Tag: Design

The best computer for graphic design 2018

If you're in the market for a new computer for graphic design, you've come to the right place. Our selection of the best laptops for graphic designers will suit you if you need a portable workstation. But if you require superior ergonomics, a bigger display and more power for less cash, then you're better off going for a desktop. 

As a graphic designer, a computer with sufficient specs is a must for creating work that will please clients and take pride of place in your portfolio. You want a machine that has a pin-sharp screen and delightful-to-use mouse. But there's a lot of choice out there – which is why we've put together this guide. 

  • 12 essential tools for graphic designers in 2018

Here, we've selected five of the best computers for graphic design. Whether you're a Mac user or a Windows wizard, you'll find something in this list that suits your needs. 

Generally speaking, the more you pay the better the machine. But don't worry if you're on a tighter budget – we've picked the best cheap computers for graphic design, too. Read on for our selection of the best desktops out there…

Apple iMac Pro

Let's be clear: this computer isn't necessary for most of us. The majority of graphic designers simply don't need this amount of power in a machine – and the cost is astronomical.  

But there's a reason why Apple's new powerhouse workstation, the iMac Pro, is so darn expensive – in fact, there are several. And if you're one of the minority of professional users that need this level of power, and can afford the price tag, this is currently the best machine on the market.

First, there's the display – that incredible 27-inch 5,120 x 2,880 resolution display. Apple says it can produce in excess of one billion colours. If you've ever wondered whether you're really seeing your designs at their best, then this iMac's screen is about as true as you're going to get. 

Combined with your choice of either 8GB or 16GB HMB2 AMD Vega graphics, the full beauty – and, of course, any errors or flaws – of your work will be seen in dazzling 5K quality.

This is the fastest and most powerful product Apple has ever made. And as you'd expect from Apple, keen attention has been paid to the ergonomics of the peripherals. The wireless Magic Mouse, Magic Trackpad and Magic Keyboard mean you have all the control and nuance you can handle. 

The iMac Pro is overkill for all but the most professional of users. If your workflow doesn't involve intense creative tasks, huge file sizes, major editing or 3D rendering at very fast speeds, you won't need this amount of power. (And if it does, but the price tag rules you out, try looking at a high-spec 5K iMac). 

However, if you need its power and can justify the cost, the iMac Pro is an incredible computer for graphic designers.

Read more about the new iMac Pro

Microsoft Surface Studio

It may sound clichéd to say that the Microsoft Surface Studio is the Windows-based answer to the best iMacs on the market, but clichés are generally rooted in truth.

This is no inferior substitute, however – it's the go-to workstation for Windows users. Check out the paper thin 28-inch PixelSense Display that puts the vast majority of other 4K screens out there to shame. 

But that's not the best bit – it's touchscreen as well, meaning you can actually draw straight onto the monitor with the superb Surface Pen. If you've not used it before, you'll be surprised just how accurately the 4,096 levels of pressure-sensitivity allow you to sketch and draw. Saying it's just like a pencil and paper isn't really too much of an exaggeration.

Read our hands on look at the Surface Studio

HP Envy Curved All-in-One

It's hard not to be wowed when you first lay eyes on the monumental 34-inch curved screen of the HP Envy all-in-one. The ultra-wide QHD (3,440 x 1,440 pixel) LED backlit Micro Edge display is unlike pretty much anything else you'll currently see on the shelves.

It's an astonishing amount of room to let your creations breathe, and displays plenty of screen furniture to let you make edits and changes with the utmost convenience. It's like having a dual display, but without the clunky hardware. Pretty nice for catching films and TV box-sets on your downtime, too.

Inside there's 8GB of RAM, a quad-core seventh generation Intel Core i7 processor and a 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD combination hard drive. A top spec for your cash.

Apple iMac with 4K Retina display

This is the Apple Mac to go for if you've got a fraction of the budget that the iMac Pro is being sold for. And if you think that means you'll be getting an inadequate machine, then think again – there's a reason why Macs are so popular among designers.

It may not be 5K, but we love the stunning 21.5-inch Retina display that you get with this iMac. It features a wider range of colours than some competitors' monitors thanks to its DCI P3 colour space. It means you get more accurate colouring and a greater vibrancy.

And because Apple puts such care into the construction of all its equipment, the keyboard and mouse are a joy to use as well.

Read our sister site TechRadar's full Apple iMac with 4K Retina display review

Lenovo Ideacentre 910

If you're looking at the price tags of the other computers for graphic design in this list, and then looking at your budget and seeing a mismatch, fear not – the Lenovo Ideacentre 910 is a more budget-friendly buy.

