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As a utility-first CSS framework, Tailwind has rapidly become popular among developers. With its fast styling process and the freedom it offers when designing a website, it’s really no wonder why.

But how can you make sure this is the right CSS framework for your upcoming development projects? In this blog post, you’ll learn what Tailwind is, and how it differs from other frameworks like Bootstrap, or Foundation.

In addition, we will highlight the main advantages and disadvantages of the framework. By the end, you will be able to make an honest and objective assessment as to whether Tailwind is the right framework for you. So without further ado, let us dive deeper into it. 

What is Tailwind CSS?

First released in May 2019, Tailwind CSS is a front-end CSS framework. It is currently at version 2.2. Since its release, Tailwind has created quite a following. More than 260k developers have used it to enhance their design systems.

Stats like these make Tailwind one of the most popular CSS frameworks on the market, and all in less than two years. There are many reasons for this. Primarily, because its features make it the ideal choice for a wide variety of projects. Tellingly, most developers prefer it to create React projects.

The main difference between Tailwind and its competitors is that it gives developers complete control over the styling of a web application. So, is it the right CSS framework for you? To answer this question, let us take a look at Tailwind’s advantages and disadvantages.

Tailwind CSS: Pros and Cons

Tailwind CSS: Advantages

1. Control Over Styling

Tailwind is a unique CSS framework when it comes to styling web applications, meaning that Tailwind does not have a default theme that you have to use like other CSS frameworks.

For example, you can give each project a different look even if you use the same elements (color palette, size, etc.). Therefore, it’s one of the few CSS frameworks that is not opinionated on how you should style your project. 

2. Faster CSS Styling Process

There is no faster framework than Tailwind when it comes to styling HTML. As a result, you can easily create good-looking layouts by styling elements directly. This is possible because Tailwind offers thousands of built-in classes that do not require you to create designs from scratch.

Therefore, you do not have to write CSS rules yourself. These CSS classes are the main reason why building and styling with Tailwind is so fast. 

3. Responsiveness and Security 

With Tailwind’s pre-built classes, you can design the layout directly in an HTML file. This makes it a very responsive, mobile-friendly CSS framework. Apart from that, Tailwind has proven to be a stable framework since its initial release.

The framework was developed by top-notch engineers, which is why bugs and breaks are rare. 

4. Additional Features 

Tailwind CSS works in the front end of a website. For this reason, it is reasonable for developers to demand ultimate responsiveness. Well, Tailwind provides the ability to create responsive themes for your web applications and remove all unused CSS classes. With PurgeCSS, Tailwind helps you keep your final CSS as small as possible.

Tailwind CSS: Disadvantages

1. Styling and HTML are Mixed

Because you do not have to write CSS rules yourself, Tailwind works differently than most CSS frameworks. While this is great for those unfamiliar with CSS, it also means that Tailwind mixes style rules in with your HTML files.

This goes against the principle of the “separation of concerns.” Many developers prefer to separate page structure and style, claiming that classes make the Tailwind markup process verbose. 

2. It Takes Time to Learn 

Because of the built-in classes, Tailwind CSS is quite learning-intensive. Even for experienced developers, it can be a challenge to learn how to use and fully utilize the pre-built classes. But, of course, as with any other development task, practice makes perfect.

However, if you are confident and quick when it comes to writing CSS classes, Tailwind may not be the best choice for you. Even if that’s true, Tailwind generally makes CSS styling faster in the long run.  

3.  Lack of Important Components

Unlike Bulma and Bootstrap, Tailwind does not have many significant styling components. Unfortunately, this means you have to manually add features like headers, buttons, and navigation bars for web apps.

This is not a significant drawback, as experienced developers can implement these features quickly. However, you will need to spend some time doing so. 

4. Documentation 

Although Tailwind CSS has made great strides when it comes to adding guides and video tutorials, it still lags behind competitors like Bootstrap. Of course, you can always contact the developers if you have a problem.

However, keep in mind that this may take some time. For this reason, you may need to customize the framework to your needs manually.

Is Tailwind Worth Trying?

In a few words, working with Tailwind is quite different from other CSS frameworks. We have identified its main advantages and disadvantages. Based on these features, we can easily say that Tailwind is:

  • An excellent solution for developers familiar with CSS who want to speed up the creation and design process in the long run.
  • Not such a good idea if you are not familiar with CSS or do not want to spend time learning a new CSS framework. 

It becomes clear that it all depends on your personal needs and preferences. However, if saving time on CSS styling is a priority for you, you should definitely give Tailwind a try.

