Archive for the ‘Website Design’ Category

13 More Sleeps Until The New Crawler Creeps

By Published 7 April 2015

If you press your ear up close to the World Wide Web you will hear a lot of chatter and the sound of an uneasy jungle! This noise has been slowly getting louder and the message is clear ‘The 21st of April is coming’!

So what is all this racket about?

Well Google is due to launch its mobile crawler which will index mobile friendly websites! (more…)

The Google Clock is Ticking

By Published 5 March 2015

Despite all of the noise on the internet over the last few months about making sure that your website is mobile friendly, it’s amazing how many haven’t got around to it yet!

Google (other search engines are available) is now starting to slap a few wrists! It’s a bit like leaving your car in a public carpark for too long, you just know that you’re going to get a ticket! Well if you leave your website alone and immobilised for too long, Google will penalise you! (more…)

Hackers Cost the Economy $100 bn Each Year. 4 Ways to Minimise Your Risk

By Published 4 February 2015

In recent articles posted by the BBC and the Guardian they highlight the ongoing plight that small businesses face to maintain the security on their websites. The Guardian cites that hacks cost the American economy $100 Bn each year, highlighting that it’s not just the Corporates of the world who are being targeted, its small businesses too. Yes, that’s you and me! These hackers don’t differentiate. (more…)

What is good web design ACTUALLY about?

By Published 26 January 2015

So you’ve thought about it long and hard for a while now, and you’ve finally come to the big decision. You want a new website.

That’s brilliant. Everyone loves new things! Now what?

Well, the next question is what is your new website for? It’s general knowledge that when clients come to us asking for a new website, we know that they want it to be the best. No, not the best, they want it to be the most brilliant, extravagant, prettiest, hard-working website out there. That’s brilliant too; no designer enjoys making boring bog-standard websites. But, I ask again, what is your website for? (more…)

The Importance of Weaponising Mobile Technology

By Published 19 September 2014

The days of desktop dominance are over.

We are approaching a tipping point in mobile technology and with change, we as businesses must learn to adapt. We’ve touched on a similar subject on ways to keep your business relevant and although this is a relative topic, in this post we want to emphasise how moving forward with mobile technology and content marketing is crucial for your business to develop in line with the technology era.

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Ways to keep your business relevant

By Published 3 September 2014

If you care about your company’s future, it’s important to pay attention to emerging trends and get a head start on the next big marketing craze.

In the evolving world of content marketing, change is good.

So good in fact that according to research by the Content Marketing Institute this year, 93% of B2B (Business to Business) marketers and 90% of B2C (Business to Customer) marketers use content marketing.
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4 Steps to Reach your Target Audience

By Published 29 August 2014

It’s a question that every business should be asking itself, because without an audience, your content can’t have any impact. You need to sit down and really think about who your audience is; if you were them, how would you want to be approached?

Where would you spend most of your time online?

What would make you care enough to listen to what your company might have to say? (more…)

5 Reasons to Spruce Up Your Website and Attract Attention

By Published 15 August 2014

Technology and trends move fast and if you don’t keep up, you’ll fall behind. Revisiting and updating your website on a regular basis plays a vital part in your website’s credibility and performance and I want to show you 5 reasons of why updating your website is undeniably important.

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How to understand the basics before you engage a web designer

By Published 8 July 2014

Web design user experienceBusiness owners face a constant learning curve with technology in today’s world.  It’s not enough just being a business leader, it’s now more important than ever to have a good understanding of the social media landscape that surrounds the ever growing opportunities – to reach out and gain new clients.  And the message is clear that if you don’t jump on board this ship, it will continue to sail without you.

So when it comes to your web presence, how far should you go to understand the technology that builds your website?

I’ve often had conversations with business owners about their website and explained to them about “platform”, “WordPress”, “Custom CMS”, even email marketing, greeted with the response “… so where does that email go to?” It can be incredibly confusing if you’re not familiar with the terminology.  I often find myself repeating what I’m saying – a lot, and explaining it in ways to help make it easier to understand.

If you plan to invest in the re-development of your website in the near future, then I believe it’s important to understand some of the basics in order to know what you’re asking for.  This will be an investment for the future, so in order to compare “apples with apples” so to speak it’s good to know what you’re asking for in the first place.

So let’s take a look at some of the basic processes that are involved in building a new website:

Wireframe

A wire frame is simply a blank canvas laying out boxes to denote where you want different content and images to appear.  The layout is incredibly important as this will dictate how the development will progress.

Design

The Photoshop (PSD) design does not just include where the punchy images will go, it also includes designs for:  Text colour; Font; background colours; Heading styles and sizes (H1, H2 etc); link colours; layout.

Also, not all pages will have the same design layout.  For instance the Homepage of a website will always be different to the content pages, which will always be different to the blog page.  So layouts will need to be designed for each of these pages.

UX (User Experience)

One of the most important aspects of design in today’s web world is designing from the user’s point of view. Keeping the design clean, easy to read, easy to navigate and making sure most of all that the user experience is a good one.  Ultimately we want users to come back and re-visit the site and recommend to others.  So the UX is the most important aspect of design.

Platform

The “platform” is the software that is used for developing your website. Fewer and fewer websites now are built without using software in some form or other.  The reason for this is so that it makes it easy for the owner to update the content themselves, rather than having to go back to their web designer all the time.

Now there are a number of different platforms available that are “open source”. Open source is when software has been developed by a community and is therefore freely available to download onto the server where the website will be hosted.  Some of the most popular platforms that are used by web designers today are:   WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, Magento.  There are of course many others however these are the most popular.

Development

So now a wireframe has been created, and a design has been agreed this now needs to be converted into a real, live website!   This involves development work (HTML5, CSS, Java, PHP.. etc). In other words the language that programmers develop code in to make it look and do all the things you want it to do.  Even with the skill and expertise required, sometimes bugs can be found that need to be fixed and all this takes a fair amount of time.

Once the development has been completed then it needs to be tested. It’s important that your new website works across all the latest browsers, and is viewable on mobile devices.  We have to check all this before we can agree that the site is ready to go live.

Value for money

So in summary, when you receive a quote for your new website that may be a little higher than you thought, there will be good reason for it.  If you follow due diligence and get 3 or 4 quotes from different web design companies, then make sure they are “like for like” in order to compare prices.

You will probably find that each web company may have a different approach and use different software which makes it very difficult to compare one against the other.

If you understand what you want and what you are getting, it makes it easier to make that very important decision.