The Success of your Site Starts with the User.
Often, customers have a “ready-fire-aim” mindset when it comes to website design. They might start by asking for certain elements in the site, such as an animated lead-in page or specific type of navigation, without taking an objective look at what will work best for their users.
The problem with this approach is that it could result in a site that’s flashy, but could ultimately fail to attract and retain your target audience. It also fosters a “stop-and-start” design process, with endless updates and re-designs that burn through a budget with significant impact on your ROI.
We believe there’s a better way. Applying what the industry has aptly termed “User Experience Design,” our award-winning approach addresses how best to influence your target site visitor through the industry’s top trends in usability and visual design.
At its heart are three tangible steps of a proven process:
- Information Architecture
- Wire Frames
- Content Planning
Information architecture is the art and science of organizing and labeling website pages. A site-mapping technique that establishes the breadth, depth and hierarchy of information on the site, it’s the process that joins the needs of your target audience with the objectives of your business to form the ideal user experience.
Done well, this strategic taxonomy addresses how your messaging relates to your audience; how best to lead your customers to the information they’re looking for, and the content you most want them to see - even if it’s more than one click away.
- Business goals
- User modeling and personas
- Site mapping & navigation design
- Site wire framing
- Content evaluation and (re)structuring
- An engaging interface that invites deeper exploration
- Intuitive navigation that guides your users through the site
- Compelling content that speaks to your target audience
- Increased satisfaction for your customers
- Higher conversions and a competitive advantage for you
Wire Frames: Part Visual Design…
While not intended to reflect actual design, wire frames represent a page-by-page layout of your proposed site, a kind of paper prototype that defines the virtual real estate of each page. Just as a sculptor uses a literal wire frame to define a sculpture’s underlying shape, we create wire frame pages to mold the basic layout of your site.
A key benefit of wire framing is the interactive discussion it creates between Cool Blue and our customers.
This dialog is critical, because it helps you refine the business decisions surrounding the goals for each page, and helps us interpret how to present the information you need your users to see. From log-in screens to sites within sites, wire frames help you visualize the literal steps to success for every page of your site.
Cool Blue understands the importance of compelling, effective website content – and the time and talent it takes to do it right. It helps to consider site building in the context of house building: If the Information Architecture and Wire Frames represent the structure, then the content is what goes inside – the floors, fixtures and furniture.
It’s much more than just decoration, however: the content is what makes your website a vibrant, interesting place that attracts visitors and compels them to stay. At Cool Blue, we make it easy to plan and manage the kind of content that engages your visitors and drives them to take action.
Best Practice: The Professional Copywriter
To realize maximum return on your website investment, we work with trained content developers and professional copywriters who understand best practices and the specific psychology of online copy writing. To deliver the best results for your business, we’ll align you with a professional copywriter that best fits your needs, one who will deliver compelling, effective content every time.
Best Practice: The Content Matrix
We make planning and managing content easy with tools like our content matrix. A dynamic document shared between Cool Blue and your team, it helps you define and organize the content you need for each page – text, images and calls to action. Combined with our proactive approach to communication and version control, the content matrix provides an easy way to ensure consistency throughout the site and also serves as a template to plan and control future changes.