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We will also share interesting things you can apply to your business

Growing Your Business as a Freelance Designer

As a freelance designer, you don’t get a job – you have to make one. It is a challenge to build your personal brand and stand out in a crowded internet marketplace. Here are some ways designers can find freelance clients and build their personal brand on the side.

Online portfolio

You should be able to showcase your work as a designer. Building a professional online portfolio is the first step to being an independent artist/ entrepreneur. The credibility and quality of your work are often gauged through this portal so it is important for it stands out. Linking your portfolio to your email, social media channels and business cards increases the exposure of your work and the more people see the better it is for you and your business. Adobe Portfolio is a great platform to showcase your work. Its seamless integration with sites like Behance, Lightroom, Photoshop, and illustrator makes it easier for you to quickly and simply build a website.

Dribble and Behance were built for designers who want to showcase their work and get feedback from a creative community. They are an excellent gateway to reach professionals in the industry and have your work seen by thousands of people who may eventually refer you to their peers, colleagues or others.

Have your designs speak for you. So when you fill up your public portfolio, make sure you showcase your best work. Once you are able to create an impact on the viewer, you will notice a significant rise in the number of inquiries about your work.

Freelancing is one of the career paths that rely heavily on referrals. Good designers who are able to produce high-quality work and who are reliable usually gets referred.

Here are a few good portfolio examples for you to get you started

Lotta Nieminen

Kimi Lewis

Marketplaces

Internet market-places such as Upwork, angel list, design inc. etc connects freelancers with clients from all walks of life. Having the flexibility to bid on contracts and set your terms makes it easy for designers to find projects that interest them. Most clients prefer to work with skillful workers within the country they reside in. To have a higher chance of success, it is useful to write a proposal that tells the client about the kind of work you do and what you are able to offer to them. Working towards a top-rated status can also help you get access to the best paying jobs in the internet marketplace.

Building an online presence – Create content, start blogging!

Writing thoughtfully about your work and about the topics you are interested in is a quick way to garner credibility, awareness, and understanding viewpoints about your brand. This will also help you position yourself as an expert in your field. When you write about things you are passionate about, you imperatively are able to offer insights, opinions about the subjects you care about. Clients like to work with interesting people and having your personality shine through your posts is a sure shot way to gain their trust.

Building an audience takes time. Being patient, consistent and thoughtfully marketing your viewpoints are often encouraged when starting a blog. You work doesn’t end when you publish a post. Promoting your blog and posting it on various social channels will help you get noticed by professionals in the industry.

Networking – Find the type of people you want to work with and find ways to socialize with them. The best way to seek out clients is to go out to events and meet people. Socializing helps you make real connections with people that may turn into successful leads. Most organizations are looking to hire skillful workers they can trust and relate to so never underestimate the power of human connection.

Here are some places to start meeting people:

• Meetups

Online communities

• Classes

• Cafes

• Parties

• Slack groups/ Twitter

• Conferences

Once you are able to build connections and secure a client base then word of mouth comes into play in sustaining your business. This takes times, effort, great work and paying attention to the quality of your interactions.
With a combination of networking and word of mouth, you should be able to start getting offers that drive you and your business forward.

Getting freelance clients and building your personal brand takes time, effort and patience. But it is a highly rewarding career option if you chose to make it one. Here is a summary of all of the steps you can take to turn this idea into a reality.

• Build your portfolio: let your work speak for you. Make it as visually interesting as possible. Share it everywhere.

• Create a public profile on web spaces that help you drive traffic to your site. A few examples are Behance, Dribble, Red bubble etc

• Learn how to use and navigate your way through the internet marketplace. Use Upwork, angel list, and design inc to your advantage. Use these platforms to showcase your work and find clients that you want to work with

• Start meeting people. Go to events, Meetups and make connections

• Start blogging: write about things you are passionate about. Create content that inspires and educate audiences.

  Image Inq   Dec 04, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More

16 Books Every Graphic Designer Should Read

As graphic designers, we are constantly looking to learn and refine our skill sets. The wealth of inspiration and knowledge that can be found in a good book is usually incomparable to the readily available content on the internet. Whether you are an established design professional or a beginner who is looking to learn new skills, we recommend this list of 12 inspiring graphic design books to fuel that creative spark.