Regardless of whether you choose to use Tailwind or not, it’s evident that many developers use it for good reasons. Since it offers a faster styling process and is a responsive and stable framework, it’s here to stay.

Tailwind can help you save time and change the way you design websites, and so taking the time to test it out is worthwhile.

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Not so long ago, customers only had a couple of ways to interact with brands. 

If you had an issue with a product or service, you could reach out through the customer service phone number or send an email. Occasionally, sites would introduce dedicated forms on their website that allowed consumers to send support tickets straight to the service desk – but that was it.

The problem with this kind of service was all the waiting. 

Send an email or ticket, and you have no idea when the company is going to get back to you. Customers end up refreshing their inbox all day, waiting for a response. Call the company, and 9 times out of 10, you’ll be placed on hold. You can’t exactly do much when you’re stuck listening to hold music, so customers are gradually getting more frustrated as they wait for a response. 

Fortunately, the evolving digital age has introduced a new solution: live chat.

Transforming Your CX With Live Chat

Live chat is a quick and convenient way for your customers to contact your business and get a response immediately. The result is happier clients, better customer satisfaction scores, and even opportunities for bigger sales. 

More than 41% of customers say they expect to see live chat on a site. 

Even if you don’t have an agent on hand to answer a chat message immediately, you can create an automated system that notifies your customer when someone is available. That means they can go and do other things while they’re waiting for a response. Live chat solutions with bots can even allow your customers to fix problems for themselves. That’s pretty convenient!

Widgets equipped with answers to commonly asked questions can automatically deal with customer queries or help them find solutions to their problems before passing them over to an agent. This means that your customer gets a solution faster, and your agents don’t have as much pressure to deal with. It’s a win-win – as long as you get it right. 

Unfortunately, a lot of companies don’t know how to implement live chat experiences correctly. 

Kayako’s study into 400 customers found that 47% couldn’t remember the last time they’d had a positive experience through a live chat tool.  

How to Upgrade Live Chat CX

The evidence shows that customers love the idea of live chat, but the reality of how businesses implement this technology isn’t always ideal. 

However, since 86% of customers say they’re willing to spend more on a better customer experience, it’s worth figuring out what separates a good live chat interaction from a bad one. 

1. Set Expectations Instantly

Setting the right expectations is crucial if you want to generate better satisfaction for your customers at a later date. When customers know what to expect from your live chat strategy, they can also make more informed decisions about which support channels they’re going to use, and whether they want to hang around for someone to answer their messages. 

The first thing you should do is showcase your agent’s availability. In this example from Help Scout, you can see whether the team is active, online, and ready to talk. The company also sets expectations for how quickly you can get an email response if you don’t want to chat.

Other ways to set expectations include:

  • Showing your opening hours: List when team members are usually available to answer questions if you’re not currently online. 
  • Topics: Offer your customers some topics that they can ask about or use the welcome message on your chat tool to direct your customers to an FAQ page. 
  • Restrictions: If there’s anything you can’t deal with over live chat, like changing a customer’s password, let them know in advance so they don’t waste time.

2. Leverage Pre-Chat Forms

Pre-chat forms are some of the most important parts of the live chat experience. They ask your customer to explain their issue to your chatbot so that they can be directed towards the right agent. Using these forms correctly ensures that your agent has all the information they need to solve a problem fast. 

You can even set up automated systems that direct customers to different agents and teams based on their needs. For instance, the live chat app on Outgrow.co gives customers the option to fill out different forms depending on whether they want answers to a question, a demo, or something else.

The button you click on dictates which professional you’ll get through to. Although filling out a form can seem like an extra friction point for your customer at first, it helps to streamline the customer journey. After all, if you can direct the customer to the right agent the first time, there are fewer chances that they’ll need to explain their issue to various different people. 

Here are a few things you can ask for in the live chat form to make it more effective:

  • The customer’s name: This will help to personalize the conversation. It could also be an opportunity to track down any background information you have about an existing customer and the orders that they may want to speak to you about.
  • An email address: Having an email address will allow you to bring up a customer’s record on your CRM. It also means that you can send any information that the customer needs to their email inbox at the end of the conversation.
  • A brief explanation: Ask your customers to share what they’re reaching out to you about and use keywords in their message to assign the chat to the right agent or professional. You could even add a drop-down menu of topics for them to choose from. 

Remember, don’t ask for too much information straight away, or you’ll risk your clients feeling that the service experience is too complicated. 

3. Make Sure It Works Everywhere

We’ve reached the point now where every customer expects a brand’s website to be responsive on any device. Most web-building templates automatically work on mobile tablets and smartphones. Additionally, it’s becoming increasingly easy for companies to transform their website and online store experiences into dedicated apps too. 

