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Links and resources

The list of websites and books that follow are resources that we consistently use as references whenever we build a new websites or redesign an existing ones. These resources contain books, marketing companies, and reputable search engine optimization (SEO) pros that will help website owners build search-engine friendly websites that enhance the user experience (UX).


Citation Labs
Outstanding link prospecting and link building tools to help deliver qualified traffic to your websites. (Garrett French was one of my former editors...he KNOWS link building.)

Information Architecture Institute (IAI)
Non-profit volunteer organization dedicated to advancing and promoting information architecture (IA).

Search Engine Land
If you only bookmark one website about search engine marketing, this is the one. The most reputable source of information on the search engines, Search Engine Watch is a "must have" for all website designers and online marketers.

Search Engine Watch
Another great resource for news about search engine optimization (SEO), search engine advertising (also known as search engine marketing or SEM), and search engines.

User Interface Engineeering's (UIE) All You Can Learn Library
One of the best places to learn about usability and the user experience online.
Government website for improving the user experience (UX). Site contains how-to usability articles and tools as well as downloadable templates.

WebAIM Color Contrast Checker
Test your web pages for readability and accessibility with this helpful tool.



Designing Visual Interfaces: Communication Oriented Techniques
Kevin Mullet and Darrell Sano
SunSoft Press

A must-read book about visual design. Learn how to create natural visual hierarchies on your website that match user mental models. IMHO, a great book for newbies as well as professional web designers. Usability and UX pros will find it helpful, too.

Ignore the publication date. This book is about visual design PRINCIPLES and FUNDAMENTALS. Every web designer should know these principles.


Designing Web Navigation
James Kalbach
O'Reilly Media

Thoroughly written for today's web environment, this bestselling book offers the best look at a critical topic of website development: navigation design. Learn how to best create and format the 5 types of website navigation.


Designing Web Usability: The Practice of Simplicity
Jakob Nielsen
New Riders Publishing

Search engines, journalists, editors, and users prefer sites that are simple and easy to use. Though not all advice presented in this book is search-engine friendly, the information will help website owners create sites that enhance the end-user experience and increase sales conversions.


Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability
Steve Krug
New Riders Publishing

If I had to select only one book that would be required reading in a website design class, this one would be it. Even though Don't Make Me Think is classified as a usability book, it is a must-read for all user experience designers who plan on creating user-friendly websites. Provides usability reviews and site design problem-solving.


Homepage Usability: 50 Websites Deconstructed
Jakob Nielsen and Marie Tahir
New Riders Publishing

Usability gurus Jakob Nielson and Marie Tahir present 113 guidelines for a user-friendly home page and analyze the home pages of popular websites such as and Microsoft. Great book for determining the effectiveness of your home page.

113 Guidelines for Homepage Usability (online)


Information Architecture for the World Wide Web: Designing Large-Scale Websites
Louis Rosenfeld and Peter Morville
O'Reilly Media


Information Architecture for the Web and Beyond
Louis Rosenfeld, Peter Morville, and Jorge Arango
O'Reilly Media

The Polar Bear Book has been THE industry standard for information architecture. Required reading for everyone involved in a website project: information architects, navigation designers, web designers/developers, usability/UX pros, and online marketers.


If you would like to suggest a link for this section, or for more information about our search engine marketing, training, and search engine advertising services, please fill out our quote form or call us at 847-426-4256.


Buy Search Engine Visibility book

Visit the Search Engine Visibility companion website

Buy When Search Meets Web Usability

Visit the Search Meets Usability companion website