This book is by Adrian Shaughnessy. This legendary graphic designer is able to provide his insights and valuable advice through this book. This book can be used as a guide to get you through this profession. It also covers a series of topics including how to establish your design career, insights into the creative process, how to run your business and on how to become a better designer.

This book encourages you to take a look at typefaces with scrutiny. Understanding their rich history, learning about their power and how it can make or break a design are a few topics that are covered in this book

This book is one of Alan fletchers best-known work. He offers his take on how to think about everything from color to composition. His remarkable thought process is examined in this prose and it also includes a series of mind teasers, names and visual puns assembled from his personal notebook and diaries.

4. How to use graphic design to sell things, explain things, make things look better, make people laugh, make people cry, and every once in a while change the world by Michael Beirut

This book demonstrates the author’s eclectic approach to graphic design. Inspiring and informative, authoritative and liberating – it has become the graphic design bible for most designers today.

This book looks at visual communication solutions based on a vibrant palette. Our eyes are naturally drawn to colors and they have the ability to invoke a broad range of emotions. Through a colorful showcase, this book is able to take the reader on a journey into what makes a color a powerful tool that is able to catch the viewers eye and create compelling sensations from near and far.

Fonts and typefaces are designed with tiniest details in mind. They have an emotive quality that is usually associated with its form and function. Just like an illustration is able to capture an intangible experience, fonts have personalities that create trust and confidence. This book by Sarah Hyndman talks about the science and art behind how fonts influence you and explains why certain fonts evoke particular experience or associations.


How do you forge your own path after graduation? This book delves deep into the various strategies that students and graduates are taking to succeed in their design careers. Available in both Kindle and hard cover.

This book gives us a peek into the world of graphic design students and how they feel about their education and profession. About fifty influential designers share their experiences about their student and professional lives

This book offers a beautiful visual representation of the graphic culture from North Korea. Print materials from packaging to hotel brochures, luggage tags are showcased in this book. Nick Bonner is an avid collector of North Korean graphic ephemera and has collected thousands of items that provide a rare insight into the state-controlled graphics output.

This book revolves around 21 thought-provoking phrases transformed into typographic works for clients around the world. Available in Kindle, hard cover and paperback.

This book covers all the key elements that make a great design. It features work from designers such as Paul brand, Stefan Sagmeister, and Neville Brody. Available in Kindle and paperback.

This book showcases the best of editorial and newspaper graphic design. In addition the beautiful display of editorial illustrations, this book discusses the daily challenges of journalists and editorial designers.

This book explores the power of graphic art and illustrations and its importance in our everyday lives. It is a compilation of T-shirt graphic, toys, shoes, signs, everyday objects and ephemera. The cover of the book itself draws the reader into the beautiful, special and intriguing graphic that is individually stickered by hand.

This explores comical questions and attempts to find ways to answer them via an array of graphical infographics. This book is adventurous and inspiring at the same time. It is filled with heroes and villains. This book offers a rare glimpse into the world of most popular and long-running comics and graphic novels out there.

This book delves deep into the process behind graphic design, its impact on society, what works, what doesn’t and most importantly why. It is a collection of Rands best graphical work from the thirties to the present. It starts with his thoughts on design moves on to his work with packaging, advertising, branding, and typography.

This book provides an in-depth analysis of the process of brand development and implementation. It is divided into three sections, covering topics about brand fundamentals, process basics, and case studies. This best selling guide to branding includes 100 branding subjects, checklists, tools, and diagrams, 50 case studies that describe goals, process, strategy, solution, and results and over 700 illustrations. Available in Kindle, hardcover and digital format.

  Image Inq   Nov 30, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More

Slow Website? How to Improve Site Speed

The speed of your website means more than just convenience for visitors. Site speed can make or break the success of your website. Without acceptable page load times, visitors will become impatient and leave your site, or worse yet, not hang around to give you a first glance.

