My good buddy Jon sent me a great link continuing a recent theme of success through ugly design. The Surprising Truth About Ugly Websites has some nice insights. For example, an ugly design conveys a very powerful message:
The idea of an ugly website could present a positive message never crossed my mind. Yet the fact is, ugly websites do have the ability to present the perfect marketing message. What is that message?
You can trust us. We are a family run business and do not employ a marketing team. Our website is simple, but functional. Most importantly, our goal is to serve our customers, not necessarily learn HTML.
I don't think that ugly sites are necessarily "functional" (look at MySpace, it's neither pretty nor functional), but I do agree with the notion that ugly design has the potential to convey a powerful message of authenticity.