I have a secret to tell you. It’s a secret that can improve the lives of every single person who reads this post…designers and marketers alike. Ready?
Design is not creating stuff that looks cool. That’s art.
Someone who creates web pages and other digital experiences that look good, whether they work or not, is not a web designer. They’re an artist – or a graphic artist at best.
Design, at its core, is the creation of a new solution to a problem. This often means creating an experience for people, be it a webinar, a product, a service, a package, a charity or even a sales pitch.
Unlike art, design always has a purpose. In web design, there’s always an Objective. An e-commerce site should sell. A marketer’s online hub should generate leads or deliver a message. A web-based or mobile application should help the user carry out a task – with ease.
Goals define the problem that needs solving. Design is process of effectively creating the best possible solution to that problem. Web design doesn’t begin with a graphic, an app, a wire frame, information architecture, or an experience map.
First, you need to understand the challenge.
- Who am I talking to?
- What do they want?
- How can I get them to find me online?
- How do I create an web experience that helps them get what they want?
- Get Found
SEO, social media, blogging, mobile optimization, PPC
- Reach them Outside your WebsitePPC/SEM, email, display, affiliate, social integration, etc.
- And to Lead Them from Where They Are… SEO, site search, website promotion, social, video
- …to the Point of Taking Action
landing pages, calls-to-action, email workflows, retargeting, lead capture forms
For most web designers, this means a new set of skills. The new skills I will show you in the posts that follow go beyond creating uber-cool visual layouts – and beyond search optimization.