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7 UX Principles to Apply to Your SEO

User experience is one of the most important aspects of web design, but many experts overlook that UX doesn’t just apply to web pages. User experience as a concept encompasses all aspects of end-user interaction with a company.

That means you need to discover the right UX strategies for everything from your homepage to your email marketing and even your listings on Google.

Today, we’re going to explore some of how you can apply UX principles to your client’s image on search engines.

Why Your Search Engine Listing Matters

Let’s start with the basics: 89% of customers start their purchasing process with a search engine. That means that whether you’re creating a portfolio to sell your services or building a website for a client, the first connection a customer has with your design isn’t on the homepage.

Most of the time, you’re driving a specific experience for an end-user before you even realize it. Before you can wow an audience with a beautiful site design or an amazing CTA offer, you need to convince them to click on your Google link.

When you invest in user experience, you think carefully about the journey that an end-user goes through when interacting with a brand. This often means considering things like the user’s intent, their needs, and their pain points.

Those same principles apply to create an impressive search engine listing.

UX on a website is all about giving your audience what they need in an informed, and strategic manner; UX in the search engine results works the same way.

How to Make Your Search Listing Stand Out with UX

So, how do you begin to apply the principles of UX to your Google Search results?

It’s much easier than you’d think.

Step 1: Show Immediate Value

Delivering an excellent experience on a website often means providing end-users with the information they need as quickly as possible. Imagine designing a landing page; you wouldn’t want your audience to scroll forever to find what they need. Instead, you’d make sure that the value of the page was immediately obvious.

When creating an image for your search engine listing, you’ll need to take the same approach. This often means thinking carefully about two things: your headline and your meta description.

Around 8 out of 10 users say that they’ll click a title if it’s compelling. That means that before you do anything else to improve your SEO strategy, you need to make sure that your web page’s title is going to grab your audience’s attention.

The best titles deliver instant value. These titles tell the audience exactly what they’re going to get when they click onto the page. The promise drives action, while clarity highlights the informed nature of the brand.

The great thing about using an excellent title for a page is that it doesn’t matter where you’re ranked on the search results. Whether you’re number 2 or number 5, your customers will click if they find something they want.

It’s just like using a CTA on a landing page. Make sure your titles are:

  • Informative — show your audience value immediately;
  • Optimized for mobile — remember, your audience might not see your full title on some screens; this means that you need to make the initial words count;
  • Easy to read — keep it short, simple, and clear, speak the end-users’ language.

Step 2: Build Trust with Your URLs

Trust factors are another essential part of good UX.

When you’re designing a website for a new brand, you know that it’s your job to make visitors feel at ease. Even in today’s digital world, many customers won’t feel comfortable giving their money or details to a new company.

Within the website that you design, you can implement trust symbols, reviews, and testimonials to enhance brand credibility. On search engines, it all starts with your URL.

Search-friendly URLs that highlight the nature of the page will put your audience’s mind at ease. When they click on a page about “What is SEO” in the SERPs, they want to see an URL that matches, not a bunch of numbers and symbols

Use search-friendly permalink structures to make your listing seem more authoritative. This will increase the chances of your customer clicking through to a page and make them more likely to share the link with friends.

Once you decide on a link structure, make sure that it stays consistent throughout the entire site. If a link doesn’t appear to match the rest of the URLs that your audience sees for your website, they may think they’re on the wrong page. That increases your bounce rate.

Step 3: Be Informative with Your Meta Description

To deliver excellent UX on a website, you ensure that your visitor can find all of the answers to their most pressing questions as quickly as possible. This includes providing the right information on each page and using the correct navigational structure to support a visitor’s journey.

In the SERPs, you can deliver that same informative experience with a meta description. Although meta descriptions often get ignored, they can provide a lot of value and help you or your client make the right first impression.

To master your meta descriptions:

  • Use the full 160 characters — make the most of your meta description by providing as much useful information as you can within that small space;
  • Include a CTA — just as CTAs help to guide customers through the pages on a website, they can assist with pulling in clicks on the SERPS; a call to action like “read about the” or “click here” makes sense when you’re boosting your search image;
  • Focus on value — concentrate on providing your customers with an insight into what’s in it for them if they click on your listing.

Don’t forget that adding keywords to your meta description is often helpful too. Keywords will boost your chances of a higher ranking, but they’ll also show your audience that they’re looking at the right result.

Step 4: Draw the Eye with Rich Snippets

You’ve probably noticed that the search engine result pages have changed quite a bit in the last couple of years. As Google strives to make results more relevant and informative, we’ve seen the rise of things like rich snippets. Rich snippets are excellent for telling your audience where to look.

On a website, you would use design elements, like contrasting colors and animation, to pull your audience’s attention to a specific space. On search engines, rich snippets can drive the same outcomes. The difference is that instead of telling a visitor what to do next on a page, you’re telling them to click on your site, not a competitor’s.

When Google introduced rich snippets, it wanted to provide administrators with a way of showcasing their best content. Rich snippets are most commonly used today on product pages and contact pages because they can show off reviews.

Install a rich snippet plugin into your site if you’re a WordPress user or your client is. When you enter the content that you need into the website, use the drop-down menu in your Rich snippet tool to configure the snippet.

Ideally, you’ll want to aim for the full, rich snippet if you want to stand out at the top of the search results. Most featured snippets have both text and an image. It would help if you aimed to access both of these by writing great content and combining it with a relevant image.

Step 5: Provide Diversity (Take Up More of the Results)

As a website designer or developer, you’ll know that different people on a website will often be drawn to different things. Some of your visitors might immediately see a set of bullet-points and use them to search for the answer to their question. Other visitors will want pictures or videos to guide them. So, how do you deliver that kind of diversity in the SERPS?

The easiest option is to aim to take up more of the search result pages. Google now delivers a bunch of different ways for customers to get the answers they crave. When you search for “How to use Google my Business” on Google, you’ll see links to blogs, as well as a list of YouTube Videos and the “People Also Ask” section.

Making sure that you or a client has different content ranking pieces for the same keywords can significantly improve the experience any customer has on the search engines. Often, the process of spreading your image out across the SERPs is as simple as creating some different kinds of content.

To access the video’s benefits, ask your client to create YouTube videos for some of their most commonly asked questions or most covered topics. If you’re helping with SEO marketing for your client, then make sure they have an FAQ page or a way of answering questions quickly and concisely on articles, so they’re more likely to appear in “People Also Ask”:

Step 6: Add Authority with Google My Business

Speaking of Google My Business, that’s another excellent tool that’s perfect for improving UX in the search results. GMB is a free tool provided by Google. It allows business owners to manage how information appears in the search results.

With this service, you can manage a company’s position on Google maps, the Knowledge Graph, and online reviews. Establishing a company’s location is one of the most important things you can do to help audiences quickly find a business. Remember, half of the customers that do a local search on a smartphone end up visiting the store within the same day.

Start by setting up the Google Business listing for yourself or your client. All you need to do is hit the “Start Now” button and fill out every relevant field offered by Google. The more information you can add to Google My Business, the more your listing will stand out. Make sure you:

  • Choose a category for a business, like “Grocery store”;
  • Load up high-quality and high-resolution images;
  • Ensure your information matches on every platform;
  • Use a local number for contact;
  • Encourage reviews to give your listing a five-star rating.

Taking advantage of a Google My Business listing will ensure that your audience has all the information they need to make an informed decision about your company before they click through to the site. This means that you or your client get more warm leads and fewer people stumbling onto your website that might not want to buy from you.

Step 7: Use Structured Data Markup to Answer Questions

If you’re already using things like rich snippets in your Google listings, you should also have a structured schema markup plan. Schema markup on Google tells the search engines what your data means. This means that you can add extra information to your listings that will guide your customers more accurately to the support they need.

Providing additional schema markup information to your listings gives them an extra finishing touch to ensure that they stand out from the competition. You might add something like a “product price” to a product page or information about the product’s availability.

