Our Approach to Website Design

Very Creative’s Approach to Web Design and Associated Best Practices & Principles

Very Creative offers a comprehensive approach to website design, online and offline marketing strategies. The website created will have the goal of driving more business your way, and is not just for display.

Quickly Getting the Point Across

A few seconds is all it should take for website visitors to get the required information. This is made possible with the seamless organisation of design, content, layout, and colour.

Web Design – Best Technical Practices

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is the main international standards organization for the World Wide Web.

Very Creative prepares websites following the W3C standards, providing us with a solid guide to follow in code validation and work testing.

Checklist guide we use for our websites:

  • XHTML/HTML – Maintaining the mark-up W3C standard compliant and valid. HTML is the language in which Web pages are developed, while XHTML extends versions of HTML.
  • XHTML – Gradually converting to HTML5 – the latest themes are mostly HTML5.
  • CSS – CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is a style language which defines how HTML elements will be displayed. Valid where possible, non-standard/CSS3 features applying rather using jQuery to keep the validation.
  • 508 – Section 508 is a federal law with a directive that all electronic and information technology which is used, controlled, developed, and obtained by the federal government should be accessible to people with disabilities. Trying to keep the websites as accessible as possible, most forms are accessible also to the blind/visually-impaired.
  • JavaScript/jQuery – JavaScript is a programming language used to make web pages interactive; it is incorporated into all major web browsers. jQuery, on the other hand, is a JavaScript library which has the goal of making JavaScript easier to use on websites.

We recently started using a different approach to dealing with JavaScript in WordPress themes by letting WP load the scripts itself, and also in a no-conflict mode which results in fewer conflicts and better performance.

Semantic Markup

Semantic Markup – HTML documents without any external formatting applied (without CSS, JavaScript, or images).

Semantics is crucial in web design. Markup tags and style classes are used to describe the content and define the web page’s information structure.

Example:

Heading elements MUST be ordered hierarchically, i.e. if there is an H2 element on the page it SHOULD be preceded by an H1 element somewhere on the same page, and so on. Intermediate levels MUST NOT be omitted (e.g. H1 directly to H3).

Content Separated from Presentation

HTML and XHTML describe the nature and hierarchy of the content. CSS, on the other hand, describes how the content should be presented.

Integration of Latest Web Development Technologies

For mobile devices such as iPads, iPhones, Blackberries, etc. Note: iPads cannot display Adobe flash animation.

  • HTML frames – Used to separate a browser window into a number of sections, with each section capable of separately loading another HTML document.
  • JavaScript – A programming language used to make web pages interactive
  • Flash- A software and multimedia platform used to create animation, desktop applications, rich internet applications, vector graphics, browser games, mobile games, and mobile applications.
  • AJAX – The use of interrelated Web development techniques (XML, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript) to create faster, better, and more interactive web applications.

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)

SEO is an important part of website design. Search engines like Google look not only at the metadata and visible text but also at the site construction.

Browser Testing & Compatibility

Our websites are tested across all browsers (Internet Explorer 5-6, Firefox, Safari, etc.)

Screen Resolutions

Very Creative’s designs follow the standard 960 pixels wide screen size.

Download Speeds

Animations & images are optimised for non-ADSL/Broadband users. ADSL (asymmetric digital subscriber line) is a type of DSL that uses copper telephone wires to transmit data faster than a conventional voiceband modem.

Equality Act 2010 (Accessibility Issues)

This makes it illegal for a website provider to discriminate against a disabled person by refusing to provide a service that is generally available, providing a lower standard of service, or failing to make reasonable adjustments.

ICO Compliance (where possible)

Our websites fully comply with the Freedom of Information Act and Environmental Information Regulations, as monitored by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).

Cookie Policy

A cookie is a small text file which is stored in a device while the user is browsing a website.

Users should explicitly be informed if cookies are set, and why that needs to be done. The consent of users to have a cookie stored in their device must also be given in a clear manner.

Privacy Policy

A website’s privacy policy imparts some or all of the ways a customer’s data or information is gathered, managed, revealed, or used.

The Use of Google Analytics

We use Google Analytics to efficiently track traffic on your website. This free web analytics service from Google is the most utilised one online.

Web Design – Best Design Practices

Good Copywriting

Good copywriting (text creation) refers to the relevance of the text to the business and subject. Text should be in plain English, and technical terms should be clarified. Text should also integrate keywords with SEO in mind.

Powerful Headings & Articles

A good heading & article should capture and hold the attention while providing relevant information.

Content and Audience

We do business and competitor research to check how website features can be gathered and laid out effectively to the target audience.

Visual Aspects

Consistency of the brand’s style design (online and offline) is essential. We create a common theme of colours, fonts, and page layouts. We utilise our solid knowledge of fonts and web design, and how they should be used in titles and body text. Fonts are limited to a maximum of 2-3 styles.

Colour Psychology Considerations

Emphasis is placed on how colours can influence and appeal to viewers, and their mood.

The All-Important White Space

Good design considers the importance of the white space between images and text, as it can influence the layout so the web page does not look overcrowded, and for coherent page navigation.

User Interaction (Usability) and Navigation

Simple always works best in navigation. However, navigation can be displayed in a number of ways (such as drop-down menus) and it can still be appealing even in a non-linear presentation. Good design and a consistent theme will help keep the page intact.

Websites are not efficient if they are not easy to use. Within a few seconds they must be intuitive through layout and navigation. Users should be able to get the information within a few seconds on your site.

The ‘Three Click Rule’

We believe that 3 clicks are all it should take for users to get the information they need.

How Do We Design Our Websites to Make them “Future-Proof”?

We use WordPress (WP), which is the most popular blogging/CMS (content management system) platform. More than 25 million people are now using WordPress as their CMS/blogging software as it offers flexibility, convenience and easy customisations.

Statistics on the 3 most popular CMS systems (Google Trends): http://www.google.com/trends?q=joomla%2C+wordpress%2C+drupal&ctab=0&geo=all&date=all&sort=0

https://verycreative.com