Are you a member? Register or Login

  1. Authors
  2. Carrie Cousins

Carrie Cousins

Carrie Cousins

Carrie is the chief writer at Design Shack, with years of experience in web and graphic design. Sports fanatic. Information junkie. Designer. True-believer in karma.

7 Ways to Design for the Unexpected

Graphics / 11 Oct 2021

7 Ways to Design for the Unexpected

What just happened? Why doesn’t that work? Does this look funny to you?

These are all questions you don’t want users to ask when interacting with your website design. But inevitably, they will. The unexpected happens all the time online. From users changing settings on their devices to slow browsing speeds, your role is to expect these unexpected challenges and offer a design solution… before they happen!

From dark mode to people taking an unexpected path through your website or app, we’re exploring lots of unexpected scenarios so you can plan for them in advance!

7 Ways Your UX Needs to Extend Beyond Your Website (And How to Do It)

UX Design / 7 Oct 2021

7 Ways Your UX Needs to Extend Beyond Your Website (And How to Do It)

User experience is a conversation that’s part of every website or app design conversation. It’s likely one of the first things you talk about when making choices about functionality, customer journeys, and visuals.

But do you talk about UX in the greater picture of designing your entire brand?

Your website or app UX needs to extend beyond the website and to everything else you produce in order to create a more consistent and unified brand presence. Thinking about user experience for all designed elements can help users connect brand materials visually and impact how people feel about your organization.

It’s time to start thinking about UX as a visual (and functional) extension of customer experience. (The examples here provide a good UX as a starting point that can extend to other parts of the brand design that you might already know. Think about how you connect their web user experiences to other elements you know them for.)

Conceptual Design: The Tool You Need to Ideate Like a Pro

Business / 4 Oct 2021

Conceptual Design: The Tool You Need to Ideate Like a Pro

How does the design process start for you? If you want to take ideation and creation to another level, conceptual design may be the place to start.

Conceptual design can actually help you better design an idea so that when you start the process of creation, it is more developed and functional. It’s a great starting point for any project, and can help you lay a solid foundation on which to build.

Here, we’ll walk through conceptual design and how you can use it to ideate and create more effectively.

Design Trend: Voice UX – Are You Designing for It?

Trends / 27 Sep 2021

Design Trend: Voice UX – Are You Designing for It?

Voice interfaces and user experiences are a trending topic in the world of website design because user behavior is demanding it.

Just think of how often you ask Alexa, Google, or Siri for help on any given day. Think about the push for more accessibly designed websites that work more effectively with devices such as screen readers. Then think about whether these things are coming into play during the design and development process.

They should be.

It is more important than ever to integrate voice UX into your design process.

What Is Universal Design? Everything You Need to Know

Business / 23 Sep 2021

What Is Universal Design? Everything You Need to Know

Universal Design is not new, but the conversations around it are reinvigorated in an effort to create more accessible and equitable design projects.

The concept isn’t specific to websites or printed creative work, it extends to every field of design.

Universal design is rooted in a set of core principles that – when used as a foundation for creative work – can help you design in a way that helps minimize the need for assistive technology and makes products more usable by everyone, not just people with disabilities.

What Is a Web Design Proposal? (And How to Write One)

Business / 22 Sep 2021

What Is a Web Design Proposal? (And How to Write One)

The most successful design projects often start with a successful business foundation. Whether you work on an agency team with other creatives or are a freelancer trying to sell your own products and services a solid web design proposal can help you win clients and set expectations for work.

Here’s everything you need to know about creating a web design proposal that will help you land new clients. We’ll discuss what a web design proposal is, how to write one, and share some helpful templates to get you started fast.

The Design Anatomy of a Good Icon: 10 Tips

Graphics / 20 Sep 2021

The Design Anatomy of a Good Icon: 10 Tips

An icon is a picture, image, or representation of another thing. So if you are looking to create a great icon, it needs to have a visual presence that’s understandable.

There’s more to designing a great icon than just a quick visual element. You have to think about shape, color, usage, and even what device or operating system it might appear on.

Here, we have 10 tips to help you make the most of icon design.

What Is a Pitch Deck? (And How to Make One)

PowerPoint Templates / 17 Sep 2021

What Is a Pitch Deck? (And How to Make One)

It’s a tool that every startup business or entrepreneur needs – a great pitch deck. A pitch deck is a presentation that you’ll use to help explain or showcase your product or service and potentially drives sales or investment. It needs to be polished and professional to do the job well.

Today, we’ll take a look at what a pitch deck is, how to make one, and how to establish a design that will wow people who come in contact with your new business.

We’ll also feature a few stunning pitch deck templates along the way, to help you get started fast.

What Is a Font License? (And Do I Need One?)

Font Collections / 8 Sep 2021

What Is a Font License? (And Do I Need One?)

Almost every design project you encounter will include type of some kind. And it’s very likely that that type will start as a font on a computer, unless you create it yourself. With using specific computer fonts, come some very specific rules regarding their use, which can vary by project.

So what is a font license? Do you need one? And where can you find the tools and resources you need to make sure you are using fonts properly?

Lucky for you, we have a primer. (And the images in this post include fonts that you can license to use in your projects.)

Breaking Down the Costs of a New Website: Tips & Rules

Business / 7 Sep 2021

Breaking Down the Costs of a New Website: Tips & Rules

It’s a common question: What does a new website cost?

It might be for a new brand or company that’s never had a website before or for an existing organization looking for a website design refresh. And the answer is a bit complicated.

It all depends on the path you want to take and your timeline for getting a new website online. Here, we’re going to break down the options available to you and the costs associated with a new website.

Plus, a few tips and rules to follow as you begin the process.

Pitch Deck Design: 10 Tips to Stand Out

PowerPoint Templates / 3 Sep 2021

Pitch Deck Design: 10 Tips to Stand Out

A good pitch deck is designed for specifically one thing – to help your startup get funding from investors. But how do you stand out from the crowd, and make a memorable impression?

There’s a delicate balance to creating a deck with just enough slides to entice potential funders, without providing so much information that they are overwhelmed.

Most pitch decks contain less than 20 slides. So how do you create a pitch deck design that stands out? Here are our ten tips to help you get started.

Everything You Need to Know About Design Tokens

UX Design / 2 Sep 2021

Everything You Need to Know About Design Tokens

Design tokens are a way to easily identify and understand the elements in a design system. As more designers and companies adopt use of design tokens, their value will continue to grow.

The key to design tokens is that they facilitate cross-disciplinary collaboration. More people on a team can understand and use design values without specificity, but with accuracy. They’ve already been adopted by design giants such as Adobe.

Here’s everything you need to know about design tokens.