Alternatively, you could provide the people who see a search result with other options. This could be an excellent option if you’re concerned that some of the people who might come across your listing might need slightly different information. For instance, you can ask Google to list other pages along with your search results that customers can “jump to” if they need additional insights.

Baking structured data into your design process when you’re working on a website does several positive things. It makes the search engine’s job easier so that you can ensure that you or your client ranks higher. Additionally, it means that your web listings will be more thorough and useful.

Since UX is all about giving your audience the best possible experience with a brand, that starts with making sure they get the information they need in the search results.

Constantly Improve and Experiment

Remember, as you begin to embed UX elements into your search engine listings, it’s important to be aware of relevant evolutions. Ultimately, the needs of any audience can change very rapidly. Paying attention to your customers and what kind of links they click on the most will provide you with lots of valuable data. You can use things like Google analytics to A/B test things like titles, pictures, featured snippets, and other things that may affect UX.

At the same time, it’s worth noting that the Google search algorithms are always changing. Running split tests on different pages will give you an insight into what your customers want. However, you’ll need to keep an eye on the latest documentation about Google Search if you want to avoid falling behind the competition.

Like most exceptional UX aspects, mastering your SERP position isn’t a set it and forget it strategy. You’ll need to constantly expand your knowledge if you want to show clients that you can combine UX and SEO effectively.

It’s easy to forget that there’s more to UX than making your buttons clickable on mobile devices or ensuring that scrolling feels smooth. For a designer or developer to deliver wonderful UX for a brand, they need to consider every interaction that a company and customer have. Most of the time, this means starting with the way a website appears when it’s listed on the search engines. Getting your SEO listing right doesn’t just boost your chances of a good ranking. This strategy also improves your reputation with your audience and delivers more meaningful moments in the buyer journey.

 

Featured image via Unsplash.

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Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

Comment créer une expérience employé engageante : le rôle de la technologie

Aujourd’hui les entreprises s’efforcent de plus en plus à offrir une expérience employé exceptionnelle. Et elles ont de bonnes raisons de le faire.

Les recherches révèlent que l’expérience employé a une incidence sur la façon dont les salariés perçoivent leur travail et les efforts qu’ils fournissent. Cette expérience a ensuite un impact sur la satisfaction client, la fidélisation, le rendement des actifs et les ventes (1).

Bien que de nombreux facteurs entrent en jeu, environ 30% de l’expérience employé est liée à l’utilisation de la technologie par leur organisation. Grâce à elle, les salariés peuvent gagner en productivité, flexibilité, améliorer leurs relations professionnelles, mieux gérer le travail à distance. A l’inverse, elle peut aussi les distraire, créer un sentiment d’isolement et limiter leur capacité à se « déconnecter ».

Pour en savoir plus, SAP SuccessFactors a mené des entretiens avec des employés dans le monde entier. Nous avons étudié l’influence de la technologie sur le bien-être, l’engagement, le sentiment d’appréciation et de valeur, la productivité, ainsi que l’expérience globale des processus RH

Bien que cette recherche soit toujours en cours, les résultats préliminaires révèlent trois insights sur la façon dont la technologie peut contribuer à une expérience employé exceptionnelle.

Les employés ont besoin d’outils pour effectuer le travail qu’ils trouvent important et se décharger de ce qu’ils jugent inutile. Nous les avons interrogés sur les tâches, activités, ce qu’ils apprécient le plus et les motive à se lever chaque matin. Selon eux, le « travail utile » est un travail qui implique :

  • La mise en œuvre de quelque chose, par exemple un projet
  • La collaboration avec des collègues dans le but d’atteindre un objectif commun
  • La contribution à une solution et voir les résultats de ces efforts

Sans surprise, lorsqu’on leur demande des exemples illustrant comment la technologie les a aidé, les employés mentionnent des outils conçus pour les soutenir dans ces activités (pour la productivité, Microsoft 365, pour la collaboration, Microsoft Teams et Skype). Avec des résultats plus prononcés chez les employés régulièrement en déplacement ou télétravail.

Mais ils mentionnent aussi des outils qui leur permettent de gagner du temps sur les tâches opérationnelles et administratives. En voici quelques exemples :

  • Une application qui indique les places de parking disponibles lorsqu’on se rend au travail
  • Une application pour commander le déjeuner à l’avance et éviter de faire la queue
  • Les solutions SAP Concur : un employé interrogé a indiqué qu’il a réduit d’au moins 1/3 son temps passé à envoyer ses frais de voyage
  • Des outils qui définissent des modèles fondés sur des comportements antérieurs et qui présentent des propositions de manière proactive. Un employé mentionne une application de navigation GPS qui propose automatiquement un itinéraire en fonction des comportements précédents. Un autre affirme : « J’aime avoir accès au système pour effectuer une tâche, et que le système reconnaisse à l’avance la façon dont j’agis habituellement et prenne en charge certaines étapes à ma place afin que je puisse m’occuper de mon travail […]. Plus vite le système gère les informations, mieux c’est, car ce sont généralement des choses que je […] ne veux pas faire ».

Moins de systèmes séparés et disparates

Les employés soulignent que devoir passer par plusieurs systèmes pour accomplir une tâche ou trouver des informations est extrêmement frustrant et chronophage. Certaines recherches ont démontré que les employés passent jusqu’à 30 % de leur journée de travail à chercher des informations qui peuvent être stockées dans des systèmes et des bases de données disparates.

« J’aimerais faire certaines choses en exactement 20 secondes », confie un employé. « Je ne veux pas avoir à me demander si je dois accéder au portail RH, au portail informatique ou au facility portal. Peu importe qui résout mon problème, je veux juste qu’il soit résolu ».

De meilleures solutions en libre-service avec une assistance humaine

Pendant trop longtemps les solutions technologiques RH des entreprises (surtout celles en libre-service) ont été conçues en tenant compte des RH plutôt que des utilisateurs finaux : les employés. Par conséquent, les employés sont souvent obligés d’utiliser quotidiennement des solutions libre-service obsolètes, non intuitives et mal conçues.

Comme le décrit un employé : « J’essayais de réserver un vol et je recevais sans cesse un message d’erreur, mais le message ne précisait pas ce qui n’allait pas. Ce qui aurait dû me prendre cinq minutes a fini par me prendre plus de trois heures Et quand j’ai finalement réussi à joindre quelqu’un au téléphone, mon interlocuteur n’a pas pu m’en dire plus […]. C’était vraiment frustrant ».

Les conséquences d’une expérience frustrante liée à la technologie vont bien au-delà de la perte de temps. Elles peuvent avoir des effets négatifs sur le bien-être psychologique et physique des employés. Des recherches ont démontré que les expériences frustrantes liées à la technologie peuvent entraîner une perte d’efficacité et un sentiment de colère, impacter l’humeur et les interactions avec les autres, diminuer à la fois le niveau de satisfaction professionnelle et la qualité du travail, compromettre la productivité et même augmenter la pression sanguine ainsi que la tension musculaire (2).

Des recherches antérieures ont démontré que l’élément indispensable des solutions libre-service est la possibilité, si besoin, de parler à quelqu’un. Et cela sans effort important et sans avoir à répéter sans fin une tâche (3).

L’effet de la technologie sur les moments importants : pas toujours positif

Qu’il s’agisse de rejoindre une entreprise, fêter une promotion, s’occuper d’un proche malade ou d’accueillir un nouvel enfant dans sa famille, les moments qui définissent la carrière ainsi que la vie personnelle sont des occasions essentielles de montrer aux employés qu’ils sont reconnus et appréciés. Pourtant, l’expérience technologique associée à ces moments véhicule souvent le message inverse.

Par exemple, un employé interrogé confie : « J’étais très excité quand j’ai trouvé ce travail. Mais le fait d’avoir dû entrer manuellement les informations relatives à mon CV dans le système à plusieurs reprises ne m’a pas laissé une première impression positive de l’entreprise ».

