Summer 2019: A Design Trend Retrospective

As autumn falls nearer and the summer sunsets over the horizon we can’t help but notice the new website design trends that have wormed their way into our work lifestyle. Design trends are much like seasons as they come and go but unlike the English summer, these design trends are more sunshine than rain. Let us look back on the design trends that have blossomed and bloomed in the summer of 2019.

Organic Shapes

We’re not going to say geometric shapes are a thing of the past because they’re certainly not, but we’re also not going to say that organic shapes aren’t a thing of the future. In the past websites have always been made up of methodical shapes and grids, this always kept a formality between the different elements throughout the website. A recent summer design trend has shown a movement more into fluid and organic shapes such as freeform blobs and droplets.

This new design trend brings a new depth to websites as it gives off more natural, free and flowing vibes that can really draw a viewer’s attention. You can see many good examples of this through our own website. If you like the design of our website why don’t you consider Contacting Us?

Mosaic Digital Media Website Design

 

Flush Design

With everybody down at the beaches for the summer season, it has given us designers stuck in the office time to reflect and enjoy the simple quiet life without all the bustle of a busy workplace. Maybe this is the reason why a minimalist design is making it’s way deeper in the biggest design trend of summer but then again maybe not.

A flush and minimal design is not a new trend that has come out of nowhere, it’s been around a while but it’s only digging its roots deeper. Many people think of a minimal design as all black and white but it doesn’t have to be that way at all.

A minimal design requires a lot of whitespaces but nobody is saying that space has to be white; it just has to be empty. You can check out a genial website design we built for a client over at thecbdeffect.co.uk.

CBD Effect Projects | Website Design

 

Font-size: BIG

It’s great from an accessibility standpoint, it’s great from a marketing standpoint and it’s great from a design standpoint. This design trend is all about increasing font size or case to make it more legible. This has been a long time coming but it really made itself stand out recently. With the combination of bolder colours and a minimal design coming into play, this trend really ties the two together to score the run of the season and make the holy trinity of big summer design trends.

The basis behind this is to increase the base font size used throughout the website so it reads easily and is displayed in a crisp and clear manner. Other techniques involved in this trend include using uppercase titles and a bolded type to pull your viewer in and get them to read the content you want. A good example of where we have used a large font scheme is on our client’s site bizbom.com.

Bizbom website design project

 

Brave Colours

Although having brave colours never truly went anywhere, it did put on its sun lotion and shorts as it made a bold resurgence during the summer design trends of 2019. Over time as businesses try to present themselves more professionally, they saturate their colour schemes and opt to use colours that are more neutral.

This leaves us designers with the perfect opportunity to bust out a bold scheme and turn the whole design trend on its unsaturated head. A bold colour scheme glows in a sea of bland and really captivates an audience. You can see a magnificent example of this on our daring sister site itglu.co.uk.

itglu web design project

 

So there you have it, what we feel have been the hottest design trends from this summer season. We look forward to seeing what new trends the next season brings. Do you want a website built with all the latest design trends in mind? Contact us on 01925 563 960 or contact us using our contact form to see what we at Mosaic can do to grow and promote your business.

Finding humour in the heatwave

Us Brits absolutely love a moan, the weather’s dull and miserable for 11 months of the year, and the one time we get some sunshine, it’s social media pandemonium as Blighty becomes; “too hot”.

We feel you here at Mosaic, it is warm, but come on, let’s all lighten up a bit just like the weather has and enjoy it whilst it lasts.

The heatwave may be draining but it’s brought us plenty of laughs in the office, and now it’s our turn to showcase 10 of the most humorous heatwave tweets we’ve seen – it might make sticking to your chair that little bit more bearable.

1. Dave

Dave, aka the home of witty banter, has summed up 99% of the population with this clever tweet. We’d argue that there’s not enough complaints in that list though.

Social media - twitter - Dave

 

2. Innocent Drinks

You have to laugh at the drinking tea part, its 30 + degrees and even we’ve got the kettle on here at Mosaic, because nothing cools you down like a scalding hot mug of water. We’re jealous of the desk fans though, even if they may have melted. We might have to pester the bosses for some of those bad boys – heatproof ones of course.

Social media - twitter - innocent drinks

 

3. The Poke

There’s work to be done so unfortunately, this isn’t us. We’re thinking about beer o’clock 24/7 though, because who wouldn’t love an ice-cold pint to help cool off?! Our time will come through, we all like to enjoy a beer together in the office every Friday (will probably be raining Friday now! *nervously checks weather forecast*)

Social media - twitter - the poke

4. Money Saving Experts

We like your style Money Saving Expert, using the heatwave as an excuse to plug the sales of fans – genius. Just look at that gif too?! It’s a hot doggo with a paper towel patting his ‘lil face, adorable.

