BlueWave Design Studio

Web Design & Development

By

Web Design Basics 101 – 2015 Edition

Your website can serve a lot of functions. For example, it can serve as a representation of your company, a lead generator or a selling machine. In this day and age, every respectable and serious company or business endeavor must have their own website. If you don’t have a website yet, this means you will have to build one.

So, what are the things that I should know about basic website building for 2015? And, what important tips that I should not ignore? If you are asking yourself these questions, then stick around as this article is going to cover the answers.

Responsive Design

Most web designers out there will often use the buzzword Responsive Design. So, what is it exactly?

Responsive Design is just a fancy term for a website that is able to adapt to the user’s gadget and/or platform.

It used to be that web designers simply developed websites for desktop or laptop use. These days, statistics show that more and more people are accessing websites via tablets or smartphones.

If your website is not able to adapt to the gadget or platform, then your website might now display properly. Ultimately, your visitors will click or press the “back” button before ever reading a word from your content.

Hence, make sure that your website puts a high priority on “Responsive Design”. Otherwise, your visitors simply leave as soon possible.

Image from mashable.com

Image from mashable.com

Navigation Bars

Navigation Bar is commonly referred as the “Nav Bar” in web design circles. As the name suggests, the Nav Bar is that bar in which different tabs are located. Some of these tabs may be “contact us”, “about us” or “services”.

Your online visitors intuitively look for the Nav Bar, which is often located near the header or other sides of the content.

The real problem is when a website developer tries to get creative with the Nav Bar. Sometimes, web developers “hide” the nav bar or have it floating around the website. Do not do this. Always remember that convenience and usability will always win over creativity when it comes to website design.

Big Image Trend

When it comes to web design, it is important to stay current with the trends. However, keep in mind that not all trends are worth following.

One of the rising trend in web design is the big image trend. Websites tend to place big images on the header or put a huge image on the background. Some would argue that it’s a good way of keeping the website “fresh”, as you simply just need to replace the image.

There is one glaring problem with the idea. Huge images take time to load. According to Google research, your visitor will likely move to a different website if your website takes more than a second to load.

When it comes to website trend, observe but do not immediately follow. Always remember the fundamentals, which states that a convenience, simple and clean website will always be preferred by online visitors.

The year is 2015 and there are new trends when it comes to web design. A few notable tips when building your website for the year 2015 are building a website with a responsive design, place the navigation bar accordingly and avoid huge images.

By

Web Design and SEO – Getting it Right

Designing a high-quality, easy to use website isn’t hard. You just need to know the right tips. So we are going to write about 6 important web design tips you should bear in mind.

Five-second Rule and Call to Action

Your website only has 5 seconds to explain what your virtual property is all about. You have to answer your visitor’s needs right away if you want to have a low bounce rate. Remember that a visitor will find it very easy to click the “back” button. You should have a compelling, easy-to-understand copy that can draw your visitors in. Your words must be concise and easy to understand.

A concise message is key to keep your visitors coming back for more. Your website must also have many “call to action” and “Buy Now” buttons. Use as many “call to action” as you can in your site’s masthead area. Is your web page long? Then you should place another “call to action” at the bottom of the page. Trust is critical if you need to sell a lot of products and services. Put as many customer testimonials as you can on your web page; this will allow you to build trust over time. Zappos is an excellent example of trust building by levering the power of customer testimonials. In addition, your website should feature some guarantees and certifications.

Image from http://www.thedrum.com/knowledge-bank/2012/12/14/why-responsive-web-design-good-seo

Image from http://www.thedrum.com/knowledge-bank/2012/12/14/why-responsive-web-design-good-seo

Fresh Content and Social Media

Your website’s content should be fresh. It means that you will be updating your content on a regular basis. By keeping your content current, your visitors will realize that your business is alive. Making your content a weapon that generates trust is always a good idea. Engage your customers with high quality content. Show your visitors your experience about the industry you work in. To establish both your brand voice and loyalty, incorporate social media into your online marketing strategy; therefore, make it easy for visitors to share your content.

Easy-to-navigate Site

Your website should be very, very easy to navigate, so your visitors should find anything they want easily. They shouldn’t scratch their heads trying to find the right button to click on. In addition, use many videos on your website. Today, more and more visitors have access to high-speed Internet, and you should take advantage of this fact. If you want to build stronger bonds with your audience, create some videos telling them what your business is all about. Creating a strong bold with your audience will allow you to build more trust. More on this here: http://searchengineland.com/the-intersection-of-seo-web-design-180308.