Une récente enquête auprès des candidats et employés de la génération Z est éclairante. 54% d’entre eux déclarent qu’ils ne soumettraient pas une candidature si les méthodes de recrutement de l’entreprise sont dépassées. 26% s’accordent à dire qu’un manque de technologie tout au long du processus d’embauche les dissuaderait d’accepter un emploi.

Alors que les entreprises continuent d’investir dans l’expérience employé, elles doivent être attentives aux solutions technologiques fournies aux collaborateurs. Des solutions dépassées, difficiles à utiliser, qui n’ont pas été conçues en pensant aux employés, désavantageront grandement les organisations lorsqu’il s’agira d’attirer et de fidéliser les talents dans l’économie de l’expérience d’aujourd’hui.

En fin de compte c’est l’un de nos clients interrogés qui le souligne le mieux : « Lorsque nous lançons de nouveaux services de ressources humaines, nous ne voulons pas seulement avoir des utilisateurs. Nous voulons avoir des fans ».

Publié en anglais sur news.sap.com


Lauren Bidwell est chercheuse en gestion du capital humain pour SAP SuccessFactors chez SAP.

(1) The Financial Impact of a Positive Employee Experience ; A Beginner’s Guide to Employee Experience

(2) Ceaparu et al. (2004) ; Lazar et al. (2006) ; Norman (2004) ; Scheirer et al. (2002) ; Murrell & Sprinkle (1993)

(3) Howard & Worboys (2003)

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Source de l’article sur sap.com

Industrie 4.0 : une opportunité historique

Les innovations technologiques permettent à l’industrie européenne de relever de nouveaux défis, dont la relocalisation de la production et la maîtrise de l’empreinte environnementale. Place à la quatrième révolution industrielle !

Les trois grandes révolutions industrielles sont toutes liées à des innovations majeures :

  • 1re révolution industrielle, le passage de l’artisanal au mécanisé, grâce à la vapeur.
  • 2e révolution industrielle, une production de masse standardisée, grâce à l’électricité.
  • 3e révolution industrielle, la flexibilité des automates programmables, grâce au numérique.

L’Industrie 4.0 s’appuie non pas sur une innovation de rupture, mais sur un package d’innovations : robotique avancée, Machine to Machine, IoT, réseaux 5G, impression 3D, jumeaux numériques, Blockchain pour la traçabilité, mais aussi Machine Learning et Intelligence Artificielle.

Au cœur de cette révolution se trouve la data. Plus précisément la capacité à collecter toutes les données de l’usine, puis à les faire remonter, généralement dans le cloud, avant de les traiter, en mode big data, puis enfin de transformer ces données en décisions, le data to action.

Lancé en 2011 par un ensemble d’acteurs, dont SAP, le concept d’Industrie 4.0 offre l’agilité et la résilience nécessaires pour répondre aux exigences de l’économie d’expérience et aux aléas, devenus hélas de plus en plus fréquents. Il permet également de basculer d’un modèle de production de masse, initié avec la seconde révolution industrielle, vers une stratégie de personnalisation de masse, répondant mieux aux besoins des consommateurs actuels.

Le moment est venu pour l’Industrie 4.0

Si certaines technologies de l’Industrie 4.0 existent parfois depuis des années, une conjonction de facteurs permet aujourd’hui de les combiner et de les démocratiser. « L’Industrie 4.0 entre en production, car son ROI est fort, explique Aymeric de Pontbriand, CEO de Scortex. Les nouvelles technologies deviennent en effet suffisamment abordables pour que l’équation économique prenne du sens aux yeux des industriels. Mais le vrai challenge reste celui des compétences nécessaires au déploiement en masse de ces nouvelles technologies. »

« Aujourd’hui, nous avons de la donnée et les technologies sont matures, poursuit Erwin Guizouarn, président d’Evolution Energie. Se pose la question du passage à l’échelle. Les industriels veulent pouvoir rapidement déployer ces technologies, en masse. Il y a un vrai challenge sur la fourniture de plates-formes personnalisables, robustes et sécurisées. Les données sont là. Les infrastructures et applicatifs sont en train d’arriver. »

Le moment est venu de relocaliser la production

L’hyperpersonnalisation des produits est une chance pour l’Europe, car elle se traduit par une relocalisation des usines. Difficile en effet de faire parvenir dans un temps raisonnable un produit personnalisé à un client, s’il doit traverser la moitié de la planète dans un conteneur.

Cette nouvelle industrie ne sera toutefois pas celle d’hier, ne fabriquera pas les mêmes produits et ne fera pas travailler les mêmes types de profils. Elle est plus technique, mais aussi plus affûtée et mieux optimisée. Elle se veut également plus vertueuse d’un point de vue écologique.

« La relocalisation de la production est une opportunité fantastique pour l’Europe, confirme Aymeric de Pontbriand. Cela se traduira par de l’emploi, souvent dans des régions désertées. Tout en repartant sur de nouvelles bases, avec une production moderne et soucieuse de son impact environnemental. » Erwin Guizouarn confirme cette tendance verte : « Les grands industriels français se sont engagés à devenir neutres en carbone d’ici 5 à 10 ans. Il y a un vrai mouvement en France pour aller vers des énergies propres et une production décarbonée. Industrie 4.0 et transition énergétique sont non seulement conciliables, mais souhaitables. »

Scortex et Evolution Energie montrent la voie

Les industriels veulent pouvoir disposer de solutions de type Industrie 4.0 clés en main, au ROI immédiat. Evolution Energie se concentre sur l’exploitation des données liées à l’énergie et son utilisation, avec comme objectif une maîtrise de ces coûts, qui peuvent représenter jusqu’à 80 % des dépenses de certains industriels. Scortex numérise pour sa part le contrôle qualité au travers de techniques d’Intelligence Artificielle. Le contrôle qualité manuel par inspection visuelle est en effet une tâche ingrate, qui peut représenter de 20 % à 30 % des dépenses d’un industriel.

Grâce à ce type de solutions ciblées, les industries peuvent basculer par étapes vers le 4.0. Mais certains enjeux restent plus globaux. « Le traitement massif de la donnée permet de passer par exemple à du vrai temps réel, ou de mettre en place une gestion globale de la production au niveau d’un groupe entier », illustre Erwin Guizouarn.

« Lors du passage à l’Industrie 4.0, il faut toutefois faire attention à ne pas laisser des sous-traitants sur le bord de la route, prévient Aymeric de Pontbriand. L’Industrie 4.0 va s’accompagner d’un véritable enjeu d’homogénéisation de la Supply Chain. »


En savoir plus sur les solutions pour l’industrie 4.0, production


 

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Source de l’article sur sap.com

20 Freshest Web Designs, September 2020

This month we’re going big and bold. Oversized type, strong colors, in-your-face layouts, and little touches of playfulness exude confidence and make a statement. There are some quieter moments too, with thoughtful illustration and more gentle use of color. Animation still features strongly in the details, with circles proving popular in rollover effects. Enjoy.

Fledge

Fledge is a film production company based in Belgium. Their site uses split screen with looped text scrolling in opposite directions on each side. A minimal color palette adds extra punch.

2ºC Earth

2ºC Earth is a beautiful and also scary website that explores the effects of rising global temperatures by focusing on 5 specific locations. Some stunning photography and subtle use of sound take you to these locations as they are now, then show what they could become. The experience is both immersive and unsettling.

pill&pillow

Unlike many digital studios who use the design of their own site to demonstrate their skills, pill&pillow have taken a very basic approach. It is very self-assured, and it works. Random colored strikethroughs on visited links add a nice touch of playfulness.

Ferrum Pipe

Metal fencing is not the most interesting of subjects to most of us, but this site for Ferrum Pipe is surprisingly appealing. On scroll animation and some off-grid image layout brings life to what would normally be, well, a bit dull.

