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Colour blindness or colour vision deficiency (CVD) affects around 1 in 12 men and 1 in 200 women worldwide which in percentage is 8% of men and 1.5% of women, which doesn’t really seem like a lot, however, this could mean that you’re missing out on leads or sales.

But how do you ensure that your user experience appeals equally to these visitors? We’re here to lend a helping hand. So, before you run to your design team in a panic, take a look at our roundup of top things to consider when designing a UX for colour accessibility.

First up, what exactly is colour blindness? 

Most colour blind people are able to see things just as clearly as the rest of the population, the difference is their inability to distinguish red, green, or blue light.

Red/green colourblindness is the most common form.

 

Designing for colour accessibility

So, how can I design for better colour accessibility I hear you say?

A question that designers (if they are not thinking about the end users) ask is  “should I bother think about designing for a small group of users?” The answer for this depending of your user group, but yes. Thinking about colourblind users in your design can be considered to be good design practices, therefore in the wider sense, you’ll then reach all four corners of your audience or user groups.

So if your site is well designed, it should already be accessible to all users

Designing for accessibility doesn’t mean that the aesthetic integrity of your design needs to ever suffer, it could enhance the power of your site allowing more people to reach it. With that in mind, here are my top five elements that can be adopted, to then make for a better user experience focusing on for a colourblind-friendliness approach:

1. Use both colours and symbols

In other blogs, we have written about validation and we’re going to say it here again it that you shouldn’t really just simply rely on colour alone to convey a message.

The approach I would take is to use both colours (colours have denotations and connotations) and the use of a or multiple uses of symbols where users’ attention is required. A good example of this is Facebook’s form fields and the error messaging attached.

 

Did you know?

Mark Zuckerberg – The founder of one of the worlds biggest companies – Facebook is colourblind. This is the reason why the logo has a colour scheme of blue. This logo and blue colour scheme were specifically chosen because by himself as he is red-green colour blind and sees blue the best.

After all, the visual sense is the strongest developed one in most human beings. It’s only natural that 90% of an assessment for trying out a product is made by colour alone.

2. Keep it minimal

You should limit the colour palette you use for your website; the fewer colours you use in your design, the fewer instances of confusion.

Not only is minimalistic design a timeless and aesthetically pleasing trend, but it’s also useful when you’re designing for colour accessibility, just like Dropbox – and yes it’s also blue!

3. Be careful with contrasting colours and hues

Black and white as a visual contrast is not alway the best way to identify what is what; try to use a range of contrasting colours clearly and hues in your design.

 

4. Avoid bad colour combos

Since colour blindness affects people in many different ways, make sure it isnt difficult determine which colours are ‘safe’ to use in web design as many designers will be just using any colour (as there are billions out there). From what I have read, there are a few colour combinations to avoid because they’re a potential nightmare to colour blind users:

  • 
Green & Red
  • 
Green & Brown
  • Blue & Purple
  • Green & Blue
  • Light Green & Yellow
  • Blue & Grey
  • 
Green & Grey
  • Green & Black

Some people go years without knowing they’re colour blind as the effects can go relatively unnoticed unless someone else points them out.

There are an estimated one million children in the UK who can’t see clearly, which can impact their development. Which is the fact that used to make their exclusive eye check storybook. Zookeeper Zoe, a free interactive storybook containing a range of eye check activities to read with your child and help you and them to understand if they might need support with their vision.

Boots came up with an ingenious test for children! A superbly clearer and creative way to diagnose in children sooner rather than later.

Another way is with the Ishihara colour Blindness Test: You can take the 38-plate based test and get feedback as well.

Colour Blind Check: an Android App created by Colourblindor where you can test whether you are colour blind in ±60 seconds.

Coblis: Colour Blindness Simulator: here you can upload an image and take a look at what it’d look like through the eyes of people with different types of colour blindness.

There are hundreds of apps out there that can help you understand if you are colour blind or how you can take a test.

When I design a new colour palette I love to use Coolors.co which allows me to look at some great palettes and at the same time allow me to use the colour blind filters.

Coolors combined with Photoshop and Illustrator allows you to browse thousands of colour palettes from the palette community.

Conclusion

Generally, UX designers should create websites that should be accessible to all kinds of users anyway. There are a few essential UX design principles to bear in mind that will certainly help:

  • Think over your overall user base – but don’t only rely on colour to convey a message
  • Keep your colour palette limited to 2 or 3 colours
  • You could use texture and patterns to show contrast
  • Carefully select any contrasting colours and shades using Coolors
  • Avoid using bad colour combinations otherwise, users who are colourblind will not be able to see your content.

Which elements do you focus on when designing for colour blindness?

If you need Fifteen to help you understand colour blindness accessibility more, then here at Fifteen we are always here to lend a helping hand. Get in touch or call us on 01159325151 to see whether Fifteen can help you integrate a better all round user experienceto your website and overall brand.

The post How to Design for Colour Blindness

 appeared first on Fifteen.

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The power of building your personal brand is phenomenal. The challenge is knowing how to tell your story with a limited amount of characters, on the right platforms, and to the right audience (in the right way).

To help you develop your message and build your own brand in a compelling way, stay true to who you are while following these next few steps for a foolproof solution.

Branding is something that most people want and it’s a real compliment to be asked to do someone else’s branding. Which includes, the logo identity, business card and the accompanying stationery.

However, when it comes to doing your own, it’s the hardest thing to do as you’re the client. You’re the one who will be forcing your hand to make countless amends and alterations to the design it the logo – that is if you want a logo.

After I’ve given you a heads up in a way of working for your own logo then I will show you what I did and have stuck by it for all these years.

What is a personal brand?

First things first, let’s start this one off by explaining what personal brands are.

A personal brand is very similar to a company identity you’ll create, but it is to do with yourself including the opinions and thoughts of yourself and not the company you work for. An identity you are creating for a client. It is also a great way to promote other businesses or interests that wouldn’t traditionally fit within the companies and is becoming an increasingly popular way to promote yourself as an entrepreneur – like Lord Alan Sugar.

Throughout the past 12 years, I have learned a lot, however, I am still very much learning every day when it comes to branding. But what I have learned is that self-branding is one of the hardest things that I have ever done.

For me, it took several years of study. I’ve decided to make it easier with these 3 key points to building a personal brand:

Make it memorable

What I mean by this, is to try and design something that when you present yourself to a potential employer then you need to make that an everlasting impression to make them remember you and if they ever needed a position filling then they will be more than likely to choose you over the rest. This highlights your drive and leaves a mark.

Make it simple

If you don’t, then you will make it harder for you to sell yourself. Make it easy and stick to it so you can tell a full story without you actually telling the story yourself.  Again, what I mean by this, is be clever about it and make it obvious enough that someone will get it without having to ask you many questions or you having to tell a very lengthy novel. If that happens then you know it’s not going to work making that lasting impression.

Make it about you – literally and laterally

I’m serious about this, you should make it about you. This is very important. Make it about you and the future endeavours. Remember not just the promotion but the targets and goals. They will remember you personally. Also when doing this, including the other two steps and think about it literally and laterally.

Literally think of yourself as who you are, so, for example, Stephan Salt – Graphic Designer. I’m a passionate creative who seeks out answers and asks the right questions such as ‘Why’. That’s a little about me literally and I’m a designer that wants to be part of your business and by adding me it would make it better for the company.

From there it got a lot easier. You can expand laterally. My surname is Salt, and near enough everything tastes better with a pinch of salt right? Well for me it does. Therefore I can up with a tagline that still to this day I use.

