Every month HOW scours the web to discover the top design websites. We’re looking for the best promo sites, as well as design tools and resources.
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Web Designer SEO
* Learn what is MIST vs what is Gorilla.
* Design to Win Hearts, Minds and Loyalty.
|Suggested by Sanjana Singh|
Great TechMagnate.com Post
Agree with all 8 of these TechMagnate.com Great Web Design tips and would add two more:
2. Creative (Develop A Process)
3. Organization (Wireframes & Nav)
4. Innovation (Include Some)
5. Responsive Design (Get Some)
6. Simplify, Simplify, Simplify7. Don’t Stop Testing
& Scenttrail's 2 Additions
9. Calls-To-Actions & Keywords are your friends.
10. Know your 80:20 Rules.
Here is our Curagmai.com post on how to find your website's 80:20 Rule: http://www.curagami.com/magica-thinking/new-seo/finding-80-20-rule/
Google trends helps redesign websites. We used Google Trends to understand headphones category for the Moon-Audio.com redesign launched the day after Valentine's Day. We share trends tips on how to use this powerful FREE tool in this 3 minute video and Curagami post.
Ecommerce Master Class: Conversion Metrics
There are only a handful of ways to increase sales from a website. Good idea to START with increasing your conversions since sending more traffic into a leaky boat is a fool's errand.
In this short Ecommerce Master Class Video we share three of our favorite tactics to increase conversion:
* Ubiquitous Free Shipping.
* Best Sellers.
As you design your next website make sure you DESIGN IN these three ideas and your site will convert better. Conversion is a magic number too. Tiny improvements in conversion create HUGE benefits to your bottom line as costs go down and profit go up.
Websites don't age well. Sooner than you think it's time for a web redesign, but don't forget the 5 CSFs (Critical Success Factors) shared here.
5 Critical Success Factors For When Your Web Redesign
This post features behind the scenes notes from our http://www.Moon-Audio.com redesign. Picture above is a "Before" and "After" view of Moon Audio's website. We spent a lot of time working on the site's information architecture.
We spent so much time because we have a lot of customer data now thanks to Google Analytics. We used that data to find the 80-20 rule and kept that finding in mind as we changed site navigation and categories.
This kind of "What Business are we In" work goes to the first two bullet point - Start with Why and Listen To Customer Votes. Another goal, not stated in the Curagami post, was to create an immediate sense of "I'm in the right place" scenttrail.
Ecommerce, especially in popular categories such as #headphones and #electronics, have two kinds of sties. One site is informational making money from passing customers over to sellers. Cnet.com is an example of a content site making money by capturing attention with great content and then passing customers on to a site where they can buy what they've just researched.
The New Ecommerce
We see the New Ecommerce merging Cnet and commerce to build sustainable online community. But there's a problem. Either of those missions is a full-time job - commerce, content or community. Merchants will need to delegate content creation to trusted members of their community and find ways to merchandise content and commerce more seamlessly than ever before.
The new Moon-Audio.com begins the move toward sustainable online content, commerce and community by clearly signalling THIS IS A STORE. Soon we hope to increase the signal to THIS IS A STORE WHERE YOU CAN LEARN TOO and finally THIS IS A COMMUNITY WHERE YOU CAN BUY AND LEARN.
Mashing up, curating and listening are the new skills needed to be a successful online merchant. No ecom site is GREAT at content, commerce and community...yet. Moon-Audio.com will fire on all three ideas over the next few months. Stay tuned.
7 Easy To Forget Simple Ideas
As you design your ecommerce store keep in mind these easy to forget but sure to make you more money online commerce tips:
* Sight Lines - visitor eyes go where your models eyes go so point them at something good.
* CTAs - don't be afraid to tell your customers what to do with Calls To Action.
* Email - email marketing is the ability to communicate with your tribe without asking permission from a middleman.
* Internal Search - tells you if your navigation is working and what customers are looking for so use data from internal search.
* 80:20 Rule - a small set almost always controls a larger set online so find your 80:20 rules and design, merchandise and sell to them.
* Keywords - make sure you use keywords in your navigation and use a rewrite tool to show visitors one set of keys and spiders another.
* Community - create an ASK (for help) and listen more than you talk and online community will form.
@David Amerlandis one of the great THINKERS of our generation and he gives much of his work away (as we all do, but his thoughts are worth more than most). Every Sunday David Amerland on G+ shares a “Sunday Read”. Since my prism leans toward web marketing I see lessons in today’s Sunday Read for Internet marketers and web designers.
David is discussing "life design", but web designers would be well advised to watch the TED talks he references and build empathy into their lives and websites. David is a "must follow". Find his blog, twitter and GPlus links in the post and follow him if you want to learn how all of this stuff really works.
Parallax scrolling is a popular design technique used on websites in order to create an illusion of movement on the screen, to help engage website visitors and move visitor yes where you want them AND parallax scrolling plays beautifully on mobile devices!.
Here are 60 examples of great parallax scrolling.
