Colin Bacon, web developer.

The available web

The available web

Looking at this you're probably thinking, "WTF!? Call this a blog? It's just text!" Strange indeed that this should be our first reaction, after all a blog post is about the content surely?

It's all about the content

A blog (and any other website) is about its content and it's necessary that we remember it is the most important part of a website. Your site can look amazing but if the content is poor or non-existent, no-one is going to stay or engage.

The content is what people come for, and based on the strength of that content will determine whether they come back or not. Your content affects SEO and Google rankings, how your site looks or behaves doesn't.

Look mum, I'm responsive!

When you write an article you want it to be available to read everywhere, not restricted to screen sizes or devices. That would be like creating a proprietary document format that could only be read with an expensive piece of software (* cough, Microsoft *).

By putting the content first, this article is readable and legible everywhere. Mobile phones, tablets, desktops you name it, I'm there. The web is inherently fluid and we must remember that our design choices can easily restrict our contents availability. I hear all too often presumptions on how a user will interact with a website. Don't assume because your content isn't for mobile use they will only browse it on a desktop. Don't assume that just because you've got an app people won't want to browse your site as well. In fact, when it comes to how a user chooses to interact, assume nothing! I mean who would have thought someone would want to browse to your site on a grey screen (kindle)?

Don't judge a book

So what am I trying to say here? What is my point? Design is a wonderful thing; a well-designed site is a pleasure to use. But tucked away behind that prettiness is the content, the meat of the site. Try putting your content first, laying it out bare on your page before you do any kind of styling with it. Does it read correctly? Is the content in the right order? Then once you start to style the contents, ask yourself will this affect the contents availability? And if so, what can I do about it? Putting these considerations first will help build a more, engaging, readable, available web.

Author: Profile picture for Colin Bacon

Colin bacon is a professional development engineer, with a passion for C# and creating compelling frontend experiences with HTML and CSS. In his free time he can be found teaching skiing at his local slope.



  1. Gavatar image of Patrick Long

    Patrick Long

    Your just being lazy. Get your finger out and style this blog