However, while most businesses know that their site needs to be responsive, they often forget about the mobile element when it comes to live chat. If your live chat function is only available on the web browser version of your website, then this is going to end up making your mobile customers pretty unhappy. They don’t want to have to stop browsing on their phone just to connect with you. 

Ideally, you’ll want to create a separate component for your mobile app where your customers can easily access the same live chat functions they’d have on your browser-based site.

If you’re just offering live chat through a mobile version of your website, make sure that it’s easy for your customer to click into the chat section and send messages without accidentally ending up on a different tab or page. It might also be worth setting up functions that allow your chat app to send push notifications to your customer’s phone whenever they get a new message. 

Being able to put their smartphone down or switch to another app while they wait for a response will provide a much more intuitive experience for your audience. 

4. Make Sure You Support All the Right Languages

You’d think that this CX tip for live chat would be obvious, but it’s shocking how many companies fail to offer support for all the languages that their customers might use. If you’re selling your products throughout the world, and you know you have customers in China, then it doesn’t make much sense to only offer live chat in English. 

Some of the available live chat apps on the market today come with features that allow you to automatically translate languages when your agents are talking to foreign customers. For instance, LiveChat currently supports 45 languages

If you’re creating your own chat app from scratch, then you’re going to need to work with your developer or designer to make sure that the right languages are supported. Remember, you don’t have to cover everything, but at least make sure that you can connect with the most common groups of customers in your CRM. 

Ensure that if you are using multiple languages, your customers know how to switch to their preferred option too. Usually, the best way to do this is with a drop-down menu. You could also use little flag icons of the countries that you support. 

5. Find Ways to Reduce First Response Time

Speed is probably one of the biggest advantages of live chat, and the main reason that customers like it so much. According to the CMO council, fast response time is the number one thing that a customer looks at when measuring satisfaction. 

While you might not be able to have someone on-hand to answer your customers 24/7, you can improve the way they perceive your load times in a variety of ways. For instance, start by making it clear when your people are online to talk to your customers. Setting expectations on when you’ll be available to immediately respond should help to avoid frustration.

  • Keep all chats in the same place for agents: Having a combined contact center solution on the back-end makes responding to queries much easier for your agents. If they can see all of your brand’s live chat, social, and email conversations in one place, they don’t have to waste time jumping between different platforms and tabs. 
  • Set routing queues: Use an automated system to send every message you get to the most appropriate agent available. You can intelligently route conversations based on the issues that your customers have or the things they want to discuss. It’s also worth ensuring that your system prioritizes routing conversations to the first agent available. 
  • Send notifications: Make sure that you set your live chat system up to send push notifications to agents when a new message is waiting. It’s also with notifying your customer when they have a response, just in case they’ve switched to another tab. 

The notifications you send to your agents could come with access to a customer’s CRM file, so that your agent can go into a conversation with the context they need. Agents that instantly get context on a conversation don’t have to waste as much time tracking down the right information. Giving your agents context also means that they don’t have to ask repetitive questions, which could annoy your customer. 

6. Make the Chat Experience On-Brand

Every company wants to give their customer a slick experience with live chat. The solution you build needs to be easy to use, and responsive across every device. However, it also needs to be something that your customer associates with your brand. 

Companies generally have a lot of options for how a live chat window can look. You can adjust the appearance to suit your brand by picking specific colors, tweaking button shapes, and even changing the available fonts. 

Working the visual elements of your brand into the design of the live chat experience is the best way to make your customers feel comfortable and confident that they’re dealing with your company. For instance, Hubspot uses matching colors, rounded edges on chat bubbles, and even a fun illustration to make their chat experience more “branded.”

Remember, when you’re creating a Live Chat experience that’s “on brand”, it’s also a good idea to think about things like voice and tone. Infusing live chat with the unique personality of your brand will make the experience more memorable. 

If you usually stick with informal language and use a lot of slang, then it makes sense to continue that in live chat – even when you’re sending automated messages. To make sure your brand identity really shines through:

  • Write scripts for your automated messages in your brand’s tone of voice
  • Write guidance scripts for employees that highlight your tone for agents
  • Provide training on brand tone of voice for your support team
  • Encourage support agents to connect with customers on a personal level
  • Remember to set guidelines on how to use things like gifs, slang, and emojis too!

7. Make a Checklist For Security and Tech Issues

One of the most significant things that will affect the experience your customer has with your live chat service, is technical and security issues. Choose the right developer or designer to help with your app, and the risk of problems dwindle. You can also address the issue of having to constantly maintain, check, and update your live chat experience by using a pre-existing solution, like Intercom.

