Menu Search
Jump to the content X X
Smashing Conf Barcelona

You know, we use ad-blockers as well. We gotta keep those servers running though. Did you know that we publish useful books and run friendly conferences — crafted for pros like yourself? E.g. our upcoming SmashingConf Barcelona, dedicated to smart front-end techniques and design patterns.

Posts Tagged ‘Business’.

We are pleased to present below all posts tagged with ‘Business’.

Utilizing The Power Of Recycling In Web Design

Truth be told, I am a philistine. When people talk about recycling, I don’t think of saving the planet. In my earlier post, “Lessons Learned: Productivity Tips For Running A Web Design Business,” I wrote about how we can reuse and recycle what we do in the Web industry to save time and money.

Espresso snippets

Now let’s explore the subject further. We will look at how we can recycle existing work (done by ourselves or others) in order to be more efficient. By doing so, we can finish projects more quickly and generate a better profit margin. The great thing about recycling is that we can all do it, whether we are a developer, designer or website owner. Let’s begin our journey with the masters of recycling: developers.

Read more...

Email Is (Still) Important And Here Is Why

Social media is more than a buzzword. It’s now a lifestyle decision for a lot of companies. Many individuals and organizations have abandoned a traditional web presence (which used to mean a website and email address) in favor of a Facebook page coupled with a Twitter account.

Screenshot

So, where does this leave email? Has the @ symbol lost its meaning as an address, and instead become the signifier of a Twitter name? I think that we need to radically reconsider our approach to email in this changing landscape and understand that it can be a powerful tool when leveraged correctly.

Read more...

Productivity Tips For Running A Web Design Business

It didn't work out as you expected, did it? The freelance life was supposed to give you more time with the family and free you from that incompetent boss. You even thought you might be better off financially. Instead, you're working longer hours and under constant stress, worrying about various aspects of your business.

Things is one of many list apps that allow you to take your task list with you wherever you go, via the desktop, iPhone and iPad apps.

To relieve the pressure of entrepreneurial life and avoid burning out, freelancers and business owners need strategies. In this post, I'll share some tactics that have helped me be more in control of my business, my projects and life in general. I hope they help you, too.

Let's begin by putting some solid plans in place.

Read more...

5 Copywriting Errors That Can Ruin A Company’s Website

No matter how brilliant a website’s design, no matter how elegant its navigation, sooner or later visitors will decide whether to take action because of something they read. In the end, the effectiveness with which a website converts visitors hinges on words. If a new website is going to hit all the right notes, its content must be just as well crafted as its design and programming.

However, as you might imagine, there are many ways to go wrong with content in a Web development project. The errors discussed in this article have the potential to undo a website and are issues that I run up against time and time again in my nearly 12 years of producing Web content. Half the battle in avoiding these traps is simply recognizing them: all too often, content is handled as an afterthought, hurriedly completed to meet a project’s deadline.

Read more...

Guidelines For Working With External Code Libraries

Working with code that was created by some other person or organization is routine for developers, but it can be one of the most demanding activities, particularly if you’re still learning. From using code libraries to working on a team of developers, there are bound to be times when you need to get to grips with code written by someone other than yourself.

Firebug

Whether you’re a software developer or a Web designer who does a bit of coding from time to time, your work routine might sometimes be isolated, but your work typically is not. When you use an external resource or work on an existing system, you see that your work exists in the context of other technologies and, yes, other people.

Read more...

Free Website ROI Calculator (Google Spreadsheet)

In this post we are glad to present to you yet another freebie: the Website ROI Calculator, a free Google Spreadsheet created by Anders Hoff specifically for Smashing Magazine and our readers. Of course, the tool is absolutely free to use in private as well as commercial projects.

Is your website doing the job you are paying for it to do? The Website ROI Calculator (ROI being “return on investment”) can get you started with setting goals and following them up in order to make the most of your website. The calculator can be used throughout the website’s lifespan, from planning to termination. Update the figures in the calculator at set intervals in order to see how your website or campaign is doing, and take action depending on the results.

Read more...

Content Strategy: Optimizing Your Efforts For Success

Content strategy is a beast with many heads, names and trajectories. To approach it is to be sucked in full force. Even so, as crucial as content strategy is, conveying its gravity to a big audience, or to key administrators, is often hard. Being so inherently complex, it’s often easiest to tackle by example.

