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Is Your Right Column Too Long?

While related links, listboxes and widgets can be powerful tools for presenting your content, the right-hand column of your page should never be longer than the center area.

Wrangling your right column may require some tough decisions.

There will come a time when you’d like to highlight (or you’re pressured to highlight) the office’s next 5 events, the 7 most recent announcements and that program for which you just built a spiffy new widget. It simply can’t all fit. Stop us if you’ve heard this one: if you highlight everything, you highlight nothing.

Try these techniques for shortening your right-hand column:

  • shorten a listbox by limiting them to display 3, 2 or even 1 item at a time
  • shorten or eliminate the summaries for your Events and Announcements
  • find other high-traffic pages within your site to sprinkle widgets
  • rotate your right-column features based on the seasonal traffic to the site

For more formatting tips, visit the Writing & Style Guide. There you’ll find best practices to help you create content to draw visitors in and showcase your department’s best attributes.