Web Design Community News
One of the most popular lines from the 1989 film Field of Dreams is “If you build it, he will come.” A great quote from an excellent movie. Sadly, this quote does not hold true to that of web design. Building a website will not get you visitors and writing in a blog will not get you readers. You must advertise and promote your website accordingly. Today, with the help of social media, gaining publicity has become increasingly easier. There are however many outlets that are often quickly overlooked. One of these outlets being user submitted community news. Continue Reading »
Strategizing Web Content
When it comes to designing a website, content is often overlooked, but why? Very rarely do users browse the web looking for a good design or decent experience. Users come for the content. Not giving them what they want with poorly written content will frustrate users. Not only does it waste their time, but your time as well.
Writing for the Web: The Right Strategy presented by Shay Howe
Refresh Chicago, January 12th, 2010
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10 Quick E-Commerce Tips
Online sales are growing rapidly year over year and now more than ever is a great time to have an e-commerce website. While maintaining and optimizing an e-commerce website may be quite the assignment, taking little steps in the right direction will greatly help the overall improvement. Begin with small improvements you can tackle quickly. Then move on to more complex tasks that may require extra effort. Slowly, but surely, you will fine tune your website into an outstanding website. Outlined here are 10 quick e-commerce tips to get you on your way.
Start Your E-commerce Optimization
1. Accommodate All Users Types
When a user visits your website it is virtually impossible to know where they stand within the purchase process. Some users are just browsing around gathering information for a future purchase while other users may be in a dead heat to make a purchase as quickly and easily as possible. Take note of all the potential user types and try to accommodate them all equally. Continue Reading »
Smart Email Marketing
One of the most valuable resources you have is sitting right under your nose and you may not even know it. What is this indispensable resource you may ask? Email marketing. For those of you who are currently practicing email marketing you may already know of the potential benefits at hand. For those of you who are not, please take note, this may greatly increase the performance of your business.
Many companies are profitable simply from their email marketing campaigns alone. With help of these time tested methods and a touch of your own fine-tuning you too can earn extra profit as well. Broken down here are the two parts to smart email marketing: Sending and Ensuring Delivery of Emails, as well as, Considerations for Designing Emails.
Sending and Ensuring Delivery of Emails
Send Emails on a Consistent Time Table
When you send your emails on a regular basis you create a pattern of which readers will become familiar with. The less likely you are to catch readers by surprise the lower your non-subscription rate will be. Internet service providers (ISPs) will also take note of regular sending patterns and credit you accordingly. Continue Reading »
Writing User Friendly Content
When it comes to online copy content is king. And this king is one of the determining factors in how successful your website is. Simply enough, if your copy is not up to par users will not read your content nor will they do business with you. Furthermore they are likely to never return to your website. Having good content will make a world of difference.
Qualities of Great Web Content
1. Give Users a Summary
Before diving into the nitty-gritty give users a summary of what they are about to read. This will allow them to make sure your topic is worth their time. If you have written your summary successfully they will continue to read. Continue Reading »
How To Stay Motivated
These days finding inspiration is easy with help from hundreds of design blogs. With a few simple clicks you have an endless supply of inspiration right at your fingertips. The real trick is finding motivation and, further more, staying motivated. Please do not get the wrong idea. Inspiration can serve as great motivation, however there is more to it. Staying motivated is a practice and requires more effort than ambiguously cruising for inspiration. Continue Reading »
Working With A Bad Client
As a web designer you are bound and determined to at one point and time come across a troublesome client. There are know-it-all clients, the low-tech clients, the day-late clients, and many more. No matter what their nature may be they exist and seem to come by all too often. Learning how to communicate with these clients can immensely change the outcome of your day-to-day productivity as well as your overall success.
Above All, Communication is Key
1. Start With a Fresh Slate
Carrying an attitude with clients is quickly going to ruin your career. Every time you approach a discussion, email, or call from a client you should do so with a good attitude and a positive mindset. Working with a bad attitude is only going to produce bad results and further fuel the flames. Keep your head up! Continue Reading »
Universal Website Usability Rules
Present Information and Media in a Recognizable Manner
Provide Text Alternatives – Any images, videos, or non-text based media presented to the user must have a text alternative or accompanying text.
Make Content Adaptable – Today information is spread across a wide spectrum including computers, mobile devices, and so forth. Make sure your content is adaptable to all of these spectrums without losing information or composition. Continue Reading »
Checkout Process Design
The checkout process has become widely known over the years on the internet and making purchases online is fairly common for most households. With such popularity you would think the checkout process has been nearly perfected, however astonishingly 59% of all users abandon the checkout process. This could be for a number of reasons but the most important being users are not given a clear direction through the process. This leads users to get confused, frustrated, and abandon the process. Ideally an easier, friendlier, and dependable checkout process will do the trick and increase conversions.
Checkout processes are fairly dynamic and span across multiple pages. Making a change to one step may affect another. While designing a checkout process it is important that you take all of the steps into consideration and design the checkout process all the way through, not skipping any steps in-between. A few design suggestions to take into account include:
Acknowledge common checkout process goals.
While the checkout process is most commonly used for the exchange of money for goods or services, it can also be used to accept donations, take membership payments, or to even transfer money into a virtual equivalent. Make sure you know the primary goal and function of your checkout process.
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Website Form Design
Forms are the biggest areas of abandonment on the internet. Reason being they are boring, ask for too many personal details, and are only a step toward the end. However much of the internet is widely based around forms including everything from login to contact forms and online purchase to social networking comment forms. All in all the more satisfying forms you design and the easier they are for users to complete the better results you will see.
Forms are supposed to be practical and serviceable, not an artistic expression. The main purpose behind designing a form is solving a problem including how to get users to input their information in the easiest way possible. It is not to say that forms should not be pretty, they should. It is all a matter of putting everything together. A few suggestions to follow when putting together a form include:
Acknowledge common form goals.
The main goal for any form is to be filled out and submitted. Different forms will have different specific goals, for example a newsletter subscription form has the primary goal of obtaining marketing information, especially an email address. Be aware of the forms broad and specific goals.
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