No matter how you choose to approach live chat, these are the things you’ll need to check for most:

  • Page load times: Page load times are crucial for user experience and SEO, so you should be taking them seriously already. Check your web chat software isn’t dragging down the performance of your page or causing unnecessary problems.
  • Cross-channel conversations: If your website has various subdomains, make sure that moving through these in chat won’t mean you lose the session. Customers don’t want to have to repeat themselves!
  • Functionality with browsers: Your chat app needs to work just as well on every browser and operating system – including mobile devices. 
  • Data management: Under things like GDPR, you need to ensure that you’re controlling user information safely. Ensure you have a DPA in place, and make sure that your web channel doesn’t affect any PCI-DSS compliance systems you have in place. Your chat solution may need to automatically mask credit card information, for instance.

Time to Enhance Your Live Chat Strategy

Ultimately, whether you like it or not, your customers love live chat technology, and they’re not going to stop looking for it on your website. Today’s consumers expect you to serve their interests by delivering customer support on the channels that they choose. Unfortunately, most companies just aren’t living up to expectations.

Following the tips above could help you to transform the way that you interact with your clients and improve your chances of better satisfaction overall.

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Google Fonts may be the single most significant contribution Google has made to the evolution of the web — yes, more significant than search, advertising, or analytics.

Google Fonts gives every business access to a visual voice with which to distinguish itself. Fonts can be downloaded for use in design software and then embedded using best practices for a consistent experience on the web.

If there’s anything wrong with Google Fonts, it’s that its default listings are based on “Trending,” a self-fulfilling criterion that keeps Noto Sans high up the list, destined to be over-used.

But if you spend a little time lower down the listings, you’ll find some exceptional typefaces that are hardly used. Yes, some of them are highly stylized, but there are also usable sans, serifs, and display fonts worthy of your consideration.

All you have to do is scroll; here’s a selection of some of the treasures you’ll find if you do…

Piazzolla

Piazzolla features dramatic and expressive angular shapes when previewed in large sizes, but its real strength is in setting large amounts of body text.

Mulish

If you’re looking for a solid workhorse sans, look no further than Mulish. Halfway between a humanist and geometric sans, there’s even a variable font version.

Ceviche One

Reminiscent of the cool lettering of 60s advertising, Ceviche One is packed with energy, thanks to the dramatic zig-zag formed along its baseline.

Vollkorn

Released by Friedrich Althausen in 2005, Vollkorn is an excellent typeface for body copy, excelling at small sizes. It now boasts a variable font option.

Merienda

Merienda is a delightfully energetic display script. The bold weight feels more confident, but both weights have a dancing rhythm that brings the page alive.

Raleway Dots

Raleway is a hugely popular — and perhaps overused font — but this dotted version is less known. It’s a simple geometric sans that functions as a display face.

Kenia

Kenia is a wonderful, uncategorizable typeface. The stencil forms result in entirely original letter constructions, and the lowercase s is magnificent.

DM Sans

DM Sans is a low-contrast geometric sans-serif that performs wonderfully well at smaller sizes. It only has three weights, but each comes with a matching italic.

Oxygen

Designed by Vernon Adams as part of the KDE project for GNU+Linux, Oxygen is a very readable sans-serif, with a generous x-height and a hint of pen stroke.

Alice

Ksenia Erulevich’s Alice was inspired by Lewis Carrol’s novel Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. It presents itself as an Edwardian serif with fanciful flourishes.

Carter One

Carter One uses bold strokes, with a medium amount of contrast, to create a sans-style script. It has dozens of beautiful details like the notch on the lowercase o.

Bodoni Moda

Bodoni Moda is a didone-style serif with strong vertical strokes and high-contrast slab-like serifs. It’s the best variable font in this genre that I’ve found.

Ultra

Ultra is a slab-serif that you won’t even consider for body text. Its sculptural shapes are almost American-western. The counter on the lowercase n is charming.

Azeret Mono

Most mono-spaced fonts fail to inspire; practical they can be, charming they are not. But Azeret Mono bucks that trend, its bold weights being particularly fantastic.

Nunito

It’s tough to find a serious sans-serif with rounded terminals, but Nunito is it. There’s also a Nunito Sans with square terminals, but I love the rounded tips.

Bungee Inline

Designed for signage, Bungee is great for display sizes and works well vertically. There are several versions, but my favorite is this classy inline version.

Oi

Oi is unapologetically loud. A slab-serif that swallows its own detail, the counters and ink traps give it a 3D quality, and the curves feel almost nautical.

