Monthly Archives: March 2015

Keep up or Log off

There are literally millions of websites by graphic designers looking to be the next Banksy of the online world. Reality is, very few make it. How does one designer stand out among millions?

Adapting and evolving your site to maintain your edge and stay current is one the most effective ways to not only keep up, but stay ahead of the crowd. This isn’t easy and takes a lot of hard work to play creative hard ball with so many talented designers out there looking for their big break.

But you can breathe easy and put down your watercolours, because there’s an easier way and you’ll find that building bridges is far more effective than burning them when it comes to staying on top.

Get Involved!

Social media isn’t just for useless procrastinating but connecting and building relationships with other designers. Take an interest in online communities, join forums and subscribe to blogs to stay up-to-date with emerging trends and receive interesting feedback to help you implement new ideas and improve your work.

Stay Passionate!

So many designers lose their momentum and give up after starting out and finding themselves falling behind and become nothing more than a fly on the wall. They focus on their failures, their competitors, their future and what’s to be gained instead of why they fell in love with creative design in the first place. Stay passionate and love your work, and it won’t be long before others see it in everything you do.

Be Educated!

Nothing opens doors the way education can. Expand your knowledge base and absorb information like a sponge to water. As a designer, having a solid understanding of code and back end development helps set the foundations for learning and implementing new designs far more seamlessly than working in sporadic chunks. Having a stronger knowledge of your craft broadens your horizons and opens you up to inspiration far more effectively than focusing on how the pretty colours blend together.

Website Blunders That Businesses Should Avoid

Most businesses are recognising the importance of having a functional and engaging website but still fail to deliver one. Listing all of the common mistakes would be impractical so I’ve shortlisted my top five.

  1. Overcrowding the homepage

The purpose of the homepage is to get the user to page two. If you have an overcrowded homepage, it can send too many mixed signals and the user is left feeling overwhelmed. Naturally when a user is feeling this way, they will leave and find another website. This should be every business’ greatest fear when it comes to designing the homepage!

Avoid having any unnecessary animations or videos, large graphical images, dense text, hard to read fonts and too many calls to action. You want to be able to convey succinctly what your company does and how it can help the user to encourage them to explore deeper into your website.

  1. Hosting out of date content

Consumers are constantly looking for new information so if they land on your website and you have out of date content, you instantly lose credibility. You can keep your content updated by adding a blog or providing new product information. In doing so, you will also increase your search engine rankings.

  1. Not optimising for multiple devices

Most people these days are searching for businesses on-the-go. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, this is going to make it a lot harder for the user to navigate your website. According to a study conducted by Google, 50% of people said even if they like a business, they will use them less often if the website isn’t mobile-friendly.

  1. Using templates and doing your own website design

I know there are plenty of how to guides and free templates to do your own website design, however keep in mind that these templates are shared by thousands of other companies. This can potentially affect your branding position and make it harder for customers to identify your brand from the other companies using the same template.

  1. Forgetting about the users

Having an aesthetically pleasing website is definitely a huge advantage, however you can’t forget about the website’s usability. You could have the most attractive website in your industry, but if the users can’t navigate around your website easily finding the information they’re after, they won’t be staying on your page long.