Lucciano’s

With its focus on mouth-watering photography and videography, the site for gelato makers Luccianos, will have you checking your freezer for any leftover salted caramel or stracciatella. The zoom on rollover is a nice effect, and the use of circles with ice cream color backgrounds for rollover text reinforces the gelato theme.

Björn Wieland

UI designer and artist Björn Wieland has created a portfolio site with a simple, relaxed feel and pleasing transitions. It feels simple, but behind the scenes there is quite a lot going on.

Coloursmith

Coloursmith is a tool from Taubmans paint company which allows you to create a custom paint color by uploading a photo. You name your color and can add a story, then you order a test pot. colors are presented well, in different light and with suggestions for complementary colors.

Finn 

Finn make diet supplements for dogs. Their site is fun, modern and clean. Bright colors and an illustration that manages to be cute but not too cutesy make a bold impression.

Highcourt

Highcourt is a new private membership leisure club set to open in New York in spring 2021. Dark blue text on cream gives a softer edge than black on white. The background color changes on scroll are pleasing, and simple line illustrations with occasional gentle animation add to the overall sense of calm.

Elevence

Elevence is the company of product designer Kazuo Kobayashi. The site uses only black, white, and grays allowing the color photos of his work to really stand out. Circular thumbnails are used to good effect, appearing on rollover.

Playtype

Playtype is a Danish type foundry whose site seems to fit their name. It has a playful, almost chaotic feel, with bright blocks of color and occasional animation. Some pretty nice typefaces too.

Neri Oxman 

Neri Oxman is many things: architect, scientist, engineer, inventor, and designer. This site feels like a really beautiful coffee table art book that you want to pick up and look through every so often. There are some nice details too, like the lens ‘reveal’ effect on rollover in a few places.

Modern Recovery

Modern Recovery is a project by sobriety program Tempest. The interactive illustration encourages exploration, to discover different stages of recovery from alcohol abuse and insights from others who have followed the program. The aim is to change our social attitudes towards alcohol and not drinking.

Bliss

Have you clicked on the link to visit Bliss Search? Yes, the link is correct, no you haven’t been redirected to a Google search results page. This Australian digital marketing company have copied the appearance of different well-known sites for their pages — Google, Instagram, LinkedIn, Tinder all make an appearance. The humor in this approach shows confidence, and makes it memorable.

Miilkiina

Miilkiina describe themselves as a digital media space and creative agency. Punchy typography, with great use of blackletter, well chosen images, and a strong header video give this home page an in-your-face edge.

Ukrainian Railroad Ladies

Ukrainian Railroad Ladies is a book by photographer Sasha Maslov. Its subjects are the, mostly, women who work as traffic controllers and safety officers at railroad crossings in Ukraine. It’s a simple site — outsized type, black and white, basic image grid, only very brief text — but it is effective in its simplicity.

Una Europa

Una Europa is an alliance of 8 European universities with the aim of offering joint research and study programs. There is some playful scrolling behavior with geometric shapes moving and changing color that enlivens what could otherwise be quite a dry site.

Bureau Cool

There’s a bit of an old school feel about the site of digital design studio Bureau Cool, with its recent traffic animation. The changing backgrounds on scroll are a nice touch.

Gridspace

Gridspace is a multimedia entertainment studio based in Montreal, and their website is a visual feast. Lots of movement, lots of video, some good use of sideways scrolling.

Nolii

Nolii make cases and accessories for iPhone that work together. The sorbet color palette complements the product colors and the block layout provides a visual reflection of the interlocking of the different products.

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AccessiBe Review 2020: Solving Web Accessibility with AI and Scalability

Web accessibility is important for two reasons:

  1. Being ADA & WCAG compliant is required by law (we’ll explain this further) so if your website isn’t compliant, you can get sued.
  2. It allows people with disabilities to browse your website, which increases your potential audience and it is the decent thing to do.

In this accessiBe review, we’ll cover:

How Does accessiBe Work

accessiBe is an automated solution that combines two applications to achieve full compliance.

Foreground application: the accessibility interface. This is the accessibility menu that allows users with disabilities to adjust the various UI and design elements on your website so it meets their unique needs.

Background application: proprietary AI technology that’s responsible for the ‘heavy lifting’, screen-reader, and keyboard navigation optimization.

The combination of these two applications is unique for accessiBe for a few reasons. While most available accessibility solutions offer just one of the two or rely on manual remediation, accessiBe checks both boxes and does it in a fully automated way.

Additionally, and most importantly, accessiBe continuously scans your website, every 24 hours, identifying and fixing new accessibility issues as they arise. Websites are dynamic – meaning, keep updating constantly with new content, pages, images and so on; being ADA and WCAG compliant is an ongoing concern, not a one-time fix.

How to Install and Setup accessiBe

You install accessiBe by inserting a single line of code on your website.

From your end, that’s all it takes.

The first thing that happens is that the accessibility interface appears on your website. The menu is available via the accessibility icon (that also appears automatically.)

Source: accessiBe website

Next, the AI application scans and analyzes your website for accessibility issues and compatibility with screen-readers and keyboard navigation requirements and fixes them. This automated process takes 48 hours.

Once the initial 48 hours have elapsed, your website is compliant.

From here on, accessiBe automatically scans your website every 24 hours to identify and fix new accessibility issues as they arise due to website updates.

Why Ongoing Compliance is Important

We’ve mentioned this already, but it’s important to stress this point.

Whether you have an e-commerce website or a company website, you keep updating and changing your website; new items go up for sale, new videos and content pieces are added. Every addition or removal from your website has the potential of creating accessibility gaps (like missing alt text for images.)

By continuously scanning and fixing your website, accessiBe ensures that you stay compliant. An accessibility audit remediates your website for the specific point in time the audit took place. Meaning, you’ll need to audit your website periodically to remain compliant, which is a costly affair. With accessiBe you don’t need to worry about this.

accessiBe Front End Features – The Accessibility Interface

The accessiBe accessibility interface (the menu that is available for users) is installed automatically on your website once you insert the line of code. Let’s look at the various features that are available for people with disabilities.

Accessibility Profiles Explained

First, it allows you to choose from a pre-defined set of profiles optimized for various disability needs:

When one of the profiles is selected, the required adjustments are instantly applied to your entire website.

For example, The ADHD Friendly Profile creates a reading mark that follows your mouse movements that diminish distractions and allows better focus:

The Cognitive Disability Profile frames all the elements in bounding boxes and adds an ‘reading cursor’ that acts as your mouse to allow enhanced orientation:

Each of the predefined profiles includes a suite of features that target the unique accessibility needs of the disability; the Epilepsy Safe Profile prevents videos from playing automatically, dims all the colors on your website and eliminates flashing and blinking animations; the Visually Impaired Profile enhances all your website’s visuals, enlarges all fonts to allow most visual impairments conditions (degrading eyesight, tunnel vision, cataract, glaucoma and more) to be able to browse your website with ease.

The last two profiles, Blind Users and Keyboard Navigation, work in unison. They allow blind and motor-impaired individuals to browse and use your website as they are used to, through screen-readers and keyboard functionality, respectively.

Two things need to be mentioned here:

  1. Blind individuals have screen-readers installed on their computers in the OS-level, meaning, on the hard drive of the computer. They use them to navigate the internet by having the software read for them every text that appears on the screen. As can be seen in the screenshot above, the Blind User profile is ‘launched’ automatically once accessiBe detects that the user is using a screen-reader. This is a crucial functionality since obviously blind users aren’t able to locate the accessibility icon.
  2. The same goes for individuals that are using the keyboard instead of a mouse to navigate the web, both the motor-impaired and the blind. accessiBe detects and automatically enables keyboard navigation on your website.

On top of the predefined accessibility profiles, accessiBe’s interface allows for further adjustments that can be controlled specifically to allow a personalized browsing experience according to the user’s needs. Let’s look at these adjustments.