Social media - twitter heat wave - money saving team

5. Pretty Little Thing

Yep, well there’s no cooler colour than black?! We mean style of course, those skinny jeans are now spray-painted on forever and half the office looks like they’ve just cannonballed into the nearest public pool.

Social media - twitter heat wave - pretty little thing

6. Marty Lawrence

Politics and heatwave news, a double whammy in the trending section. This one probably got the most laughs, so bravo Mr @TeaAndCopy.

Social media - twitter heat wave - marty lawrence

7. Official Weather UK

Never has the bin that holds all the rubbish ever seemed so appealing. Roll on 5pm for the wheelie bin bathathon.

Social media - twitter heat wave - official weather uk

8. Graham Love

PENGUINS DIE IN HOT CARS, ok so maybe stuffed ones won’t but, at least give him a bit of air by leaving the window open a tad.

Social media - twitter heat wave - graham love penguin in a car

9. Kristen Powers

Its times like these that we really wish most UK homes and buildings had air conditioning units fitted as standard. *wipes dripping brow*

Social media - twitter heat wave - kristen powers

10. Mosaic Digital Media

Last but not least, a shameless plug for Mosaic Digital Media. There’s a very serious message behind this tweet though, so please be safe during the heatwave.

Social media in Warrington- twitter heatwave - mosaic digital media

P.S. If you fancy a good belly laugh, look no further than Tom’s smooth moves, coming to a dancefloor near you soon.

Have you seen any other funny posts regarding #heatwave2019? Let us know on Twitter.

The Cached and the Furious

At Mosaic Digital Media, one of the simplest and silliest issues we always have is our websites incorrectly displaying our changes after we have made them. Naturally, this makes us pull our own hair out as we are certain that we have done everything correctly, yet the website says otherwise. The usual culprit to this phenomenon is the browser cache.

Before we get started on how to fix this issue if and when you stumble across it (as we most certainly think you will) lets first go over what exactly is a cache and if it is so detrimental to our work why it does exist?

A cache is a collection of temporary files or data that is stored either on your personal computer (local cache), within the websites hosting (server cache) or on whatever platform you’re accessing the internet from (browser cache). The use of a cache is to save the server the trouble of sending every file needed to view the website over to you every time the page is refreshed, this of course then saves you the trouble of having to download the files every time allowing the site to load faster.

Clearing your cache on different devices

With the explanation and breakdown of what a cache is out of the way, it becomes more obvious on what the actual issue is. Since we have already downloaded the files and saved them in the cache we are not getting our newly edited files until the old ones have been removed! So how exactly DO you remove a cache from your computer? Well, you have come to the right place, read on and we’ll cover what to do when clearing your cache on whichever device you are using in Google/Safari.

Windows/Linux:

When clearing your cache on a Windows/Linux device you want to do the following steps:

1. Press F12 (This will bring up a window of code, ignore this and click back into the browser)

2. Right Click the refresh page icon

3. Left Click the option “Empty Cache and Hard Reload”

Mac:

To start clearing your cache on a Mac device you want to do the following steps:

1. Hold Down the Shift Key

2. Left Click the refresh page icon

Android:

To start clearing your cache on an Android device you want to do the following steps:

1. Press the 3 Vertical Dots located in the upper right section of the screen

2. Press the “Settings” option in the dropdown

3. Press the “Privacy” option in the “Settings” screen

4. Press the “Clear Browsing Data” option in this screen

5. Choose which elements you would like to clear (in this case the cache) then press “Clear”

Apple:

To clear your cache on an Apple device you want to do the following steps:

1. Press the “Settings” option on the Apple device

2. Press the “Safari” option

3. Press the “Clear History and Website Data” option

Note: This will also remove your browsing history

Mosaic can increase your sales with our marketing prowess and expertise in SEO, SMO, and Web Design. Contact us on 01925 563 960 or contact us using our contact form to see what we can do to promote your business.

Top 3 Favourite Website Easter Eggs

Easter, the excuse to eat as much chocolate as we can, is here and we’ve already started stockpiling our eggs for the long weekend. Although we will be still hard at work like always during this time, we thought we would share some of our website tricks with you. What better secrets to share than that of the Website Easter Egg hunt!

Hidden around the depths of the internet are some sneaky secrets and reserved references that are hidden away waiting to be found. This kind of secret or reference is known as an Easter Egg in the technology industry. Many of these tricks are not very well known and are not immediately apparent, usually requiring input from you to uncover these hints. Although we would never be able to cover all the Easter Eggs that are out there, we can certainly highlight our Top 3 Favourite Website Easter Eggs.