Considering the price, the processing power you get to render your designs is surprisingly brawny, with the quad-core Intel CPU and 8GB of RAM taking the strain. The Nvidia GeForce graphics card is a welcome addition, too – fine if you're wanting to implement animation.

You're not shortchanged on the size of the screen, either. But measuring 27 inches at the diagonals, the downside is that you're only dealing with Full HD, with an option to upgrade to 4K at a higher price.

Related articles:

  • Top alternatives to the MacBook Pro
  • Best Photoshop tutorials
  • 9 tools to make graphic design easier

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What to learn to upgrade your web design skills

So you've got a perfect design portfolio, you've mastered all the nuances of responsive web design and your user experience skills are tip top, but there's something holding you back from progressing in your career. Sometimes, to get better at your day job, you need to look a little outside your particular specialism. You could take on a side project, try a new creative hobby, or simply pick a cutting-edge new area to skill up in. We asked seven top web professionals what they were planning on doing to add some new strings to their bow. 

01. Game development

Tools like Unity have made game development more accessible

“I love playing video games (at the moment I’m currently hooked on Stardew Valley), and there are some really great ones coming out from indie developers that I follow on Twitter,” says frontend developer Anna Debenham. “Watching them share their progress of crafting walking (as well as dancing) bears, and teaching cubes to chase a banana using machine learning, is something that has really inspired me.”

Game development software is becoming more and more accessible for beginners, and platforms such as VR are opening up possibilities for more confident web pros. Debenham plans to try her hand at building a 3D game using Unity. 

  • Get started: Build your own WebGL physics game

02. iPad design

Learning to design on an iPad takes a little dedication

There are plenty of great painting apps to help you create artwork on the go, but it takes time and effort to make the most of them. Web designer and frontend developer Katherine Cory finally invested in an iPad Pro and Apple Pencil last year, with the aim of using Procreate to create amazing digital paintings, but is still getting to grips with the new workflow. 

“I naively thought I’d start creating work as great as the time-lapses I see on Instagram, but after a few hours of playing and only creating scribbles, I’ve realised it’s a skill I need to learn,” she smiles. “I’ve signed up to an Udemy course and have joined Skillshare. Hopefully, by the end of the year I’ll be creating designs like a pro (pun intended).” 

  • Get started: Paint a classic fairy tale scene with Procreate

03. Artificial intelligence

AI raises ethical questions for developers

Digital transformation consultant Sally Lait started playing with neural networks last year, and she’s keen to expand her skills. While AI isn’t something she aims to offer directly to her clients, Lait thinks it’s an important area for web professional to be aware of. 

“With AI being a growing corner of tech where there’s a lot of hype and even greater amounts of ethical concerns, I’d like more hands-on, practical experience to better inform my knowledge of these important issues,” she explains. “I see it as my responsibility to experience and understand the impact that different technologies can have.”

  • Get started: How the intelligent web will change our interactions

04. Podcasting

Podcasts are a great way to immerse yourself in the web industry

“2018 is the year to get back to combining technology with stories from real people, therefore I’m relearning a skill from years ago: podcasting!” announces frontend developer and consultant Jenn Lukas. Lukas used to co-host the Ladies in Tech podcast, and will be reprising her skills with a new show No, You Go alongside CEO Katel LeDû and Sara Wachter-Boettcher. To get the podcast launched smoothly she’ll be learning the new WordPress updates, refreshing her audio editing, and brushing up on interviewing skills.

  • Get started: 18 great web design podcasts

05. Soft skills

Brushing up on skills like communication can really pay off

Don’t forget ‘soft’ skills such as communication and persuasion. Improving these can have a massive effect on your career. Over the coming months, Make Us Proud’s Inayaili de León Persson aims to focus on design leadership and research, to suit where her career is currently headed. 

“I’ve been reading a lot of books and articles, and watching talks around these subjects, and I’m planning to attend some conferences too – and, of course, learning on the job,” she shares.

  • Get started: How to network successfully

06. AR and VR

VR is a completely different ball game

An area that’s getting a lot of attention at the moment is virtual reality and augmented reality. In order to understand the possibilities and the limitations in this medium, creative director Shane Mielke plans to spend some time getting to grips with the new tools that are making VR and AR more accessible, including Unity and ARKit. 

“By understanding the tools and process, I can more confidently solve design and navigation problems in a world that doesn’t follow the standards of the web-only projects that I have most of my experience in,” he explains.