Slow site speed is seen as a major red flag. So much so that search engines, like Google, will drop your site down in rank to provide their users with a quicker solution to the information they are seeking. Beyond simply inconveniencing visitors, slow site speed may significantly affect many related factors like UX, bounce rates, SEO and overall site traffic.

What can you do to identify areas for improvement for your site’s load speed? It all starts with understanding the factors that impact site speed.

Factors That Affect Site Speed

how to improve site speed

how to improve site speed

Server or Hosting

The web hosting company and its accompanying server capacity for your website will have a direct impact on the speed of website loading for visitors. Small websites might use shared hosting while larger websites may need to use a virtual private server to maximize the benefits of shared hosting. Sites that are larger yet will need to have private dedicated servers to support the necessary file storage and daily traffic. Choosing the right hosting provider, package and server solution will set the entire ground floor for your site’s performance, especially in terms of page load speed.

File Storage

The larger the size of your files the more that is required of your site to load each page. Keeping your files stored efficiently will reduce unneeded files, large files and therefore limit the overall requirements on your site’s server. By reducing the number of unnecessary files and compressing larger files such as images, videos and other graphics, you place less strain on your site to quickly load pages.

Plugins

Plugins that need a lot of assets to load will make your website slow. Make sure that clean code is doing the heavy lifting of site performance as much as possible as to not rely on plugins. Deactivate and remove all unnecessary plugins.

Browser Compatibility

Older types of browsers may have compatibility issues with certain HTML strategies. Catering to older browsers by implementing antiquated coding tactics will greatly hurt your site speed.

The volume of Traffic

High traffic translates to higher bandwidth use. If your site is not equipped with sufficient bandwidth, it could lead to slow site performance. Make sure your hosting service offers the necessary bandwidth to support your site traffic.

Methods of Speeding Up Your Website

is my site slow

is my site slow

Minimize and Combine Files

Meticulously comb over your code to ensure that there are no opportunities eliminate unnecessary files or combine code to perform more efficiently.

Use Asynchronous Loading for JavaScript and CSS Files

These scripts can be loaded in two different ways. Traditional HTML practices tells you to include JavaScript in the head. This creates an initial delay to the rest of the body. By implementing asynchronous loading, you allow for Java and CSS to begin loading simultaneously with the rest of the HTML. It requires proper ordering of code. This can be challenging but is the new standard in modern site development and will greatly increase your load speeds.

Delay JavaScript loading

This means that you stop the loading of external JavaScript files until the entire site page has loaded. If you can start to convey your message through body text, it may provide the necessary information visitors need to stay through the rest of the loading.

Reduce the Time for First Byte Loading

This is the time that a website takes before it starts loading. This initial loading paves the way for a either an acceptable or unacceptable load speed. This often comes down to the hosting provider and package that you have chosen for your site.

Reduce Time for Server Response

The amount of time that your DNS takes to be found is a factor to be considered. This depends on the speed of your DNS service provider. Therefore, choose DNS service providers with higher speeds.

Reliable Hosting Provider

It is essential to choose the right hosting provider for your specific needs. With the increase in the traffic of a website, there is a need to move from a shared host to VPN and then to a dedicated server. This reduces the number of shared parts of the server thus increasing load speeds.

Run a Compression Audit

The smaller the size of your files, the faster your site will load. This is especially the case for sites with heavy media use. By compressing files, the upload time is reduced significantly. Periodically investigate the size of your files while also maintaining file size best practices when uploading content to your site.

Enable Browser Caching

This is done to second and subsequent visitors to a website. The information is stored in their respective hard discs so that in the second and any subsequent visits, some info can be fetched directly from the hard disk. This reduces the time needed for loading.

Reduce the Size of Images

By reducing the size of images, this reduces the time required for them to load. This makes the browser load faster as the data for the image is minimized.

Use External Hosting Platforms

Large files, like videos, can be hosted externally from the CDN server that you are using. This will reduce the data in your server and result in improved load speeds.

In a busy online landscape, you need to take every step to achieve a competitive advantage over rival sites. Forcing new site visitors to wait through a slowly loading page, is a surefire way to skyrocket your bounce rate and send potential leads to the competition.

