The effect of contrasting selected graphical elements of a web page on information retrieval time
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As online presence plays an increasingly important role in corporate success, the high usability of a company’s website becomes one of its most valuable assets. The time required to reach the needed information, which plays a key role among the many factors that influence a website’s usability, depends to a significant degree on the site’s design. The perception of the visual aspects of design is in turn influenced by various so-called “visual means”. This term encompasses a range of methods, procedures or techniques of using elements of graphical design to achieve the desired effect, which should be applied according not only to the informational content of the site, but also to the designer’s overall vision, i.e. the graphical layout of the site. Therefore, it can be said that a usable website design is largely dependent on the site’s composition, understood as maintaining the appropriate relations between its form and content. One of methods for increasing the visibility of a given graphical element is highlighting its distinctness, difference from other elements. This method is called contrasting. This article presents the methodology and a discussion of the results of original research into the impact of contrasting chosen text elements on the home page of a website on the time needed by a user to reach the information "privileged" by such a procedure.
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