Advice for crafting layouts and structure that can create a clear, original web design.

Layouts / 21 Mar 2018

10 Web Design Commandments for Every Project

Do you have a rulebook when it comes to website design? There are some rules that apply to pretty much every web design project—let’s call them the “web design commandments”.

No matter how large or small the website, these rules are the foundation for good design. If you follow along with these basic guidelines, and make them part of your thinking for every project you start, you’ll avoid many of the pitfalls that designers can stumble into!

Layouts / 15 Mar 2018

10 Tips for Designing Landing Pages That Don’t Suck

A landing page is the first experience your customer (or potential customer) will have with your brand. It has to convey information, encourage a call-to-action, and reflect your personality. It’s difficult! Today we’re sharing ten landing page design tips to help.

If you just stick your logo and product image on a template, it’ll be obvious. The page won’t provide the experience or information your customer expected when getting there. Whether it is hard to navigate, difficult to read, or a mess of visuals, designing a landing page that doesn’t suck takes planning and precision. Let’s take a look at ten tips on how to do it better.

Graphics / 17 Jan 2018

Design Trend: Open Concept Layouts

If you watch any home improvement shows on television, the most repeated phrase might be “open concept layout.” Did you know you can DIY your way to an open-concept layout in website design as well? This design trend is more than just a home improvement idea.

Open concepts are a fun, and functional, visual pattern that can help users navigate your website while controlling digital clutter. Here’s how you do it with 10 mini case studies and examples!

Layouts / 20 Dec 2017

7 Ways to Ensure Your Long-Scrolling Website Is Successful

The old keep-it-above-the-scroll manta isn’t always what your content – and design – needs. Here are seven ways to create a long-scrolling website that will keep the attention of users, and hopefully keep them scrolling.

Long-scrolling can be a stellar way to engage users. Sometimes the best visual presentation possible doesn’t happen entirely above the scroll. Long-scrolling formats are websites that scroll multiple times to capture that content. Let’s put the often-debated concept to rest. Today’s users understand how and when to scroll.

Graphics / 4 Dec 2017

5 Web Design Trends We’re Already Over

Design trends have to be used cautiously. Just as quickly as many trends come into fashion; they can fall out of favor and make a design feel dated.

Don’t ignore them completely — testing out trends can stretch your creative muscles and help you create something you might not have tried otherwise. But do be aware of what’s fresh, what’s timeless, and what’s out of date! Here are five design trends that are over (or should be anyway).

Layouts / 13 Nov 2017

Parallax Effects Compared: 5 Choices to Consider

Parallax effects remain one of the hottest web design trends. This animated scrolling technique happens when background and foreground move at different speeds while the user scrolls so that there are two independent layers moving at the same time.

This effect can be used for any number of website types and is a fun way to create – and increase – user engagement. The nice thing about parallax effects is that you don’t have to use them on every page of a design; parallax scrolling is a great homepage technique to help drive users to calls to action or other content.

Parallax effects create an element of depth and distance and a greater sense three-dimension than some other techniques, making users feel like part of the design.

The downside to parallax effects is that they don’t always work on mobile devices. (But there are some workarounds for that as well in the tutorial at the end of this article.)

Here are five parallax effects and styles to consider. (Make sure to click through the links to see exactly how each animation works.)

Graphics / 1 Nov 2017

Design Trend: Dark Color Palettes & Animation

Have you taken note of all the super dark design patterns lately? Designers are experimenting with some funky, dark design patterns that feature animation in the same color scheme.

These animations include everything from simple movements that happen on their own, to hover effects and full cinematic experiences. Let’s dive into this website design trend and explore a few ways to make it work for your projects.

Layouts / 11 Oct 2017

Coming Soon Landing Pages: Tips and Best Practices

What do you do when your website is under construction and you aren’t quite ready for launch?

Whether you’re generating buzz to release a new product or app, or just waiting for a new website project to be ready, a coming soon page can be the fix.

When used well, coming soon pages can help generate leads (with an email signup form) and drum up some interest for your website.

Graphics / 25 Sep 2017

What’s a Logo Grid, and Why Should You Use One?

So you need to design a logo. Where do you start? Shapes? Typography? A grid?

A logo grid or construction guide is a popular starting point for many designers looking to create a logo. The use of a grid system, especially for a design that might often render at extreme sizes – very large or small – can help you create something that has visual harmony, an organized aesthetic and purposeful design.

Layouts / 20 Sep 2017

Vector vs. Raster: What Do I Use?

With all of the image options and file formats out there, it can be a little overwhelming when you are choosing what file type to use (and send to clients). Compatibility is always a concern when you are working with different file types, but when it comes to graphics and images the type of computer graphic format you use is essential to how the image renders.

There are two types of digital graphics files – vector and raster. Vector images are made of hundreds of thousands of tiny lines and curves (or paths) to create an image. Raster images are composed of pixels. But how do you know what format is best for your next project?

Graphics / 31 Jul 2017

7 Tips for Creating a Website Header That Wows

A website header is often the first thing that a user sees. It can make or break the user experience, your branding, and much more!

To help retain users and keep them moving through the design, you need to create a website header that wows. And not just on the homepage. On every single page of the design. (Remember, a significant number of users don’t go to your homepage first.) Here’s how you do it.

Graphics / 14 Jun 2017

Flat Design: An Evolving Trend

Is the flat design trend finished? We don’t think so. It’s not dead yet. But the trend has evolved to be less stark and more engaging for users.

The early days of flat design were marked by a complete lack of design elements such as shadows, gradients, or realistic elements with texture. Many of those design elements are back, but are being paired with the overall idea of flat design to create a website user experience that’s both simple and easy to engage with. Depending on what side you are on, it might be a better version of flat design.

Here’s a look at the flat design trend evolution, and where we are today.