 

3. Konami Code on Digg.com

Rick Roll Easter egg

Digg.com is a popular internet news source for a variety of different subjects and hot topics. Hidden away in its code however is a small gem, a piece of code that detects user input on the keyboard and will execute a function if the correct combination is typed in, just like a combination lock.

Around the internet there is a certain popular key combination called the Konami Code that acted as a cheat code in the video game Contra, if you input the following keys into digg.com you are rewarded with an Easter Egg of Rick Astley singing ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’, this is known as being “Rickrolled”.

The keys to the Konami Code are: Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A

 

2. YouTube is Awesome

YouTube is awesome Easter Egg

I am pretty certain that just about every person who is reading this blog knows about YouTube, however, do they know about any of the Easter Eggs that YouTube has to offer? Although YouTube has many Easter Eggs scattered around its site, I will only highlight one of them, the most awesome one.

In a similar fashion to how the Konami Code works on digg.com, YouTube has its own variant where if you type the word “awesome” on your keyboard whilst watching a video the progress bar will start flashing through all of the colours of the rainbow. Don’t worry though if you find this Easter Egg annoying or distracting you can just type “awesome” again and it will go away.

 

1. The Most Meta Easter Egg

Wikipedia Easter Egg

The best way to describe the Internet phenomenon of the Easter Egg is perhaps with a link to the Wikipedia article that details it right? Not so you can read it of course but because there’s an actual Easter Egg hidden on that page too!

Although this Easter Egg may not be as fancy or as fun as some of the other ones on our list we feel that this deserves a place for how it manages to be both meta and descriptive. To find the Easter Egg on this page all you have to do is click the hedgehog in the upper right image on the page, you can also hover over the hedgehog for a little sentence of what the hedgehog thinks of this whole ordeal.

In Conclusion

Now armed with your newfound knowledge of the Konami Code you can go and explore the heights and depths of the internet and check all your favourite websites to unveil their secrets on your Website Easter Egg hunt. Why not start with our site and find our hidden Easter Egg?

From everybody here, at Mosaic, we wish you a Happy Easter! If you need any help or would like to enquire about any of our services and find out how we can help you, please contact us on 01925 563 960 or Contact Us.

Getting the Most from St. Patrick’s Day Marketing

St. Patricks Day was on March 17th and swiftly approached as people bought their leprechaun hats, picked their shamrocks and prepared for what could have been their most drunk day of the year. We are all for being wasted on this occasion but we certainly won’t be wasting this occasion. St. Patricks Day is more than just another day in the calendar for us, it’s a marketing opportunity.

The main focus in St. Patricks Day is the high consumption of beer and the excuse for a party; so does this mean only alcohol companies can capitalise on this day? No of course it doesn’t, just because a holiday may have a specific focus it doesn’t mean it can’t be used or interpreted in different ways to fit your business. Your company can benefit from St. Patricks Day (or any occasion for that matter) in many ways depending on how you choose to market it. Here are just a few ideas that may help you boost your sales on this lucky day:

Try your luck with a contest

St. Patricks Day is an Irish holiday and the Irish are known for their luck. Take this opportunity to let your customers see how lucky they are with a contest or giveaway. Contests are a good way to increase customer engagement that can correlate to an increase in conversions meaning more sales. Contests are an especially effective marketing strategy on Social Media platforms, as it will generate more brand awareness.

Go Green for Paddy’s Day

We’re not talking about recycling here (although that is a good idea) we’re talking about quite literally making yourself green to celebrate St. Patricks Day. The colour of St. Patrick is widely known to be a shamrock green and is tightly associated with the day. Making parts of your identity green such as your logo or some elements on your website can show your audience that you are more than just a corporation. Customers are more likely to approach a corporation with a personality behind it. Changing your website is a good way to generate additional traffic to your site; a fresh coat is likely to decrease bounce rates and increase traffic.

Save them a pot o’ gold with discounts

People love money and more specifically saving money. St. Patricks Day is a great way to push a marketing campaign in the guise of a holiday discount. Although at face value, applying discounts may seem like a bad idea as it decreases the profit margin on your product/service it is many other benefits that outweigh the negative. Customers will likely be loyal your business and use your services again when given a pleasant experience such as with a discount.

Just wish them well

Maybe you don’t want to really change your business or push a promotion on this occasion, that’s fine too. Just wishing your audience a simple happy St. Patricks Day can work as well as an actual promotion as it shows people you care about them and can increase customer engagement and brand awareness. That being said, from all of us at Mosaic: we wish you a happy belated St.