“For Better Taste Just Add Salt”

From there I wanted to be a little creative and make a lasting impression. I wanted to make it so. With that, I spent weeks and weeks of my time creating (printing, sticking and adding salt) to nearly 3000 life-size salt sachets with “Just Add Salt” on the front and my contact details on the back. To make it even better, I created a typeface made from chips (as the first thing you mainly do is add salt to make chips taste better), making this into a poster and printed on Chip Shop paper and used biodegradable chip shop trays added lots of my business card sachets, with a bounded portfolio book, a CD ROM (yes a CD) with my work on there all wrapped in the poster. This poster at the bottom has my details on there and the tagline, “For Better Taste Just Add Salt”.

These were sent to a number of agencies that I really wanted to get some experience at and most of them took me in.

There was another Salt in the class. I remember being after them in the critique about our branding, in which they said whilst looking at mine “I’m not making Salt Sachets”. BIG MISTAKE, got me the First for that project – anyway enough about what happened to me.

Connections

When building your brand, it is important to determine your strengths and what you want your brand to stand for. Start by making a list of what you are great at and what you are passionate about.

Within this digital age, personal brands has never been more important, so make yourself stand out by being authentic on what makes you truly unique. Once you have developed these core strengths, you’re then able to strategically enhance your brand to be consistent with these few values.

Branding doesn’t just stop at an identity, it’s also the connections you will need to make. Connections are essential to getting your brand to where you want it to be. Whom you associate with tells others about your values as a person. Connections could also help expand your following and gain more recognition.

The single biggest mistake people make is that they either brand themselves just for the sake of doing so or that they fail to invest the time in learning about what’s in their best interests and who they are as a person. The key to success and this isn’t revolutionary, is to be compensated based on your passion. In order to find your passion, you need a lot of time to think, some luck and you need to do some research online to figure out what’s out there already to know that what you’re going to be doing hasn’t already been done.

Brand discovery is about figuring out what you want to do for the rest of your life, setting goals, writing down a mission, vision and personal brand statement… Have you ever been called humorous by your peers? That description is part of your brand, especially if you feel those attributed are who you are. To know if you’ve discovered your brand, you need to make this equation equal:

Your self-impression = How people perceive you

Personal Branding Toolkit

Now that you know what you want to do, well, at least in your mind, it’s time to get it on paper and online. All marketing material you should develop for your brand is called a Personal Branding Toolkit. This kit consists of the following elements that you could use to highlight your brand and allow people to easily view what you’re about:

  1. Business card: It doesn’t matter if you’re a University student, CEO, or a consultant, I feel that you should have your own business card – this will allow the employer to know who you are. The card should contain, your personal brand statement, as well as your *preferred* contact information and your identity.
  2. CV/cover letter: These are typical documents that you need for applying for jobs and when you go on interviews (something over 2 million job seekers will be doing as we speak). Be sure to prioritise each document with information custom to the target position. Take your CV online, promoting your personal brand to the world and making it shareable.
  3. Portfolio: Whether you use a CD, web or print portfolio, it’s a great way to showcase the work you’ve done in the past, which can convince someone of your ability to accomplish the same results for the future. Figdig.com and carbonmade.com are socialcarbonmade.com networks for people who want to show off their creative skills to the world.
  4. LinkedIn profile: A LinkedIn profile is a combination of a CV, cover letter, references document and a moving and living database of your network. Use it to create your own advertising, in order to search for jobs or meet new people that you feel is worth knowing.
  5. Email address: Don’t overlook your email address as not being a significant part of your toolkit. Most people use email overall social networks and when you connect with someone on a social network, you’re notified via email, so get used to it. Your email address can pose as an for your brand to grow.
So what is next for you?

After you spend some time on these elements of your personal branding toolkit, it’s time to showcase it to the world. Get yourself out there. Make a name for yourself – be heard and do not be fooled by the myth that if you build it, they will come. Unless you’re the luckiest human on this Planet, you will have to actually communicate everything you have created to others. This is a scary task, but if you do it once, you will learn and be more confident as a person and simply better yourself.

However, if you think you need any help or guidance then Fifteen are here. At Fifteen we love to do this for you and take the stress away from you having to brand yourself. We know what’s done before and we work creatively to achieve the final goal in creating a successful brand. We wouldn’t just create a logo, a logo is the starting point of branding, we could create great stationery, such as business cards, letterheads, brochures and even compliment slips. Then depending on if you need it, a website site and some branding guidelines. To be honest there really isn’t a lot that Fifteen cannot do.

So if you want to talk to us about any opportunities you would like us to do then either call us on 0115 932 5151 or drop us an email.

The post Personal Branding 101 appeared first on Fifteen.

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There are many companies who rebranded to keep up with the times of many years of trends. Nothing more than I like is a real good rebrand. Even if it’s subtle!

Co-op

There are many companies who have even rebranded but have gone back to the past and revived their original brand, such as Co-op. They dusting off a logo from 1968 amid a major restructuring of its membership scheme. This change swept across all their brands including Food, Funeral Care, Legal and Insurance, changing their entire brand in a fell swoop. People are saying that this is a “radical act” but a very good idea.


The rebrand has been two years in the offing and was partly triggered by the new membership offer.

The rebrand has been created by a modernised version of the 1968 cloverleaf logo, which has been designed as a visual reminder of the company’s roots.

The new identity of Co-op has been redrawn from archive material and a new colour scheme has been introduced to enhance the original 1968 Co-op colours, while a new typeface has been introduced to work across all print, digital and in-store touch points. The full rollout is expected to take three-to-five years as the Co-op says it wants to be prudent with its members’ money. It will also include signage, shop environments, packaging, uniforms and vehicle livery.


The applications are almost annoyingly simple: logo on the top with the same visual margin around it, then blue. Done. It’s on the strength and presence of the logo alone that this formula works. (So I guess if you don’t like the logo you are out of luck in liking this project.)

The Co-op has its own private label, that carries around 600 products that will all adopt the new look as well. These are probably designed with ease-of-use in mind for both their customers in mind (due to being a corner shop style of supermarket – as their customers are normally in and out). It some cases it might be designed bordering on the boring edge of simplicity, but somehow the alignment of the background and the simple text I would have to say that I really do love the packaging design. It’s just great, like where the logo sits at centre stage. Overall, though, this has the right balance of retro and modern appeal while at the same time having a strong retail feel that can be more fun in the food retail operation and remain more serious for its other businesses.

Looking back towards the past for inspiration is one thing and others do look forward to create something new.

Channel 4

A new brand identity for All 4 has been designed which has been designed in collaboration with Channel 4’s in-house agency 4creative. The new brand identity includes a new All 4 logo, both a 2D version of the classic logo with a streaming “Playbar” at its core and then secondly an adaptive digital-first experience across their social media and VoD, mobile, big screen, and desktop platforms.

With a disruptive and rapidly evolving entertainment landscape, the challenge was to develop a slick, new identity that worked alongside the newly unified Channel 4 brands while creating a distinct, seamless, and next-generation experience for All 4.

In action, the Playbar (blue and yellow section at the bottom of the new identity) expands horizontally to become an infinite stream that will then guide, frame, and connect every piece of content, showcasing the vast library of shows that are available for people to see across all their channels and platforms.

Channel 4 has adopted for a while an edgy typeface logo and the angle of the leading edge within the 4 is used consistently to create a sense of forward momentum and is a strong graphic element of this new look. In motion, the fluid, slick, and effortless scene of the graphic makes for a new vision of what’s to come. Suggesting scrubbing through the timeline, revealing show images and titles through silky-smooth parallax motion shows that they have thought of everything including new design trends.