  • Get started: The VR web is here

07. A rounded approach

Don’t panic over every hot new tool or technique

While all these new tools and techniques are exciting, if you try and learn every new thing that comes along, you’ll find yourself running to stand still. So if reading this list is putting you into a panic, worry not. 

“If you can think algorithmically, share your skills, work with a team and empathise with users, there will always be work,” councils Web Standards specialist Bruce Lawson. “Being rounded is the skill I want to develop.”

This article was originally published in net, the world's best-selling magazine for web designers and developers. Buy issue 304 or subscribe.

Read more:

  • The complete guide to SVG
  • 5 web typography trends to look out for
  • The dos and don'ts of perfect portfolios

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How to design a handwriting font that isn't boring

Ulrike Rausch is a type designer and letterer, and the founder of her own type foundry, LiebeFonts. Her studio is dedicated to crafting handwriting fonts with love, with the likes of KFC using her lettering to give its branding a personal touch.

In her talk at TYPO Berlin 2018 (tune in to the livestream here), Rausch shattered some of the romantic illusions surrounding font design and pointed out that handwritten fonts can go from unique to boring very quickly if they’re used unimaginatively.

So how do typographers keep their work fresh? In her talk, 'Brush, Ink and Code – The Making of a Font', Rausch revealed some advice for combining digital know-how with traditional methods in order to create a handwritten font with a sense of individuality.

Here are some of the key tips from the talk, which Rausch says help “preserve the liveliness of irregularities.”

01. Create handwritten alternatives

LiebeDoris was used for a KFC campaign

Repetition of letter shapes can kill the charm of a handwritten font dead in the water. After all, even the neatest human handwriting contains subtle idiosyncrasies between one use of a letter and the next. Why should handwriting fonts have an uncanny sense of uniformity about them?

One way around this is to create handwritten alternatives. This is what Rausch did for her KFC lettering, with the project taking around a year and a half to complete thanks to this extra level of effort with the type design. By creating different variations of each letter by hand, the branding team had the flexibility to shake-up the lettering in its marketing and stop the font from becoming stale.

02. Use OpenType features

LiebeLotte offers a variety of ligatures and alternates via OpenType features

If there was one message Rausch was keen for typographers to take away from her talk, it was to use OpenType features. If you’re unfamiliar with OpenType features, don’t worry. According to Rausch, design software tries its hardest to hide these features from its users.

So what are they? Put simply, they’re a series of tools that make fonts look and behave differently, which is perfect for changing characters in handwritten fonts. When used with a batch of handwritten alternatives, OpenType features, in particular the contextual alternate feature, are a way of jumbling up the occurrence of a letterform.

There’s a lot of scope for flexibility with OpenType features. For example, they can be programmed to sniff out repetitions of a letter shape that appears twice in a row, or multiple times in the same sentence. Perfect for keeping handwritten fonts lively.

03. Make sure the client uses the features

Rausch’s work for KFC didn’t live up to its potential… because the client didn’t turn on the OpenType features

If OpenType features are hard for designers to find and use, just think how difficult it is for clients with no typography skills. For Rausch, her KFC lettering was sure to be the pride of her portfolio, with the alternate lettering set to spice up the fast food chain’s marketing.

This wasn’t quite the case. When she saw it in reality, the lettering had that handwritten yet uniform look she dreaded. The reason? KFC had not turned on the OpenType alternate features option when it came to writing out its branding messages.

04. Beware the glyph palette

LiebeGerda comes alive with OpenType magic – most characters three variations that are automatically shuffled and inserted as you type

Even if you’ve been extra careful and alerted the client to the OpenType alternate features, this doesn’t mean you’re home and dry yet. That’s because each piece of design software, as well as making OpenType features hard to find, apparently doesn’t make them straightforward to use, either.

One particular glitch Rausch pointed out could be found in the glyph palette. If this is opened up while working with a set of alternate fonts it has the annoying habit of turning off the contextual alternate feature. Definitely one to point out to your client before you see your hard work become another repetitive handwritten font out out in the wild.

Related articles:

  • 8 elegant script fonts
  • 23 great places to download fonts for free
  • 19 top free brush fonts

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Enter the True AR app design challenge

If you're passionate about augmented reality (AR) and want to be the first to try the upcoming True AR SDK by WayRay, you're in the right place. Global holographic AR technology company WayRay is currently running the True AR Challenge, an online competition where designers and developers are invited to share their ideas for AR applications for cars. 

