Where we share our insights about all things web design, development, and marketing.


Website Design Trends for 2012

As 2011 ends and we move in to a new year, we move into new trends in website design. Design trends for this year will be sure to help grab your visitors’ attention. While the eye is naturally drawn to graphics and images, it is important for the design of your website to integrate with its function.

Top Trends for 2012

1.    Colors – Brighter colors are being used more than neutrals, but in moderation. You never want to mix too many different colors or use bright backgrounds that will make it hard on the viewer’s eyes.

2.    Typography – Custom fonts are being used more with effects like depth, gradients, and transparency.

3.    Images – Images are always important to grab the user’s attention. Larger images and background images are a current trend that will continue into 2012.

4.    Animation – Animation is always a great way to enhance a website. In 2012 we will see more movement with websites.

5.    Responsive Web Design – This means that your website responds to the device it is being viewed on, which makes it easier to view on different screen sizes, including mobile devices.

6.    Minimalist Design– Sometimes less is more. In 2012, simple designs will give more appealing results. It keeps your website organized and allows the message to be more prominent.

7.    Infographics – Put important information into an infographic to present the info visually. Your users will be more likely to read the info and be interested in what it says.

Does your website incorporate some or all of these trends? If not, are you thinking about updating your site design to be fresh for 2012?  The website designers at TWG are up-to-date with the latest trends and styles for website designs in 2012 and ways to incorporate them into your website’s function for the best results.


Graphic Designer Rachel Green of TWG Design Studio
"Rachel is a graphic designer who is passionate about combining function and style into stylish websites that truly do the brand justice. Rachel uses her experience in a variety of areas including design, marketing, advertising, and social media to give clients the complete package."


New Year, New Website Part 2

If you missed part 1, see it here.

Welcome back!  Let’s get back to redesigning that website for your business—in addition to the previous list we offered---we have a few more points to make.  As you will continue to read, the benefits to redesigning your website certainly outweigh any budgetary drawbacks. 

Put your best foot forward:

    Just as with any relationship---you don’t want your website to grow stale in the eyes of your users.  Your regular visitors will enjoy something new on your website—this keeps the relationship fresh, keeps your business on the right side of cutting-edge, and, most importantly, keeps your users coming back.  New doesn’t have to be complicated—in fact, solicit feedback from your users, and incorporate some of their user-requests into your redesign.  You can have a website that works for you, and works for your customers.  First time users will appreciate that you have a clean, current site—and this can be the necessary edge to win their patronage. 

Check your reflection:
    Let your website reflect your business.  Regardless of the budget you had when you first invested in your website—indulge, if needed, to get a redesign that speaks volumes for your business.  Not every redesign has to be a custom design—for some businesses, a template site branded for their business is more than enough.  For others, a custom design is needed.  Does your business offer custom work?  Or are you in a less-specialized market?  Do you have a lot of local competition?  Are you trying to reach larger markets outside of your local area?  Let your website act as a mirror---all who view it should see a true sense of your business and all that you offer. 

Grow your website with your business:
    For many small businesses—the first website that they invest in is often small, and lacking in enhancements.  When first getting your feet wet—many site owners defer to the practicality of just having a website rather than focus on creating a tool that can make their business operations smoother, more organized, and custom-developed for their needs.  Your website can do anything you need it to do.  What do you need in your website?  Some data basing options?  Maybe email-to-text capabilities for you and your customers?  Time-saving options to update your website, Facebook and Twitter in one process?  Also, what do your users want from your website?  Do they need the convenience of online bill pay?  Do they want to schedule appointments online?  Do they want to sign up for email announcements or newsletters? 

As your business grows and matures, so should your website.  Additions can be in lump-sum, or you can slowly add one or two features every 6 months or yearly.  Don’t sell your business short by handicapping your efforts, your brand, and your marketing with an out-dated website.




New Year, New Website Part 1

The turn of the year brings with it much work to be done within a business.  In the hustle of getting started on the right foot in the new year, do not overlook your website and online presence.  Much like hairstyles, wardrobes, and even logos and branding---your website needs a face-lift from time-to-time, too.  Why invest in redesigning your website, though, when what you have seems to be working?  Off-the-cuff—my reply is “Why not?”—but I will provide a more compelling argument than this.  In fact, I will provide so much evidence, supporting why your business needs a redesigned website—it will require two separate posts!  Here’s Part One…
Stay ahead of your competition:
    What happens when your competitors make the move to a redesign—and you’re left behind, with an ancient, unattractive, old site? Be the leader in your industry—be the company that customers look to for the latest, greatest and most up-to-date products, services, and marketing tools.