Leave no stone unturned, especially in terms of site speed. Regularly audit your website’s load speeds to ensure it’s up-to-par as you continue to add new content and files to your site. Make the necessary changes to your site to maintain optimal site speed.

  Image Inq   Nov 28, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More

The 10 Most Popular Google Fonts of 2018

Google Fonts is an open source collection of nearly 900 font families that are used by graphic designers, web designers and content specialists for both digital and print design projects. Google Fonts have been downloaded over 19 Billion times by users. All the fonts are available for download from the Google Fonts GitHub repository or you can download the font library into your server. While companies like Adobe and others have followed suit and built their own font directories, Google Fonts remains the top choice for personal and professional use due to its breadth of quality open source font options.

As content controls your messaging and the purpose for your advertisement, blog post, logo or general brand communications, it’s important to pick the right font. Without a personal representation or auditory source for context surrounding a message, font style can help establish tone and create an immersive experience for visitors. This helps to create a connection and establish brand identity.

There is no detail too small to overlook. Selecting the default font in any scenario is a surefire way to blend in with the rest of the buzz on the internet. If you want to stand out and truly represent your brand properly, you need to carefully select a font that meets the need of the moment. Whether that moment is a sales page or a header picture, a font can make or break the user perception and engagement with your content.

There are a number of font varieties within Google Fonts, therefore, finding the right font for your website or graphic designs can be tedious. Establishing a few go-to fonts can make decision making more efficient for marketing and creative teams. For your convenience, we’ve put together a short list of 10 of the most popular Google Fonts for graphic designers, web designers and marketing professionals.

10 Best Google Fonts for Designers This Year

#1 Open Sans

top free fonts

top free fonts

It’s one sans serif typeface font mainly optimized for web, print media and for mobile to make characters appear bold and legible. Open Sans is more of a professional and clean looking font. There are 10 different styles of Open Sans font – from light to bold.

#2 Roboto

best free fonts

best free fonts

Roboto is also a sans-serif font which is has been popularized as the standard font for the Android operating system. Similar to Open Sans, Roboto font has 12 different styles – the standard Roboto family of fonts can also be used along with Roboto Slab and Roboto Condensed family. Roboto font is used across 20+ million web pages online today.

#3 Lato

graphic design fonts

graphic design fonts

In Polish, Lato means “Summer”. Lato font was developed by a Polish designer. When he started his work, it was initially designed as a set of corporate fonts for a client. Later, the designer gave the font a different style and made the font publicly available. The font contains a combination of strong characters and semi-rounded details around the edges of the letters. Lato font is used by 9+ million web pages on the internet.

#4 Raleway

best fonts for websites

best fonts for websites

Raleway is a font specially intended for large size text and headings. Raleway has 9 different font types varying based on the weight. The Raleway font is used across more than 8 million websites as of today. The download offers both TrueType and OpenType formats.

#5 Montserrat

free google fonts

free google fonts

The Montserrat font was designed by Julieta Ulanovsky from Buenos Aires after finding inspiration from the old posters and signs in the Montserrat neighborhood. Montserrat has a classic urban style and well designed for making body text and headline content. Montserrat has 18 different font types and the font has two sister families called Alternates and Subrayada. Montserrat is also used in about 9 million websites as of today.

#6 PT Sans

top google fonts

top google fonts

PT, the short form of ParaType, started in 1998 as a project for the “Public Types in Russian Federation.” In addition to PT Sans, there is also the PT Serif font. Most of the PT Sans font usage comes from Russia.

#7 Source Sans Pro

best google fonts

best google fonts

The Sans Pro is amongst the most commonly used fonts for application user interfaces. Using this font makes the text highly readable in the user interface. A sans-serif typeface font, the font has 12 different style variations. This font is the first ever developed open source typeface font by Adobe. More than 4 million websites feature the Source Sans Pro font.

