Grow Your Site, Keep Your Users

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“EBay struggles with its fast growth, constantly turning to users to gauge new designs and taxonomies. The company also tries to keep its Web site design as simple as possible so users can find what they’re looking for quickly.”

I get this blurry vision that ten years from now, web sites will be skinnable. Separation of content, structure and presentation will not be limited to being a productivity must-have used in the backend of web sites. Rather, as a user you’ll have a choice of templates that you will customize and apply to sites.

Think of browser-based preferences (eg. I use IE’s accessibility options to surf the whole web in resizable Verdana) breeding with adaptive taxonomies and Winamp skins. It will go beyond changing the looks, and will apply to navigation options, ie. you’ll have standard tools to see the site as a map, a directory or whatever else helps you find your way around.

01/19/10: CSS skinning: let your visitors choose the style

03/06/02: Xanga Skins.

03/03/02: BlogSkins.

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