Bring your website into the 21st century:
    If you are the owner of a website that is more than 5 years old---your site shows its age to every viewer.  The standards in website design and coding change quite rapidly; and as a result, websites age quickly.  Five years of the same design may be creating a pre-historic look and feel for your website.  Think about the message this is sending to visitors---if your website looks that old, how out-dated might your products or methods be? 

Focus on your destination:
    Your website should display where you are headed—not where you have been.  If the content, dates, images, or any bit of information on your website is not current or centered on what your business can offer and is doing now and in the near future---it’s time to breathe some fresh life into it all!  Your business plans and goals change annually—so should the goals and plans for your website. 

As far as marketing tools go—Your website takes the cake:
    Your website is the best marketing tool you have in your arsenal.  Why?  Because it is available online to current and prospective customers 24/7.  When your office is closed—your website is not.  With specialized programming, your website can even act as a staff-member—users may be able to request appointments, make payments, offer feedback, or even purchase your goods and services all through your website.  What other marketing tool can do all this?  And….let’s not forget the strength behind good and proper marketing of your website.  This can land your business on the map in areas that would take years and thousands of dollars in marketing to achieve.  Maybe the website deserves a Christmas bonus next year…

Are you still uncertain if it’s time to redesign that site or not?  Check back later on this week….we’ll offer you more proof, just to give you that extra little nudge in the right direction that you need…


Getting the most out of your website

In order to get the most out of your website, your customers should come first.  They need to be considered every single step of the way: from the usage of the website, to the navigation, to the layout.  Every aspect of the site needs to ensure that any user can visit and be able to find exactly what they want, quickly. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your website.

1)     Know your audience: Why would someone visit your site

  • Who will be visiting your site, and why? This knowledge is vital to the success of your website. Think about why someone would want/need to visit your site, and focus all other aspects of the website around this.
  • What are they hoping to achieve by visiting your website? To learn basic information about the company and find contact information? To view your inventory, or purchase products? Whatever the reason, if you know why they are visiting, you can focus your website to allow the users to access information faster, and with less hassle.


2)    Consider your navigation

  • Browsing and searching are the 2 main ways that users access content on your website. Is your website easy to use, and easy for the end user to find exactly what they are looking for? All content on your website should relate as close as possible to the reason the website exists.
  • If you have an ecommerce website, then you should have information about your company, but the main reason users will visit will be to purchase products, so ensure this is an easy task for the users.


3)    Thinking about adding a new feature, getting a redesign, or don’t have a website, and want to get one?

  • Does the potential change positivity affect the visitors? Before committing to a change, make sure the change is something that will make the website more effective, and will meet the needs of the users.
  • Will design updates or a new website help your users? If you want a new design, while you are going through the process to get it setup, always keep in mind that the users are the most important, if your users are not happy, then your website will be less successful.
  • If this will be your first website, don’t worry; we, at TWG, are experts at making sure your website works perfectly with your business goals.  We will help you every step of the way.

If you are interested in getting updates, a redesign, or a brand new website, feel free to contact us, at TWG Design Studio, and we will go to work harder for your business to provide you with everything you need to reach your target audience successfully.

Author: Chase Hubbard


What are you doing with your business Facebook page?

Does your business have a Facebook page? Are you using it to its maximum potential? Facebook pages have been around for a while, but it can be a great advantage to your business if used correctly. Facebook pages can be used to connect with your existing customers and reach out to new ones.

It is important to start with a set of goals for your Facebook page that will benefit your business. These may include:

  • To be found by people who are searching for your products or services
  • Connect and engage with current and potential customers
  • Create a community around your business
  • Promote other content you create, including blog articles
  • Generate leads for your business

Once you define the goals you want to achieve with your Facebook page, it is time to start posting. Some things to keep in mind when posting are:

  • Start with exposure
  • Generate awareness
  • Motivate your followers to interact with your business
  • Be entertaining and interactive in your posts
  • Use images, videos, contests, and interesting information for your customers
  • Write simply and plainly; keep it conversational
  • Keep consistent activity to engage your fans
  • Use Facebook to grow your email list, and vice versa
  • Introduce new products or services
  • Connect and ‘like’ other business pages

With your Facebook page now booming, you can’t forget about promoting your page and connecting it to your website and other marketing materials. Make sure that you link customers to your Facebook page from your website and post info on your page that will send them back to your website.

If you don’t have a Facebook page set up for your business, you might want to consider getting one. It is a great tool to use in our socially connected world.