Bait & Switch Parallax
Earlier today we shared a Scoop on ecommerce web design trends (http://sco.lt/5bADXl ). CycleMon is a good example of falling in love with an idea, parallax scrolling, and forgetting ecommerce basics such as 1. DON'T MAKE ME THINK and 2. You have 9 Seconds to tell me what you are all about.
Cyclemon forces customers to scroll to the bottom of a long list of designs BEFORE they proceed to a Cafe-Press like store. WRONG. Don't be so impressed with your designs you make me spend precious TIME scrolling through ALL of them.
OR if you do so ask me a question. What design best describes you? Cyclemon could use a tag or make their images clickable to clue their customers faster. Don't FORCE your customers to follow YOUR line through the forest of your products.
And, don't bait and switch. When Cyclemon LOOKS one way during the scroll and another after the click they violate the scenttrail rule - whatever is on the other side of a click must resemble and amplify what is on the other side.
Cyclemon violates the rule because they leave the ecommerce to after a long scroll and click. This is like inviting an insurance salesman to lunch. Be more clear upfront and you won't violate the Scenttrail Rule.
Oh and one more thing. The Cyclemon page defined our laptop as mobile. Make sure your sniffer is reading correctly before you expose it to the world or you lose trust and legitimacy both things needed if customers are going to open their wallets.
Best About Us Pages
Team Curagami is looking for great About Us pages. Our fav is http://www.rei.com/about-rei.html. hits all the "pillars" of a great about page including:
* It SOUNDS like them.
* Includes A Creation Story.
* Guiding Values Statement.
* Save The World Cause.
* Movement Outline (so people want to JOIN).
* Some external confirmation ( for REI).
REI.com's About page has each of these "Great About Page" pillars. The page is also social, aware of itself (thus the question about how does it land at the bottom) and community focused.
By using a picture from a customer, noting the customer's name and paining the page with social share widgets REI.com says, "We are a community, a movement you should join if you too care about having fun in the great outdoors".
Well done About Page that tells THEIR story beautifully and invites customers in. Share your favorite About Us page and, if we use your suggestion, we will send a Tech Cures Cancer Tee along with our thanks.
Find our Video about About Us pages on YouTube
Find our Ask for Help Haiku Deck here
Send to martin(at)Curagami.com or Tweet with tag.
Asking the right questions in the right way is key to online marketing success. How SMBs can compete with Amazon isn't as important as what is their why and how are they learning from Amazon's web marketing power.
Running into the web team from http://www.MoonandLola.com today after meeting them last week helped us realize we needed to add slides to our presentation. We HATE IT when that happens (lol).
Last week we spoke with about 40 Small to Medium Sized Businesses (SMBs) in a conference sponsored by FedEx and seeing the team at the Digital Summit today jogged our thinking. We forgot to discuss the importance of PLATFORM thinking.
We all know winning platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and my favorite Scoop.it. Platforms are winning because they play the "new SEO" game beautifully. We added Video Notes on YouTube to explain all of this (https://youtu.be/tSHeIxtrs4g ).
Find the Haiku Deck here: http://shar.es/1g7Kfb
We're boiling down 13 of the most prominent web design trends emerging in 2015. Will they change your understanding of a "modern website"? You be the judge.
Marty (@Scenttrail) Notes:
1. Make it big (Agree but not as easy to do well as they make it look).
2. The multimedia experience (agree and same as #1)
3. The Parallax effect mutations (Horizontal Scrolling) Agree
4. Animated storybook (Agree and cool).
5. Flat design (agree & effect of mobile)
6. No more boxes (Agree and YES!).
7. Tiles (Pinterest effect and agree).
8. Navigation widgets (Agree!)
9. Integrating Google maps (Agree where appropriate).
10. Mashup interfaces (AGREE grab those APIs :).
11. Minimize (Seems to contradict #1, but agree).
12. World Wide Wait (speed is going to be KEY).
13. Designer automation (Agree, can do a lot with templates now).
Gary Marshall shares 50 of the best free web tools to help build your site, from well known tools as WordPress and Drupal through to some you may have never considered
Lots of "new to us" tools on this comprehensive list of free tools to use in web design. "Free", in some cases, means freemium or you get to start for free and need to upgrade for more advanced features. Nothing wrong with this "try and get addicted" model since you don't invest in tools that don't get traction.
Haiku Deck Zuru uses the power of artificial intelligence to transform your ideas into polished presentations. Become a charter member to get 6 months free.
Haiku Deck is one of my favorite visual marketing tools. Our 41 "decks" have generated more than 100,000 views. We got the idea about slides being a new marketing channel by working with this magic wand of a tool.
Now they've got something new up their sleeve and the entry fee is a whopping $30 bucks (lol). Let's see, 100K views for $30 bucks, we signed up today and suggest you do the same. Whenever their new tool comes out of beta we know it will be worth many multiples of $30 bucks :). M
In this article, Kendra Schaefer examines the things all web professionals should know before swan-diving into the Chinese market, including how mobile-only social platforms have become the revolutionary new frontier of Chinese web design, and who’s designing beautiful websites in China today.
Cool post. China is ahead of us on MOBILE leaving "Mobile First" for "mobile only" and they take more web design risks that pan out more often than you think.