Web Design Works

Web Design Works by Anita B. Carroll

{ Designs for } Custom Web Sites ~ Social Media Sites (WordPress, Blogger, Facebook) ~ Web Advertisement ~ Web Graphics

Race-Point can help you with your

Online { VISUAL DESIGN } Business Presence needs.

My online website specific design services includes; Social Media Networking Sites (Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and more) Blogsites (WordPress, Blogsite,) Custom Website Design, Website Re-Design, and Website Usability Testing.

With the information below, I hope to help you decide what type of website it is that will best fit your purpose.  Including a quick fact about website usability and why it is crucial for you as a website owner to understand its importance.  So, first let’s get started on deciding what type of website it is that you need.

1. What type of website are you looking for?

It may be a bit overwhelming at first, trying to understand and decide what kind of website is the best one for your purpose.  With that in mind, I created a short checklist that will help you get started.  The 4 most important questions to ask yourself when planning a website are:

  1. What type of business is this for?  I.e. shop, self-representing artist/professional, start-up, small business owner, corporation, organization, non-profit organization, foundation, hospital, etc.
  2. What is the purpose of your online business presence? I.e are you planning on selling products from your website?
  3. What do you hope to gain by having an online presence? I.e is it to generate more sales?
  4. Budget?  It is important to establish up front what type of financial investment you can afford to make, in today’s market we have a multitude of selections to choose from, so don’t be deterred and think you can’t have a fabulous online presence, just because your wallet is sparse.

So, let’s play out this following scenario:

  1. What is your business type? Self-representing Artist.
  2. Website purpose? Sell my handmade goods.
  3. Website goal? Reach out to a larger customer base to help generate more sales.
  4. Budget? Not to exceed $200 in monthly expenses.

As “your” designer I would immediately recognize and know that what you need is an E-Commerce based website.  The key answer above is in question #2 – Website purpose: “Sell my handmade goods.”  There are many E-Commerce based website options to choose from.  The most cost-effective and very easy to manage are providers such as Etsy.com and CafePress.com … but as I mentioned there are many more to choose from.

To learn about the various website types, check out this article that I wrote about website types, and don’t forget to find out if you really need a brand and what branding is.

In this second section, I will cover some quick facts about:

.2. Website Usability

What is web usability and why it is crucial for you as a website owner to understand its importance.

Let us first explore what Web Usability is:

Web usability is an approach to make web sites easy to use for an end-user, without the requirement that any specialized training be undertaken.  The user should be able to intuitively relate the actions she needs to perform on the web page with other interactions she sees similar contexts, e.g., press a button to perform some action.

So, why do YOU need to know what website usability is and why is it so important?

After deciding which website type is the right one for your business model, the goal of your website will ALWAYS be to ensure that YOUR target audience reaches their goal, on YOUR website, seamlessly and without effort.  Helping your target audience reach its goal, is accomplished by implementing user-friendly interface and experience design (UI & UX) based on proven website usability research and website usability testing when available.

Best usability practices are when visual cohesiveness, in both design and communication is applied to the brand.  Correct UI and UX design is when the brand reaches the hands of its target audience effectively, seamlessly, and without effort. – Anita B. Carroll, Visual Designer, Founder Race-Point.com

For instance, take any website, and see if you can answer the following questions by simply looking at their home page:

  1. Company name
  2. What do they do?
  3. Who is their targeted audience?
  4. Do they have a product?  If so, what is it?

If it took you more than 10/15 seconds to find theses answers and if you answered “no” to any of the above questions, the website is failing to serve its target audience.  If your website doesn’t communicate to its customers why they should buy your product, services and etc., chances are, you wont achieve your goal.  This why it’s important to understand what website usability testing is and how it can help you achieve your business website goal.

What do you think, do you agree – is website usability important? 

Have you performed usability testing on your site, how did it help you?  What did you find most surprising?

I welcome any thoughts on the subject.  Please feel free to comment below.

Also, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me at: anita@race-point.com to discuss your project and business needs.

-Anita B. Carroll
Visual Designer, Founder Race-Point.com

Learn more about Anita

Anita B. Carroll -  Visual Design Consultant and Owner at Race-Point.com

Anita B. Carroll is a visual design consultant and owner of Race-Point.com, supporting self-published authors and publishing houses with all their business brand identity design needs, and offers a FRESH take on book cover design.  Anita has over 17 years of experience within the visual design field, starting out managing creative initiatives for both online and print publications, for Fortune 500 Businesses in Silicon Valley, California.  Experience applying brand visual design and content guidelines consistently across several products. Anita is specialized in Heuristic Evaluation, Web User Interface Design with focus on online usability testing, a valuable skill when designing book covers for the rapidly growing digital market.  Anita is also an avid reader. Discovering book cover design has provided the opportunity to combine her works in photography and graphic design skills.

Anita’s work has been featured in the KOBO Writing Life, Examiner.com, Anneli’s Place, Monadnock Living Magazine, Amherst Citizen, The Milford Cabinet, and The Union Leader.

Over the past 17 years, Anita has gained experience in both the United States and Norway,  and is currently working out of her home studio in New England—US, where she works with clients from around the world.

Anita is also an avid photographer and a Lampwork Glass Artist, and her works have been displayed at various galleries throughout the years. 

In her free time, she enjoys traveling and exploring what Mother Nature has to offer with her family. … You might spot her at one of the U. S. Cape beaches, biking the National Sea Shore trails, photographing the gorgeous coastline, as well as capturing beautiful moments through beach portrait photography.

sisters

~*~

To connect with Anita you can easily connect with her on Facebook  (http://www.facebook.com/RacePointUS) and Twitter (@RacePointUS).

Anita enjoys connecting with self-published authors of any genre, so please feel free to contact her directly at: anita@race-point.com with any cover design questions and needs.

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