#8 Oswald

free fonts for designers

free fonts for designers

The main intention of the Oswald font is its ability to be used across web browsers of all devices such as desktops, laptops and mobile devices. The Oswald font is known to have replaced the historic Alternate Gothic’ sans serif font. Over five and a half million websites on the internet make use of the Oswald font today.

#9 Lora

graphic design fonts

graphic design fonts

Lora is one of the best suited fonts that will work perfectly on multiple screens as well as in print mediums. Lora font has 4 different styles and the font is best suited for the body text content in web pages. The curvy nature of the font with the serif makes this font look different and elegant when compared to other fonts. Over 1.5 million websites use the Lora font to showcase their content.

#10 Work Sans

fonts for designers

fonts for designers

Work Sans is a font best suited for websites and web page content (on-screen content). This font comes with 9 different styles. The best recommended size range is between the 14-48px for the Regular and others in the middle of the family. The boldest fonts can be best suited for print as well as web.

These are just a few from the vast list of the fonts that are available under the Google Fonts brand. Each font has its signature look and can apply to different purposes according to each brand’s specific needs. As with all graphic design projects, it comes down to what suits a brand’s identity and the purpose for each particular marketing campaign, social post, online page, etc.

Find the fonts that work for your purpose and explore the ways in which that font can help tell your story.

  Image Inq   Nov 26, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More

The Nuances of Typography: Ligatures, Diphthongs, Swash Characters & Variables Fonts

Typefaces are designed keeping the tiniest details in mind. It is also the emotive quality of these individualistic typefaces that help us express and communicate ideas with clarity. Our fascination with letterforms and typography and using it as a tool for expression has evolved with time. So has the typefaces and how we use them today. Here are some examples of typographic elements and nuances that are quite often overlooked by designers but their relevance and importance haven’t changed.

1.  Ligatures

Ligatures are two or more intersecting characters fused to form a single character. Here is an example to illustrate this idea. Here, by combining e and t, we form a Latin word “et” meaning “and”

Ligatures are a response to a design problem. Colliding characters may find relevance in certain aspects of design but does not support in communicating a brands message with clarity. When working with serif types, it might make sense to turn on ligatures. When using Photoshop, they can be turned on from the control panel or in the basic character formats.

2.  Diphthongs

Diphthongs are ligatures in their decorative form. They visually represent the pronunciation of a combined vowel. They can be applied through the Glyphs panel.

3.  Swash characters

Intended for use at the end of a word or a line, when used sparingly they can add a flourish to headlines, titles and chapter headings. Some italic styles have swashes and can be checked opening the glyphs panel, under the show menu.

In the world of typographic experimentation, we come across a variety of styles of form and function. Here are a few font styles that have made an impact in the world of web type.

4.Variable fonts

Variations in weight, width, and height and its ability to act as multiple font styles has helped improved page load times and the reading experience of the visitor. Variable fonts such as the one above by D-stype foundry, which lets you control the size of its Serifs. By playing with serif and sans serif styles like the gif below, you are able to create a unique reading experience.

Typography Examples:

Anurati

This is a futuristic typeface by Emerson Richard. He adds visual interest to his forms by playing with the idea of the law of closure. Set against this backdrop this font is able to instantly take us on a futuristic ride.

Click here to download Anurati

Blanka

Blanka is another font type designed by Emerson Richard. The form follows a similar theme with its structural geometry and bits of missing pieces.

Click here to download Blanka

Elixia

Elixia is a typeface built using hexagons. It’s a decorative display font that comes in both upper and lower case. The style creates a futuristic feel without losing touch with its archaic form.

Click here to download Elixia

Luciana

This is a monospaced font with light strokes coupled with a set of swashes to give it a feminine and dynamic feel.

Click here to download Luciana

Stellar

The versatility of this font makes it one of my favorites. By pairing it with the right type and treatment you are able to change its look and feel dramatical.

Click here to download Stellar

Arkhip

This font features letterforms with wavelike curves. This creates a sense of movement and visual interest to this typeface.

Click here to download Arkhip

Tuesday Night

This font by Font Forestry is perfect for designing invitations. With its extra large, flowing capitals, this beautifully handcrafted font is a great addition the script typeface category.

