This is Broken – Again
While coming back from a trip this spring my wife and I stopped at the Tim Horton’s in Merrit BC. For those of you south of the 49th parallel, Tim Horton’s is the Dunkin Donuts of the north. They are in most, if not all, cities accross Canada. While IMHO, they will never win any awards for great coffee – they are clean, friendly, and you always know what you are getting.
While relaxing with my coffee, I spotted this sign – it is a perfect example of a good idea that wasn’t fully thought out. If you click on the image for a larger view you will see the word ‘RESTROOM’ (actually it says ‘RESROOM’) in Braille underneath the printing. For the visually impaired the bold black printing on a white background is great.
However, for a blind person, the sign doesn’t exist. You will never see a blind person running their hands up and down a wall to find a sign for the Restroom. They are going to ask someone.
At the Gel (“Good Experience Live”) Conference in 2006 Seth Godin gave a presentation on things that are broken. He devides signs and ideas in to categories. This sign falls into the ‘I am not a fish’ category. That is, things that are broken because the person who designed them failed to take the user into consideration. From signs that fail to inform to websites that are impossible to understand (see www.webpagesthatsuck.com we are being inundated with ideas and products that are broken.
Don’t let you website fall into one of Seth’s categories for ‘Things that are broken’ – have someone check your site. (Preferrably someone who hasn’t seen it before.) See how the navigate the site, see if they can find the information you want them to find, see if your site is broken.
Remember – It is not whether you think the site is broken — it is whether your customers think it is broken.
Contact us to find out how TIMR Web Services can help your business