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President Mnangagwa Unveils Pretty-Ugly Website

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President Mnangagwa Unveils Pretty-Ugly Website

Many business decisions start with search engines today, and if you do not have your own website, you are only reaching about 6% of your market.The design of your website is more important for conversions than you think. You can implement any conversion boosting tactic in the world, but if it looks like crap, it won’t do you much good.

Design is not just something designers do. Design is marketing. Design is your product and how it works.

President Mnangagwa has a formidable online presence, and he is once again turning to the Internet to communicate with the Zimbabwe public by launching a Website edmnangagwa.com/.

Yes, edmnangagwa.com is his official website and we confirmed this with his office. Techunzipped tried to understand why our President did not pick a local domain like .co.zw or .org.zw. For Techunzipped it was a business decision we made when we started and our vision at the time. But for a President who is the brand of Zimbabwe. For to pick and international domain over local, we cannot forgive him for that kwete bodo (NO) we cannot forgive for that.

To make matters worse the domain is hosted by an American company called Singlehop. In Zimbabwe, we have local companies which have invested million infrastructure and of a President whose motto is “Zimbabwe is open for business” is just does not sell Zimbabwe well.

The biggest benefit of localized hosting is that you will increase relevant traffic to your business, you can say that investors will ones viewing ED’s website but ….. Too often, people forget that traffic and relevant traffic are two different things. Simply visiting your website isn’t going to mean a sale. If you run a shop in Zimbabwe, visits from the US aren’t going to help your business.

Generally, a locally hosted website will load faster. The loading speed of your website is crucial for customer experience. If your site takes too long to load, chances are your customers will lose interest and move on.

Another benefit of using localized hosting from a business standpoint is the security of having help when you need it.

.COM domains might be the daddy of them all, but it’s not the only option out there (we have .co.zw and .org.zw) and it may not be the right option in every case. The most important thing is that ED is the President of the Republic and his domain should be local and hosted local, too! Buying locally is always a good idea and we pray that #ED will lead by example.

Website Design

President Mnangagwa this week blasted government websites for not following current trends. Speaking during the official launch of Zimbabwe National Policy for Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Mnangagwa called for an immediate relook at the websites, saying they were not reflective of his government’s new thrust.

I encourage our government ministries and parastatals to spruce up their websites and make them more interactive, responsive and reflective of the current impetus under the new dispensation. Let us all in our image, actions and service culture reflect that it’s a new era and that Zimbabwe is open for business,” he said.

“ICT modernization will create a conducive environment that will attract investment from both local and global players and increase our competitiveness as a country,” he said.

Our President should be speaking to the man in the mirror. With all due respect, our president website is PRETTY-UGLY.

As a designer myself, the design of your website is more important for conversions than you think. You can implement any conversion boosting tactic in the world, but if it looks like crap, it won’t do you much good.

Squeaky wheels get the grease and prominent visuals get the attention. Visual hierarchy is one of the most important principles behind good web design. It’s the order in which the human eye perceives what it sees.

Certain parts of your website are more important than others (forms, calls to action, value proposition etc), and you want those to get more attention than the less important parts. If you website menu has 10 items, are all of them equally important? Where do you want the user to click? Make important links more prominent.

ED’s website makes users think.According to Krug’s first law of usability, the web-page should be obvious and self-explanatory. When you’re creating a site, your job is to get rid of the question marks the decisions users need to make consciously, considering pros, cons, and alternatives.

The website lacks Proximity and Space. Proximity is helpful in creating organization on a page since similar or related elements should be grouped together to create a relationship between them. Ideally, you might cluster the elements together in a way that helps to declutter the overall design. The elements don’t need to be clustered together for placement, either proximity could mean they are connected visually another way, such as by color, font, type, size etc. And on Spacing, the designer did not choose to leave blanks, which are just as important as the ones you’re filling with colors, text, and images. Negative space creates shape and can help highlight the most important pieces of information in your design. Never underestimate the power of simplicity.

ED’s website lacks basic use of effective writing. As the Web is different from print, it’s necessary to adjust the writing style to users’ preferences and browsing habits. Promotional writing won’t be read. Long text blocks without images and keywords marked in bold or italics will be skipped. Exaggerated language will be ignored.

What makes you engage with a piece of content or out in the world? What elements draw you in and what missteps turn you off? Think about these questions and you’ll be on your way to creating cool designs.

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Pardon has been a technology enthusiast his entire life and has spent the better part of last decades in information technology and security, and he writes with an aim to remove some of the "mysticism" from the cyber world. He’s the Editor at Techunzipped. Away from the keyboard, you're likely to find him playing with the latest gadgets or the latest Game.

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