Now for Distilled’s Leonie Wharton’s simple tips on getting the best out of your relationship with your designers.
(Sorry guys, no time to cover Andy’s tips on technologies & SEO – watch out for his blog post on the Distilled blog soon.)
Firstly, learn to communicate better with designers – it’ll help everyone!
- Let them know about design restrictions, especially if they are coming from a print background. Use something like a progressive enhancement methodology to ensure every step has its i’s dotted and t’s crossed.
- Show your designers where they need to focus on simple text areas but also let them know where they can have fun.
NB. The SEO should enforce sign-off and they should be involved right from the get-go. Start at the wireframes stage. Nothing should be a bad surprise as each of the stages progress, make sure your designer knows exactly what the final goal is from the very beginning.
- Try to provide your designer with the actual content, and help them understand what the key content is – as well as which images are going to sit alongside that content.
- You may need to reign the designer in on the font side of things, make sure there is a set style guide so you also know what you are doing if they are not there but you want to add content.
- Increase page speed – you can lower the file size, as long as you can maintain a decent image quality!
- However large or small, finding the right content should be simple if the information architecture is logical and the design is clear. Use simple wireframe templates.
- Make navigation obvious – don’t let your designer run away with their ideas
- Splash pages – enough said right.
- Breadcrumbs are an easy area a designer to miss out without guidance, same for text on category pages
- Are they obvious? Squint at the page, can you still see them?
- Think contract to other website colours
- Do your buttons look clickable?
- Make sure the text on your button is an action – e.g. sign up, book now etc.
- Don’t clutter a page with too many call-to-actions as they lose their weight on the page
- Remember positioning – they should be at the end of the form, in line with where the user is used to clicking. Don’t move the button away.
- Don’t just use Google Images!
- Analyse what similarities your infographic content has
- Note down any visual references
- Decide on a colour pallete
- Include graphs and silhouette imagery
- Choose one font for the title and another for the body copy text
- Highlight key facts as either pull quotes or by using bold colours