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Chapter 1. Customer-Centered Web Design > Myth 4: Good Design Takes Too Long an...

Myth 4: Good Design Takes Too Long and Costs Too Much

Customer-centered design does add some up-front costs because you will be talking to customers, creating prototypes, getting feedback on those prototypes, and so on. However, customer-centered design can considerably reduce back-end costs—that is, costs incurred as a result of responding to customer dissatisfaction, through help desk calls, returned purchases, general Web site maintenance, and so on. Evaluate the trade-off between spending more time and money at the start of your project and losing revenue over the long run.

Customer-centered design can even reduce the total development time and cost because it focuses on finding problems in the early stages of design when they are still easy to repair, preventing them from ever causing serious problems that are time-consuming and expensive to fix. We know that your team will not always have the time and budget to do everything possible, so we try to lay out the trade-offs among the different actions you could take to improve your site. This book discusses many effective approaches you can use to test your assumptions and to test your Web site, to make sure that it is a winner in the long run.

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