The stand out vibrant accent colours are the two true heroes of this new rebrand.  Firstly they have given us a sharp yellow and a powerful acidic teal, which brings a refreshing energy and digital quality to the look and feel of it. This is offset with a deep grey that adds a premium feel, while the use of Channel 4’s headline brand font in its boldest, italic weight throughout creates confident typographic language. From simple, clear headings online to unstructured, offset layouts in print and social and on-air.

Every aspect of the brand has been refined to create a digital-first user experience. With the playbar integrated into everything from the UI and actual streaming bar in the All 4 app when watching content to on-air promos, social stories with a powerful use of typography and strikingly graphic outdoor billboards.

Alice Tonge, Head of 4creative said:

“Our aim was to develop a more refined approach to branding for All 4, reflecting the improved product, which has become easier to navigate. The new All 4 branding is purposefully minimal, confident and sophisticated, providing us with a flexible toolkit that will bring freshness and energy to All 4.  It is the final piece of the bigger portfolio rebrand that happened at the end of last year as part of the strategy to align all our brands around the master brand.”

The new iOS app has been completely rebuilt to be more reliable, more intuitive and more engaging. It also brings improved functionality, including better download capability, the ability to start programmes again when watching live and to stream audio described content on iOS for the first time and furthermore better usability and accessibility (which is a firm favourite of mine). In further iterations new functionality and new ways to discover shows will be added, of what I have read so far. The visual design will also continue to evolve over time to reflect the new brand identity I’m sure of it.

There is also a streaming service that will rival ITV’s Player plus.

Dubbed  All 4+, this service was launched as a small-scale test in late 2018. There has been a lot of work gone into the creation of this brand and it’s partnering creations. There has been some very good feedback thus far.

The Head of All 4, Richard Davidson-Houston, has said:
“We’re innovating on all fronts. The classy new visual identity will help Channel 4 to stay front of mind in Video-on-Demand and the scaling-up of the All 4 + trial shows that we’re getting serious about a paid upgrade to the free service.”
“All 4 continues to grow faster than the market with its unique mix of live TV, catch up TV, box sets and our new content partners – such as Vice, Walter Presents and Adult Swim – give people even more reasons to choose All 4.”

Since the launch it All 4 (having moved away from their old identity which I thought was quite unique in its own right), 2018 was the most successful year for All 4 since it launched in 2006, with views up 25 per cent year on year. Walter Presents also had its best year ever on All 4, surpassing 27 million views thanks to hits such as 13 Commandments and Killer By The Lake.

So this means that people are taking a good look at this and thinking about what they have done is something special.

Purple Bricks

Only a few years old, Purple Bricks, founded in 2012 is an online real estate company that turned its first profit in 2016 but was then fighting allegations in 2017 that it was misleading customers. It has also recently expanded into the United States. So, whether the rebrand came about due to international expansion, a need for a new image following less than desirable attention in the press, or just the standard growth and maturity of a young company, the company has a new look.
In the real estate landscape, it can be very tempting to be very overt with imagery utilising rooflines, doors, or keys. This is moving away from that, and while it might look like a financial institution, the mark and colour visually distinguish it from competitors.

It will catch your eye. I would like to think that one could do interesting things with the logo mark as a border around a “For Sale” sign in a front yard.

From letterhead to digital marks on listings, it seems clear that the mark can be utilised in numerous applications.

The bold purple colour is the strongest thing the brand has going for it in this regard, but overall, it seems to be too muted in its form and font. When I first came across the brand, I wasn’t sure if there was some slang or obvious cultural reference in the UK to purple bricks that would help make this a brand with real meaning.

I’m not sure that happens to be the case, so I think the name is actually a bit confusing here. What exactly are ‘purple bricks’ and, in the case of this company, how does that represent doing things different in the real estate industry? A strong look for the brand with successful proportion bodes well. However, the font selection gives pause yet it isn’t enough hesitation to cause alarm.

This brand should stand for a long time to come, assuming that the business does as well. 

The logo is certainly simple, and without a doubt, there are many out there would naturally think that it is too simple. Clever simplicity is a very difficult thing to achieve. This logo does a fairly good job, the four diagonals line up, and that adds unnecessary complication to an otherwise simple mark. While it isn’t perfect, the mark is a large improvement. While the new mark might have the appearance of a financial institution, at least that usually conveys trust and strength. The original mark looks cartoonish and game-centric.

So there are many ways in a brand that can rebrand, but all in all, most of the time a brand does a rebrand, it’s to be with the times. At Fifteen we haven’t shied away from that either and our branding truly represents us and our beliefs.

If you feel that you need to rebrand and make something more unique, or even haven’t got a brand and you would like to make your vision a reality then Fifteen can help. Anything you have we are the agency for you. Get in touch with our friendly team or give us a call 01159325151 and we will be here to help you achieve your goals and visions.

The post The Past, Present and Future of UK Brands appeared first on Fifteen.

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Logo design is a subtle art. Not just in the way they show space but also in the way they hide little Easter eggs. Take a look at some of the greatest messages hidden in some of the most-famous logos.

FedEx:


FedEx is a well-established delivery service company, and its logo is seen on the side of trucks, planes and white vans.

While the logo may look simple with the colours, within the type there is a hidden gem. Have you ever noticed the arrow hidden in the negative space between the ‘E’ and ‘X’? The arrow represents getting places with speed and precision, which sums up the FedEx brand perfectly.  

Toblerone


Established in Bern, Switzerland, 1908, Toblerone is a world famous chocolate bar that is loved by millions.

Their logo consists of a mountain that apparently represents the Matterhorn Mountain in Switzerland, which is why the bar is triangular shaped.

However, according to the makers’ sons, the triangular shape originates from a pyramid shape that dancers at the Folies Bergeres created as the finale of a show. Lastly, going back to where the chocolate bar was created (Bern, Switzerland) within the letters of ‘Toblerone’ the word ‘bern’ is hidden within them.

The logo also has a bear on it, which is in the negative space of the mountain. This symbolises the coat of arms of Bern. The colours of the logo are even the same as the flag.

Google


Google is probably everyone’s go-to web search engine and the answer to every question ever asked. This makes it one of the most recognisable logos in the world.

Google’s Mission is to “organise information and make it universally accessible and useful”. They are also known for their approach to the working environment, by not playing by the rules and simply having fun. I mean, they have a slide going from one office floor to the other (if that isn’t fun, I don’t know what is).

With all that said, you may think there isn’t much to their logo? However, Googles logo is supposed to symbolise that they don’t play by the rules and know exactly how to have fun. They don’t have a crazy typeface or icon, they just simply relay their message with colour. The colours they have chosen are the 3 primary colours with an exception to the green which breaks this rule, representing breaking the rules.

Coca-Cola


This one might take a little time to actually see. Even Coca-Cola themselves don’t really associate the hidden image with their logo. Nonetheless, the hidden message in the Coca-Cola logo is actually the Danish flag.

According to Coca-Cola, this wasn’t their original intention, but once they discovered that Denmark was named the “Happiest country on earth”, they even set up a media stunt in one of Denmark’s biggest airports and welcomed people with flags.

For some reason, they didn’t hand out any free Coke though.  

Toyota


Founded in 1937, Toyota is a widespread brand, that is popular for manufacturing cars. Although Toyota has been around for 82 years, their current logo as only been around since 1990.

