This has got to be my favorite question of all time, related to web design projects.
A. I have a lot of people that want to work with me.
B. I feel that I can do my best work when I do my full process and give as much value as I can.
The old adage – be wary of anyone trying to sell you a car, or a website for $600 isn’t just because these people may not have the experience – which is pretty likely, but also because these people are just using pre-built templates and throwing your content into the site.
It’s not that these people are bad folks, it’s just that they might not know better. The reason I think templates aren’t the best solution for people is because the design usually trickles down to the lowest common denominator to fit in with the template rather than serve your marketing and sales goals.
Example: I want a set of icons to communicate our key differentiating features.
Solution with full web design process: Very intentionally choosing or creating icons, matching them to the brand, and then adding them to the site.
Solution with template: Check what the template has, and use whatever is readily available even if it doesn’t quite fit the company.
Another example: I want to make sure our website creates a distinctly different impression from our competitors websites.
Solution with full web design process including visual design: Finding photographic elements, text and any other illustrative items to combine in just the right way to create an impression and draw out our desired emotional response – often the feeling of wanting your product or service.
Solution with a template: What kind of cool visual effects does the theme have? It looks like the main section of the theme is a slider – let’s use that, that way we can showcase our three main services without having to choose one main thing.
This is the road that leads down to strange, sad, and homogenized web design.
Working with me is an alternative to this way of thinking. Because I’ve studied A/B testing, and have done A/B and user testing on many sites, including those I’ve designed – I take this objective research into consideration when I design.
Your average template wielding, cheap web designer doesn’t do that.
I think that my portfolio demonstrates this kind of thinking, and backs me up in my claim that I’m the kind of Minneapolis web designer that deserves your trust – even if I’m a little more than the Craigslist people and the template wielders.