I remember in college my professors told me that “designers solve problems” and “don’t be a page decorator”. That’s fundamental to my design approach: I solve problems. Sure you can get a website from SquareSpace, WIX, or Web.com but unless you can articulate your brand and design a website that delivers on your brand promise; there’s a high risk of producing a failed website. You’re hiring a designer to figure out how to visually communicate your brand and connect with your customers. Not to blindly follow design fads like “flat design” or “hipster vintage typography” without considering if they serve your brand’s message and personality. Does your brand need photography abused by some Instagram-style Photoshop plugin?
A great web designer always asks “why?” Why is that “hero image” on the home page? Why do we even need “hero images” (they’re sooo 2012)? Why does this design look like the millions of sites on the Web? Seriously, why does that site overuse Web 2.0 tropes that had their 15 minutes in 2006? Why are we using that style of font? Why does our HTML5 and CSS3 look like a hot mess in Internet Explorer? Why? Why?? Why???
Content management systems (CMS) is my specialty. I’ve tried just about all the major open-source CMS platforms: WordPress, Drupal, Plone, Zope, eZ Publish, PostNuke (remember that??). For fun, I experiment with not-so-mainstream CMS platforms. I worked briefly for a company whom developed a Digital Asset Management (DAM) system. I’m totally nuts about all forms of content management. Is your current CMS not working for your website and content strategy? Workflow tools or model not working to your expectations? I fix that.
How’s your site’s user experience?
Do your customers rather pick up the phone and overburden your customer service staff than to interact with your company’s website? Can your non-technical customers complete a transaction on your website without waving a white flag?Are your employees awash in e-mail overload due to your company’s intranet implementation? Is your e-commerce shopping cart truly a frictionless “no-brainer” experience where buying stuff off of your site is a total joy for your customers? If not, we should talk.
Got a slow WordPress or Drupal site?
I can dig deep, deep into your performance problem. Uh, getting ahead of myself here. The first step is precisely defining the performance deficit we’re trying to solve first! I follow an empirical data-driven process to define the performance problem before committing resources to solving them. Then I address them at multiple levels: WordPress optimization, in-memory database caching, content caching strategy, Content Delivery Networks, and/or server level optimization. Every tweak is executed incrementally and iteratively. Data of results informs if we’re going in the right direction. A slow site not only frustrates your visitors but also can do damage to your Search Engine Optimization and ultimately to your brand. Why wait? Be proactive and contact me today about your site’s performance problem.