Expletus Sans

One of the significant trends in typography is the angled clip of adjoining strokes, creating the effect of shadow. This effect is brilliantly achieved in Expletus Sans.

Lustria

It’s comparatively unusual to find a serif face designed to work well at display sizes. At large sizes, Lustria’s rounded terminals evoke ink spread delightfully.

Yatra One

Yatra One is a Devanagari and Latin typeface that uses the Devanagari brush angle for its strokes, giving the Latin text an unusually slanted, stand-out character.

Amiko

Amiko is a highly legible typeface and excellent at tiny font sizes. It’s perfect as a secondary font if your main font is too fancy for elements like legal notices.

Keep Scrolling

It’s always tempting to leap at the first typeface you find that meets your needs, but if you dig a little deeper into Google Fonts, you’ll find a vast range of typefaces that offer both practicality and character.

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Every day design fans submit incredible industry stories to our sister-site, Webdesigner News. Our colleagues sift through it, selecting the very best stories from the design, UX, tech, and development worlds and posting them live on the site.

The best way to keep up with the most important stories for web professionals is to subscribe to Webdesigner News or check out the site regularly. However, in case you missed a day this week, here’s a handy compilation of the top curated stories from the last seven days. Enjoy!

Medusa – Headless Open-Source Ecommerce Platform

28 Free Website Testing Tools

Google Search Finally Has a Dark Mode

Top 10 Good Website Designs

A Minimal Image Viewer for Windows

PHP is Still The Most Used Server-Side Language

22 Best Typeform Alternatives In 2021 (Free & Paid)

Grainy Gradients

25+ CSS Page Transitions (Free Code + Demos)

Doodle Ipsum – The lorem ipsum of illustrations

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The post Popular Design News of the Week: September 13, 2021 – September 19, 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


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In the video below, we explore RESTful Web Services with Spring Boot and take a closer look at reading HTTP POST Request Body using @RequestBody annotation.  Let’s get started!

Source de l’article sur DZONE


Man working on machine

No-Code

No-code facilitates the reuse of predefined components, typically using a drag and drop interface or a web form. Such platforms always include things like identity and access management, and most importantly don’t require any code to stitch components together, therefore reducing the need for engineers to spend time architecting databases, APIs, or internal workflows. They are always related to one particular task and audience, like web development, spreadsheets, analytics, market automation, etc. Airtable, Zapier, Webflow, Retool, Waylay Digital Twin solution, and similar apps can be found in this category.

Low-Code

On the other hand, low-code has a different set of goals and user personas in mind. The major misconception about low-code is that the “low” in low-code means that a person with hardly any knowledge of coding is the user of such a platform.

Source de l’article sur DZONE

The WordPress themes and plugins you choose for your clients’ sites don’t just impact how the interface looks or how well it works. They also impact your ability to build them.

The point in using WordPress themes and plugins is to make your life easier, not to create more work for yourself or limit what you’re able to do. If you’ve struggled to find WordPress tools you can rely on from job to job, BeTheme might just be the total package you’ve been looking for.

BeTheme has it all:

  • A backend builder
  • A frontend builder
  • A WooCommerce builder
  • 600+ pre-built websites

There’s nothing extra to pay with BeTheme. One fee gets you all the tools you need to easily build professional-grade websites for your clients.

Get to Know BeTheme’s All-In-One WordPress Solution

Want to see how the BeTheme powerhouse works? Check it out:

1. Build and Manage the Backend With Muffin Builder 3

Let’s be honest, WordPress page builder plugins leave something to be desired. While they all have their strengths, it’s hard to find one that offers different tools for how you want to work.

Many of them offer a visual drag-and-drop builder, leaving designers with little flexibility in how they build websites. With BeTheme, you don’t have to compromise.

Muffin Builder 3 is the intuitive backend editor that gives you full control. And if you want to code it all by hand? You can. If you’d prefer to tap into BeTheme’s wide array of templates, pre-built sections, and predefined settings? You can do that as well.

What’s more, the backend builder makes it easy to add sliders to your website, optimize your pages for search, and more.

2. Design and Perfect Your Site on the Frontend with Muffin Live Builder

One of the reasons why drag-and-drop website builders have become so popular in recent years is because they empower everyone — from the DIY business owner to the professional web designer — to build websites visually. There’s just one problem:

While it’s great that developers both inside and outside of the WordPress ecosystem are creating these intuitive builders, they sometimes come at a cost.

One thing that tends to get sacrificed is speed. Because they take the editing out of the WordPress dashboard and onto the frontend of the website, many of them can take a while to load. (Some of them are known for stalling out on occasion, too.)