Toyota’s logo represents three hearts of the company: the heart of the customer, the product and the progress in the field of technology. Did you also know that Toyota’s logo consists of all the letters in the company name; if you separate the logo’s icon?

Amazon


Amazon is leading the way when it comes to shopping online, and they have made sure that their logo represents that. The yellow arrow in the logo starts at the letter ‘A’ and ends at the letter ‘Z’, hinting that they sell everything ‘from A to Z’.

This also can imply that they get from ‘A to Z’, with the ‘A’ being the company and the ‘Z’ being the customer. The arrow also looks like a smile too, don’t you think?  This represents the customer being happy and satisfied with their service.

My Fonts


My Fonts is one of the most popular online font resources, allowing users to have access to a number of different fonts.

Now, you probably noticed the hidden image right away and if you didn’t, like myself, The ‘My’ in My Fonts is stylised to look like a hand. This implies that the user can get their hands on whatever font they like.   

Baskin-Robbins


Baskin-Robbins is one of the worlds largest chains of ice cream and cakes and is commonly known for its limitless flavours.

When Baskin-Robbins was founded they began with only 31 original flavours. That number is hidden within the logo, between the ‘B’ and the ‘R’, acting as the shape of the ‘B’ and the stem of the ‘R’.

Pinterest


Pinterest is a popular social media application that allows users to find projects and recipes they like from across the web and ‘pin’ them to their online notice boards.

With that said, let’s get to the point (pun intended). Within the logo, the letter ‘P’ incorporates pin.  

Tour de France


The Tour de France is an annual multiple stage bicycle race primarily held in France, while also occasionally passing through nearby countries.

To some, their logo may just look like a cool, creative font. However, the logo actually consists of cyclists, in the word ‘Tour’. If you look closely at the ‘O’, ‘U’ and ‘R’ you will see the cyclist on his bike, riding downhill with one yellow wheel.

Conclusion

Good logo design is a fine art with some of these examples lasting several lifetimes. If you’re interested in designing a new logo or even just creating a rebrand contact us today and let us help you leave a lasting impression.

The post 10 Hidden Messages in Logos appeared first on Fifteen.

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Hello again and thank you so much for reading the previous blog on why you should have a professional website and continuing reading and the interest you have in wanting that perfect website.

I have already shown you 4 great examples of why, but I thought I would share with you the rest which is equally important for you to decide to have a professional website.

So here goes.

5. A website enables you to target a wider audience


Since more and more people have access to the internet, even in remote locations, you can target a much wider audience.

Whether you offer services and/or products, or your business or consumer based, your website provides you with an alternative location to sell. As a retailer having an eCommerce site is a great place to sell your products to a wider market. Therefore a website is a perfect place to do that from the comfort of their homes.

Even service-based businesses can offer their services globally through a website. Now that we have so many affordable ways to communicate with people, we can do business with anyone, anywhere, any time. A website makes it so much easier to attract clients on a  national and even global scale.

6. It provides a medium to showcase your work


No matter what type of business you’re in, a website is a great place to showcase your work or demonstrate your skills. By including a portfolio or case studies, image gallery or videos, or even testimonials about your work, you can demonstrate what makes your company or brand unique.
A lot of people now look to social media when it comes to showing off their skills or portfolio as it reaches even more people in this world what their capabilities are. These platforms include Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. But the question is, is your target audience on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook and other social media channels platforms?

However, these social media platforms have a slight downfall. The quality of your photos or graphics is compromised and the size may be substantially reduced. Not only that but Facebook and other social media channels control how people interact with them and even WHO can see them. This could mean that without careful consideration of a social media campaign you could potentially lose customers.

If you have a website, your portfolio can be viewed by anyone and you are in control of what people see, the quality and size of your photos, and how people interact with this information.

7. A website saves you time


I touched on this point in number 2 in the previous blog post. As the saying goes, time is money. Saving time is another great reason why your business needs a professional website. Plus Fifteen are very competitive and we can guide you down the right path.

Time is an important commodity in our ever-increasing fast-paced world, even if you don’t attach a monetary value to it. Most people these days don’t have enough time for leisure, pleasure, family or healthy activities. Having a professionally designed website saves you time both in the short and long term.

By providing information to your customers online, you can save a vast amount of valuable time that you would otherwise spend communicating with prospective clients.

Talking to customers on the phone, in messenger or emails, face-to-face at meetings, networking events or trade shows, it all takes time. Creating flyers, brochures and other promotional material take time (although they are still important to a good marketing plan) – time to plan, research, communicate to your designer, printer and so on. Not to mention the time needed to distribute your marketing material.

With a website, you can save time by providing information about your products and services in various online formats—graphics, video, ebooks, flip books— or as text right on the page—no distribution required. Once your website is up and running, it is available to your customers indefinitely, saving you time having to communicate the same message over and over again to different people all for the cost of a domain.

8. A website can improve customer service


There’s nothing more I hate in this world when I search for a company in my local area and they don’t have a website to see what they have to offer. (I do rather visit local businesses to support my community) but having no website would force me towards a company that does which in hindsight would be a bigger company. A website is a great way to provide value-added services to small to medium businesses and is a great way to keep them coming back to you.
No matter what products you sell, you can share tips with your customers on how to use or care for their product. If it’s compression dress or suit, you can provide tips on how to wear their garments. If you sell beverages, such as tea or coffee, you can provide brewing times and temperatures. If you offer a service, such as accounting, you can provide your clients with valuable advice to help them pay less tax or how to simplify their bookkeeping. Or if you’re in insurance, you could give advice on how to choose the right insurance policy for theirs or their family’s needs.
Something else I find super informative is the humble FAQ page or a resources section. You can regularly add articles or upload newsletters to answer all your customers’ questions and keep them better informed and up-to-date.

And finally;

9. You own and control your website

Even if you have a big social media presence, another reason, and probably the most important reason why your business needs a professional website, is so that you actually own or at least pay rent for your online space.
There are lots of free or low-cost ways to gain a web presence, make a name for yourself or claim your online space, but in most cases, you don’t own your online home, office or store and, even worse, you have little to no control over all that’s contained in your online space. With a professional website, you do and Fifteen are here to help.

Again, Social media is a great way to bring traffic to your website and it’s a great way to share content from your website. However, relying solely on social media to attract customers or clients is not only preventing several prospects from doing business with you, but you do not own your stuff and you cannot control what happens with it.

The content you’ve uploaded to your favourite social media channel could disappear at any moment without prior warning if social media companies pull the plug for whatever reason.

The same is true for a freebie website. When you decide it’s time to move on, you can’t always take your website content with you (at least not easily) and you will most likely need to start from scratch.
With a professional website, one that is self-hosted, granted you are renting space for your web address, but you own everything contained within your online space. If ever you want or feel the need to move to a different web host, you can take everything with you (provided you have backups and/or do so before your account expires).

I’ve always maintained the importance of having a web presence that you own, and this is definitely a valid point to consider when determining whether your business needs a professional website or not.

Are you interested in finding out how Fifteen can help you design, build and market a new website or update an existing one? Drop us a message or call us on 01159325151 as we will be more than happy to guide you in the right direction.

The post Why Do I Need a Website? Part 2 appeared first on Fifteen.

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I’ve been a designer now for a number of years and love all aspects of the design world whether it’s designing for web or print but the one thing that really floats my boat is when I’m asked to design a new company logo.

The challenge with any new logo design is making it different while at the same time keeping it simple. This allows it to stand out from its competitors and be victorious within its brand arena but above all, it has to be memorable.