Accessibility Content Adjustments Explained

The content adjustments allow you to control every aspect of the written content on your website. The menu looks like this:

Each of these elements allows for granular control of the way content, or text, is presented. From altering the entire website’s text to a readable, sans-serif font that is easier to follow, to highlighting titles and links, to adjusting font size, the spacing between lines and letters and using a text magnifier that follows your cursor on the screen.

Here’s how it looks with Highlight Titles and Highlight Links turned on:

You can see all the links are highlighted with an orange bounding box while all titles are highlighted with a blue bounding box.

Accessibility Color Adjustments Explained

The color adjustments allows users to control every aspect of the color scheme on the website:

From adjusting contrast and saturation, to switching the entire website to a monochrome color scheme, to adjusting textual elements and background colors. Let’s look at a few examples.

Here’s a side-by-side of default appearance and the Dark Contrast adjustment turned on:

And here’s how it looks with the Monochrome adjustment turned on:

Accessibility Orientation Adjustments Explained

The orientation adjustments allow full control of ‘distractions’ that make it hard for individuals with epilepsy, ADHD, and cognitive disability to browse the web:

As such, the orientation adjustments allow users to mute sound, hide images, stop animations and additional ‘focus’ features such as an enlarged cursor and reading assistance that highlights the text being read.

Here’s how the Remove Images adjustment works:

accessiBe Back End Features

Unlike ‘accessibility plugins’ (more on that later) accessiBe provides a comprehensive back end treatment to your website – automated, AI-powered analysis of compatibility with accessibility requirements and fixing of the elements that need adjustment.

It should be noted that 70% of the WCAG compliance requirements deal with screen-reader and keyboard navigation compatibility and all these requirements are not answered by installing an accessibility interface widget that merely makes UI and design adjustments.

For example, an accessibility widget will enable you to enlarge the font on your website, to adjust the saturation or to highlight links, but it won’t enable a blind individual to differentiate between a shopping cart icon and a checkout icon, nor will it enable a motor impaired individual to easily navigate a menu.

This is a crucial consideration to make when choosing a web accessibility solution. Being WCAG compliant is a YES / NO situation. Your website is either compliant or it’s not, there is no middle ground here.

accessiBe’s back end features come to solve and answer all these compatibility issues that enable full screen-reader and keyboard navigation functionalities.

Screen Reader Compatibility Explained

Screen Reader is a software for blind individuals to use computers and browse the web. As the name suggests, the software reads aloud what is seen on the screen for blind individuals.

The screen reader software is installed on the computer. But in order for it to work with websites, the website needs to be compatible with the software. To achieve compatibility with screen reader software, WCAG requires that a website should adhere to a set of attributes called Accessible Rich Internet Applications (ARIA) that are installed within the website’s code, allowing it to ‘communicate’ with the screen reader.

Let’s take social icons as an example. We are all familiar with those icons – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram – they are instantly recognizable for us visually. A screen reader software doesn’t actually ‘see’ elements on the screen, rather it scans the website’s code to understand what appears on the screen. As such, a Facebook icon code simply says ‘link’ and has the URL that directs the user when clicking the link.

So with a website that isn’t compatible with a screen reader, that doesn’t have ARIA tags implemented, the screen reader will read to the blind person “link” for the Facebook icon; not very helpful, is it?

When ARIA tags are implemented, additional information is added to the Facebook icon – and any other visual link on the website – that describes what is the link. So the screen reader will read to the blind person “Facebook link”.

It’s not difficult to imagine the scope and effort of the work needed in order to implement ARIA tags on your entire website.

Keyboard Navigation Compatibility Explained

Keyboard navigation means that motor-impaired individuals are using their computers only through their keyboard, rather than a mouse. Scrolling, clicking links and menu buttons, opening and closing tabs – everything is done using designated keys.

There are many issues relating to keyboard navigation as today’s websites are highly complex, layered with content elements, and react dynamically to user behavior. Any element of the website must be compatible to allow full keyboard navigation.

Let’s look at a popup as an example.

Popups can be triggered for a variety of reasons. For mouse users, it is a simple occurrence; you can bring the cursor to the area of the popup, click on one of the fields to input details or click the X to close the popup.

But how do you handle the popup using only the keyboard? How do you differentiate between ‘regular’ functionalities of the website and that of the popup? How do you ‘shift the focus’ of the keystrokes to a layered element? You need to allow unique keystrokes to operate the popup, keystrokes that are activated only when a popup appears.

It’s one example of the many challenges making your website compatible with keyboard navigation. The list of WCAG requirements for compatibility with keyboard navigation is a long one, and understandably so as it needs to enable motor-impaired individuals to navigate your website with the same ease as the rest of us using a mouse.

How accessiBe’s Background Processing Achieves Screen Reader and Keyboard Navigation Compatibility

Without getting too technical, what accessiBe does is scan the entire code of your website and adds keyboard functionalities and ARIA tags to various elements on your website directly. It won’t interfere with your site’s code, but rather add an additional ‘layer’.

accessiBe’s AI ‘learned’ all of ARIA’s tags and keyboard functionalities required by WCAG and when scanning your website’s code implements all the required adjustments to achieve full compliance.

How accessiBe Makes Menus Accessible

Menus are a good example for understanding what the accessiBe background processing does and the benefits it provides.

We recognize menus on websites instantly, because we saw thousands and thousands of them. We know how they look, we know what their functionality is, and we know where to hover and click in order to reach the various pages of the website.

But if you remember, we said that screen readers don’t ‘look’ at the screen, but rather scan the site’s code to understand structure, identify links and read them aloud with all the text that appears on the page.

So menus are coded as a list structure, because in a way they are. A screen reader will announce a menu as a list, which might be confusing for a blind user. Additionally, many menus have drop-down sub-menus, accessible via a hover or by clicking a little triangle. Without proper ARIA tagging, a screen reader will miss the sub-menu.

What accessiBe does is adding readable tags for every element in the menu so a screen reader will recognize and announce each element properly. The ‘list’ code structure will get a “menu” tag, and the sub-menu will get a tag for ‘sub-menu’, thus allowing the blind individual to utilize the full functionality of the website.

Additionally, accessiBe alternates the tags on-the-fly while the site is being browsed. Once a sub-menu has been opened, a tag that says “sub-menu open” will be added to indicate to the screen reader what has happened, and will be changed with the tag “sub-menu close” once the sub-menu has been closed.

Image Recognition

One of the key elements of accessibility compliance with screen readers is to provide accurate alternative descriptions for images, known as alt text.

accessiBe utilizes various image, object and character recognition technologies (OCR and Iris) to provide highly descriptive and accurate depictions of images displayed on the website. Without adding screen-reader compatible alt tags to images a blind individual would simply not be aware of the existence of images, and miss out on the information usually displayed on images.

Let’s look at the following banner images from an e-commerce website:

As you can see, valuable information is communicated via the images – sales and discounts – the kind of information any shopper would want to know.

This is the descriptive text that accessiBe’s AI assigned to these images, completely automated with no human intervention (from left to right):

  • Image contains: shopping,  shorts, woman, ashion; image text: extra 50% off shorts
  • Image contains: shopping, red top, woman, jeans, fashion; image text: 50% off bottoms
  • Image contains: shopping, blue jumpsuit, woman, fashion, bed, ; image text: 50% off jumpsuits & rompers
  • Image contains: shopping, shoes, ocean, woman, fashion; image text: 50% off shoes

Again, doing this kind of work for the hundreds to thousands of images that are displayed on every e-commerce website requires a lot of time and effort. accessiBe achieves this in a completely automated way, and every image added to your website instantly gets its alt text.

In-Depth Feature Review and Demo of accessiBe

Comparison of accessiBe with Accessibility Plugins

There are many web accessibility plugins out there. They offer a ‘quick fix’ for ADA and WCAG compliance – add an accessibility menu and you’re done.

As tempting as it may sound, the distinction between an accessibility menu and being fully compliant must be made.