Click here to download Tueday night

Mindfully

This beautiful and elegant font has a calligraphic feel to it. This typeface can be used for more than just invitations and would work great when designing custom postcards with a hand-lettered feel.

Click here to download Mindfully

Halogen

This structured typeface comes in both all caps and small caps. With an industrial feel to it, this futuristic font style is often used in designs that need to stand out.

Click here to download Halogen

Rustico

An easy font choice for web design, branding and social media banners. Rustico is the go to typeface for when you are looking for something bold with a hand-lettered feel.

Click here to download Rustico

Hanseif

Another bold sans serif typeface with a great vintage feel to it. Comes in two different styles — regular and rough. If you like texture, you’ll like this font. This is a versatile font and when paired with a complimentary style is makes the design pop.

Click here to download Hansief 

In addition to these futuristic fonts, Adobe just added 665 classic faces from 41 font families to its type kit library. ITV Avant- grade gothic, ITV Benguit, gill sans, Nova, plantain, Rockwell nova, trade gothic next and Sabin to name a few.

Not all typefaces are created equal. You can find thousands of typefaces on the internet. Finding the perfect typeface that both deliver in aesthetics and function is not an easy task. Text being one of the primary ways for communication, designers often devote their entire careers to type. With well documented online resources for typography, exploring fonts and font combinations have never been easier.  Before choosing a font style, it’s important to identify the purpose of your design. As typography is key to setting the mood, tone, and the style of a design, it would have to align with the purpose of the project.

Information about your user’s interests and cultural upbringing could influence decisions you make for your type. Identifying your audience is important as their attributes will influence your font options. Understanding the motivations behind each font and pairing it with well-researched design elements will help you create designs that are engaging, meaningful and relevant.

  Image Inq   Nov 22, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More

10 Commandments for WordPress Blogging Beginners

If you’re wondering how to start a blog, look no further than the most popular publishing platform on the market, WordPress. With more market share than all other content management systems combined, there is no question which CMS is best for bloggers both new and seasoned. The reason why 27% of the internet is powered by WordPress, is because it has the simplicity to support blogging for beginners and the capacity to run massive corporate sites.

At all levels, WordPress offers an extremely user-friendly platform for content creation. For those looking to generate a professional and high functioning website, WordPress offers a variety of themes, plugins and features to achieve any visualization or function you desire for your site to have. On the same hand, templates can enable WP rookies to simply input their data and/or drag and drop content to create attractive, user-friendly and high performing blogs.

If you’re a beginner and want to know how to blog, outlined below are the Ten Commandments for WordPress blogging basics for beginners.

1. Thou Shalt Have A Great About Us Page

WordPress blog must haves

WordPress blog must haves

As much as it’s important to outline what your blog is about, visitors also want to know about the creator. It doesn’t matter who you are, the “About Us” page is important as it helps differentiate your blog from those that cover similar topics. It helps them to not only connect with your page but also you. Your “About Us” page should be unique, informative and genuine because it’s one of the first pages a new visitor will click on.

2. Thou Shalt Change Your Admin Account

After successfully installing your WordPress blog, go to the Admin Account and rename it. A mistake that beginners often make is failing to rename the default Admin name which makes a site an easy hacking target. It’s important to rename the username and ensure that it’s different from the display name of your account.

3. Thou Shalt Have Only Necessary Categories

blogging dos and don'ts

blogging dos and don'ts

One of the main WordPress basics that you should keep in mind is that your site shouldn’t have numerous categories. Only have a few categories that are relevant to your page. Extra categories may confuse or repel visitors. Having unnecessary data on your site will also create more information for browsers to scan when loading your site. Slow load speeds are also another major red flag for internet users that can quickly lose your blog potential loyal followers.

4. Thou Shalt Only Download Themes From Verified Sources

There is a wide range of websites that offer WordPress themes. Premium themes offer the highest level of autonomy and customization. However, many free themes or free versions of premium themes still offer premium quality designs and overall functionality. It’s important to choose themes that are dependable and regularly updated to suite the most recent versions of the necessary plugins that all WP sites utilize. Some of the reputable sites that you can download premium themes include WP Explorer, WooThemes, and ThemeForest among others.

