WHAT IS WEBSITE DESIGN?
At AmazingWebDesign, we believe websites are much more than pretty design and layout.
. . . Or even about the latest trend in website appearance, flashy animations, or scrolling your visitors all over the place before they have had a chance to digest your message at their own pace.
There are numerous skills and elements that make up an effective and successful website. Some are more art-based, and many others are more technology-based.
Website design is commonly thought of as the graphical design aspect. It is far from only that.
Yes it would be absolutely fun if the design aspect or creative process on the screen for all devices would be the only aspect and then automatically include all the necessary backend functionality.
But we are not there yet!
It takes considerable skill, care and experience to deliver that.
Website Design Components
Many website's stand or fall on the design of the backend ('invisible' coding work) put in to create the foundations of the overall site.
You might have a good looking website
- Without good back-end database coding at the server-side to functionally communicate with your customers and securely deal with your client data, it is about as good as a good looking model aeroplane that will never fly. Form without function has little value where websites are concerned.
The backend of a website commonly uses different coding languages and their use is more specialised. It is also what gives your website any structured memory of what is occuring day in, day out. Without a good backend, a website is likely to fail, or at best, fall short.
- Without good hosting and the ability to respond to required changes in technology, its days are also numbered.
- Without an effective SEO strategy, far fewer people will ever see your site.
In fact we could all get distracted into thinking web design is just about a 'tick box list' of all these things, and wireframes, code management, social media (which is really about SEO anyway) . . . or even about creating some 'work-of-art' in the contemporary sense that would please or 'tickle' many, whilst failing in what it needs to do in the overall performance stakes.
Good website design is a hundred per cent about being able to integrate all these elements in a coordinated and proportional way over time in order to best serve your overall online goals.
And without experienced and up-to-date knowledge and coding skills available, a website will always be 'less than it can be' and less than other sites with that resource.
So design really is more than those 'pretty colours' and graphics chosen for your site, . . or about sexy animations. It is about the whole ongoing approach to your website aims including the 'nitty gritty' of what actually makes a website 'tick' and perform behind the scenes.
And could any website 'tick' in black and white?
Relative importance of web design factors
Our Website Designs
are professional and benefit from the latest website design standards.
MODERN WEB DESIGN
Our sites embrace numerous modern design elements and technologies but only as appropriate for your design
elements such as full screen layouts, animations and a mobile-first design approach
Our sites load fast. Slow sites do not hold visitors attention and are a great SEO disadvantage
This is mainly achieved by good hosting, efficient coding structure, the optimisation of images and various caching techniques. A mobile-first approach also plays a part.
Security is ever more important on the internet and is a priority for all our website designs and installations
It is also important to keep software up to date to avoid the more obvious security risks. This is why support is important and keeping up with the latest security measures.
All our designs are fully responsive and cater for all sizes of device, from desktop wide screen to mobile
Try resizing your browser window to any size for this website. And then refresh. The more limited bandwidth of mobile devices is also properly taken into account. There are many sites on the internet which do not do this properly.
We aim to engage but not to mesmerise website visitors. Only the main required interactions are needed.
Good backend functionality together with JQuery and AJAX techniques help us achieve this customer interaction. We feel that visitors appreciate being accurately informed without 'pop-ups' windows all over the place.
TAILORED FOR YOU
Our websites are designed to fit your individual identified needs. There is no 'one size fits all'
We carefully listen to the customer and provide a detailed specification in writing before the commencement of a project.
All our designs are carefully coded using the latest web design languages and tools.
Core frameworks are used and all the necessary bespoke elements are tailored to suit. AWD have a repository of code components which we try to re-utilise in order to reduce costs and the chance of any errors.
About half website visits globally are now from mobile devices so we put design for mobile as a real priority.
This lean mobile-first approach increases mobile website access speed and only downloads items needed to mobile. Larger screen devices have more bandwidth and receive the full 'wider design' treatment.
Our designs are easier to update with new features and suitable new technologies as they come along.
This is due to the well structured nature of our designs, the use of modular code, and our focus on suitable main core technologies
Here at AWD, we use the latest technologies for all our website designs. Below are some examples of techniques, tools and languages we employ in order to provide customers with good-looking, modern responsive websites:
HTML markup language
We use HTML5 extensively throughout our sites for web documents. It is not strictly a programming language, but is a way of describing the main structure of a web page. This core component can be 'coded' directly however we commonly use a template system using PHP to dynamically generate HTML and serve web pages to the browser.
CSS style sheet language
PHP scripting language
We extensively use PHP code (mainly in its object-orientated form) to provide the important server-side backend functions for websites. This is 'the workhorse' of what makes a website function behind the scenes. We use it to help with database access, AJAX communication techniques, for use in our own templating engine, and much more.
We use this core programming language mainly in object-orientated form and commonly via jQuery libraries, for presentational purposes within the browser. Also for use with AJAX techniques to access and refresh browser data without any slower page refresh. It is what helps to make our web pages dynamic, responsive and 'come alive'.
MySQL relational database programming
The chief developer has extensive experience over many years of programming database applications including using MySQL as the server database datasource. He is also skilled at SQL interrogation of such systems in order to produce useful query results.
We make use of a number of frameworks such as the Twitter Bootstrap application framework to help efficiently code and structure our sites. We also have our own 'in-house' designed frameworks which can be utilised where appropriate.
WordPress and other web CMS
For WordPress sites it is also sometimes necessary to tailor the backend MySQL database structure to cope with particular customer requirements. We have all the skills to do this either by tailoring the code, or in other instances by developing a suitable plugin for the particular requirement.
eCommerce website development
For customers who require a professional eCommerce solution as part of their website, we have all the skills necessary to provide, extend and tailor that eCommerce element. All eCommerce sites designed by us are mobile-friendly and database-driven.
All our sites make it easy for your customers to quickly find the products they require and make 'painless purchases'. E.g for WordPress-based sites we commonly utilise WooCommerce as a base (owned by WordPress.coms since 2015). The WooCommerce component is used on about a third of eCommerce websites worldwide and is an effective and well tested solution on which to base an eCommerce website.
The trend is obviously all towards buying and selling on the internet
So for a professionally laid out eCommerce site with ongoing support, start selling online by contacting us today.
Other computer language skills
Although not commonly used for website design development, the chief developer at AWD is also competent and skilled with numerous other programming languages and tools including Java, C++
and as an official Apple iPhone and Mac Developer, Objective-C and Swift.
This skill-base and service really does provide a 'one-stop shop'.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
Well we are not totally unconscious to the 'possibility' that the above overview of some of the main technologies we use may be about as interesting to many as 'watching paint dry' 🙂
And sorry, it was more technical but we do like to be transparent. Our customers do not need to understand theses complexities, since the result is the most important thing.
Irrespective, this all means that there is a deep reservoir of skills, knowledge and modern technologies available and ready to use effectively for the benefit of your website.