Branding and identity

  • The ESRC logo is on the homepage and other main entry pages
  • The correct version of the ESRC logo is used
  • The ESRC logo is a clickable link to the ESRC homepage
  • Your logo is a clickable link to your homepage
  • The ESRC logo is at the top left of your pages (not essential) 


  • Content is grouped into logical sections with clear and meaningful titles 
  • There is a clear hierarchy of pages
  • Consistent layout is used across all pages


  • Clear, prominent links are provided to main sections and important pages, eg by using top and side navigation menus and bars
  • Navigation options are consistent on all pages
  • Links to related content are included

Homepage design

  • Prominent links to key content are provided on the homepage
  • Latest news and activities are showcased


  • All fonts are easy to read, eg Arial or Verdana
  • Consistent font styles are used across your website 


  • All colours are compatible, accessible and non-clashing
  • Fonts and background colours contrast with each other


  • Alternative (alt) text is used for all images
  • Heading styles are used for page titles, headings and sub-headings
  • Headings follow a logical hierarchy
  • Clear, short and descriptive titles are used for page titles, headings, subheadings and link titles
  • File types and sizes are included in download links, eg PDF, 45Kb
  • Justified alignment isn't used for text
  • All tables are accessible 

Browser compatibility

  • The website displays properly in Internet Explorer (8 and above), Firefox, Chrome and Safari

Screen resolution

  • The website displays properly across all screen resolutions, especially resolutions of 800x600 pixels and higher.

Page load times

  • All web pages load quickly (in less than 10 seconds).


  • All content is user-focused, rather than inward-focused
  • All content is written in plain English 
  • Punctuation and grammar are used correctly 
  • Content style and formatting is consistent 
  • Content is presented in short paragraphs 
  • All pages are kept short, ideally less than 500 words 
  • Short sentences are used 
  • Headings and subheadings are used 
  • Bullet points are used for lists 
  • Content isn’t repeated in different pages 
  • No text is underlined 
  • No unnecessary text or clutter is included 
  • All download files are well-written, consistent and accessible 

Completing key tasks

You must ensure that your website users can easily find out:

  • what research you are involved in
  • who funds your research
  • how to contact you for information about your research
  • what the impacts and findings of your research have been so far
  • how to keep up-to-date with your work (eg through news on your website, newsletters, RSS feeds and social media)

Maintaining your website

  • All features and functionality work
  • All links are active and relevant
  • All content is up-to-date
  • Content such as news items and blogs are regularly updated