WayRay has brought amazing partners to the challenge, so you’ll get to pitch your idea and present your solution to top specialists from academia (ETH Zürich, EPFL), business (Roland Berger GmbH), and industry (Porsche AG).

How to enter the challenge

To enter the contest, register online, download the materials and visualise your idea of an AR app interface for cars. The most creative, original, and user-friendly concepts will be granted $2,000–$5,000 and shortlisted for the US-based hackathon later this year, the winner of which will walk away with $40,000. 

The online phase lasts until May 30, culminating at the onsite Hackathon, where designers will team up with developers to create AR app prototypes and compete for their share of the $160,000 prize pool. 

Here's a step-by-step guide to enter:

  • Register at https://wayray.com/sdk/challenge
  • Confirm your participation in the automatic reply
  • Download the materials (rules, PowerPoint template, images, videos)
  • Fill in the application form in the PowerPoint template
  • Use the images to visualize your AR app interface and add the pictures to the template
  • Optional: use the videos with different road scenarios to visualize an animated version of your AR app, upload your videos to any file hosting service and put the link into the template
  • Convert the filled PowerPoint template into a PDF file and send it to sdkchallenge@wayray.com, open until 30 May 2018.

Shortlisted finalists will be notified by email by 30 June 2018. For full terms and conditions, visit the dedicated challenge page on the WayRay website. 

Judging criteria

When deciding who makes the shortlist, the judges will be looking at the following criteria:

  • Creativity (How original is the AR app?)
  • Relevance (Does the AR app serve a user need?)
  • Design (Did the participant/team put thought into the user experience? Is the AR UI pleasant to look at?)

About WayRay

WayRay is a global holographic AR technology company headquartered in Switzerland

Founded in 2012, WayRay is a global holographic AR technology company headquartered in Switzerland. In keeping the full R&D process under control – from product concept to prototype testing – WayRay has morphed from a startup into a full-cycle manufacturer of holographic optical systems, hardware, and software. 

WayRay’s solutions for the automotive industry include Navion, the first-ever aftermarket holographic AR navigation system; the embedded Holographic AR Display, a built-in solution for car makers; the True AR SDK for developers to create AR apps for cars; and Element, a gamified car tracker for smarter driving. In the last few years, WayRay has carried out successful projects with car manufacturers like Honda, Porsche, and Rinspeed.

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The design studio survival guide

Starting and running a successful design studio takes guts, determination and a fair bit of business savvy. It can be hugely rewarding, but you also need to know what you're letting yourself in for.

As our freelance survival guide shows, there are plenty of considerations to bear in mind when going it alone – but these responsibilities are multiplied when you're running a business and have staff, infrastructure and other things to worry about.

Whether you're just starting out or are looking to build your reputation and grow your studio, we've gathered together a collection of content to give you the insight and inspiration you need to be successful. 

This includes creative business advice, useful insights on how to create a better studio culture and working environment for your staff, and self-promotion and portfolio ideas to get your name out there.

So read on for our essential guide to how to run a more successful design studio. If we haven't covered a particular burning question for you, fear not – we will continue to add to this collection with more invaluable studio advice each month.

01. Inspirational design studios

02. Design studio business advice

03. Advice on design studio culture

04. Self-promo advice for design studios

05. Design studio portfolio advice

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New film tells the story of Canadian graphic design

Having raised almost $100,000 on Kickstarter – nearly $20,000 over its target – Design Canada, a documentary about the history of Canadian graphic design, is premiering this summer.

It's five years since Greg Durrell, who is a partner at Hulse & Durrell, and his collaborators Jessica Edwards and Gary Hustwit began filming. The team thought they were finished last year, but ended up having to delay the release in order to rework a story arch. 

Throughout filming, they met the heavyweights of Canadian graphic design – the people responsible for the design thinking that ultimately shaped the nation. 

Watch the trailer below and read on for our exclusive interview with Durrell…

What inspired you to start the project?

Growing up in Canada, I realised I was surrounded by beautiful symbols and logos, but I could never really find any information about them. As my frustration grew, I decided to make a film about it. When I began the project I didn’t even know anyone who had made a film before. A mutual friend put me in contact with Jessica and Gary and a half-decade later, the rest is history.

Did you discover any new design work?

I feel like I discovered archives which had not been seen in decades. Tracking down Canada’s design pioneers was often a challenge. Little information existed about them online and when I showed up at their homes often I would be looking through their body of work for the first time. The Canadian design story was not documented in the same way as in the UK or US.