All iconic logo designs are memorable, close your eyes and think of Coca Cola, Apple or Nike and they will appear in your mind’s eye as if you have just seen them. Understandably, these logos have been around for years and millions of pounds have been spent on elaborate marketing campaigns but the principle remains the same, being memorable is key.

The Logo Design Process

So, how do you start the process of designing the ‘perfect’ logo for your client, a logo that will be a representation of their business and its offerings, a logo that will serve the test of time, well, there are many things to consider along the way but one fundamental thing is understanding your clients needs.

At this point, I should mention that to get to the absolute core of your client’s needs I would recommend running a series of workshops. These workshops are designed to discover what really makes your client tick, why they get out of bed in the morning to do what they do and what their brand stands for. These workshops cover all manner of things from discovering what brand archetypes they are to understanding their customer personas. For now, we’ll set all this aside and save it for another blog maybe, so let’s get back to the logo.

The Logo

Firstly, the obvious questions come to mind such as, what font to use, after all, there are thousands of fonts out there and choosing the correct one is crucial in the successful design of a logo. For example, you wouldn’t use ‘Cooper Black’ if you were designing a logo for a retirement home, not the conventional type anyway.

Font choice can make or break a logo, it can make the logo look corporate or fun so getting this spot on is important as it needs to give the right message to the target audience.

Another obvious design decision to make is what colours to use in the design makeup of the logo.  This choice is also crucial in portraying the correct message. Using colour to evoke emotion is something designers understand well and use to its full potential so it’s important that we get this right from the start.

Choosing a red colour palette portrays ‘passion’ and ‘excitement’, some brands that fall into this bracket are Virgin, Coca Cola and Red Bull. Choosing a blue colour palette would portray ‘loyalty’ and ‘reliability’, brands that fall into this bracket are British Gas, Facebook and the UK Lotto amongst many others.

Finally, choosing a green colour palette evokes the emotion of ‘sanctuary’ and ‘trust’ examples of brands using green are BP, Starbucks and Bodyshop.

Logo design decisions

There are many other decisions to consider when designing a logo, ‘target audience’ being one of the most important. Why would you need to consider the target audience when designing a logo? Well, the logo has to be enticing in order to attract them.

Let’s say you’re designing a logo for a nursery school, your target audience would be the parents or guardians of young children so the logo needs to appeal to them. To break this down further you could list the exact criteria.

  • Male and/or female
  • 20 – 35 years of age
  • Working full or part-time
  • Have young children around the age of 4

Having identified the target audience you start to build a picture of what your logo needs to look like.

Make your logo stand out from the crowd, make it unique and memorable don’t fall into the trap of being too obvious with the design. It’s a cliché but ‘thinking outside the box’ really is important. You want your client to feel that they are getting a great service. You also want to reassure them they’re in good hands so giving them the first thing that pops into your head, in my opinion, is too easy and safe.

What I mean by all this is being obvious is not good design, if you were tasked with designing a logo for an airline company I would steer clear of using an aeroplane icon in the design, think differently, be smarter. Try to be more abstract, perhaps the silhouette of a bird’s wing or a constellation of stars.

Timeless Logos

Great logos are timeless and still look as relevant today as the day they were designed. You only need to turn to Nike for inspiration. The Nike ‘Swoosh’ icon was designed in 1971, that’s 48 years ago, and it still looks amazing, why? Because it’s so simple and doesn’t rely on fads to support it like 3D text or modelling or trendy fonts that will soon date and look tired. This is important when considering logo design the more simple you can make it the better and be mindful of font choice. Less is more, focus on a clear concept and be bold, don’t follow trends, set them.

Reinforce the Brand

Designing a logo that reinforces the client’s brand is always something that should be considered. If you get this right the finished result will be extremely powerful. Take Apple, they have adopted the ‘apple’ for their icon. The apple represents knowledge which is perfect for the company as they are known globally as world leaders in technology.

One of my personal favourites is the WWF logo, the panda symbol is so strong and recognisable and overcomes all language barriers. Incidentally, this logo was created in 1961 that’s 58 years ago, just goes to show if you get all the design elements right the end results will be extremely memorable.

And Finally

There are a lot more elements to consider when designing a logo like ‘balance’ and the use of negative space to make your logo look awesome not to mention ‘shape psychology’. Shape psychology is worth thinking about as it can help to reinforce the brand ethos, for example using a square-shaped logo gives balance, security and professionalism while a triangular shape gives the impression of stability and power. A circular logo design offers unity & community.

To finish off you need to make your logo adaptable, it has to look great in print and on screen it also needs to work when it’s big and small and finally, you need to design variations of the logo that work as solid colour and reversed out.

Giving your client a suite of logos that they can use for any online or offline need is important and shows you have a clear understanding of the design process.

Like I said at the start, designing logos and branding really is one of the best parts of my job, helping new businesses get off the ground with a solid foundation is such a good thing to part of. Make sure your branding is point and go to the professionals for your logo design. It’s much more than a simple icon or image, it is the face your customers see every day. If you’d rather leave it to the professionals contact us today and we’ll help you design a logo that hits all the targets.

The post Creating The Perfect Logo appeared first on Fifteen.

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I’ve browsed many studies that lots to say regarding to accessibility on websites. I have also read blogs and articles about how typography should be your first port-of-call when the brief demands accessibility.

What I am trying to say is that if the typeface you’re thinking of using isn’t right for all abilities, the design simply isn’t comprehensive for every type of user. This includes the huge number of users that include the visually impaired, the elderly and users who in-fact endure having dyslexia. I have dyslexia (a mild form of it) and I do struggle every now and again when it comes to reading or even surfing the web.

What is dyslexia?

Dyslexia a general term for disorders that involve issues with the learning to read or interpret words, letters, and alternative symbols, however that doesn’t have an effect on the general intelligence of someone. They say even Albert Einstein was dyslexic.

The signs and symptoms of this learning disorder does differ from person to person. Every individual with the condition can have a unique pattern of strengths and weaknesses.

Dyslexia may be a learning difficulty that primarily affects the abilities involved in fluent and accurate word reading and spelling, but it is also the characteristic features of dyslexia are difficulties in phonological awareness, verbal memory and verbal process speed.

Co-occurring difficulties may also be seen in aspects of language, motor coordination, mental calculation, concentration and personal organisation, however, these don’t seem to be, by themselves, markers of dyslexia.

Now that we have dug a little into the meaning, I thought I would make it even more relevant to what Fifteen do which is design including typography.

Which fonts are the easiest and best to read?

Dyslexia may be a disability that can be incredibly sensitive to particular typefaces, in both print and on screen. We intend to take a look at some of the typefaces we recommend to suggest that whatever materials you are creating, they’re accessible to a broader audience as possible.

Dyslexic individuals notice that the readability of a piece of text can varies greatly relying upon the font (typeface or type style) used. I actually wish to stipulate that some fonts that are recommended and used by dyslexic people through out all types of materials and technology.

Serif fonts, with their ‘ticks’ and ‘tails’ at the top and end of most strokes (as found in traditional print fonts such as Georgia or Times New Roman), tend to obscure the shapes of letters, therefore sans-serif fonts are generally most well-liked. Thus we tend to see many dyslexic individuals find it easier to browse a font that appears almost like a handwriting as they’re familiar with this style, and some teachers prefer them.

