Web Design Vector

When starting to build your small business website, all of the pieces that go into properly executing your business online can be quite overwhelming.

From vision, to fonts, to imagery, we consulted our in-house web design expert, Justin, to bring you the five factors to focus on when designing your small business website:

1. Come with a GOAL in mind
It’s always a good idea to know what you want for your website before you start designing.

Is the goal of your site to sell something, generate leads, show off your portfolio, or just display your business hours? Once you establish this goal, you can start crafting the content of the site around it. If you’re an artist showing your work, focus on your art and include nice imagery. If you’re advertising a store front, have your contact information and hours of operation front and center.

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Washivore Header

In honor of National Small Business Week, we’re taking a look at a Webs user website that highlights a whole industry of small business owners that most people don’t think about interacting with, but who touch our lives every day: farmers!

Washivore.org is a hub for all things farming in Washington State. Their well-branded, professional website has a lot going for it, but it succeeds in three key areas specifically. Let’s take a look:

Visual Presentation
Upon arriving at Washivore.org, you are greeted by colorful imagery that really draws you in. There’s a perfectly-sized header image carousel, images for the links to their highest-value landing pages, a rotating image gallery further down the page, and even some video embeds. But despite the volume of visual content on this website, good layout and tasteful color choices keep it from feeling overwhelming or cluttered.

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GIF Evolution Cover Photo

Ah, the animated GIF.

Whether it’s a tiny kitten scaring a large dog, or Taylor Swift dancing awkwardly at an awards show, there’s something about seeing a few seconds of time captured in an infinite loop that appeals to us.

Sometimes a situation becomes funnier the longer it plays out, like a Will Ferrell joke; or sometimes we notice details we hadn’t before, and we stare at it for five, or ten, or twenty loops before moving on to the next image.

A GIF can be entrancing and hypnotic when done well (see “Full English” image below) or irritating when done poorly (if the loop is off by a fraction of a second).

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Desinion Website Screenshot

We’ve talked before about the value of user testing for your small business website, and a few ways to go about it. But have you ever wanted to get the same unbiased feedback to help you make other strategic decisions? Whether it’s a logo, a user experience flow, a new ad, or some copy you’re trying out, getting measurable feedback early in the process can help you save money and get better results.

So, how can you get a significant number of opinions in a way that’s easy to read and base decisions on? Desinion. Every now and then a product or service comes along that seems so fantastic that I just can’t believe that it’s really as inexpensive as it seems. Desinion is one such service. There are free and paid options ($19/year), both of which seem to provide a really excellent value.

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Majestic Wonders Website Header

Every few weeks, we feature Webs users here on the blog and highlight many of the interesting ways that they are using Webs to create truly stunning websites.

Recently, we’ve featured a dance psychologist, a beautiful art store, and a Turkish ice cream company!

In those posts, we’ve shared how you can achieve similar designs, use the same features, and learn from the experience of others.

Today we’d like to dig a little deeper and share a full small business success story. Several weeks ago, I reached out to Kerri, the owner of Majestic Wonders Photography, to see if she would be interested in sharing her story on the Webs blog. As a product owner on the Webs team, I was interested to hear more about her experiences with Webs and how our products helped her business succeed.

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Web Design Infographic Header

Sometimes it’s fun to take a trip down memory lane. Whether it’s reminiscing about at the early days of the internet, as in BMW’s Super Bowl commercial, or looking back at the history of web design.

If you’re in the mood to do the latter, you’re in luck! Today we’re sharing a fantastic infographic from Spark Pay (formerly AmeriCommerce) that takes a detailed look at how things have changed – from design to browsers to screens – from 1990 to today.

So put on your biggest baggy jeans, grab your giant mobile phone, and hop in your time machine as we go back…to 1990.

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Examples of clever 404 Errors

Have you ever been browsing the internet and reached a page screaming, “404 Error Page!” and been afraid you had done something terribly wrong to harm your browser and/or computer?

Have no fear! We have all been there.

Good news is that is completely normal for a user to come across a 404 error page, and for your small business website to return one.  Because in the definition of a 404 Error Page (or HTTP 404 for our more technical audience) it describes the error as a web page that simply could not be found when attempting to follow a broken or dead link (or one that you’ve typed in incorrectly).

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Webs themes mosaic

Today we are delighted to announce a project that our design and product teams have been hard at work on for the last few months – a new collection of website themes! Today on the Webs theme browser you can search, browse, and filter over 450 new premium themes, many with several color variations available.

Limited time: Save 40% on a new Webs package with the code WEBSBLOG40 at checkout! Click here.

Why add hundreds of new themes?

You asked for it, you got it.
One of the bits of feedback we hear most often from users is that they want more design choices. Whether you run a small business like many Webs customers, or maintain a personal blog, you want your website to be one of a kind. We hear that, and want to do everything we can to support that objective. Just like our original website templates, these new themes are all highly customizable, allowing site owners to choose their own fonts, colors, background images, and more.

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Overhead Station website screenshot

Sometimes when small business owners first make the leap into buying a website, they can become their own worst enemy. They feel like they need to have an extensive website with robust navigation and overflowing image galleries before they can go live. And as anyone who has run a small business can tell you, this does take time to achieve. No matter how user-friendly your website builder, feeling the need to pull together a novel’s worth of copy and hundreds of photos can bring the process to a stand-still.

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bw

 

It’s a pretty gloomy day here in Silver Spring, MD, but what better way to brighten things up than to check out a website full of puppies! Today’s Webs user example site comes from BehaviorWorks Dog Training & Behavior Specialists, which has 5 locations around Wisconsin.

This polished and energetic website has a lot going for it. First, there’s a great header that clearly brands the business and offers contact information right up front. Next is the navigation, which is robust and user-friendly.

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STYLE SWITCHER

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Header Style

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