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The Ultimate Convention

Careful! This post is looking a little old and could be inaccurate in many, many ways

A website is full of the small decisions and even smaller details that together make a website what it is. Sometimes we forget the small things when we begin to chase the best of new standards and techniques available to us. So every now and again I try to focus on the small details that we sometimes forget in order to refresh the memory of the well trained designer as well as help those just starting out.

So what am I on about?

The web is built on numerous conventions, things that the general populous have learnt about the way in which we build websites that they can use from site to site. One of the best known is that clicking on a website’s logo will navigate the user to a websites homepage.

At some point someone decided adding a link on a sites logo would aide usability and at some point people noticed it was clickable either by seeing a hover state or by just clicking random things on the site. Since then pretty much every site uses the convention and the average user knows that whatever site they go to that they can expect to find a site where the logo doubles as the home link.

Yet this convention that so many understand isn’t being used by everyone. Implementing such a change doesn’t break a design or even take that long to implement but when carrying out a test on CSS Mania I found a few sites decided to go against the convention.

At the time of testing there were 26 sites featured on the homepage of CSS Mania, three one page sites didn’t have a link on the logo as it was redundant, another site’s logo disappeared on internal pages and 4 sites didn’t bother with a link at all, even though as multiple page websites you would consider it common practice to do so.

In my view this is one of the unbreakable laws of multiple page websites as it is something that affects no other part of the website and is easy to implement. So if you are reading this and don’t utilise this widely known convention then think why not, and when you come up with no response start implementing it on all your sites from now on.

If you disagree with me feel free to let me know below…