Patricks Day!

So don’t just rely on the luck of the Irish to boost your sales this spring season, rely on us here at Mosaic. Mosaic can increase your sales with our marketing prowess and expertise in SEO, SMO and Web Design. Contact us on 01925 563 960 or contact us using our contact form to see what we can do to promote your business.

10 Year Website Challenge

If you have been on Social Media these last couple of weeks, you may have noticed a new trend popping up on your feed: a “10-year challenge”. This challenge looks at how much somebody, or something, has aged within the last decade. Here at Mosaic, we are all for keeping up with industry standards and latest design trends so let us have a look back at some popular websites to see how they fare in the #10YearChallenge.

Apple

Many look to Apple as a design leader when it comes to slick and minimalistic design they use for their website but it never always used to be that way. When we made Apple take the 10 Year Website challenge we can see they have shifted from their original design a lot in the past decade.

Old

apple old website

New

apple new website

Twitter

Twitter has seen its fair share of renovation over the 10 Year Challenge from a boxed light blue layout with similar aesthetics as other social media sites from that time to a modern fresh full-screen splash.

Old

Twitter Old Website

New

Twitter New Website

Stack Overflow

A website we here are all familiar with. A soft safe haven for us with a sharp design and an easy to navigate layout but looking back that did not always use to be the case. The 10 Year Challenge reveals that the site used to be more compact and blocky. Not all of us here remember the old design but some of us do.

Old

Stack Overflow Old Site

New

Stack Overflow New Site

eBay

Many things have changed over the years with eBay from the logo to the colour scheme. Looking at the result of the 10 Year Challenge, we can see that eBay has dropped its use of the yellow colour and opted for a more plain and modern looking site. E-commerce sites generally need to keep themselves keep and tidy so the user is not swamped by too much irrelevant information.

Old

Old eBay website

New

Old eBay website

PAPYRUS

PAPYRUS is one of the more recent projects we have worked on but the site has not always been with us. We decided to have a look back on what it used to look like, not just before we redesigned it but what it looked like 10 years ago. PAPYRUS has come a long way since then opting for a fresh modern full-width layout with much more vibrant colours and neater navigation. We can see it has aged a lot and for the better in the 10 Year Challenge. Check them out following the link here.

Old

Papyrus Old Website

New

Papyrus New Website

 

Do you feel your website is looking so 2009? How about getting a more modern look and join in with us on the 10 Year Challenge! Contact us on 01925 563 960 or contact us using our contact form and we will see how we can help you.

New Year, New Design Trends

So the New Year has rolled around and resolutions are already being made and broken, there is no better time to reflect on the past year than now. We feel the last year went past quickly but was still packed with loads of new design trends and ideas for us to bring forward to the future. Why don’t you read our Design Trends of 2018 Blog to see what the trends were at the beginning of last year?

Last year had many advancements and alterations in the design industry. From the way websites are laid out to the inclusion of GDPR rules and regulations in May; 2018 was a big year for how we go about website creation. Covering every major design trend in the past year would be too cumbersome and long to accomplish so instead we will highlight the ones that most affected us.

A river of colours

As the year progressed so did the palette and vividness of the colours used in website designs. Budding from the Premier League website in late 2017, the colour craze continued throughout the entirety of 2018 and has stayed with us in thus far in 2019. We have adopted this movement into our own designs that you can find on Our Work. One of our favourite designs this year is the Papyrus website that was heavily influenced by this design trend.

You can read more about how we use colours and what makes for good and bad colour combinations in our Colour Theory Blog.

Typography and me

Another big advancement from the last year is the layout of and the way we use typography. In previous years, the font choice for websites was limited to the resolutions of the smaller screens as mobile browsing was becoming ever increasingly popular.

An easily readable font on a small device was a necessity due to the screen resolution cap that came with them. As technology has advanced, however, it means the screen resolutions are much crisper than they used to be meaning fancier and more engaging typefaces are openly available to us.

Typography plays an integral part in web design as this is usually the main way you’ll be pitching your business to your audience. We even mentioned it in our Design Trends for 2018 Blog. With the availability of more fashionable typefaces coming accessible to us, we will undoubtedly see a shift in the way typography is presented itself to us on websites in 2019.

You can read more about typography in our Typography Blog.

Asymmetry paves the way

At the latter end of 2018, we starting seeing a huge shift in the way the construction of websites were being made. Fewer and fewer sites have been adopting the traditional boxed and squared layout of websites and designers had started leaning towards new fresher layouts of asymmetrical designs.