However, most of those forms of typefaces could result in confusion with some letter combinations, like “oa” and “oo”; “rn” and “m” that in my experience could get extremely muddling and impair how I would read something that is in front of me. This said, reading a sentence incorrectly and me worry about people are judging me or completely misunderstanding what I am reading is something that I had to deal with.

The size of the ascenders and descenders of letters (the ‘stems’ on letters like p and b) is additionally vital as many dyslexic readers believe on recalling the visual form of a word thanks to poor phonological awareness. If ascenders and descenders are too short, the form of the word can get harder to spot and may make reading slower and less accurate.

So what makes a font more accessible and what must you look out for once you opt for one with people who have dyslexia?

Top 10 tips for accessible type styles
  1. A clean fashionable sans serif with large open counters is taken into consideration is to be the most suitable form of typestyle for signage, sub-headings and captions where there are small amounts of text set at 16pt and above
  2. Look for a font with optimum character recognition to best assist legibility wherever sure a characters are deemed confusing. Does the Capital ‘I’ and lowercase ‘l’ appear the same? Or are the ‘B’ and ‘8’ too similar?
  3. Take care with the positive and negative areas in and around the letterforms (making certain that the letter spacing looks equally balanced)
  4. A serif added to the lowercase ‘i’ enhances character recognition
  5. A character stroke that is about 17-20% of the x-height can be proven to be the most legible form
  6. Pay attention to the letterforms on a darkened background because the spacing could look tighter and also the letter shapes could appear to ‘glow’
  7. Numerals need to be clear and simply recognisable. 0 (zero) might have a dot to assist the legibility and it’s preferred that the ‘6’ and ‘9’ have open terminals.
  8. Choosing a typeface with an over sized x-height, extended ascenders and descenders as this helps legibility and readability
  9. Open terminals aid clarity and permit the letterforms to be simply read
  10. People with learning disabilities are usually treated as inferior with childlike design hence such a bigger joke is made around the font Comic Sans. An accessible font shouldn’t mean childlike, there’s no reason to compromise craft for readability. A highly crafted typeface with a considered, clear and elegant design is highly recommended

So with these points, below is a list of fonts that I think would be perfect for you to use for all kinds of materials from web to print.

Preferred Typefaces Read Regular


In 2003, Natascha Frensch, a graphic designer at the Royal College of Art, designed a font specifically for dyslexic readers, taking into account the issues discussed above. There are examples of Read Regular on her web site at www.readregular.com and the children’s publisher Chrysalis is now using it for two-thirds of the 150 children’s titles it brings out every year. In May 2012, Dutch educational publishers Zwijsen adopted the Read Regular typeface, where it is known as Zwijsen Dyslexiefont.

Lexie Readable


This typeface is designed specifically for dyslexia. You can download it from www.k-type.com free for individual use. It was developed quite a bit over the last few months, although it still has some minor irregularities. It tries to avoid some possible dyslexic confusions (e.g. b-d) by using different shapes and is broadly based on Comic Sans, see below. Please let us know what you think of it.

Tiresias


Has been designed for Visual Impairment. Originally produced for subtitles and signs, there is now a screen version Tiresias PC font. It is good for legibility, but doesn’t address the issue of dyslexic confusions.

Century Gothic


A sans-serif font which maintains the basic design of Monotype 20th Century, but has been modified to ensure satisfactory output from modern digital systems. The design is influenced by the geometric style sans-serif faces which were popular during the 1920s and 1930s.

Calibri


Calibri is a modern sans-serif typeface with subtle roundings on stems and corners. Its proportions allow high impact in tightly set lines of big and small text alike. Calibri was included with Windows Vista and Office 2007 and is now the default typeface for Microsoft Office.

Sassoon


This font is often recommended for dyslexia but was actually designed for early reading. Also, it is quite expensive and can be bought through Adrian Williams Design and elsewhere on the web. Letter shapes are similar to those that schools use to teach handwriting, and ascenders and descenders are exaggerated to emphasise word shapes.

Myriad Pro


A modern typeface designed by Adobe. We have begun to use Myriad Pro in our designed materials and in part on this dyslexic.com site. Myriad Pro has a clean sans-serif aesthetic making it suitable for people with dyslexia.

Web Fonts

A number of fonts have been commissioned by Microsoft, others are available through Google Web Fonts, all with the aim of making on-screen reading easier and are included in many of their packages. While some have a fault common in many modern fonts in that they have large bodies and short descenders and ascenders, which makes the letters harder to tell apart, they are very professionally worked, so they are as clear and clean as possible at all sizes and in all media.

Trebuchet MS


Trebuchet MS has short descenders but reasonably long ascenders, small body size and generous line spacing. We find this font suits many readers.

Other Fonts

Although there are thousands of fonts freely available on the web, most of them are fancy display fonts totally unsuited for blocks of text. We are therefore currently obliged to fall back on the fonts distributed with Windows and Mac OS for our style sheet.

Our other two choices are Geneva for the Mac and Arial for older Windows systems.

Some dyslexic people find that Comic Sans is one of the more readable of the commonly-available fonts. Others find it too bold, too childish or too informal.

Conclusion

All in all, know your audience and also be aware of the other users who may not be able to read something without difficulty.

However, be creative too!

So if you need any more information on what you need for your customers or need us to design that perfect piece of work that can be accessed by all then please drop us an or give us a call on 0115 932 5151 and we can discuss more.

The post What Are The Best Fonts For Dyslexia? appeared first on Fifteen.

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What you don’t learn in design school

When you graduate university you would assume that you would know everything there is to know about the essential software you’ll be using when working in the design industry, right? Yeah, that’s what I thought too. Now then, I’m not saying I left university clueless about the software but within the first 2 months working at Fifteen, I have gained more of an understanding of the software, than I did in the three years I was at university.

Having said that, I’m not talking about the ABCs of the software, considering it’s fair to say we all know how to use the pen tool, right?

I remember at the beginning of university when we would have a weekly two-hour slot in which we would all try and squeeze into a tiny mac room to at least try and familiarise ourselves with the basics of photoshop and illustrator. However, in my third year of university, this wasn’t the case. We were expected to know everything about the software at this stage and ‘just get on with it’.

Nevertheless, you’re probably thinking why I didn’t put in more time and effort to learn the software in my own time? Well, the reality is, I did. I would watch tutorial after tutorial to gain an understanding of the software. Granted, this taught me the essential skills I needed to navigate through the software, but it didn’t teach me the most important skills when it came to looking out for the errors in my artwork, especially when it came to typography.

To begin, we all know what Kerning, Leading, Tracking, Widows, Orphans, Rags and Rivers are right? Well, if you are a typography guru, you might be more familiar with these terms. But, for others who aren’t, let’s break it down.

Kerning What is Kerning?

Kerning is the spacing between characters.

Now then, this might sound like something everyone should know (which they should without a doubt) but in university, they do not teach you this. Well, at my university they didn’t. For example, when you are designing a brochure and it has a huge amount of text, depending on the typeface you use, at times the copy can start to look a bit pressed together and this can become challenging for the user to read. Additionally, If you want to learn more about Kerning, this website type.method.ac lets you practice kerning and it even scores you on your ability to kern!

Tracking What is Tracking?

Tracking is the spacing between groups of letters

Similar to kerning, but instead of looking at the spacing between each individual letter here we look at the spacing between each word. The same rules apply for this method as they do for kerning but, again it all depends on what typeface you are using. Nevertheless, this is something you should take note of if you are ever working with typography.

Leading What is Leading?

Leading is the spacing between each line of text.

This method is one of the most important rules when it comes to typography. For example, when you have a large amount of body text, the lines in a paragraph can start to merge together. Manually reducing or increasing the leading will almost always improve the design to make everything work well together.

