When it comes to building the perfect site for your business, our expectation can be that we'll hand it all over the site designer/builder and receive a miracle in return without doing our part. But we have a crucial part to play in figuring out what we want and why we want it that way. Whether you're taking the DIY approach, or hiring someone to build your site, these ten questions are worth taking the time to answer before you start.
In this post, I'm going to share 10 web design trends for female entrepreneurs, bloggers and creatives to help you evaluate whether the ideas you have for your own site build are current and future-focused, or whether they're overdue for an update. This post will also help you to think more practically about which elements are 'must-haves' for your own site so that you can communicate these ideas more clearly to the web designer you're working with. Thirdly, I hope this post will inspire you to build a beautiful online space that represents the hard work you've put into your project so far.
A crucial part of designing your website is coming up with a colour scheme, which is a set of colours that both define your brand and are used throughout your site for interest and consistency. These colours show up in your photography, backgrounds, headings, links, footers, and calls to action. If you've already worked with a graphic designer on a logo and branding elements, this particular set of colours has probably already been decided on. But if you don't have a colour scheme to refer to, this post will help you come up with one.
A moodboard is an arrangement of images, materials, pieces of text, etc., intended to evoke or project a particular style or concept. When preparing for your website build (or another creative project) it can be really helpful to take the time to prepare a moodboard to gather ideas, collaborate on a project, and communicate with your team in a visual way. Here's how to create a moodboard using two free online tools - Pinterest and Canva.
This is perhaps not the most inspiring blog post you’ll ever read (what an intro), but there is something calming and satisfying about getting your ducks in a row and figuring out which systems and tools work best for you when it comes to your business processes. This week I’ve really been focusing on fine-tuning how I go about dealing with queries, contracts, gathering content from clients to make sure that I have a system that works, and that is clear to me and those I’m working with.
In a recent post, I talked about 11 steps you can take to DIY your very own Pinterest graphics. Although I love great stock photography, I find it can either be overdone, or really expensive, which is why I thought it would be a good idea to chat about how straightforward it can be to come up with your own original visual content.
Have you ever wondered how people get those beautiful bold blog graphics, the ones with text overlay, that are themed and all fit nicely together? Well, if you haven't, I certainly have so I thought I'd do a bit of investigating. I also wanted to see if I could come up with my own DIY-ed images, and then share my process with you.
At first glance it might seem that the answer is obvious (a resounding yes!), but for many small business owners who have relied on word-of-mouth, marketed themselves at brick-and-mortar shows, and who use social media well to effectively build a client base, I think it is a question worth taking seriously.
In the last month or two I've revamped my website and logo (you can read more about that here). I also needed to tidy up my online presence and make sure that I was communicating a consistent message across my various social media channels. I thought it might be helpful to list all the spaces I tidied up in case you ever go through a process like this. And of course there's a check list you can download if you're the type that likes homework.
This whole process is a bit like redecorating your home. You're convinced at first that only the living area needs repainting, but once that is done, you realize how grubby the entrance way is so you go ahead and paint that too. Before long, the kitchen needs a bit of work as well. It was like this while updating my website. One thing led to another...
If you haven't heard the term 'flatlay photography', don't worry, you'll probably recognise it when you see it. It's a style of photography where the picture is taken from a bird's eye view of a small curated scene: your breakfast, outfit of the day, your workspace, a current creative project, or something that just came out of the oven. Regardless of how effortless these images may appear, there's quite a lot of work that goes into getting just the right shot, arranging and rearranging items on a table until they have that 'totally natural' look about them. Ironic, isn't it.
What you say and how you say it is just as important as the visual image you are portraying. A beautiful, slick looking site starts to disappoint when riddled with incomplete sentences, poor grammar, and a myriad spelling mistakes. I thought I'd put together a few thoughts on how to put your best foot forward when it comes to web copy. And don't worry, you don't have to be a professional writer to be able to make these tips work for you.
I enrolled for Melyssa Griffin's 7 day "Triple Your Traffic Challenge" email course, the aim of which is increase your Pinterest traffic through practical changes to your account. As a prolific Pinterester (is that a word?) that's where I find a lot of inspiration for crafty DIY projects. And although I've been aware it can be useful for business, I haven't been super clued up about how exactly to do that.
Her short email course has really helped set me on the right path, so I thought I'd share 10 things I learned about Pinterest in the hopes that it might help you too.
Ria from @Craftsposure started her Instagram account in 2014 with this question in mind: "How do I help makers and crafters get more exposure on Instagram." Today she has over 260 thousand Instagram followers. I thought it might be worth listening to her webinar titled 'How I grew my Instagram to 250k followers.'
Here are five things I took away from what she shared.
I love Instagram, don't get me wrong, but every social media platform has its own set of benefits and constraints. Instagram has become a space to share my personal view on life, as well as a way to grow my online business. I love the niche communities that spring up around specific interests and hobbies, and I love how creatively challenging it can be. But sometimes it doesn't lend itself to a series of consecutive images or story - something more than just that one post.
Although I've been doing a lot of thinking about how creative businesses can best use Instagram to increase their reach in an organic way, I have only recently started thinking about paid Instagram advertising, and how it works. When I spotted Hubspot and Iconosquare's free ebook - The Essential Guide to Instagram Advertising I thought it might prove to be a helpful read. And so it was. In fact, if you're thinking about implementing paid Instagram advertising, then I highly recommend you download it and read it through thoroughly for yourself.*
Lately I've had a few people ask me why I decided to go with Shopstar, so I thought I would share the rather rough thoughts I wrote while I was in the process of making a decision about which e-commerce solution to use for Furoshiki Dreaming, my own online shop.
Founded by the first designer hired by Pinterest, Sahil Lavingia, who wanted to answer this question: What if selling online was as easy as social sharing?