Another thing that gets sacrificed is how much you’re allowed to customize. You either have to design your website with the features and settings available from your page builder plugin or you have to do all the work inside of WordPress.

Muffin Live Builder doesn’t suffer from these issues.

For starters, the visual builder is lightweight, so it won’t keep you waiting around for pages to load or changes to reflect on the frontend.

Also, you don’t have to choose which builder you want to use. If you want to primarily build sites with the backend editor and then perfect the designs on the frontend, you can. With BeTheme, you don’t have to pick-and-choose which editor you want to use.

3. Create Great Looking Monetized Sites with the Muffin Woo Builder

Many page builders are built for one purpose: To help WordPress users visually design websites so they can see their work reflected on the site in real-time.

That said, many page builder plugins haven’t accounted for the ecommerce piece.

Users can design and customize the regular pages on their websites with the visual builder, like the Home, About, and Contact pages. However, their ecommerce pages — Shop, Products, Cart, Checkout, and more — have to be managed through WooCommerce’s interface.

WooCommerce is a great ecommerce plugin. However, it’s not ideal having to design different parts of your site with different tools.

Be now has a solution for this: Muffin Woo Builder.

The Muffin Woo Builder allows designers to build their own single product and shop templates instead of just customizing the default ones provided by WooCommerce or the theme.

It also gives you design editing capabilities that no other page builder plugin can. For example:

  • Create design rules for your ecommerce pages
  • Choose from 11 product gallery styles
  • Switch between Shop and Catalogue mode
  • Set custom variation swatches
  • Show or hide the cart button
  • Add a sidebar
  • Configure settings for how product images render
  • Enable a Wishlist
  • Pick and choose which icons appear in the header

If you want this level of control over the layout and look of your ecommerce pages, you have to install other plugins or custom-code those changes into the backend. So, this is definitely a unique feature amongst page builders.

4. Instantly Design an Attractive Website With One of 600+ Pre-Built Sites

BeTheme isn’t just the fastest WordPress builder because it’s lightweight or because there are various builder options that allow you to work the way that’s best for you.

BeTheme also comes jam-packed with 600+ pre-built websites, with new ones released every week.

When you install a pre-built site, BeTheme is going to do a number of things for you:

  • Install all the specific plugins you need for the site
  • Load a fully designed and fully functioning website into your WordPress installation
  • Add placeholder content and imagery throughout so you can easily swap in your own

That’s going to save you a lot of time. Think about the cost savings, too. You get access to more than 600 pre-built websites without having to pay anything extra for them.

Is BeTheme the total design package? You bet it is!

It can’t be overstated what a game-changer BeTheme is for WordPress designers. Two page builders, one WooCommerce builder, and 600+ pre-built sites all rolled into one?

Everything you need to design high-quality websites is baked in.

That’s something you rarely see in any product or service, let alone in WordPress.

If you’re ready to say “Goodbye!” to page builder plugins and transform the way you work, get the BeTheme powerhouse now.

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Every day design fans submit incredible industry stories to our sister-site, Webdesigner News. Our colleagues sift through it, selecting the very best stories from the design, UX, tech, and development worlds and posting them live on the site.

The best way to keep up with the most important stories for web professionals is to subscribe to Webdesigner News or check out the site regularly. However, in case you missed a day this week, here’s a handy compilation of the top curated stories from the last seven days. Enjoy!

Pollen – A Library of CSS Variables Inspired by TailwindCSS

Using the Platform

Why You Should Switch to Code-Based Design

15 Great Chrome Extensions for Web Designers and Developers

Exciting New Tools for Designers, September 2021

24 CSS Javascript Animation Effects

3 Psychological UX Design Principles to Enhance User Experience

UX vs. UI – Which Should You Focus?

Customize TailwindCSS to Give Your Sites a Unique Look

10 Fundamental UI Design Principles You Need to Know

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The post Popular Design News of the Week: September 6, 2021 – September 12, 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


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We all want a little more fun and games in our lives. So, why not add some gamification to your next interactive content campaign?

By 2025, the gamification market is expected to witness a massive 30.1% growth rate, with global sales revenue reaching around $32 billion

That’s because gamification adds more entertainment to the website experience and gets audiences engaged. The idea behind gamification is to bring game mechanics into the design of a website or piece of content. There are many different ways to do this. 

Some companies add hidden achievements and bonuses to their blogs that customers can collect by visiting every page and reading their content. Others allow readers to collect points for leaving comments or play games to win potential prizes. 

