A Web portal is a site on the World Wide Web that typically provides personalised capabilities to its visitors, providing a pathway to other content. It is designed to use distributed applications, different numbers and types of middleware and hardware to provide services from a number of different sources. In addition, business portals are designed to share collaboration in workplaces. A further business-driven requirement of portals is that the content be able to work on multiple platforms such as personal computers, personal digital assistants (PDAs), and cell phones.
A solid portal framework (and there are many good ones in the market today) provides a technical base from which you can manage, implement, and control the distribution of applications to all of your users-both internal and external. However, access to applications alone does not guarantee a usable portal. The standard, out-of-the-box design of a portal's user interface can often be complex, confusing, and even overwhelming to the user.
When designing a portal at Sigma Infotech, we ensure that it adheres to the following rules:
- Good orientation for first time users
- Easy to find information
- Not overwhelming users with functionality on one page
- Easy navigation a key to portal design
- Adhere and re-visit the scope of the portal regularly
- Consistency across the portal - Functionality, Navigation, Usability
- Control to the portal administrators