Tag: Web Design

19
Sep

Everything You Need – for Website Projects

For many, just knowing where to start can be the biggest challenge with web-design projects. With that in mind, we’ve put together a handy wee checklist (everybody loves a list,) to fill in the gaps.

1. What’s the purpose of your new site?
What’s your new website for — is it to communicate a change of direction for your company? Introduce E-Commerce functionality? Show a new brand position? Generate more sales? The clearer a picture we have of the end goal, the more we can help find ways to achieve it.

2. Can you provide info on your company?
Let’s talk about you a little. Some info on your organisation helps us get a feel for who you are and what you stand for.

Any of the following is helpful.

– What does your company do?
– What makes your company special compared to others?
– Does your company have any specific vision, mission or values?
– Any other info?

Company documents, links to your current website or Facebook page all work.

3. Who’s the target audience?
Another big one. We want to ensure that your new site reaches the right people and engages them in the right way. What can you tell us about the people you are targeting?

Are they…

Young/Old?
Male/Female?
Fun/Serious?
Take their time/Don’t have time to waste?
Any specific legibility issues to consider?
Anything else ?

If you’re targeting all of these people, this is fine – we can factor that in too.

4. Who’ll manage the website after we’re done?
Once the project ends.

We’d like to know the following about the people we hand over too.

– What would be their preferred platform (WordPress/Umbraco/Squarespace/Other?)
– Are they (Beginner/intermediate/advanced?)
– Is any training required after the site is built?

5. Tell us about the pages of your new site?
One of the first things we do with your site is put together a site structure – this includes pages, menu and any additional functionality.

What we need to know?

– How many pages?
– What are on those pages – images/text/graphics/video?
– How will those pages link together?
– What features would you like on those pages?

Features may include

– Social Media Share Buttons
– Contact Forms
– News/Social Feeds
– Video Snippets
– CTA (Call-To-Action) buttons.
– Anything else you may have in mind?

Again don’t worry if don’t have everything,  include what you can and we can help with the rest.

6.  Content?
Our favourite subject – content. Nothing prevents web-projects from going live more than waiting on content (particularly written copy.)

What do we have and what do we need to create? (This can include any of the following.)

– Photographs of the people in the company or main products/services.
– Written copy to go on the site, likely to include about-us text, service text, etc…
– Graphics or infographics to highlight key statistics, customer data or product features/benefits.
– Any videos you have sitting on YouTube/Vimeo?

Like we said, the more you can provide the better.

7. Any SEO goals for your new site that you’d like to implement?
If you have SEO goals, let us know what they are and we can look at ways to implement these into the site.

We’d like to know about any of the following.

– Any data from your previous website (such as a Google Analytics, Yoast or Crazy Egg Reports?)
– SEO actions already taken?
– Information on Keywords/ Meta tags/ landing Pages?

And finally any tools or measures you would like to take with the new site?

8. Do you have brand guidelines?
We are designers, what can we say. Another favourite, if you have them, we want them.

9. Crucial Functionality & Anything We’ve Missed?
There is a whole host of other functional things to consider with your new website.

They can include any of the following…

– Do you have web-hosting?
– If you require web-hosting, are there any particular things we should provide? Additional Security? Database Protection? E-Mail Systems?
– Do you have access to your domain name? If not, where can we source this?
– Do you have a partner that can assist with the technical part of the project – an IT company, web-development staff or separate web hosting company?
– Any cookie requirements/ legal statements to go on the site?
– Anything else we may have failed to mention throughout this list?

10. Time and Budget?
How long do we have and how much do you have to spend?

Starting with time…

Looking past the ‘Go-Live’ date, are there other dates in-between? Website projects can take months or more, so if we’re creating content, we want to make this available to you as soon as possible.

Regarding budget…

it helps to know this as early as possible. It allows us to properly spec the project. Usually a ballpark of where you feel comfortable with minimum-to-maximum spends is fine. We can take it from there. If you’d like help on maximising project budgets, we have a post on that too, check it out >>>

And that’s us. Whether you have everything on the list or not, don’t worry, we can help fill in the gaps and don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions?

