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Extreme Makeover: Taking your website to a new level

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Extreme Makeover: Taking your website to a new level

  1. 1. Eve Simon Creative Director Beaconfire Consulting <ul><li>Extreme Makeover: Taking your website to a new level Ad Council Seminar Series October 1st, 2009 </li></ul>
  2. 2. Feeling stuck? <ul><li>How to tell that you need to redesign your website. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Any of this sound familiar? <ul><li>“ We’re rebranding the organization, but let’s just swap out the logo on the web site, ok?” </li></ul><ul><li>“ It’s fine that no one can find us on search engines – the right people know where we are.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Add a button on the homepage for the new content. Squeeze it in above the fold.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ We’re missing out on this social networking thing. Fix it!” </li></ul>
  4. 4. Oh yeah, you’re ready.
  5. 5. “ Flash is the future!” <ul><li>… and other website redesign myths debunked. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Myth #1 <ul><li>“ Design is universal.” </li></ul>
  7. 7. Myth #2 <ul><li>“ They do it, so we should too.” </li></ul>
  8. 8. Myth #3 <ul><li>“ Site architecture should reflect your org’s structure.” </li></ul>
  9. 9. Myth #4 <ul><li>“ Usability is luxury that we can’t afford.” </li></ul>
  10. 10. Myth #5 <ul><li>“ Twitter will save us.” </li></ul>
  11. 11. Ok, so then what’s the Holy Grail of design? It’s not magic – it’s a process... “ Don’t go there – it’s a silly place”
  12. 12. 1. Start a dialogue <ul><li>Avoid design by committee </li></ul><ul><li>Interview stakeholders </li></ul><ul><li>Brainstorm </li></ul><ul><li>Ask lots of questions </li></ul><ul><li>Determine your target audience </li></ul><ul><li>Think like an outsider looking in </li></ul><ul><li>Be honest about likes & dislikes </li></ul><ul><li>Know you cannot please everyone </li></ul><ul><li>Challenge yourself to think unconventionally </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t over complicate </li></ul>
  13. 13. 2. Do Your Homework <ul><li>Know the audience inside & out </li></ul><ul><li>Prioritize multiple audiences </li></ul><ul><li>Clearly define site goals & requirements. </li></ul><ul><li>Identify & prioritize engagement opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>Objectively identify the pain points </li></ul><ul><li>Understand the brand </li></ul><ul><li>Size up the competition </li></ul><ul><li>Gather all design assets </li></ul>
  14. 14. 3. Don’t reinvent the wheel <ul><li>Follow best practices where appropriate </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Consistency </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Usability </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Typography </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Page balance & eyetracking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Color & Contrast </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Keep it simple </li></ul><ul><li>Read “Don’t make me think” by Steve Krug </li></ul>
  15. 15. 4. Use visual narrative to push action & engagement <ul><li>Define your “voice” & stick to it </li></ul><ul><li>Select strong visuals & draw your audience in but don’t overdo it </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t be afraid of metaphor, but think it through carefully </li></ul><ul><li>Use straightforward labels </li></ul><ul><li>Keep the subject matter accessible to your audience </li></ul><ul><li>Show all available engagement opportunities clearly </li></ul><ul><li>Move people to “do something” </li></ul>
  16. 16. 5. Beat All Expectations <ul><li>Create very different design options to select from </li></ul><ul><li>Never force a concept. If it feels like you have to explain it to your mother, throw it out and try again </li></ul><ul><li>Beware of visual stereotypes </li></ul><ul><li>Be picky </li></ul><ul><li>Deliver an “embarrassment of riches” </li></ul><ul><li>Stay engaged and on message throughout the process </li></ul>
  17. 17. Not Just a Pretty Face <ul><li>Real examples of how mission, message & engagement can transform user experience </li></ul>
  18. 18. American Lung Association <ul><li>Before </li></ul>
  19. 19. American Lung Association After
  20. 20. Wildlife Conservation Society Before
  21. 21. Wildlife Conservation Society After
  22. 22. National Breast Cancer Coalition Before
  23. 23. National Breast Cancer Coalition After
  24. 24. Tell the story through visual impact
  25. 25. Focus on action
  26. 26. Design for the audience (even if it’s not your aesthetic)
  27. 27. Encourage interactivity
  28. 28. Secret sauce, silver bullets & the tooth fairy <ul><li>A great website is not about someone else’s fiction. </li></ul><ul><li>It needs to tell your story. </li></ul><ul><li>Own it. </li></ul>
  29. 29. Thank you.

Hinweis der Redaktion

  • .. What IS your sign? What we’re gonna talk about here
  • .. What IS your sign? What we’re gonna talk about here
  • The basic tenets of design ARE universal across mediums BUT… Don’t forget that here is a significant difference between art and design. You can create stunning visuals that reflect your emotions or feelings by themselves but to design effectively, project requirements must override personal preference.
  • There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach to good web design. Custom solutions are needed to address unique needs of every organization. The catch is how to solve similar engagement design challenges in new ways Design best practices can be your friend, but should never be your crutch.
  • While it’s important for a site to take structure into account, it’s the user that matters Designing towards who the site is for, not who is footing the bill, is critical to success Internal politics are of no consequence to your audience, &amp; should never impact them A solid engagement &amp; narrative focused info arch is the backbone to a great design
  • You cant afford NOT to have usability While you don’t need to do full out testing – you need to know what makes a good user experience and follow best preactices
  • Social media is a tool, not a shortcut
  • ; be strong so they feel included and listened to, but don’t let them derail your process with your team about what people want, and don’t be afraid to pose a lot of questions
  • assets including logos, photos, style guide but identify areas of flexibility
  • forge new ground – don’t just stop at “ok” or “close enough” , following same criteria/information – a site is more than a homepage, it’s your voice on the web.
  • A to b on the way to C
  • Always remember the difference between art and design Plot out a process that will work for you and follow it no matter what Remember that you can’t please everyone at your organization – aim to meet the needs of your audience If you create something that’s beautiful that doesn’t further your organization’s mission or engage the audience, it’s not ultimately going to be effective Trust your instincts and be willing to take risks Fight for what you think is right