Used correctly, gamification is a fantastic way to connect with your audience and increase engagement levels. So, how can you use gamification in interactive content?

The Evolution of Gamification 

Elements of gamification have appeared in everything from marketing campaigns to web design and even eCommerce strategies. 

In 2014, an Apple App Store review of more than 100 health apps even found that gamification elements in applications led to greater participation and higher user ratings. In other words, customers are more likely to get involved with an activity that includes gamification components. 

While gamification can take on many different forms, the aim for most companies is to create an environment where customers can feel more invested in their interactions with the website. For example, if you win a point every time you comment on a blog post, and you can trade those points in for prizes, you have more of a desire to keep commenting. 

The promise of being able to “accomplish” things with pieces of interactive content and websites also appeals to the competitive part of our psychology that pushes us to keep doing things in exchange for the promise of a kind of reward. 

Many companies have generated a lot of enthusiasm for their brands through leaderboards, time events, and similar experiences. For example, just look at how popular McDonalds becomes each year when the monopoly game rolls out as part of the purchasing experience. 

People buy more items than they usually would during McDonald’s Monopoly just for the opportunity to win. This same boost in engagement benefits your content strategy too. 

6 Ways to Add Gamification to Your Content

There’s no one right way to gamify your website or your marketing content. The method you choose will depend heavily on your audience and the kind of experience they respond best to. 

The key to success is finding a way to grab your customer’s attention and hold onto it. Here are some of the tried and tested strategies to explore:

1. Create an Actual Game Experience 

When it comes to incorporating gamification into your website design and content, you don’t necessarily need to be clever. You can be extremely straightforward and just design an actual game. For instance, to help attract more people to the American Army, the US created a war simulator that potential applicants could play on Steam. 

The game aimed to introduce young people who might consider a career in the military to what that job might be like. If the kids liked what they saw on Steam, they could visit the military website and learn more. 

For companies who can’t afford to build an entire fully-featured game, something a little smaller can be just as engaging. For instance, rather than using a standard pop-up with a discount code to entice customers to buy the rental service, Gwynnie Bee created a scratch card. People could scratch the spaces using their smartphone or computer cursor and win money off. 

The great thing about the interactive content from Gwynnie Bee is that it encouraged potential visitors to connect with the business in a lucrative way. To use the scratch card, you first had to give your email address. This meant the company could build its email list while delighting consumers. 

When designing a game experience for your marketing campaign, remember:

  • Get the right support: Designing a great game is tough, particularly if you want something more complicated than a scratch card. Don’t take the risk of creating something that doesn’t work properly; hire a developer. 
  • Promote the experience: Make sure everyone knows about your new game. Share screenshots on social media and talk about it in your email campaigns. 
  • Focus on fun: Remember, games are supposed to be fun. Measure the reactions of your audience to ensure they’re having a good time. 

2. Design a Loyalty or Reward Program

Loyalty is one of the most valuable things your audience can give you. So why not reward them for it? Loyalty programs are fantastic tools for business growth and engagement. They give you a way to turn one-off clients into repeat customers and advocates for your brand. 

How you choose to reward your customers (and when) is up to you. Some companies might give customers points every time they share a post on social media or comment on a blog. This encourages more engagement with your brand. 

On the other hand, you might just let your customers earn rewards for every purchase they make. This is a strategy that Starbucks uses with its reward program.

As customers increase their spending with Starbucks, they get the reward of extra points that they can put towards future purchases. This keeps customers coming back for more and may even entice some clients to buy Starbucks when they otherwise wouldn’t. 

The oVertone company is another excellent example of a brand using gamified rewards with its marketing strategy. The loyalty program breaks down into tiers, where users can see how much they need to spend to ascend to the next level. New rewards and perks appear with each level. 

Remember, when building a loyalty program:

  • Make your customers feel special: Ensure that your audience feels good about being one of the lucky few in your loyalty program. Give discounts and offers they can’t get elsewhere.
  • Keep them informed: Make it easy for your customers to see what they need to do to get their next reward, so they keep coming back for more. 
  • Mix things up sometimes: To stop the experience from getting boring, roll out things like “double points” days and bonuses for your most active customers. 

3. Encourage Customer Interaction

The biggest benefit of gamification is that it encourages and increases customer interaction. You can give rewards to participants that comment on your blog posts, for instance, or share your posts on social. The customer benefits from the reward, while you get the advantage of a better business presence. 

Samsung drives interaction with gamification with a function on its website that allows customers to discuss issues and watch videos. The most active participants get a badge for their efforts. 

