Have great looking professional design
I was once waiting for the subway in the London underground when I saw an ad that caught my eye. The ad was basically just copy but the way it was written and the message really stroke a chord with me. The ad read:
“Since the beginning of the times we used rings to define who we are. Our philosophy, model, beliefs and product. It told stories about ourselves. Our individuality, our uniqueness.
Rings were never about decoration. They were statements of who we were.
And then we stopped creating it for ourselves. We started buying off the shelf.
It was no longer our story. Being online on the same day became more important than what we were going to say and provide on the website.
I believe a website isn’t just a website. It should be your mark on the Internet, how you came together and fell in love with your work. A story that can be handed down.
How can you do this? Work with design professionals to capture the details in a website that celebrates your uniqueness. A website no one else on the Web will have alike. “
My thought after reading this was how it perfectly it applies to website design.
With the growing myriad of templates and off-the-shelf products and services being advertised to us it is easy to start thinking why should we invest in professional design when we can, at least in theory, get the same result with less money or even for free.
Hiring a professional on-line presence that generates results
The difference between hiring professionals to work on your branding and website from other people is really simple. The professionals have done it multiple times before with success. The others have not.
No one wants to pay more than necessary for a service or a product that solves their needs. I mean why would you want to pay more if you can get it for a fraction of the cost and time?
The question is when we go to the market and consider different companies we tend to think that they are all created equal. They are not. A small agency is different from a big agency. WordPress is different than Magento and Drupal. And award winning professionals are different to work with than people that are starting out.
Steve Jobs, when he was building out Next, payed a hundred thousand dollars for a logo. Why? Because he wanted something that was different from everything else on the market. That would reflect the brand and business he was setting out to build.
The only way to look professional is to work with professionals.
The only way to build great design is to hire great designers.
Be willing to invest. That investment should aim to produce a result that will significantly increase the gap between you and your competitors. At the end of the day people want to work with the winning team and the way to judge who is winning from the outside is through design, story branding and marketing.
I see many clients choosing a supplier based on price and platforms without asking to see what success stories the company can show.
With tools like WordPress.com, Squarespace and Wix people tend to believe they can just go on-line, create a beautiful website in minutes and that will be it. Unfortunately, although it is true that you can use such tools to produce and publish something online fairly quickly, the truth is that in order to create something meaningful and disruptive to the market, i.e. that customers love, that generates business transactions and is a real pleasure to use, requires us to go through a series of disciplines rather than point and click tools.
But Nuno, I don’t want to pay thousand of dollars to an agency to create my business website – you say.
Do you want to be a market leader?
Do you want to have a world class marketing system?
Do you want to be perceive as the best in your industry, become highly valued and payed accordingly?
Then you have to do what the market leader does.
You have to work at world class level.
You have to aim to disrupt your industry, influence it and deliver value like no other player will do.
It’s funny that if you search for the key steps for building a website online you find generic tactical steps like “choose a domain name”, “pick a hosting company”, “create content”, etc.
In fact there seems to be no single methodology to create a website that 1) is meaningful and disruptive to the market, 2) customers love and generates business.
The only pattern we see is that they hired professionals.
The 4 stages of a website design
Joana Galvão, from GIF Design Studios, establishes a website has 4 stages: Beginner, Bootstrapped, Beautified and Branded & Bespoke.
Beginner/Brochure/Business card website – This is your first iteration of your website. Your aim has been to have some sort of online presence.
Bootstrapped/Self-made – you need to invest a lot of time to learn a whole set of new skills to build a website.
Beautified – you got a designed to create a logo, put together fonts and your colour scheme, had professional photos done, hired a copywriter and then finally a web designer or developer to put it all together online.
Branded & Bespoke – your website is a powerhouse. It’s on everyone’s list of “I want my website to look like [insert your name here]”. It creates a wow effect when people land on it, which gets their undivided attention.
At what level do you want to play?
Branded & Bespoke
People are making snap judgements about you and the VALUE that your brand represents before you get a chance to talk to them. – Joana Galvão, GIF Design Studios
Clients will make their first impression by browsing your website and will immediately create a story inside their heads. That story can be a number of things:
“This is nicely designed”
“This is a template”
“This looks professional”
“This is stock photo”
“This looks cheap”
“This looks useful.”
“This looks exquisite.”
Our years of experience have taught us that a website shouldn’t be about compromise. Created using the best design practices and standards and mobile-friendly our websites are exceptional crafted at a fair price.
Your company isn’t off-the-shelf, why should your website be?
How to create a killer (professional, catchy, that brings in results, that puts me out there as a leader in my industry, world-class) website?
Do you think that is something the biggest brands and companies know? I doubt it. But the interesting thing is that they get there anyway. Do you ever wondered why Apple, Google, Facebook and others have interesting and compelling websites? If you think it’s because they have a lot of resources and money you would be right. But there is also another factor. The fact that they hire professional suppliers to help them out.
Now, there is nothing wrong with throwing together a logo you or someone on your team created, a nice color-scheme and a bunch of words and pictures into a web page. But it is not going to look professional and premium.
Does it pay off to hire professionals to do my website?
Design centred approach has become prime focus for any technology driven company, because good design can be a huge differentiation.
As the trend continues more and more industries turn to design centred approaches for better handling of customers and maintaining higher standards of service.
Good design is invisible. Even two years old can play with it.
Hire a professional award-winning Web Design boutique.
Be willing to make the necessary investment.