Websmithian provides website design services for businesses and organizations in and around Stony Plain.
I’ve lived in the area since 1983 and resided and worked in Spruce Grove (AKA “Eastern Stony Plain”) since 2013. After owning a successful Edmonton IT business for over 27 years, I sold out and now have my one-man show, Websmithian. It’s my passion to help other businesses and organizations by designing websites — something that I’ve been doing for my own needs for over two decades. The websites I craft are good-looking and highly functional. More importantly, they also load fast, run exquisitely well on a smartphone, and get my clients found on Google and Bing.
Website Design Priorities
Most people have their design priorities set out when they first engage my services. They want a new or renovated website and typically have their concerns lined up in the following order of importance:
- Visual. They want their website to look good and positively reflect the company, brand, or organization.
- Functional. They want the new website to work properly.
- Responsive. That is, they want their website’s content to adapt itself to the screen of the device it’s being displayed upon. These days that could be a desktop, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.
- Speed. They want the website’s inherent media (copy, graphics, animation, video) to load quickly on the screen of the user’s device. And they want it that way no matter whether it was delivered through the air or via a cable.
- Visibility. They want their website to be easily found by those seeking it.
Well, I would insist on listing those priorities in pretty well the exact opposite order! Most folks believe that what’s visually displayed on the user’s screen is of the highest concern and the rest of the conditions follow. I totally disagree. So, why?
Consider the same list again, this time in reverse order and with a few explanations:
- Visibility. What good is your website if it can’t be found? If someone does a Google search using a specific search term and can’t find your website listed, what’s the point of it being fast, responsive, functional, and visually pleasing?!
A beautiful jewel that’s buried in the ground can’t be appreciated.
- Speed. If your website is found, yet takes longer to show up on the user’s screen than their patience can stand, what’s the point of it being responsive, functional, and good looking?!
Slow and steady may have won it for the tortoise – but it doesn’t in the internet race.
- Responsive. If your website is found and displayed nice and quickly on the user’s screen, yet the content doesn’t flow properly or isn’t easy to read or digest, why would anyone care if it looks good or not?!
It’s like trying to read beautifully written prose that doesn’t have proper punctuation. Frustrating.
- Visual. If your website has been found relatively easily, has popped up quickly on the user’s screen, and has adapted its content to that screen, then – and only then – are we going to care just how good it looks!
The Status Quo of Other Website Designers
The thing about most of the website designers in the world today is that they feel that their primary job is to please you. After all, you are their client and the customer is always right, right? Many of these website design people want you to believe that a good-looking website that’s totally aligned with your brand and your image and uses your corporate colours is going to serve you best. And it may! The trouble is, the person we should ultimately be trying to serve here is not you – it’s your customer. That is, both your current customers and those prospective customers that your website is supposed to be attracting.
The concerns and needs of those who we are enticing to visit your website are what we need to consider first and foremost here. Are they able to find us? When they find us, can they easily get the information they’re looking for? If you want some action from them, is the website compelling and easily enabling them to act?
Who In Stony Plain Does Website Design?
So, what do business owners and organization leaders in Stony Plain ask themselves when they need a new or renovated website? I would expect it’s typically something like:
‘Who can we get to make us a new, flashy, state-of-the-art website?’
Unfortunately, they then answer that inappropriate question with one of the following answers:
- ‘I’ll design and build it myself. After all, I know my business or organization better than anybody.’
Yes, just about anyone with a bit of computer knowledge these days can use Weebly, or Wix, or even WordPress to cobble themselves a passable website. And it might look really nice and function reasonably well. But they typically have no idea of the time and resources they’re going to have to put into learning whatever website design tool is before them. They also are about to be faced with learning how to create and resize graphics and put everything together to have things look cohesive and work properly. Not easy — and certainly very time-consuming.
- ‘I’ll give my employee the task of designing and building the website.’
Well, unless that person is fully experienced in that ability and has all of the knowledge of cobbling together a functioning website, you’re essentially paying someone to learn a skill that they will only use once. And, if that employee moves on, you’re going to be stuck – so you’d better assign two employees to this one-time task, just in case.
- ‘I’ll give the job to my nephew, Matthew! He knows lots about computers.’
Well, Matt might know a heckuva lot about computers and computing and how to modify them for gaming and such, but has he ever really designed and built a website before?
- ‘I think my next-door-neighbour’s kid has designed a couple of websites before, like for her church group or hip hop band. She could make us a new website.’
Yes, she probably could. But she won’t be thinking about how quickly it loads, whether it gets found on Google, or whether it’s mobile-friendly. And when the site has a glitch or you ask her to do some maintenance on the website a few months from now, well, you might find that she’s become more interested in being a hip hop superstar.
Website design is part art, part science. It’s both practical and creative. It requires someone with both a logical mind and an eye for design.
It’s my passion and I’d love to help you design your next website.