BLOG: Sex and other words that sell

I love it when you’re on a plane, with a book, and it starts with “I’ve worked hard to keep this book short - hopefully short enough you can read it on a long plane ride.”

BLOG: Sex and other words that sell

Steve Krug, author of “Don’t Make Me Think” is well regarded as an industry expert in website usability. He makes some of the following useful suggestions and you can also take a look at his site www.sensible.com

Trigger words


We don’t read pages - we scan them. We look for words or phrases which catch our eye. Busy, we also know we don’t need to read everything. We have certain trigger words hardwired into our nervous system - free, sale, sex, and our own name. Best practice design principles help remove any mental chatter. We don’t need anything extra added to our cognitive workload.  At the first glance of a website we should have the answer to these four questions:

  • What is this?

  • What can I do here?

  • What do they have here?

  • Why should I be here?



  • Make a strong first impression

    We need to make things obvious & remove the mental chatter. How do we do this?

    • create a clear visual hierarchy on each page. Things related logically should be related visually

    • take advantage of conventions. Users of websites expect consistent navigation, for example.

    • break pages into clearly defined areas

    • make anything clickable obvious

    • minimise noise and visual clutter

    • omit needless words. “If I had more time I would have written you a shorter letter” - variously attributed to Blaise Pascal, Mark Twain, or Winston Churchill

    The home page is your opportunity to make a strong first impression. It defines your site identity & mission, it should entice me with good stuff about what’s inside, and establish credibility & trust.


    We can help

    At PracticePlus we specialise in websites for accountants. With an experienced team of strategists, designers and developers we ensure your website is optimised to full potential, including:

    • Helping visitors instantly understand the value you offer

    • Creating an easy to follow site map so visitors don’t get lost

    • Keeping page layouts clean and easy on the eye

    • Writing content that compels people toward action

    • Creating designs that bring your content to life

    If you’d like to learn more about the process and the results then get in touch. We’d love to speak with you.

    Michelle Polglase PracticePlus

    As General Manager for PracticePlus, Michelle is inspired by innovation and on a mission to provide the best website solutions for accountants and bookkeepers globally.