When you look at your web design what do you think about with regards to the footer? Is it the part and parcel of your overall design or is it an afterthought?
It appears to me that the majority of designers do not make sufficient use of the footer. This area is a whole new area just waiting to be discovered and utilized.
When you think about the way a foot can be used the mind can take several different leaps in the direction. Personally, I loved the use that IBM had made use of it with their one section of the site.
I was disappointed though that I had to back pedal to get back to that section when I clicked on the cloud application to read more about it. I am talking about their section of the smarter planet. I really liked the way they extended it and extended it. I think there were about 27 different icons you could click on. The possibilities here were endless. They also carried the theme of the icons through as they were all round and had the 5 splashes above them. For those that were in doubt the text below made the purpose clear. This was the first of the good footers I found, and I was on a hunt for more.
Travelocity has a good one.
Here you will find links for every one of their websites around the world. This makes it easy to get the site of your home country and in your own language. Although you might be anywhere in the world the main site will come up, unless you ask for a redirect. If you do you will still find the footer the same with all the countries listed as well as the partner sites cruises and information.
Dishizzle is one that makes a good impression.
Good enough to eat. A good food website in the San Diego area of the USA this has a great but simple footer which matches the header. This is a plain yet very well presented website, which tells you what you want to know in the shortest possible time. I would be surprised if they didn’t sell a lot of food at the three featured restaurants as a result.
Some websites such as the White House use their foot to direct you to the place you want to peruse.
It is well laid out and informational with a minimum of words and covers the entire website activities.
The New Your Times uses their footer to bring you up to date with the headlines.
In addition to this and in far smaller text underneath it, they list the full page of links that you might possibly need go from the copyright to the RSS feed.
I am continually disappointed that very few designers pay so much attention to this feature, which could be extremely useful on its own. The opportunity that is being lost by so many is to me totally amazing. Shorter pages and an inclusion of a good footer make a lot of impact on a visitor.