October 6, 2010 § Leave a comment

What I like about sites like USA Today is that they don’t go overboard with their images. This might be the minimalist in me talking (again), but while they don’t use their images sparingly, whoever designed the site made a pretty good judgement call when they decided not to assign every single story with a picture. Like, say, Patch seems to do.

There’s a picture for the top story, and links to other recent headlines. Below that, there’s a little slide menu which links to different kinds of media– photos and videos and interactive charts. Below that, there are boxes with links to different sections, and a sampling of the recent stories within each section.

Instead of providing a picture for every single story, which would probably make it easier to just casually browse through but less professional-looking, USA Today displays a thumbnail relating to the most recent, or most important story in the lineup. It draws your attention, gives you enough time to read the headline relating to it, and if you’re interested? You click.

When you see a picture of a football player, you know it’s a story in the sports section, and if it’s a picture of money or, well, diamonds– you know it’ll impact your wallet somehow. Instead of showing off pretty pictures to prove a point, or just to act as eye-candy, USA Today uses images sparingly, with precision. If you really want to see the pictures for a certain story, when it isn’t displayed on the front page? Just go check out the story!


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