Widows What are Widows?

Widows are a lonely ending line at the end of a paragraph or column and left dangling and separated from the rest of the paragraph.

This is considered poor use of typography and never looks great in huge amounts of body text. There is usually too much white space between paragraphs. Which will often confuse the user’s readability when there is a lot of text. Remembering this issue and resolving it as soon as possible will defiantly help when it comes to proofreading future projects.

Orphans What are Orphans?

Orphans are a lonely word separated from the rest of the paragraph.

Very similar to a widow but instead this rule applies when a single word appears at the end of a paragraph or when the word appears alone at the top of the column or page.

Learning this rule and knowing exactly what to look out for will defiantly help you improve as a designer.

Rags What are Rags?

Rags are uneven vertical margins of a block of type.

You can have a bad rag and a good rag. A good rag goes in and out from line to line and bad rag doesn’t. Sometimes breaking up the sentences is always a better option than relying on your software application which may generate a bad rag.

Rivers What are Rivers?

Rivers are gaps that run through the white areas of a paragraph.

Now, if you have made it this far you were probably unaware of most of these terms and may have a better understanding of what they are now. Having said that, let’s dive right into rivers…

Rivers (or rivers of white) are the lines formed in between the gaps of the text in a paragraph. This is most commonly created when the ‘justify tool’ is applied to a body of text. For example, when the alignment of the spaces between each word on each line conflict with each other creating what looks like a ‘river’ running between the body of text.

Conclusion

So, how would you fix all these issues you ask? For widows and orphans, some techniques you may use to avoid or fix them would be by forcing an early page break, this can be accomplished by adjusting the kerning and/or tracking to produce tighter or looser paragraphs. You could even adjust the hyphenation of words within a paragraph, this always helps too.

Additionally, rivers and rags can be avoided or fixed by also adjusting the hyphenation and the justification settings on your text. If you don’t already you will probably want to avoid using the ‘justified’ type tool as much as you can.

Right now, you’re probably thinking how on earth you are going to remember all these issues that can occur when using typography? Don’t worry, it comes with practice. However, once you are familiar with each issue and how you can resolve them, you should correct them as soon as you can, especially if you don’t want other designers judging you (don’t worry I won’t, promise!).

With all that said, remember that typography doesn’t just consist of selecting a typeface, choosing a font size and whether it should be in regular or bold!

If you need help with your typography in your designs, don’t hesitate to contact our team of design experts.

The post What Design School Doesn’t Teach You appeared first on Fifteen.

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Here’s an interesting fact I thought I would pull out again: In 1993, an estimated 13,161,570 people used the Internet when the world population was sitting around 5,578,865,110 people or just 0.3% of the world’s population. Compare that to 2014/15 where over 3,000,000,000 out of 7,243,784,121 people or just over 40% of the population of the world have access to the Internet.

So I thought I would add more to this and say there could be another 9 Compelling Reasons Why Your Business needs a Website.

Since 2009, there has been a drastic shift towards the internet and social media. As a result, many new businesses understand the need for a website and turn to the likes of Wix for free drag and drop page builders.

However, there are still a lot of small business owners who do not believe they need a professional website or even a website at all.

They’ve either been in business so long without one they think word of mouth is all they need or they believe they can get all their customers or clients on Facebook or other social media channels.
If you’re a small business owner or you’re just starting out, like many, you may think there’s no benefit in having a website when you can do everything on social media. Or maybe you think you can’t afford a professional website so you get a freebie and do it yourself instead? Perhaps you’re in the generation that didn’t grow up with computers, you don’t use a computer so you think your customers don’t use computers.

You think if you are not tech savvy why bother with a website. But even if you are an established business that has relied on word of mouth and think you are doing quite well, there are several reasons why your business needs a professional website too.

I believe, even with all that you can do on social media, and even if you’ve been in business for several decades, unless you do not want to grow your business or you’re about to retire and travel the world, your business needs a website and preferably one that is professionally designed and developed.

Here are the first 4 reasons of our top 9 on why your business would need a professional website

1. Your business will gain credibility

More and more people are searching online for things they want, for solutions to their problems, to compare prices, or just to get some information about a store, restaurant or businesses. If you don’t have a website, potential customers will go to your competitors who do, especially if you are a home-based business without a bricks-and-mortar address.

Having a website will not only provide the information your customers are looking for, but it will give your business credibility. It says ‘I am here, I mean business, and I am in it for the long haul.’

You may be thinking, I have a “freebie” website that I built myself, why should I pay for someone to do it for me? There are several reasons why I don’t recommend “freebie” D.I.Y. websites, which I address elsewhere, but even a “freebie” website is better than no website at all. However, if you are somewhat tech savvy and have the time to build your own website, I strongly recommend you at least use WordPress with a professional theme and that you pay for web hosting with a reputable web host but again if you are not, then Fifteen are here to help.

There’s nothing less professional online than a website that says “Hey, look, I used a free website builder!” Your business will gain so much more credibility by having a professional website designer could help you design and build your website – and Fifteen will help and therefore with careful planning, designed responsively and with your customers’ needs in mind, your website will provide a professional image and give potential customers a great experience when they visit, whether it’s on their computer, their tablet or their mobile phone we would work together to make all this a reality and you’ll, therefore, gain even more credibility.

2. It saves you money


You’re probably thinking you can’t afford a professional website. But you really can’t afford NOT to. Although the cost of designing a website varies depending on your needs, once it’s up and running, a professional website is worth the initial investment. Compared with the cost of traditional means of advertising and even networking events that often include the cost of a meal or trade tables, when you consider the potential market you can reach with a website, it is a very cost-effective way to promote your business long term.

So when it comes to comparing the cost of a professional website with a freebie D.I.Y. website, unless you are fairly skilled, your website will cost you in time and effort that could be better spent elsewhere in your business. Not only that, but if it’s not professional, or can’t be found in search engine SERPs, you will lose customers and that will also cost you dearly.
Saving money is definitely a great reason why your business needs a professional website, but there are several more reasons and with Fifteen by your side, we could help you rank pretty high or even top of Google Searches.

3. Customers can be kept informed


In its most basic form, think of a website as being an online brochure or catalogue that can be updated at any time. It is much easier and quicker to update information about your products and services on your website than it is in a print brochure or catalogue but at the same time, printed materials are not to be ruled out.

A website is an effective way of introducing your customers to new services, letting them know about new products, announcing upcoming events and special promotions. You can also provide added value by posting tips, resources and other information through a blog on your website. This is so powerful and will make Google very very happy.

Unlike print ads, newspaper articles and flyers, your website can provide current information and news in real time whereas printed material could become out of date. And if you discover a mistake after you publish a page or post, it is a quick fix.

A website can be so much more than just an online brochure or catalogue though. Now we have YouTube videos, Podcasts, Webinars, eBooks and other online media to showcase our skills, expertise and products, provide online classes, courses and workshops and much much more. Not to mention social media integration which enables you to share information on your website across numerous other channels and reach an even wider audience.

4. A Website is always accessible


If you’re not working 24/7, a website is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You can provide both regular and prospective customers with the convenience of reviewing your products and services when your store or office is closed.

Not only that, with so many interactive features and add-ons available, visitors to your website can contact you, sign up for your courses, schedule appointments and even purchase directly through your website even when you’re away from your desk. This makes your customers feel that you’re still there and active and with today’s busy lifestyles, this is a great selling point when making a purchase decision.