We have a sneaking suspicion that asymmetrical designs will be the future of 2019s designs with many new creative websites coming out of the woodworks and possibly revolutionising the way we design.

We have some truly wonderful asymmetric designs in the workflow so stay tuned to Our Work for when they are completed.

And there we have it, the 3 most vital design trends that we feel will influence the way we design websites in 2019. If you enjoyed this blog, you can stay tuned for more future blogs by signing up to our Newsletter.

If you are interested in getting a modern website designed with us, why don’t you give us a call on 01935 563 960 or Contact Us.

Typography in Web Design

First of all, what is typography? Well, typography is what you’re looking at right now, text. The design and form go into each letter so our words can be visually displayed. We need typography so our words are legible and displayed clearly for readers whilst maintaining a visually appealing aspect to them to keep the reader drawn.

So what is typography in web design? This blog will describe the different aspects of typography in web design to help you determine the good from the bad and the ugly. We aim to give you some pointers into what fonts and styling you should choose for your website.

If you are looking for a library of readily available web fonts check out Google Fonts for a wide selection of useful and clean fonts.

Fonts

I am going to start with the most common and critical aspect to typography in web design and that is the choice of font. There are many types of fonts out there all with their own unique styles and designs; saying there are thousands of fonts would be a vast understatement.

Fonts come in many different styles, sizes and shapes but can all be boiled down into four main font categories: Serif, Sans Serif, Script and Decorative. Fonts may fit in multiple of these categories but these categories are still important when it comes to choosing the right font for your website.

Serif

A serif font consists of small lines, called serifs, attached to the endpoints of letters. A popular example of a serif font would be Times New Roman. This type of font can be used as either a body or a title font but are more commonly used on printed media rather than in web design.

serif Typography in Web Design

Image source: https://dribbble.com/shots/4811525-Article-Header

Sans Serif

Sans Serif fonts are letters without the serif on the ends and instead have flat endpoints. Helvetica is a good example of a sans serif font. In web design sans serif is probably the most widely used font type due to its clean and clear readability even on lower resolution monitors. The most popular use for sans serif is as a body font but very commonly used as title font too.

Sans Serif Typography in Web Design

Image source: https://dribbble.com/shots/3538223-Web-Design-Touchstone-Innovations

Script

Script fonts, also known as handwriting fonts, are a type of typography that appears like it has been written by hand and is usually displayed in cursive. Sometimes with handwriting fonts strokes connect to one another so it is best not to tamper with the letter spacing when using these. Qwigley would be an example of a script font.

Although this font can be used in web design it is often avoided due to its difficulty to make out sometimes and that it cannot really be altered much using other typographic techniques without the font looking messed up. That being said the font can still be used to add a bit of splash and style to a web page just don’t expect to see it as the main font.

Script Typography in Web Design

Image source: https://dribbble.com/shots/4905259-Smooth-River-Font

Decorative

The fourth and final font is a Decorative font. These fonts are the quirky and outlandish fonts that have fun flairs and are designed with more style in mind rather than legibility. The Algerian font is a good example of a decorative font. This type of font is not often used in web design due to the novelty aspect of it. When it is used it is used sparingly and as a title font, it is not good practice to use this type of font as a body font whatsoever.

Decorative Typography in Web Design

Image source: https://dribbble.com/shots/5283128-Hillingdon-Font-Extras


Size

People often say size doesn’t matter but when it comes to typography in web design it most certainly does. Having your text too small and it will become illegible and not friendly for any of your older users or those with eye problems. Having your fonts too big, however, will look jarring and will lower the quality of your website design.

The industry standard for body text in web design is 1em that is usually set to 16px. This being said you may lower or raise the pixel count for your body text size to however you see fit but 16px is generally the agreed upon size when it comes readability against design.

Line Height

Line height is just as important as the setting of typography in web design as size is. Although the importance of line height is not immediately apparent when you have just a few words it is when the sentences and paragraphs start forming is when you realise its use.

The line-height on text determines the amount of space left below the letters so when the paragraph collapses there is a gap between the two rows of text. Using our above-determined scale of 1em = 16px it is the best practice to set the line height of your body text at 1.25 – 1.5 depending on browser size. It is best to have a smaller line height on smaller devices such as mobile and tablets with a larger line height being on the desktop.

Letter Spacing

Tracking, also known as letter spacing, is the typography in web design that calculates the individual gaps between each letter. The letter spacing, although it is important, can usually be left as is unless you have any special design ideas. In web design, the letter spacing can be set to the value of ‘normal’ which will calculate the default letter spacing of the font in use. If you do prefer, you can set the letter spacing as a px or em value.