As we’ve mentioned earlier, there are two parallel tasks that need to handle in order to achieve ADA and WCAG compliance:

  • Front end – UI and design adjustments, achieved by the Accessibility Interface (the visible menu for content, font, color and orientation adjustments)
  • Back end – screen-reader and keyboard navigation compatibility, achieved by implementing ARIA tags and further code adjustments

Reminder: 70% of accessibility compliance requirements deal with back end adjustments, meaning, screen-readers, and keyboard navigation compatibility.

Accessibility plugins, whether free or paid, only answer the front-end requirements. Meaning, after installing an accessibility plugin, you are just 30% compliant. Since accessibility compliance is not a scale (you don’t ‘get points’ for making it halfway through) you’ll need to turn to an additional provider to do the back end work.

accessiBe, on the other hand, provides a full accessibility compliance solution, covering both UI and design requirements through the accessibility interface AND screen-reader and keyboard navigation compatibility requirements through it’s automated AI technology that analyzes and makes adjustments in the code-level of the website.

Benefits of Using accessiBe Over Accessibility Plugins

  • Achieving complete accessibility compliance
  • Dealing with a single provider, rather than two or more
  • Cost-efficiency (manual audit and remediation service are expensive)
  • Complete compatibility with screen-readers and keyboard navigation
  • Enabling true accessibility to individuals with disabilities

Comparison of accessiBe with Manual Accessibility Services

Manual accessibility services can help you achieve full accessibility compliance, but it comes with two major disclaimers:

  1. You’ll still need an additional solution for an accessibility interface, which the service companies don’t provide
  2. The compliance achieved is for the point in time the audit and remediation were performed. Let’s explain this point further.

Companies that offer a manual accessibility service assign a team of accessibility experts to do an audit of your website. The result of this audit is a lengthy document detailing all the accessibility faults that your website has. It is a valuable document as it gives you a precise depiction of what needs to be fixed in order to achieve compliance.

From here there are two possible paths:

You can either take the audit results to your development team and have them remediate your website accordingly.

Or, some of the service companies offer a remediation service, meaning, they’ll assign their own engineers to manually make the necessary changes in your website. Needless to say this extra service isn’t given for free.

In both cases, you are looking at a process that takes weeks if not months (depending on the number of pages your website has.)

Additionally, since it is a manual process done by experts, it comes with a hefty price tag.

But most importantly, the audit and remediation hold for the time they were done. Unless you have a 100% static website, meaning, you do not make any changes to your website – never add or remove products, never update content – the ‘effect’ of the audit and remediation fades away with time.

Since the process was manual, any changes you make to your website must be handled manually accessibility-wise. You added a new banner with a link to items on sale, you’ll need to go into the code and add ARIA tags. You added a new image, you’ll need to go into the code and add alt text compatible with screen-readers. And so on.

Some of the manual accessibility service companies offer maintenance services as well. They will periodically audit your website (manually) and provide a remediation document that will need to be implemented (manually) either by your development team or by theirs for an additional cost.

These costs add up. Having your website audited and remediated for compliance on an ongoing basis takes time, effort, and money. But you don’t have a choice. Being ADA and WCAG compliant is an ongoing task, since websites are dynamic and being updated regularly.

accessiBe, on the other hand, offers a 100% automated and ongoing compliance solution. The initial audit and remediation process is carried out – with no human intervention – in 48 hours (compared to weeks or months by a manual provider). Then, your website is scanned every 24 hours to identify and fix accessibility issues using accessiBe AI technology. Meaning, compliance maintenance is constantly carried out ‘in the background’ keeping you ADA & WCAG compliant at all times.

Which brings us to another crucial point regarding manual accessibility services. They make it extremely hard for you to scale up. Every business has a constant aim to grow, but with a manual accessibility service, scalability becomes a pain point. The more you grow the more time, effort and money you need to put in to remain compliant. You want to add another section to your website, you want to launch an additional website? Using a manual accessibility service will hold you back. You’ll need to account for additional time before going live to manually enable accessibility and additional funds. For fast-moving companies, time becomes a serious burden.

Since accessiBe offers an automated and ongoing accessibility solution, scalability is not an issue.

Benefits of Using accessiBe Over Manual Accessibility Services

  • Time-efficient
  • Cost-effective
  • 100% automated
  • Ongoing compliance
  • Infinite scale
  • Single provider for full compliance (front end and back end)

How to Check Your Web Accessibility Compliance Level

Before you get started on your path to being ADA & WCAG compliant it’s important to understand the current state of accessibility your website provides.

Obviously, if you’ve never taken any steps to make your website accessible to individuals with disabilities, there’s no need for this – your website isn’t accessible in any way.

This is actually highly important if you have taken steps to make your website accessible, like for example, installing one of the accessibility plugins. You might be under the impression that by doing so your website is both compliant and accessible to individuals with disabilities.

There’s a simple and quick way to face the accessibility reality.

accessiBe offers a free, automated compliance audit tool available online named aCe. It uses accessiBe AI technology to scan your site, detect accessibility issues and provide quite a detailed report on the various elements that impact your website’s accessibility, and those include:

  • General score
  • Clickables
  • Titles
  • Orientation
  • Menus
  • Graphics
  • Forms
  • Documents
  • Readability
  • Carousels
  • Tables

Each of these elements is given a score and some explanations to the specific issues that need attention within the context of these elements.

In addition to gaining a compliance audit with the remediation steps needed to be taken in order to fix these issues, aCe gives you a very clear idea of where you stand and what needs your attention in order to achieve compliance.

We gave it a try. We ran a website that has installed one of the accessibility plugins (which was recognized, by name, by the aCe audit tool) and the results cement the point that these plugins aren’t comprehensive enough of a solution for true ADA & WCAG compliance.

Here are the results:

As can be expected, the UI and design side got relatively high scores, due to the accessibility plugin installed on the website, but anything that has to do with back end compatibility with screen readers and keyboard navigation got a failing score.

Conclusion

accessiBe is an automated and comprehensive web accessibility solution that achieves ongoing compliance with ADA and WCAG regulations for your website.

It offers a unique combination of front end and back end compatibility, meaning, it provides an end-to-end solution for both user-facing accessibility interface, and compatibility with screen readers and keyboard navigation.

The solution offered by accessiBe is a no-touch, no-code, continuous compliance utilizing proprietary AI technology that audits and remediates your website.

It is by far one of the most affordable web accessibility solutions, starting at $490 for websites with up to 1,000 unique pages.

When compared to accessibility plugins, accessiBe’s offering is robust and comprehensive, delivering full compliance that plugins aren’t able to.

When compared to accessibility manual services, accessiBe offers a speedy and automated audit and remediation process compared to the lengthy, manual and highly expensive offering of the service companies. Additionally, accessiBe, unlike accessibility manual services, delivers ongoing compliance and the ability to scale with ease and speed.

The combination of AI-based audit and remediation, the most comprehensive accessibility interface on the market, ongoing compliance, scalability, and a highly affordable plan makes accessiBe stand out from the competition by offering a unique end-to-end solution for achieving ADA and WCAG compliance in a fast and simple way.

 

[– accessiBe is a partner of WebdesignerDepot –]

Featured image via Unsplash.

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When Does Emotional Design Cross a Line?

Designing for emotion in and of itself is not a problem. Websites are bound to elicit an emotional reaction from visitors, even if it’s as simple as them feeling at ease because of the soft, pastel color palette you’ve designed the site with.

I don’t want to outright villainize emotional design. Unless there is some form of unethical manipulation at play, designing for your visitors’ emotions can actually provide them with a more positive experience.

So, here’s what I’d like to look at today:

  1. What is emotional design?
  2. When does emotional design cross a line?
  3. What’s the right way to design for emotions?

1. What Is Emotional Design?

When we look at emotional design in the context of a website, we’re focused on three types of emotional reactions:

a. Visceral Reactions

Visceral reactions are instinctive ones. Usually, visitors experience these as their first impressions of a website or web page. For instance, a cluttered or otherwise poorly designed homepage might leave visitors feeling overwhelmed, hesitant, or wanting to flea.

