Amazon’s Top 10 Secrets of a Successful Website…

02/05/2005

You’ll like this. Small post. Don’t really do so many of those any more, but this one has three links in it so I can’t stick it into del.icio.us. Oops. Four links. It starts with a little tiny post at Signal vs. Noise, the awesome 37signals weblog (dammit, five links):

“Is there any doubt that BIG is in? The signup button for Amazon Prime puts that question to rest.” (Big is in)

And when you click on the link you do indeed get a really really really big button. And the button has a bevel! And the bevel is big!

And I’m here to explain to the 37signals guys why this is the case, because although they’re all special clever-clever ‘we think we’re the shiznit’ usability people and all, they appear not to have read the seminal work on the subject – Jason Kottke’s classic 10 secrets of a successful website. It’s just as well that not everyone is so far behind the times though – I can say without question that Amazon have read this work because how else would they have known to implement Rule #10 of a successful website:

the bigger the bevel, the more important the button

Now people think Jason’s just a pretty face (jeez – six links… nngh) which is just so not true. For a start, it would be fairer to say that he was a pretty face, and not – I might add – that much prettier than me (it’s not the years, it’s the mileage). But more importantly, when he was a pretty face, he was a pretty face that also knew all about the web ‘n’ shit.

So look and learn people, and watch as Jason leads you through the future step by step – believe in him now or watch stupified as one by one his principles come to be employed in future Amazon.com designs:

From rule #4: 3D logos: “With today’s high end power mac 7200s and 486 pcs, one can create beautifully rendered animated 3D art that rivals the likes of that produced by pixar and industrial light and magic. why have a two dimensional logo when three dimensions are available? the extra dimension will make your logo stand out from those of your competition.”

From rule #6: CDRom on the web: “in the three years the web has existed, the web design community as a whole has discovered the one great truth: developing for the web is just like developing for a cdrom. you’ve probably heard different, but that’s just propaganda from all the techies that are mad because people no longer develop text-only pages.”

You know, come to think of it, you should write to Jason right now and get him to do an Amazon redesign that’ll really push them into the 21st Century! With his help maybe they can stop all this concentrating on business and so-called ‘classic design’ and really make something that sells their brand values instead!