Benedetto

BB

Benedetto is an ideas-driven Creative Entrepreneur. He is on a mission to unleash the power of creativity to create a better world – for people, business and society. He is the founder of the loft, a design and branding house which operates worldwide helping companies bring their brands to life in the most imaginative and effective ways possible. A real man on a mission. Benedetto likes to make things happen and happen fast and in a big way. He wants things done yesterday and is relentlessly driven in his quest to make tomorrow better than today for his company, the people he serves and the wider community.

05
Sep

HAPPY FACES

“We start with happy faces and work backwards…”

This was the answer I gave to a young business person who asked me recently how the loft was so busy and why we are working on so many new projects at the moment.

It is devastatingly simple when you think about it, so simple I have missed it myself, a few times in the past.

“Nobody cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.”

We picture happy clients, we visualise them giving out their business cards, showing off their websites, sharing their info-graphics on social media. We make storyboarding one of the most important parts of our creative process. We don’t start with typography or graphics or technology or what others are doing.

We take a positive scenario and work backwards.

I know this approach sets us apart from many other agencies and many other service providers.

In the loft, we leave our egos at the door, we practice and sometimes obsess about ‘context.’

How can we make our solutions work for the client? What do we need to do to achieve an effective result for them? How can we make them happy? Delighted even?

The client provides the framework and it’s our job to shine within that framework. This regularly takes us off the beaten path but it does help the people we work with, to shine.

It allows them to pass their business cards to others with absolute confidence, to provoke a person to go to the ‘contact page’ on their website or to tempt a person to pick the bottle off the shelf.

We are relentlessly focussed on those details because they are the things that matter. They are going to help our clients and by helping our clients, we know they’ll come back again and again, and sometimes refer new people too.

The method changes, but the result always remains – happy clients.

 

Richard Seymour’s, ‘How Beauty Feels’ in my favourite TED talk, he discusses creating things that are just wonderful for people – our ethos is the same.

Most people don’t remember what Steve jobs said about the technical spec of the new I-Phone in 2007, but they do remember him calling a local Starbucks and using the new device to order ‘4,000 lattes to go!’

 

This focus allows us to deliver solutions quicker, we are able to maximise client budgets, it allows us to concentrate on what’s important. The process also gives us endless scope for creative solutions.

Thankfully, we have a team of exceptional designers and suppliers who can mould their considerable talents around those bespoke requirements, talented people who have the humility to understand that the best way they can be the stars is by shaping their skills to the benefit of those that they serve.

Our approach is effective but it does require people with open minds, good intuition and exceptional basic skills. Thankfully we have just those people.

Some (crazily I believe) ask if it can be tiresome hearing how good you are all the time?

It doesn’t.

People using the word ‘love’ when talking about things you have done for them or seeing their materials shine on social media is a tremendously uplifting experience. And one that generates its own momentum to keep on going.

IMG_2663

The Advert we created for Petroleum Experts, found its way onto this very large 3-Dimensional, glass paperweight, something they gave to their clients for their 25th anniversary.

Or how about working with a client who in 25 years, having never worked with a creative agency, loving their design so much that they re-produce it in glass to give to their clients on their own 25th Anniversary Dinner.

That last moment is one that happened recently when Hamid Guedroudj and James Woodrow of Petroleum Experts pulled me into their office and presented me with a blue box and inside was one of the biggest paperweights I have ever seen – and one with the design that we co-created with them. A bit of a favourite moment amongst many.

When you start with happy faces and things like this happen you cannot help but have a happy face yourself.

Benedetto

BB

Benedetto is the founder of the loft, a design and branding agency based in Glasgow.

The loft helps its clients build more effective brand communications and operates in a diverse range of sectors, specialising in technology, packaging design and professional services. The company is proud to include Petroleum Experts, The Wood Group, BenRiach Whisky, The University of West of Scotland and Glasgow City Marketing Bureau amongst its clients.

The loft offers people-centred brand solutions created using imaginative thought processes and delivered with a consistently high-quality and bespoke client service.

The loft is looking beyond traditional creative services and has begun to produce more integrated brand journeys for its clients – tying together disciplines such as digital, social media and customer experience – in addition to sales & marketing to help companies attract and retain customers & staff. Essentially, building a stronger bond between the person and the brand.

The loft was setup with assistance by PSYBT in 2012 and received Growth Funding the following year. Benedetto is the regional ambassador for the Princes Trust in Glasgow and also provides support to other charities including Young Enterprise Scotland, SMART STEMs and MCR Pathways.