A New Website
So, as you can see, we've created ourselves a new website. We do hope you like it.
The site was built over the course of the last few weeks. We wanted it to be very visual, a showcase for our work. So it is quite... gallery-y. We'll be gradually adding more products to the galleries over time. Stay tuned.
The following is a brief run-through of some of the main points we considered when building the site.
Everybody knows that the layout of a website should follow a generally consistent pattern, with the various components aligning in columns and rows, but something which is often overlooked is space. Space is key to a well designed website. Elements should not lay too close together, cramping each other. The layout should allow them to breathe. Lots of white space helps each individual element to stand out and attract the eye, which is especially important with a Portfolio website like ours.
Colour & Imagery
Since Rach's favourite colour is teal, this was the colour around which the site was built. We have various tones throughout which all relate back to that one shade of teal - which you can also see in the 'Studios' part of our logo (another blog on that in due course).
The images at the top of each page - which are called 'hero' images - were carefully selected. They had to follow a set of rules. Most obviously, they had to be pleasant to look at, and not overly complex. They also needed to represent the theme of the page they would be adorning (also fairly obvious). Finally, they had to compliment the overlaying text in a compositional sense. For example, the paints and paintbrushes on the Illustration page are arranged nicely around the text, so as not to confuse the eye. Many of the images have their focal points on the right-hand side, to counterbalance the text to the left; the surfing hand on the Web & Digital page, for example, and the gifts in the image on the Gift Wrapping page. Most of the 'hero' images were procured from pixabay.com - a handy source of free, high resolution images - and they were all darkened significantly for use on the site (again, to help the white overlaying text to stand out).
We obviously didn't just build the website for fun (although it was fun). It's to show off the services we offer and hopefully reach some new clients. It was important therefore to include lots of Call-To-Actions (CTA) throughout the site. A CTA is basically a prompt for a site visitor to do something e.g. to get in touch with us via a contact form or a call button, or visit a certain page. We have included CTAs both on the website pages and within the image descriptions themselves.
Optimising For Mobile
It's clearly essential for a modern website to look good and work well on mobile phones.
Due to the significant reduction in space on a mobile phone screen, many of the decorative elements of the desktop version of our site have been jettisoned in the mobile version. For example, the images representing our various services on the home page, and the images of ourselves, just above that, had to go. We don't want visitors to have to do any unnecessary scrolling in order to get to the information they need, or to reach our CTAs.
Hovering in the bottom right of the mobile view, no matter what page you are on, is a Whatsapp button. This allows visitors to get in touch with us with one click.
SEO stands for 'search engine optimisation', which is the practice of ensuring your website is set up to perform well in search engine results. This entails things such as writing good meta-data - the tags which sit invisibly within your site and tell the search engines what your site is and who it is for. The better and more accurate the meta-data, the easier it is for the search engines to put your site in front of the right people.
I won't bore you with any more SEO details here. Suffice to say it's something which you do need to get right. If you're reading this and have any questions on SEO, or anything else mentioned above, get in touch! We'd love to help.
Thanks for reading!