A minimally designed homepage interface, on the other hand, might have visitors not feeling much of a reaction at all. In this case, no feeling is a good feeling.

Like Irene Au said:

b. Behavioral Reactions

Behavioral reactions stem from the usability of a website. There’s a lot that can stir up negative emotions here, like:

  • Extra-long contact forms
  • Confusing menus
  • Error-ridden content
  • Slow-loading pages
  • And more

Again, if a website is easy to get through and attractively designed, visitors aren’t likely going to “ooh” and “aah” with every step they take on the site. And that’s a good thing. If they’re focusing more on how the design looks, they’re not paying attention to the brand’s actual offer.

c. Reflective Reactions

Reflective reactions are the third type of emotions we design for.

This is complicated because there’s a lot wrapped up in how visitors feel about a website after the fact. Sometimes the most well-designed interfaces and experiences can’t save them from a bad experience, whether they realized too late that the products were overpriced or they were treated poorly by a live chat representative.

As a web designer, all you can really do is to make sure you’re working with reputable companies and then aligning the designs of their sites with their values.

When Does Emotional Design Cross a Line?

There’s already enough social pressure online; your website doesn’t need to be one of those places, too

Emotional design shouldn’t be about manipulating consumers’ emotions. In most cases, emotional design is about controlling the environment of the website so that emotions don’t go spinning wildly out of control — in either direction.

It’s when we take what we know about influencing someone’s emotional state to monetarily benefit from it that emotional design becomes problematic.

Here are some ways in which you might negatively impact the emotions of your visitors through design:

FOMO

The fear-of-missing-out isn’t always a bad marketing strategy. However, when FOMO is used for the purposes of rushing consumers to take action now and without time to really think it through, it definitely can be.

Chances are good they’ll feel badly no matter what. Either because they regret the rushed (and probably unnecessary, or expensive) decision or they blame themselves for missing out on an opportunity to be like everyone else.

There’s already enough social pressure online; your website doesn’t need to be one of those places, too. So, be careful with how you present customers with limits (on time, on products, etc.) or how you frame the call-to-action (“If you don’t buy this now, expect to fail/be miserable/suffer even more”).

Analysis Paralysis

It doesn’t matter why people specifically seek out your website. They have a problem or a hole in their life, and they’re looking for something to fix it.

Now, you can’t help it if the website has too much to offer in the way of options or solutions. Companies have to provide every possible solution/option so their users don’t feel like they have to go somewhere else to get what they need. However, the way you design these options can lead to a negative emotional state if you’re not careful.

For instance, your visitors might experience analysis paralysis, where there are so many options that it becomes impossible to take action. Similar to FOMO, this can lead to regret either with the decision they made or the one they were incapable of making.

By simplifying how many choices are presented at once, or designing a clear and supportive pathway to the right option of many, your website will leave visitors feeling much more positively about the whole experience.

Trendy Nostalgia

Nostalgia can be a great way to play upon the positive associations and emotions consumers feel towards an era gone by or a place they once knew. But, again, it depends on how you design with it.

For example, if you design a vintage website for an agency launched in 2019 and run by a group of 20-somethings, it might come off feeling disingenuous once customers start to catch on.

For a restaurant known as the oldest bar in the state, that would be a different story. That nostalgically designed website would be a real part of its story; not just done as a sales gimmick. As a result, customers would likely embrace those warm feelings for the “good ol’ days” they get from the website.

Also, think about how quickly nostalgia fades if it’s done to align with a trend. Unless you’re committed to redesigning a website the second that nostalgic feeling falls out of favor, you could be condemning your client to an outdated website mere months after launch.

What’s the Right Way to Design for Emotions?

Like I said before, there’s nothing wrong with designing for emotions. You just have to make sure your website visitors don’t feel manipulated and that they welcome the pleasant feelings the site gives them.

make sure your website visitors don’t feel manipulated

It might seem harmless at the time. After all, what are they doing on the site if they weren’t interested in the first place? And it’s not like they were bullied into spending their money, right?

But if they sense in any way that their response was driven by an emotion they wouldn’t have otherwise felt, they’re not going to be happy. While it might not be enough for them to cancel their subscription or services, or to return products they bought, it will definitely leave a bad taste in their mouth. And, ultimately, it can cost your website loyal visitors and customers.

So, if you’re going to use emotional design on a website, do it to improve their experience, not to put more money into your clients’ pockets. That means your emotional design choices need to be honest, transparent, and focused on eliciting naturally positive emotions like:

  • Satisfaction
  • Feeling impressed
  • Trust
  • Calm
  • Feeling valued

Go back to the three emotional reactions I brought up earlier. If you can design a website to give off a positive first impression, and to be pain-free and usable, you can spend the rest of your time injecting small bits of happiness and positivity into the website with color choices, friendly micro-interactions, personalized content, and more.

 

Featured image via Unsplash.

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5 Tips for Designing One-Page Websites That Work

Smart design choices can help reduce the fatigue and frustration people would otherwise feel when using the web.

There are a lot of ways web designers can minimize distractions, information overload, and analysis paralysis. For instance, designing with abundant white space, shorter snippets of text, and calming color palettes all work.

One-page websites might be another design choice worth exploring.

When done right, a single-page website could be very useful in creating a simpler and more welcoming environment for today’s overwhelmed consumers.

With its diminutive structure, it would leave a unique and memorable impression on visitors. What’s more, a well-crafted one-page website would provide visitors with a clean, narrow, and logical pathway to conversion.

For those of you who use BeTheme’s pre-built sites (or are thinking about adopting them for your next site), there’s good news. In addition to the great selection of traditionally structured sites available, Be also has single-page websites for you to work with.

So, the technical aspects you’d need to master to get the one-page formula right are already taken care of.

Let’s have a look at some of the features that make single-page websites shine and how you can design them:

1. Give Visitors a Succinct Journey Through the Website and Brand’s Story

The typical business websites you design include pages like Home, About, and Contact, as well as pages that explain the company’s services or sell their products. Unless you’re building really long sales landing pages, there’s usually about 400 to 600 words on each page.

That’s still a lot of content for your visitors to get through and it can make perusing a single website an overwhelming experience. Imagine how they feel about reading through all that content when they have to do it multiple times when comparing other websites and options.

In some cases, this multi-page website structure is overkill. The information you’d otherwise fill a full page with can easily be edited down to fit a single pane or block on a one-page website and still be as useful.

Like how design and development studio Pixel Lab does it:

Pixel Lab

Notice how all the key points are hit in a concise and visually attractive manner:

  • The Featured Work portfolio
  • The About Us introduction
  • The FAQs
  • The contact form

The BeCV pre-built site is built in a similar manner (and for a similar purpose, too):

BeCV

Just remember to keep a sticky navigation bar present at all times so visitors know exactly how much content there is on the page.

2. Opt For a Non-Traditional Navigation for a Uniquely Memorable Experience

Typically, the rule is that website navigation should follow one of two patterns:

  • Logo on the left, navigation links on the right.
  • Logo on the left, hamburger menu storing the navigation on the right (for mobile or desktop).

There are a number of reasons why this layout is beneficial. Ultimately, it comes down to the predictability and comfort of having a navigation be right where visitors expect it, no matter where they end up on your website.

However, with a single-page website, this is one of those rules you can bend, so long as you have a way to keep the navigation ever-present and easy to use.

There are some great examples of one-page sites that have done this, usually opting for a stylized left-aligned sidebar that contains links to the various parts of the page. Purple Orange is just one of them:

Purple Orange

And you can use a Be pre-built site like BeHairdresser to create a similar navigation for your website:

BeHairdresser

If you’re trying to make a bold brand stand out, this is a neat layout option to experiment with.