 Allan Fleming designed the CN logo in the 1960s

In terms of my favourite design from the project, I think the CN Railway logo was the one which had the biggest impact on design in Canada because prior to that identity, Canadian companies had logos with frilly maples leaves, beavers and various kitschy-Canadiana elements. CN showed Canada that you could modernise and still be Canadian.

Who were you most excited to talk to?

Having the opportunity to interview Massimo Vignelli about Canadian design two years before he passed was a huge honour.

Why do you think your Kickstarter campaign was so successful?

I think there was a lot of exceptional work from that period that has not received the proper recognition that it deserves and people are curious to learn more.

How did you keep motivated over so many years? 

The story was something I was very passionate about and I knew from the start that it would take years to complete. I believe that small daily habits can build into extraordinary outcomes, so motivation wasn’t a huge issue. I’ve always enjoyed long-term over short-term projects.

Burton Kramer talks to Greg Durrell during filming

Why did you decide to delay the film's release in 2017? 

The decision to delay the release was doing what was best for the film. We had a narrative thread that weaved some of our stories together, and it was not working. It was one of those situations where on paper it sounded great but in executive it was off and we knew we could fix it. This resulted in delaying our release nine months, blowing up our timeline, reshooting new stories and then reassembling everything. but it was worth it.

Will the film help boost Canada's reputation?

Regardless of what it does, or does not do for Canada’s international perception, I hope people take away that graphic design matters and it influences our lives every day. If we can become more conscious of it and use it as a tool, we can build a better country and ultimately a better world.

Design Canada is screening in Canada this summer

How can people see the film?

Follow us at www.designcanada.com and on social @designcanfilm to stay up to date about screenings near you and the digital release at the end of the summer.

This article will appear in Computer Arts issue 280, on sale on 29 May. Subscribe here.

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  • Guess the extreme close-up logos
  • Famous logos redesigned as fonts
  • Can Melania Trump be best at logo design?

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Pixel Pioneers returns to Bristol with first-class web design and UX advice

If you're on the hunt for some web design inspiration, look no further. Pixel Pioneers, a one-day conference for web and UX designers as well as front-end developers, is returning to Bristol's harbourside on 8 June, this time preceded by a day of workshops.

Following on from last year's inaugural event, Pixel Pioneers Bristol will feature some of the brightest minds in web design and user experience, such as Ida Aalen, Simon Collison, Sarah Richards and Heydon Pickering. The talks will cover design systems, inclusive interface design, variable fonts, content design, how to influence users' perception of your site's speed, and more.

You can also choose between two workshops on Thursday, 7 June:

  • Easy and Affordable User Testing with Ida Aalen
  • Psychology for UX and Product Design with Joe Leech

Plus, An Evening Afloat With Shopify, a free conference warm-up aboard the Grain Barge will include an informal fireside chat with designers Mike Kus, Djuro Selec and Michael Flarup about their top tips for work-life balance in the creative and tech industries, and how we keep ourselves motivated, accountable and on track. 

The speakers: Laurence Penney, Sarah Richards, Stéphanie Walter, Simon Collison, Heydon Pickering, Inayaili de León Persson, Michael Flarup, Ida Aalen

The speakers (from left to right, top to bottom): Laurence Penney, Sarah Richards, Stéphanie Walter, Simon Collison, Heydon Pickering, Inayaili de León Persson, Michael Flarup, Ida Aalen

Pixel Pioneers founder, former net magazine editor Oliver Lindberg says: "A lot of the big UK conferences are expensive and/or tend to be in London. Freelancers, small businesses and students often miss out on going to events because of the cost and the time sacrifice involved. I wanted to change that and create an affordable event with international speakers for local communities, right on their doorstep, so people don’t have to travel. It made sense to start in Bristol because the city (and the whole South West for that matter) has such a vibrant tech and digital community."

Bristol has an amazing UX community, and I’m thrilled to be able to bring some true pioneers to the city

Oliver Lindberg

"I'm particularly excited about the focus on user-centred design. There will be a lot of talks, crammed with practical takeaways, that will explain how to make the web better and improve user experiences for everyone. Bristol has an amazing UX community, and I'm thrilled to be able to bring some true pioneers to the city, such as Ida Aalen, who will come all the way from Oslo to tell us how to do user testing with limited resources. 

"Or Sarah Richards, who created the discipline of 'content design' and leads the way in creating user-centred content. I'm also excited about adding workshops to the Bristol schedule for the first time. For example, as Joe Leech's psychology talk was so popular last year, I've asked him to come back to run a full-day workshop on UX psychology."