Content Strategy: Optimizing Your Efforts For Success

My first job as a Web content writer involved creating a campaign that promoted holiday spending and travel. I came up with clever tag lines that incorporated lyrics from Bing Crosby Christmas jingles. I thought I was doing great work, and when I got an email from my boss to discuss the campaign, I assumed I would get a pat on the back.

Read more...

Designers And Developers Playing Nice

The differences between designers and developers often erupt in pointed jabs on the Web or at conferences. Jokes or not, the jabs create friction whose consequences are real. I am a designer, and by no elaborate means of job-title-rejigging do I consider myself a developer, but I see the cruelty of designer and developer egos going both ways. So, what happens if someone throws a pair into a sack to hash it out? How do we emerge?

Screenshot

Our projects, careers and maturing industry rely on our ability to learn to work together instead of against each other, and looking at what we have in common is one way to begin addressing interdisciplinary cat fights.

Read more...

Nudging Clients In The Right Direction … To Give Them What They Want

“How did you do that?” My colleague Leigh sounded impressed. He had been working with a problem client for weeks trying to get design approval. Then I came along and was able to get signed-off in a single conference call. “Can you teach me how you did that?” he asked. I mumbled something about years of experience, but the truth was I didn’t have a clue. It just seems I can find design approval easier than most.

Screenshot

As I thought about it I realised there are actually quite a lot of things that have become second nature for me over the years. But I have learnt the hard way through many painful projects. Unfortunately because I started designing websites back in 1994 there was nobody around to teach me this stuff. I wish somebody could have just shown me how to avoid all of those endless revisions.

Read more...

Taking Credit Card Payments Online: What’s Involved?

If you're looking to integrate a credit card payment solution onto your website, the following steps are a guide to applying for, enabling and taking payments online. At first glance, the prospect of integrating a payment solution on a website can seem unwieldy, what with the vast array of payment options and technical acronyms. This article breaks down the entire process into bite-sized pieces, helping you understand the process much better.

Screenshot

When taking any kind of credit card payments connected to a bank account, you must apply for a merchant account with a bank. If the payments will be taken online, you'll specifically need an Internet Merchant Account (IMA). In addition to banks, in many locations there are dedicated merchant account providers you can use.

Read more...

Why Wait For The Opportunity? Create Your Own!

As many people who work in a creative field like design and development may already know, sometimes our clients just do not understand what it is that we are trying to achieve. The boundaries that we are seeking to push are not ones they approve of for their project, so our creative ideas get backburnered until we can find an appropriate project as well as an agreeable client where you can flex these creative muscles freely. In fact, the standard business processes, especially the ones we allow ourselves to be strapped into, tend to work against us in this aspect.

Screenshot

Allow me to elaborate. For most creatives, the most genuine and innovative ideas can often come without provocation. Which is unfortunate, because that tends to relegate these ideas to one of two categories. The personal project category that we get to whenever we find the time to break away from our work plates to snack on something different. Or to the professional project pool where we wait on that client who will allow us the freedom to incorporate this idea into their project.

Read more...

Examining The Design Process: Clichés And Idea Generation

Where do good ideas come from? It’s a question that matters a great deal to designers, yet seems to be curiously discounted in the common perception of graphic design. Any time I talk with, say, an uncle at Thanksgiving about my work, I’m reminded that, in most people's minds, the job of being a designer is mainly a matter of learning a set of computer applications — programs which, when properly operated, presumably do the work of generating ideas on their own. [Links checked February/10/2017]

Screenshot

[fblike]

If pressed further, most people will offer up some version of the Genius Theory: the idea that certain individuals are simply blessed with a force called ‘creativity’ that (as the theory goes) allows them to summon remarkable visual solutions to problems where the rest of us see only a blank canvas.

In this article, we will look at four examples of successful visual solutions created by well-known designers, and examine the process by which each designer arrived at his final concept. In each case, we will see that the solution did not arrive as a sudden flash of inspiration from out of the blue; rather, a good idea emerged methodically out of a sensible analysis of readily-available ideas and impressions.

Read more...

↑ Back to top