3. Tell a More Visually Striking Story

One of the problems with building a website with WordPress is that you always have to worry about how your design decisions affect speed. Even once the code is optimized, images are usually the low-hanging fruit that have to be dealt with.

But when your website only contains one page, this means images aren’t as much of a problem (so long as you compress and resize them). It’s only when you continue to add pages, products, and galleries that you have to scale back your visual content.

So, if your brand has a strong visual identity and you want the website to show that off through images, a one-page website is a great place to do it.

Just remember to keep a good balance between text and images as Vodka A does:

Vodka A

There’s no reason for a liquor distribution company to mince words when the elegant product photos effectively communicate to consumers what it’s all about.

In fact, this image-heavy, single-page style would work well for any vendor selling a small inventory of products: food, beverages, subscription boxes, health and beauty products, etc. And you can use the pre-built BeBistro to carefully craft it:

BeBistro

4. Turn a Complex Business Idea or Offering into Something Simple to Understand

When a company sells a technical or complex solution to consumers, it can be a real struggle to explain what it does and why they should buy it.

But here’s the thing: Consumers don’t really care about all that technical stuff. Even if you were to explain how an app worked or how you use a software like Sketch or WordPress to design a website, their eyes would glaze over.

What matters most to them is that you have an effective and affordable solution that they can trust. So, why bog them down with page after page of technical specs and sales jargon?

A one-page website enables you to simplify even the most complex of solutions.

Take Critical TechWorks, for instance. It offers an advanced technological solution for the automobile industry…and, yet, this is all it needs to explain the technology at work:

Critical Techworks

If your website’s visitors are more concerned with the outcomes rather than the “how”, you’d do well to make the website and content as easy to digest as possible. And you can use a pre-built site like BeCourse to do that:

BeCourse

Notice how both of these sites take visitors through a small handful of sections (pages) before delivering them to the main attraction: the contact or sign-up form.

5. Capture Leads and Sales at Different Stages of the Sales Funnel

Some of your visitors will be brand new to the site and need more information before they pull the trigger. Others will already have a good idea of what they’re getting into and just need one small push to get them to take action.

With a single-page website, you can design each section to cater to the different kinds of leads and prospects that arrive there.

The top sections should be introductory in nature, providing new visitors with information they need to decide if this is an option worth pursuing. The sections further below should drill down into the remaining questions or concerns that interested prospects have.

Regardless of which section they’re looking at, your one-page site will have CTA buttons built in along the way that drive them to conversion the second they’re ready.

This will enable your site to always be prepared to convert leads, whether visitors read the first two sections or make their way through all of them until they reach the conversion point (e.g. a contact form, a checkout page, etc.).

You’ll find a nice example of this on the Cycle website, with CTAs strategically placed along the single-page’s design:

Cycle

BePersonalTrainer is a good pre-built site option if you want to ensure that you include a CTA button at the perfect stopping points throughout your page:

BePersonalTrainer

You won’t find them at the bottom of every section, but that’s okay. You just need them whenever your visitors are seriously thinking about taking action.

What Should You Build: A Multi-Page or One-Page Website?

Although a single-page website won’t work for larger websites (especially in ecommerce), it could work well for business websites that are on the smaller side to begin with.

By centralizing all of that information into a single page, you’ll create a fresh experience that wows visitors with how succinct yet powerful both the message and offering are.

Just be careful. Many single-page websites are poorly done (which is probably why they fell out of fashion for a while).

Remember: This is not your chance to throw web design rules out the window. In fact, this will be an opportunity to clear out the fluff and the clutter that’s accumulated over the years and to return to a more scaled-back and classic approach to design.

And with the help of Be’s pre-built one-page websites, it won’t require much work on your part to make that happen.

 

[– This is a sponsored post on behalf of BeTheme –]

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Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

20 Freshest Web Designs, August 2020

In this month’s collection of the freshest web designs from the last four weeks the dominant trend is attention to detail.

You’ll find plenty of animation, in fact, almost every one of these sites uses animation to a greater or lesser degree. Let’s dive in:

Globekit

Globekit is a tool that allows developers to quickly create animated and interactive globes and embed them on web pages. Its site features some exceptional 3D animation.

Yolélé

Yolélé is food company built around fonio, a West African super grain. Its site features a great page transition, and the landing page carousel is one of the few examples of horizontal scrolling we’ve seen work well.

Begonia

Begonia is a Taiwanese design agency with an impressive client list. Its site features animated typography, a super bold splash screen, and some surreal artwork. There’s so much here, it’s almost overwhelming.

Next Big Thing

Next Big Thing is an agency supporting the full lifecycle of start-ups. Its site is clearly targeting tech-based clients, and there are some lovely transitions. The masked hero transition on scroll is delightful.

Proper

We all have every reason for the odd sleepless night right now, but regular sleep is essential for our health. Proper offers sleep solutions from coaching to supplements on its subtly shaded site.

The Oyster & Fish House

The site for The Oyster & Fish House is packed with some delightful details. We love the subtle wave textures, the photography has a nostalgic feel, and the typography is perfectly sophisticated.

Drink Sustainably

Fat Tire produces America’s first certified carbon neutral beer, and Drink Sustainably has been produced to explain the concept. We love the vintage advertising style of the artwork.

Treaty

It seems like every week there’s a new CBD brand launching. What we like about Treaty’s site is the slick fullscreen video, the inclusion of botanical illustrations, and the really brave use of whitespace.

Studio Louise

You’re greeted on Studio Louise’s site by a shot of trees with two random shapes; as you scroll the shapes morph and relocate to the top right corner, and you suddenly realize they’re an “S” and an “L”, cue: smiles.

Wünder

Another site for a CBD product, this time a vibrantly branded sparkling beverage. Wünder’s site features enticing photography, an on-trend color palette, and credible typography.

Seal + Co

Some professions lend themselves to exciting, aspirational sites, and some companies are accountancy firms. However Seal + Co’s site creates the impression of a modern, capable, and imaginative firm.

DocSpo

There is some lovely, 3D animation on the DocSpo site. The company is a Swedish startup enabling digital business proposals, and its site is bold, Appleesque, and packed with nice details.

Motley

We never get tired of particle effects, like the one employed by Finland-based agency Motley. There’s some superb work in the portfolio, and it’s great to see a blog using Old Master paintings for thumbnails.

The Ornamental

The Ornamental sources leather goods for wealthy individuals, and luxury lifestyle firms. Its site is minimal, with some drool-worthy handbags. We particularly liked the image zoom hover effect in the store.

G.F Smith

G.F Smith is one of the world’s leading paper suppliers. Its redesigned site is much simpler than its last, with some lovely touches, like the varied paper photography when you hover over product thumbnails.

Raters

Raters is a new app that lets you discover new movies via reviews from people you trust. This simple site does an exceptional job of previewing the app, across multiple device sizes.

Fleava

There’s a whole heap of nice interactive details on Fleava’s site, from the cursor-following circles when hovering over links, to the way the thumbnails are squeezed when dragging through projects.

The Story of Babushka

A babushka doll is a traditional Russian toy, made up of dolls, nested inside dolls. The Story of Babushka uses the toy as a metaphor for growth in this children’s book, and the accompanying animated website.

Grand Matter

After the uniformity of the 2010s, there are a wealth of illustration styles being explored across the web. Grand Matter is an artist agency that represents some amazing talent, and we love the illustration they chose themselves.

Nathan Young

Nathan Young’s site does exactly what it needs to do: Providing case studies for his design work. The fade-out on scroll is a simple device that elevates the whole site experience.

Source


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

Running the Nanos Unikernel Inside Firecracker

A lot of people seem to be under the impression that Firecracker is a competing technology against unikernels. It actually isn’t. It’s more of an alternative to existing machine monitors such as qemu and is actually complementary if you need the quick boot times. As for isolation levels you are going to have about the same isolation as you would get with KVM – it uses the same facilities underneath.

OSv was the first unikernel to have support for Firecracker but now Nanos has support as well.

Source de l’article sur DZONE