Security and CMSs

You can use WordPress and other CMSs to avoid reinventing the wheel. This Web Design in Cornwall, UK, features a good use of CMS in the way of WordPress and has responsive theme with many calls to action in place. Creating a website from scratch is very time-consuming. These CMSs come with many plug-ins and themes that will make your development process easier and more effective down the road. Be sure your website is SEO-optimized. The virtual property should look professional as well. You should also build a secure site. Your website shouldn’t store any financial data about your customers such as credit card numbers or SSNs.

SEO and Big Fonts

Search engine optimization is a very important part of web design. Write down your most important search terms. You should base your website title and H1 tags on these phrases. Use these phrases also in your website’s content. In addition, your checkout pages and forms shouldn’t be long. Moreover, your copy should be free from tiny words. You don’t want your visitors to squint at all times. Use your website to share your expertise. This will allow you to build even more trust over time. If you do this, you can become a leader.

Clean

Your website should be as clutter-free and clean as possible. Your website shouldn’t have too many buttons and pop-ups, as this will annoy your visitors right away. Spotlight only your must important content and keep your website simple. In addition, you should take a close look at the best websites out there. For instance, visit the best websites related to your website’s topic so that you can see their design. Your website’s colors should work together; therefore, you should use black words on a white background.

As we have said above, your website must have SEO in mind. You should also avoid tons of small fonts. In addition, your website should be clean with tons of security features. To avoid reinventing the wheel, use a CMS.

By

Essential Website Design Tips For The Coming Year

The year 2015 is almost up and the web design world is also getting ready for the coming future through the adoption of new trends. There is therefore a need to leave the old web design trends and replace them with the new trends and strategies that are coming up. User experience has been taken as an important topic by all the companies in the web design trends that are present today. The responsive type of web design has enveloped all the mobile platforms and thus webpages have some patterns that are predictable. On most mobile gadgets, websites that are good usually appear in 3-up boxes stack with a grid format of 9×9. In the year 2016, much is expected in as far as adding unique and new user experiences is concerned. Here is an in-depth analysis of some of the most popular website design tips for the coming year:
Grid Utilization in Unique Ways
It is expected that many websites will utilize the organic freedom that is found within a website. It is possible that people will start noticing photos being stacked atop one another next year. Consequently, with every action of rolling over, the image’s Z-index will shift and thus push it to the top of the pile.

Illustrations that are Custom-Drawn
It is possible that one will not necessarily rely on the icons rather bring some vector packs that exist on the web. This thought line will surely save lots of time as well as the budget but using illustrations that are custom-made will assist the website to get the feel and look that will enable it become great for telling stories. It will also create a user experience that will be memorable in the end.

Great Typefaces Accessibility
Designers have benefited a lot from Google’s font collection that is usually free of charge. Next year, designers could go a notch higher and look to getting typefaces that are not only great looking but those which are got on a budget that is limited. They will also come along with varying weights, styles as well as many more aspects that will be responsible for making the website influential and unique.

Cinemagraphs Advent
Cinemagraphs are always loved by people due to their nature of being moving photos. When a website incorporates cinemagraphs, it generally gets a new mood and also has a layer of elegance and wonder added to it. The cinemagraphs don’t take that much bandwidth like the videos and are not as well still simple shots. This is a website design tip whose integration is expected in the future.

Websites that Incorporate Storytelling
It is quite a complex thing to story-tell via a website as even the good websites that have much storytelling always require internet connections that are of high speeds. Use of a story sequence after the other could drag the user into the target product and daily activity of a site. If one relies on a story that is sensible and worth following then they will have devised a brilliant way to put their point across. The storytelling integration on websites is a kind of art that will be used in the future as a website design trend. Helping a person carry out a certain task will ignite their desire to purchase a certain product in the long run.

Using Semi-flat designs
Flat design of website designing has slowly made way for the semi-flat design. This was after Windows launched a metro style in the Windows 8 UI, a design which the designers have stuck on. Most mobile applications use this style and hence the design trend to the semi-flat design. This design will assist companies attract more users by using card concepts, subtle shadows as well as smart transitions. This trend will be great as it will eliminate the issues brought about by the flat design.

Lazy Loading
There are some websites that have continuous feed content and thus lazy loading design trend will enable the users to be able to view the immediate content on the website. This will be possible without necessarily having to load the page in its entirety. Twitter is one of the social media platforms that utilize this design trend and other social media platforms ought to follow suit. This will enable the users to view content they need by loading different parts of the page at any given time.

All the above are some of the website design trends that are expected to be utilized in the year 2016.