If your business structure requires a lot of engagement from your audience, then using gamification elements can encourage them to stick with you for longer rather than losing interest. For instance, language learning software Duolingo has a four-point gamification strategy for its users.

Duolingo knows that learning a new language takes a lot of time, so it asks users to set small specific goals instead. The smaller tasks bring users back regularly, and consistent users gain rewards. There’s even a progress bar to help you track your progress compared to other customers. 

Gamification gives your customers another reason to keep coming back and connecting with your brand. That makes a lot of sense for companies that rely on long-term relationships with customers, like Duolingo and other teaching brands, for instance. Remember:

  • Make it simple: People will only want to interact with your brand if it’s easy to do so. Make it clear what you want your customer to do and what they need to do next. 
  • Reward every action: Keep people coming back for more by rewarding them for their actions, even if it’s just with a gold star or digital sticker. 
  • Nudge inactive customers: If a client gets involved in your interactive content, then stops participating, send an email reminding them why they should come back. 

4. Run Contests and Offer Prizes

Probably one of the easiest ways to use gamification in your advertising campaigns is with a competition. Contests and competitions have been around since the dawn of business. They’re a useful way for companies to collect information from customers, particularly if you ask your clients to sign up to your site with an email address to get involved. 

Competitions are also a way to push your audience into doing positive things for your company. For instance, you could run a competition where consumers share a social media post and tag a friend to enter. Or you could have a competition that asks your clients to refer a friend to get involved. 

When KIND, a healthy snack company, wanted to connect with its customers and create a new product, it didn’t just do market research. Instead, the company created the “Raise the Bar” contest to let customers cast a vote for which flavor they wanted to see next.

When 123ContactForm wanted to engage its audience, it gave people the chance to win one of three platinum subscriptions for 6 months. 

Contests are naturally exciting and fun to take part in. They’re an opportunity to get your audience excited, and you don’t need to give anything huge away either. Just make sure that the prize you offer is something that your audience will be interested in. 

A few more pro tips include:

  • Generate hype first: Don’t just launch a contest out of nowhere; get people excited about the idea with announcement blogs, social media posts, and emails. 
  • Give people a lot of ways to get involved: If people can’t take part in the competition on social media, let them do something on your website instead. 
  • Follow up after the win: When someone does win something from your website, follow up with that winner and post pictures in the form of a blog/case study. This will generate more hype for your brand and get people excited about the next event. 

5. Get Your Audience Feeling Competitive

No matter how much they might deny it, most people are at least a little competitive. So when you’re implementing a gamification campaign into your content and marketing efforts, it pays to tap into that sense of competition. All you need to do is find a way to encourage your followers to compete. 

The best example of a company that did this particularly well is Nike. Nike and the Run Club app teamed up to motivate people to get involved with healthy activities. The app allowed users to customize and build their ideal training program based on their athletic level. 

At the same time, you could also win badges and trophies to share with your running community. The more you took part in challenges on the app, the more you could potentially win. 

The Fitbit application has a similar way of keeping customers engaged. When you download Fitbit, you can access information about your exercise strategies and potentially track your progress towards your goals. However, there are also measurable achievements to earn – like a badge when you first walk 500 miles. 

Users on Fitbit can also find their friends using the same app and compete with them in various challenges. 

To successfully add a competition to your gamification strategy, remember:

  • It needs to be social: People will be more inclined to get involved if they show off their achievements. So make sure that people can showcase their accomplishments. 
  • Make people want to win: There needs to be a reason to get to the top of the leaderboard. You might offer people discounts or exclusive prizes if they accomplish certain goals. 
  • Show progress: Prompt people to keep working on reaching their targets by showing them how close they are to success. 

6. Make Boring Content Seem More Interesting

Some content is naturally more engaging than others. If you want to showcase some important information or data, you might create a whitepaper or a report. Unfortunately, the result can be a relatively bland piece of content.

With elements of gamification, you can make the experience a lot more engaging and interesting. Sites like Daytum.com allow users to turn personal stats and information into charts that showcase information in engaging ways. You can allow your users to track their progress through the report and rack up points as they go. 

Adding subtle elements to otherwise clinical and less interesting information is a wonderful way to make the experience more exciting. The more enticed your customers are by your content, the more likely it is that you’ll sell them on your business. 

Gamify Your Marketing Strategy

Gamification isn’t a new concept, but it’s one that many companies and designers can begin to take advantage of these days. Thanks to more advanced browsers and smartphones, customers can more fully enjoy the interactive elements of websites and content campaigns. 

As your audience dives deeper into the digital world, they expect more unique experiences from you. Gamification can make any website or marketing experience more memorable. It’s time to take advantage. 

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