What Is User Centered Web Design?

Description: Just as with Web 2.0, the phrase 'user centered web design' is gaining ground and falling off more people's lips by the day. So what exactly does it mean?

Quite simply, user centered web design is the web design of the future. In the past we were happy with creating websites that people could find and look at and get useful information from. Happy with their lot, they then went on their way.

But thanks to the rise and rise of Web 2.0, the interactive way that the internet is going, user centered web design has become more prevalent.

User centered web design is all about the web designer giving up a little of the control over their website. When a site is created the webmaster usually has a very specific idea of how they want the whole thing to look. Now while there is no harm in this - in fact it's quite a logical way to approach things - it doesn't automatically appeal to every single visitor who arrives on their website.

If you opt for a user centered web design it means that you will allow your visitors to view your site with larger text if they want to. Not everyone has perfect eyesight and what you think looks great and is perfectly acceptable might have one of your most loyal visitors squinting at their computer screen.

In order to start indulging in user centered web design it's necessary for the web designer to stop using some of the more rigid HTML tags that define very clearly how each page will look. While this may take some getting used to it has the end result that their visitors will be able to view their website quite happily, regardless of what browser they are using and what personal preferences they have about how a site should look.

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