them to another website designer. Remember that if the person you are designing for isn't living up to their end of the bargain, you have just as much right to cut your losses and move on - a valuable lesson I learned the hard way!

Other articles from this issue:
- How To Choose The Right Hosting Company for Your Website - FTP Access
- Web Programming Tip - Vitamin C?

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