I feel that’s a great place to keep you informed this far, keep your eye out for my next blog which I will share my other 5 reasons why you should have a website, a professional one.

Are you interested in finding out how Fifteen can help you design, build and market a new website or update an existing one? Drop us a message or call us on 01159325151 as we will be more than happy to guide you in the right direction.

The post Why Do I Need A Website? Part 1 appeared first on Fifteen.

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Everyone Has One

I’ve been busy finding out my Creative type through a creative testing that explores the many faces of the creative personality.

What fascinates me about this is that’s it’s all based in psychology research which as a UX designer I’m pretty fond of. The test assesses the basic habits and tendencies—how you think, from how you act to how you see the world, to then help you better understand who you are as a creative person. This isn’t just for a creative minded soul, it’s a form to make you know who you are as an artistic human.

All you will need to do is simply answer 15 questions (with two answers per question) which will give you a deeper understanding of your motivations, plus an insight into how to maximize your natural gifts, you as a person from a psychology point of few to then face your challenges.

These personality types aren’t black-and-white labels they are more complex than that. Think of them more as signposts pointing you towards your full creative potential. While there’s probably a core type that best describes you as a creative you may change types at different points in your life and career, or even at different stages of the creative process whilst working on a project. As a creative, you have a little bit of all eight Types inside you.

Here is a little more information that you might find useful about this new test, these are the people or organisations that brought you this insightful test allowing you to know a little more about yourself as a creative person:

Adobe Create: Community Champion


Creative Types is brought to you by Adobe Create Magazine. Through the lenses of craft, culture, and career, we celebrate and fuel creative minds with inspirational stories, Creative Cloud how-tos, and more.

Anyways Creative: Creative Partner

Anyways is a creative agency that helps brands to become more adventurous and meaning-driven through collaborations with the world’s best creative talent. As part of the HudsonBec Group alongside It’s Nice That, they believe in the power of creativity in brand communications. Anyways Creative acted as the Creative Partner behind Adobe’s Creative Types project, including sourcing creative collaborators and overseeing the project from ideation to execution.

Carolyn Gregoire: Test Designer + Writer

Carolyn is a Brooklyn-based writer and creative collaborator whose work explores the inner lives of humans. She’s written about everything from psychedelic research to neuroaesthetics to Vedic meditation for publications like Scientific American, TIME, Harvard Business Review, and The Huffington Post, and she is a co-author of Wired to Create: Unravelling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind. Carolyn created the experimental design and wrote the content for the Creative Types project.

Isabel + Helen: Set Designers

Isabel + Helen use simple sensory pleasures as a starting point to create ambitious installations that invite their audiences to become participants in play. Combining a stripped-back aesthetic with a sense of humour, they conceive both quiet interventions and large-scale constructions. Isabel + Helen designed and created the playful, tactile environments that appear in the videos between the Creative Types test questions.

Anton Hjertstedt: Character Designer

Anton Hjertstedt is a 3D artist living and working in London. He uses 3D software and virtual reality to create pieces that integrate digital explorations, still life, uncanny architecture, and materiality. Anton has worked with brands including the New York Times, Zegna, Soho house, Droga5, and Reebok. He designed and produced the Creative Types’ eight character representations.

BBDE: Videographer + Film Director

Brendan Baker and Daniel Evans are a London-based photographic duo whose still-life work combines the power of the surreal and the hyperreal. Collaborating since 2011, they’ve produced imagery for the likes of Apple, Adidas, Louis Vuitton, and Hermés, and their work has been exhibited in galleries in London, Los Angeles, and New York. Baker and Evans directed and photographed the sets used for the videos between the Creative Types test questions.

Daniel Powell: Web Designer

Dan Powell is a web designer and developer whose work explores the way people interact and play within digital spaces. Dan, who works primarily in the realm of art and design, created and produced the Creatives Types of interactive digital experience.

Taking the test

So I thought I would have a play and therefore I took the test and this was my outcome:

I’m a Visionary: imagining the impossible

Here’s what it says about me:

  • Creative Strengths
  • I’m full of big ideas, ability to see potential and possibilities everywhere
  • Untapped Potential
  • Using my visions to fuel consistent daily action
  • Ideal Collaborator
  • The Thinker

Here’s a little more which might help you gain a little more insight into who I am as a Creative if you ever work with me.

I live in a world of infinite possibilities, preferring to see things not as they are but as they could be. Apparently, I know life is limited only by the boundaries of my own beliefs, and I would say this for sure, I’m driven to push the limits of, well, everything.

It continues to say that I’m Emotional, passion-driven, and full of ideas, and the VISIONARY combines a vivid imagination with a desire for practical solutions. (That’s real Deep)

My introspective and intuitive nature is balanced by a keen interest in the world around myself and a desire to contribute to society – check out my other blog “Believe in the Power of Creativity to Change the World” which will show you some of my contributions to society not just at a creative level but my carbon footprint.

I’ll tell you more about what the test says about me. It continues to say, I’m charismatic and expressive, (I do) love sharing my ideas and visions with others and creating a community around shared values and ideals.

What is my greatest gift? It’s the ability to see the spark of potential in everything and everyone and to inspire others to see it, too. I am able to guide people toward an invisible horizon with a rare generosity of spirit and strength of conviction, which is great as I see myself as a creative who gives back rather than holds everything in.

I’m also being told not to get stuck in the dreaming stage, VISIONARY. My greatest challenge—and true power—lies in learning to take consistent daily action to create the future envision for myself.

Seek out the “voice of reason” of the THINKER type to help me take a grounded, rational approach to the creative work I do. The THINKER’s deep perception and probing intellect lend a powerful clarity that can bring the visions into sharper focus.

Wow. That was some powerful insight into myself. I feel I can see myself in this and feel if you take the test you’ll be able to find your Type.

There are 8 Creative Types:
  • The Artist – seeing beauty, creating beauty
  • The Thinker – deep thoughts, big questions
  • The Adventurer – so much inspiration, so little time
  • The Maker – committed to your craft
  • The Producer – process is power
  • The Dreamer – the power of imagination unleashed
  • The Innovator – move, shake, disrupt, repeat
  • The Visionary – imagining the impossible

What creativity is and where it comes from is one of life’s great unsolved mysteries and with this quiz you might start to understand a little more behind your creativity.

Psychologists say that creative people have a tendency to avoid habit and routine—which means we’re constantly changing. We often feel misunderstood because we see the world differently from others—and indeed, neuroscience shows that our brains are literally wired differently.

While creative people are master shape-shifters, we do tend to have one particular shape that best expresses who we are at our core, with a unique set of perspectives, motivations, gifts, challenges, and ways of engaging with the world and other people.

So with this Test, “Creative Types” aims to identify the core personality in each of us. The test’s goal is to shine a light on the inner workings of different creative personalities types in a way that might help us better understand ourselves, our creative process, and our potential.

The creator of this wonderful test has said;

“There were countless different traits and characteristics to measure, but it all seemed to boil down into three core questions: Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Are you more intellect-dominant or emotion-dominant? Are you a dreamer or a doer?”

These three questions mixed to create a surprisingly clear and vivid combination of personality types. That became the Creative Types test formula.

Using these in your field of working as a creative you’ll get to know the strengths of yourself and the people around you. I will for sure be learning a few more aspects of the team here at Fifteen and putting their Creative Type to the Test when working with them.

So if you feel inspired to know which type you are then head over to My Creative Type and discover your true inner creative.

The post What’s Your Creative Type? appeared first on Fifteen.

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