Colour

Finally yet importantly is the colour of the text. Colour is not usually thought of as an aspect of typography in web design as it is commonly changed and isn’t really considered when changing the design of the text. Colour does depend more on the look and layout of the website rather than the text itself but it does affect the look and feel of the typefaces.

The font style does depend on the colour that you choose, as deeper and darker colours will make the font feel thicker whereas the lighter colours will make the font look thinner. This also depends on the background your font is on, as a background colour will absorb the font if it is too dominant but a recessive colour will let the text prevail. If you are having issues with your colour selection, you can check out our Colour Theory Blog for some colour combination and design ideas.

Conclusion

So that’s it, the main elements and uses of typography in web design. We have covered the different fonts you can choose and what other aspects of the lettering you can take into consideration when building a website. We have explained what typography is and what uses it has. If you want to read about more design trends and tips why don’t you check out our Web Design Trends of 2018 Blog and our Web Design Top Tips Blog.

If you still need assistance with your website design or would like to talk to us for any website design related reason you can contact us on 01925 563 960 or contact us using our contact form and we will see how we can help you.

What is Colour Theory?

Colour theory is the idea and practise of creating a structure for each of the primary, secondary and tertiary colours that allows us to see how each colour works in relation to one another, allowing us to get a better understanding on which colours complement each other and which ones don’t combine well.

There are three main colour theory categories; the Colour Wheel, Colour Harmony and Colour Context. In this article, I will describe each of these works along with how we implement them in our everyday work here at Mosaic.

The Colour Wheel

The Colour Wheel is a wheel that uses primary colours (Red, Yellow & Blue). This was originally designed by Sir Isaac Newton in 1666. The colour wheel highlights each of the primary, secondary and tertiary colours with their shades starting from a solid block colour and fading down to white; this gives us our colour hues. Each colour is placed between the colours that most associated with it. This allows us to see which colours go well together and how well all the colours will blend.

Here at Mosaic, we like to use the colour wheel when creating new websites, if the client is in need of branding and has not yet been established yet we can have free reign over the colours we can use. This allows us to find each a set of complementary colours that catch the eye of the viewer and draws them in. In the next section, we will go into more detail about complementary colours along with other colour schemes when we talk about colour harmony.

Colour Harmony

Colour Harmony is the practice of using colours that are well associated with one another to pick out the perfect balance in design and to make sure the chosen colours have a smooth contrast and are not too harsh to look at. Naturally, some colours work better with each other than others do, colour harmony is about differentiating these rather than just always using our favourite ones (Or else everything we make would just be 50 shades of purple!). We have listed some of the most common colour schemes based on colour harmony below:

Analogous Colours

An Analogous Colour Scheme is the idea of using a selection of usually 3 to 5 side-by-side colours on the colour wheel. These colours generally contain one prominent colour with some lighter and darker tertiary colours that are either side of the chosen colour on the colour wheel. Below is an example of an analogous colour scheme:

Complementary Colours

Complementary Colours are a duo of colours that are directly opposite one another on the colour wheel. The opposing colours create the maximum possible contrast allowing the colours to stabilise each other out, as one is a dominant colour whilst the other is a recessive colour. Below is an example of a complementary colour scheme:

Triadic Colours

A Triadic Colour Scheme is very much like its complementary colour counterpart but instead of choosing two opposing colours, this uses three. To find the correct colours to use in a triadic colour scheme you have to choose the primary colour you would like to use and calculate the other two by finding the equal distance between all three points.

This variant of colour harmony works best when there is one designated dominant colour or all three colours only highlight the design. Below is an example of a triadic colour scheme:

Colour Context

Colour Context is the way each colour interacts when combined with other colours. The idea of colour context is to highlight which colours contrast well with certain combinations and which colours are absorbed. This is an important step in our industry in particular as it allows us to know which shades to use and in what contexts to make sure nothing clashes and every element is displayed clearly and draws the user’s eye.

Depending on the surrounding colours, the way our eyes view colours changes meaning that the same colour on two different backgrounds may appear slightly different even though they are the same shade, this can sometimes cause confusion, as it is the best practice to introduce as minimal as possible shades to keep brand identity strong.

Why don’t you have a look at some of the previous projects we have completed here or read more into branding with our blog ‘What is a branding kit?’.

If you would like to inquire about any of our services and find out how we can help you, please contact us on 01925 563 960 or Contact Us.

5 Common Website Design Mistakes Made Daily

When it comes to website design, a common goal to have in mind is to be creative as you like and make a website that is unique and promotes your business. Usually, a distinctive website design is a great goal to have as it encourages you to go against the grain and design an exclusive website. This, however, does not always go to plan, as there is a reason why websites are designed the way they are.

