What Bloggers Can Learn from “Facebook Lite”

blogNot long ago Facebook rolled out a lite version created for users in countries where connections are slow and bandwidth is small. But during testing, they discovered that the lite version was quite popular with American users, too.

Facebook Lite (www.lite.facebook.com), which is currently only available in the U.S. and India, features smaller type, fewer ads, and no applications, pages, or groups.  It lets you quickly and easily see what’s happening with your friends without having to take in lots of other information, and I for one love it.  Facebook Lite might even make me a regular Facebook user.

As Mike Elgan at Computeworld points out, Facebook Lite is growing in popularity for the same reason Google trumps Yahoo and Twitter is a wild success:  simplicity.  Simplicity works every time.  We like cool stuff, but we like it even better when it has a clean design, a straightforward approach, and it’s easy to use.

The same concept applies to your blog and your website.   Too much stuff flashing, waving, blinking, or talking will drive your readers crazy.  Too many choices will confound them.  It’s OK if it’s fun, or unique, or different as long as it’s easy to use. People want information without having to fight for it.  If your site is too much trouble, they’ll find another one.

So, today, make an honest assessment of your website.  Ask yourself these questions:

  • Is it simple to navigate?
  • Can people find what they’re looking for?
  • Does it have the features you would want?
  • Is it loaded up with too much stuff?
  • Does it have a unique perspective?  That is, is there a reason to visit your site rather than someone else’s?
  • Does it give visitors a reason to bookmark it or to come back again?
  • If you stumbled across your website, would you stop and look, or would you just keep going?
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