The Lowdown

10th May '17

mobile opinion website

The Importance of Mobile-Friendly Design

Mobile optimisation sounds simple on paper. It is making your website, application, or digital advertising work properly on a smaller screen (like a smartphone) by altering its layout. Mobile optimisation is becoming a very important aspect of design and digital marketing. Here we have outlined a few points you need to consider.

Responsive Design Is The Future Of Design

When designing for mobile, there are a few basics to cover. Firstly, buttons need to become larger and easier to touch, whilst other non-vital elements such as decorative images should be made smaller or even hidden if they aren’t needed. Think about the way you use your phone and how frustrating a poorly designed website can be. I bet you can think of a handful of examples. This is something that needs to stop.

With the huge range of smartphones, tablets and laptop computers available, the implementation of this concept can be daunting. Your website needs to work perfectly for as many screen shapes and sizes as possible and in landscape and portrait as well. Simply shrinking your site to fit won’t work. Intelligent design decisions must be made to ensure a solid experience for users on any device.

Apps are no different. What works for your desktop computer, with a keyboard and mouse, will need to change for your phone. Advertisements must adapt as well. It is vital that you make effective use of the smaller size available.

why (and how) to make sure your website is responsive

– There is an increasing trend of visitors browsing the web on a mobile device. Many companies report seeing upwards of 50% of their traffic coming from mobile, so now is the time to change.

– Modern websites are often designed for mobile first. The layout is planned for use on a small screen before being scaled up for larger displays. This will help to avoid images and text ever becoming too crowded and will ensure you have the best site possible for all devices.

– Mobile devices often rely on touch for browsing. This means that buttons and links should always be large enough to tap with a finger. They should be easy to reach and simple to find with logical functionality.

– Websites loading on mobile will often use a slower Internet connection. To improve loading times for users, measures should be taken to optimise the size of your images. You should also look at the number of resources a website relies on to function. Lots of files and images result in a longer wait for users. A users patience can run out quickly.

– Although mobile browsing is relatively young (when compared to traditional desktop websites) a strong design ethos has already arisen around what constitutes a mobile-friendly website. Elements such as the so-called ‘burger’ menu act as useful shorthand for communicating meaning to users. Utilising these mobile design paradigms will improve the user experience, which is great for your audience.

Need Help With Responsive Website Design?

If you are looking to redesign your website so that it is mobile friendly our designers in Shrewsbury will be happy to help.

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28th February '17

opinion

UX: User Experience

How many times have you visited a website but you’ve been infuriated by how it works? Hard-to-find buttons, menus that don’t work properly, and information obscured by popups are all common complaints. It can be a very frustrating user experience.

the importance of user experience online

There are now more ways to browse the Internet than ever before. You can use your laptop, a tablet, your smartphone, and even some watches! It is imperative that your website, whatever your offering, is easy to use and browse for all. This is what we mean when we talk about User Experience (UX).

Every decision made when designing your website is an opportunity for improvement. Will my main menu be easiest to find at the top of the page, or will users find it useful if it sticks to the top of the window? Does this paragraph of text need to be displayed straight away? Will my customers expect to be returned to the home page when they click my company logo? These are all very important design and UX aspects to consider.

browse our browsing tips

  • Your website’s job is to give people the information they’re looking for as quickly as possible, with a minimum of fuss. Strike a balance between offering routes to that information, and not overloading visitors with too many options!
  • Keep your page layouts tidy and consistent. That concept for a different-shaped-page-where-the-text-runs-in-a- spiral-from-the-inside-outwards may be on brand, but how likely is it that the average user will stop and spend a minute wrapping their head around it?
  • Don’t try to squeeze too much in. Like we mentioned about not overloading visitors with options, it is often counter-productive to feature too many products or services at once. After all, not everything can be the most important thing on the page! This is particularly important for mobile website layouts, where space is at an absolute premium.
  • Usability before user ability. Remember, no matter your industry, you’re catering to a wide range of computer literacy. Your website should offer speed and reliability to your more capable visitors, and gently guide those that know what they need but require help getting there.

At Source, we pride ourselves on website design and ensure that all of our work is created and built with user experience as the main feature. Don’t take our word for it, have a look for yourself at some of our projects.

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7th February '17

opinion source virtual reality

Virtually Reality

2016 was the year virtual reality became, well, a reality. You might have seen people wearing these oversized headsets, a futuristic gateway to a digital world that leaves you looking like a muppet to onlookers. For the uninitiated, virtual reality headsets allow you to see a virtual world all around you, such as a completely immersive video game, or a...

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Marketing in the era of Pokémon Go

By now, you’ve likely been exposed to Pokémon Go in one form or another - whether you’ve seen gaggles of kids (or adults) gathered around trying to catch a Pikachu, or if you yourself have felt the call to catch 'em all! For the uninitiated, the game allows you to walk around in your local area, be that a city...

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4th March '16

design opinion

“Great Design!”

The phrase “great design” is something that gets thrown around a lot; both by our clients and in our office! It’s often used to say we like something. As in, “Great design, I love it!” Other times we’re being more nebulous, and talk about great design as some sort of holy grail, almost unattainable for its mysterious meaning. Making the...

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Tools of the Trade

Techy post ahoy! If you’re interested in how the technical team take a web design and turn it into a living, breathing website, read on. For a long time, building website was reserve of a cerebral minority. Until the last few years, front-end development (the art of building what a visitor sees when they visit a website, out of nothing...

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14th April '15

marketing opinion source

Moving Pictures (or: how to viral)

If a picture’s worth a thousand words, think of the value of just a few seconds of video. Source have examined the phenomenon carefully, and we’re here to break down how video can work as a powerful tool for your marketing needs. The advent of viral marketing In the past few years, the Internet has seen the advent of faster...

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16th March '15

opinion programming

Micro Bit… or Raspberry Pi?

Some would argue that the British software industry (especially video games) can be traced back almost entirely to the bedroom coders of the 80s. The affordability of machines like the ZX Spectrum and Acorn Electron gave school children across the country the tools they needed to turn their ideas into reality, and give them skills that would eventually lead to...

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