This post introduces “The Effective Website” a bi-monthly column I’ve begun writing for Multichannel Merchant magazine. This month’s column is about social tagging and e-commerce.

Recommended for your web developers: Joel Spolsky’s little book on usability, “User Interface Design for Programmers.”

We’re migrating our corporate site to Wordpress. In this technical post, we discuss using static pages in Wordpress, breadcrumbs, contextual nav, and helpful plugins.

HistoryCrumbs are a line of links atop a webpage showing the last 8 pages visited.

“If you have $100k to spend on web analytics, buy a $10k package and hire a $90k analyst.”

Nice post from Denny Hatch citing Robert Scotton clear web writing: simpler words, shorter sentences, less fog.

One great steal-this-usability-idea for retailers from Google WebMasterCentral is the flyweight “rate this tool” survey.

Jeremy Keith’s “Scripting: Web Design with JavaScript and the Document Object Model” is really decent. I like this site.

Rant: Why does viewing a PDF through IE or FireFox cause the browser and often the desktop to come to a grinding halt for several seconds, even on a decent computer?

The site provides several screens of simple geometric shapes and asks you click on the page. At the end of the survey, the site shows you where others have clicked by superimposing dots on the image; the density of the dots provide a natural 2D histogram

I just got back from my first Ad:Tech, in Chicago where I gave a talk on website conversion tactics.

The CSS train is here. Get on board.

In the traditional offline world, direct marketers have the mnemonic, “list-offer-package.” The largest factor in determining the success of your marketing effort is the list, or the population you’re reaching.

Why are some websites so good and some so marginal when it comes to usability? After judging this year’s finalists for the MultiChannel Merchant Best-Of-The-Web awards, one sees some very large sites dropping the ball, and some tiny sites hitting homeruns. When it comes to web usability, you don’t always have to be big to be great.