When designing websites there are some unwritten rules, and some written ones, to what makes a website effective that web designers adhere. In this blog, I will be covering some of the most common mistakes and pitfalls people fall into when trying to design their own distinctive website.

If you are looking to get your website built by a professional agency please contact us or give us a call on 01925 563 960 and discuss how we can help you.

Not Enough Content

One of the most common traps people fall into when designing their website is the lack of good content, or sometimes any content, on their website. Websites require a good amount of content be it images or text in order to be found and picked up by search engines. Search engines look at the content on your website and rank it accordingly to how relevant it thinks your website is to the search term. If your website is lacking in content then it is less likely to come up in search results meaning less people will see it. This, of course, is bad for business.

Too Much Content

On the contrary, to the above point, having too much content on your website can also be detrimental to your website design. When we say too much content what we really mean is too much irrelevant content or too much content clustering together in one location rather than it being distributing it evenly throughout your website. Content is great for SEO for when a search engine crawls your site as it is more likely to find lots of relevant content to the search results that you’re likely aiming for however when the user goes onto your website they may feel overwhelmed by the clutter of irrelevant and lengthy content and bounce back off the website.

No Call to Actions

A lot of website design is about getting your audience to the contact us page, buying a product or in other ways subscribing to the service you are advertising. This is sometimes lost in translation when building a website as they focus to much on how the website looks and not enough on how the website works. The main element that is essential to websites that many amateur designers miss is the need for effective calls to action. A call to action is a link or an instruction to the user that tells them to do an immediate action, usually being a prompt to completing sale or gaining them as a client. These are more often than not either never implemented or poorly executed in a way that the user doesn’t feel compelled to click or doesn’t even realise that they should click in some cases. Bad call to actions will reduce the conversion rates on your website making your website design effectively useless.

Bad Images

More often than not when we are doing website design, we encounter a vast amount of bad imagery. A good image wants to be high-quality, relevant and well optimised but many of time that images we come across tend to be the opposite of this criteria; pixelated, irrelevant and otherwise too large. All these traits of a good image are vital for a website design as these are what draws the users attention the most and is what keeps the user from bouncing right back off the website. Traps that I have encountered amateur website designers fall into is using images that do not fit the area that they are using them. Examples of these could be a small image used as a banner image forcing it to expand and be highly pixelated or alternatively a very large sized image in a small area that would take longer to load than necessary.

Not Mobile Responsive

The last and perhaps most vital of these website design mistakes that people fall into is forgetting or just neglecting the need for a mobile responsive website. As we move into the future, more and more people are moving to mobile web surfing. According to various studies over 50% of all website traffic is now coming from mobiles and that number is only increasing. If that isn’t enough to convince you of the importance of making your website mobile responsive, Google is now starting to rank your website down if it deems it as not mobile friendly. This means you will not only be losing traffic from anybody browsing on mobile but you will also be penalised for it. It is not just mobile responsiveness you want to worry about either, making sure that your website design is fully responsive is just as important. This means making sure your website works on not just mobiles, tablets and full-width but also on any dimensions the user may have their browser width set at.

Making your website distinctive whilst adhering to the above criteria can be difficult, if you are struggling to make an effective website or looking to get your website built by a professional agency please contact us or give us a call on 01925 563 960 and discuss how we can help you.

What is the Best Type of Website Hosting for you?

There are many variations of website hosting out there that you can buy, rent, or get at no charge. With a high selection of options comes to a vast variety of choice that may leave some people confused about what they are buying. In this blog, I am going to cover a selection of different hosting types, highlight the advantages and disadvantages of each one of them, and give tips whether this is the right type of hosting for you.

Shared Website Hosting

When on a shared website hosting plan, your website is on a server that is hosting other websites in addition to yours.

The advantages of being on a shared hosting server are that it is usually rather cheap to be on due to the cost of the server being split between all of the other sites that are on that server. The issues of using a shared web hosting server are that all the sites that are sharing that server are also sharing the amount of traffic they can support. If one site is gaining a lot of traffic, the server will dedicate more resources to that website and therefore cause the other websites to slow down. This usually is not an issue if your site is the most popular one on the server, as the server will delegate the resources to you.

This type of hosting is the preferred type of hosting for newer and smaller websites, as they are likely to get less traffic than large sites. This option is usually the desired option for businesses that are starting up online due to their initial lack of traffic.

If you are interested in our shared web hosting plan please contact us on 01925 563 960 or contact us here.