Jeremy Keith kicking off the inaugural conference last year

Jeremy Keith kicking off the inaugural conference last year

There will be plenty of networking opportunities, including an after-party with free drinks. Student and group discounts for five people or more are available. Please contact the organiser for details. 

Pixel Pioneers is also working in partnership with GWR to offer conference attendees heavily discounted rail fares to and from Bristol. If you're planning to travel on a GWR route, go to this page and select 'Bristol'. You'll get a London to Bristol return for £44, for example (this is for a fixed outward journey with flexibility on the return). You only need to be able to provide proof of attending the conference. 

We're offering an exclusive 10% discount for Pixel Pioneers Bristol, which applies to both the conference and the workshops. Just use the code 'creativebloq'. 

Related articles:

  • Pixel Pioneers brings top web design expertise to Somerset
  • Why research and testing are vital in web design
  • How to design app icons


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You Need to Design More Than Just Your Homepage

You Need to Design More Than Just Your Homepage

Website first impressions matter. But not as much as you think.

Most of us have heard so many clichés about the importance of first impressions that we’ve probably never questioned their worth. After all, we know from our own experience how quickly a bad impression can put us off—a person, a restaurant, a brand, you name it.

But there’s another side of first impressions that doesn’t get as much attention, and it’s this: they don’t last. Unless that first impression is backed by something of substance and quality, it will soon be dismissed.

I noticed this recently when conducting some competitor research for a client. My process is to compile a list of competitors, then look at their homepages. I open each in a new tab, take a quick screen shot, and then click around the page to see what else they might be doing of interest.

For this research project, I noticed that many websites looked impressive at first glance. They did a great job in the first few seconds of creating a strong impression for the visitor. I started to get worried: what if the competition was really tough?

And then after scrolling around for a bit, I noticed a common trend. Most of these websites devoted the bulk of their attention to creating an attractive landing screen. The more I used their sites, the more frustrated I became. Only one website followed through on the promising user experience their homepages hinted at.

Clearly, these websites hadn’t thought passed the first impression, and that’s a big problem.

First impressions matter less than they used to.

Back in the day, it’s possible that most brands made their bread and butter off those initial seconds of contact. Consumers simply didn’t have much more to go on.

But today’s consumers are savvier than ever, and they do their research. If your homepage does its job, they’re going to be on your site longer than six seconds, reading your content and learning more about your brand. That’s only a good thing if your website follows through on the good impression you made at the beginning.

There’s a saying that the fastest way to kill a bad company is through good marketing. If you put all your budget in the packaging and none in the product, your customers will notice and it won’t take long for your brand reputation to plummet through the floor.

Design deep: carry the original impression through to the end.

There’s another critical error in the strategy that over-invests in the homepage to the detriment of the rest of the site: not every visitor to your site will see your home page. More and more, entry pages are blog posts, service pages with high-ranking SEO, or landing pages promoted by AdWords or social media. This means that those businesses that put all their energy into 6-second website first impressions are neglecting other entry streams.

So, how can you make sure the first impressions you make on your website lead to the outcomes you want?

  • Focus on overall usability. You want your users to have a good experience on your site. That means giving TLC to every part of your website, not just the most attention-grabbing parts.
  • Look to your personas. Think about who’s visiting your site, and where they need to go. One of the key tasks of your home page is to help direct visitors to other parts of the site. Make sure it speaks to your entire audience.
  • Think about your website holistically from a conversion standpoint. Your home page won’t close a lot of sales—but that’s OK. It can divert traffic to pages that are more suited to the task.
  • Have consistent messaging. If your headline is bold and splashy but the rest of your site copy reads like an instruction manual, the contrast will be noticeable to your visitors.

A first impression will keep you in the game. It won’t close the sale.

The mythology of the all-important first impression needs to die—or at least get modified a little. A good first impression will certainly help you start a relationship with your best foot forward, but it won’t get you across the finish line. For that, you need to be able to back your bluster with competence.

This is essential for your website as much as it is for life. Those first few second visitors spend looking at the top screen of your homepage (or any other entry page) are important, particularly for keeping visitors from bouncing. But it’s not your main tool for conversion.

To convert, you need to think of your website holistically, including all the different ways that visitors may find it, and the visitor path they’ll take one they’re on your site.

Anything less is too shallow to do you or your visitors any good.

The post You Need to Design More Than Just Your Homepage appeared first on build/create studios.

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