Cloud Hosting

Cloud hosting is a newer form of website hosting that allows many single servers to coordinate with one another and create what is effectively a super server. This is an effective way of hosting for providers as they can easily add additional servers to the cloud to increase the cloud size.

The advantages of using a cloud-based web-hosting server are that if the traffic to your website suddenly increases the servers will be able to support the additional load without taking your website down. Just be wary that cloud-hosting servers generally operate on a Pay As You Go (PAYG) pricing plan in a similar way that energy bills work where you only pay for what you use. This can be a good pricing plan but it may incur some unexpected charges if the traffic to your site unpredictably spikes.

This type of hosting is best for businesses whose websites are growing quickly and are gaining an increasing amount of traffic.

Dedicated Hosting

With using a dedicated hosting server your website is contained alone in a server with no other websites on it to share resources. Usually, when being on a dedicated hosting server it allows you full access to the root permissions that gives you full control of the server if you wish to use it.

Dedicated servers are the highest form of a server you can have your website hosted. The people who generally use this type of hosting are businesses whose websites have grown into a large online presence and need the dedicated additional resources due to the volume of traffic they are receiving.

If you are interested in our dedicated website hosting plan please contact us on 01925 563 960 or contact us here.

Free Hosting

Using free web hosting means, somebody somewhere will let you keep your website on their server for no charge. This hosting type is generally a shared web hosting plan but without the charge. These companies regain the profits lost on using free hosting by adding advertisements to your website and limiting the amount of server space your website can use.

The advantage of free hosting is, as the name would suggest, the hosting does not cost. There are not many other advantages to free hosting however as the companies are still a business that needs to make money and they employ other tactics to their hosting to make you pay money in order for them to change or remove something. Adding their domain to your domain, placing ads all throughout your site or limiting the uptime on your site are just a few of the ways that they try and get you to pay for their hosting.

This type of hosting may not be good for businesses or anybody trying to gain a lot of traffic from their website but it is useful for anybody who just wants to mess around with creating a website or for people with small personal projects.

If you are interested in knowing more about our website hosting plans or would like any of our other services, please contact us on 01925 563 960 or contact us here.

Is Woocommerce the Superior eCommerce Platform?

As online shopping becomes increasingly popular, more and more people are turning to Woocommerce in pursuit of getting ahead of the competition. Since the launch of Woocommerce in 2011 over 2 million websites are now integrating this popular eCommerce platform into their site with a multitude of different uses ranging from a simple single product page to a massive selection of variable products in an online store.

In comparison, Woocommerce proves itself as the most popular eCommerce platform having over six times the amount of users as its main competitors Shopify and Magento. This popularity comes from a surplus of reasons why people prefer Woocommerce as their desired eCommerce site. Here are just a few of the major ones to help you decide if Woocommerce is the eCommerce platform for you.

If you are considering building a Woocommerce website please Contact Us or call us on 01925 563 960 and we can arrange a personal scoping session to help you out.

No License Cost

Unlike Shopify and Magento, Woocommerce does not have a licensing fee. This means that when creating an eCommerce website Woocommerce is the most cost-effective solution. For new and upcoming businesses that do not have the capital to keep up with an annual license fee that platforms such as Shopify and Magento charge, Woocommerce becomes the ideal eCommerce platform. You simply require a hosting provider and domain and away you go.

Ease of Use

Another accolade Woocommerce has earned itself is its ability to be understandable and easily interpreted by both the more and less technical people. Even though there are some elements to Woocommerce that are more advanced than others which can be daunting, this platform takes the top prize for being a great and simple platform for those with less knowledge in online shops right up to a wonderfully complex system for those with a greater understanding in theme development.

Highly Customisable

Maybe you do not want a traditional eCommerce platform that lists products that people can buy. Maybe you want something unique and special, something more personalised to your desires; Woocommerce is the platform for you. Due to its simple and professional nature, it is known to be a highly customisable platform with a wide selection of pre-built plugins that have a variety of weird, wonderful and niche functionality allowing you can make an eCommerce platform tailored to you.

Security

With Woocommerce being the hugely popular platform it is, updates are pushed out on a regular basis. Not only does this minimalise the number of bugs you may encounter but also makes sure that the plugin is always up to date on the latest security changes and updates meaning that you need not worry about any security breaches or flaws. If you would like to read more on website security, please feel free to read Our GDPR Blog.

So now that you are aware of the benefits, what is your opinion on Woocommerce? Do you think that this is the platform for you? Or do you think you would prefer another eCommerce platform such as Shopify instead? If you would like us to build you a personalised Woocommerce website please Contact Us or call us on 01925 563 960.