5. Thou Shalt Avoid Installing Many Plugins

blogging for beginners

blogging for beginners

If you are learning how to blog, one of the few and interesting features that you may come across are plugins. Plugins give you the capability to add functions and features to your WordPress site as if you were a professional developer. However, don’t get overexcited with them and install multiple unnecessary plugins. Only choose plugins that are compatible with your site and theme. Extra plugins will quickly slow down your site and generate a bulky admin panel that will be harder to navigate.

6. Thou Shalt Avoid Overcrowding The Sidebar

If you are learning how to blog, it’s important to know that your sidebar should be well organized and spacious. It shouldn’t be overcrowded with social media posts, adverts, contacts and testimonials. The sidebar should clearly outline the vital aspects of your page. It should be junk-free and have links that only direct users to relevant information.

7. Thou Shalt Ensure Your Permalink Structure Is Changed

The default permalink that is displayed on the URL when a person is reading your blog makes it difficult for search bots and readers to determine which post is being referenced by the URL. The default permalink usually ends with – “=123” and this doesn’t help to create distinction when it comes to posts. You can change the permalink structure by going to settings which is found on the dashboard and then the permalinks section. There are about six options and you can select the option that suits your posts.

8. Thou Shalt Ensure Your Site Is Updated

setup WP blog

setup WP blog

This is among the top WordPress basics that few people ignore. A lot of users usually think that after they have installed the software, that’s it. However, WordPress usually upgrades the software including the plugins and themes constantly. Each upgraded version has improved features as well as functionality. WordPress allows for updates to ensure that it continues to stay atop the cutting-edge of publishing platforms and web design. Always ensure that the WordPress site you are using is the latest version. You can check the version of your current site by scrolling down to the bottom of the page. Note that if there is a new update, there will be a clear prompt ushering you to do so.

9. Thou Shalt Back Up Your Site

One of the common blogging basics that most people tend to ignore is creating a backup of their site. When you set up a WordPress blog and especially if its SEO oriented, it’s necessary that you back it up. This should be one of your top priorities during the installation process. Note that you cannot fully rely on your site’s hosting company for complete backups. There is a wide range of plugins that can assist you in establishing a successful back up version of your site.

10. Thou Shalt Have a “Contact Us” Page

set up a WordPress blog

set up a WordPress blog

It’s important for readers to be able to get in contact with you if they have any suggestions, opinions, questions etc. Building a brand requires a certain level of engagement with your audience. One of WordPress blog basics is to ensure that you have a “Contact Us” page. This helps to help you to build a personal connection and generates loyal subscribers. The Contact Me page could have an email address, your phone number, social media profiles, a contact form and a subscribe function to gather an email list and generate as many points of contact with your viewers as possible.

Don’t play the guess and check game and miss out on significant viewership when you launch. Hit the ground running by following these essentials of blogging on WordPress.

  Image Inq   Nov 20, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More

Shopify vs. Bigcommerce: Detailed Comparison

Do you want to launch an online shop and don’t know where to start? If your budget is on the minimum and you don’t want to spend a lot on hiring a web designer to create your website, e-commerce platforms like Bigcommerce and Shopify may be the best solution for you.

E-Commerce platforms offer you all the tools you need to manage an online store for a monthly fee. They may be the best solution if your budget is limited and if you’re just launching your online shop business. There are pros and cons to using these tools, that’s why we decided to present them to you and show you all of their most important features in one place.

Today we decided to compare some of the most popular e-commerce platforms – Shopify vs. Bigcommerce – and give you an overview of their features, payment options, fees and pricing plans, templates, app stores, and more. We gathered here some of their best features as well, and analyzed their pros and cons so you can get a balanced overview of what they have to offer.

We hope this detailed comparison will be useful and help you make a decision on the best e-commerce platform for your business.

Bigcommerce

Why choose an e-commerce platform for your online shop?

Bigcommerce and Shopify are e-commerce platforms that offer a 360 approach to online shopping. For a monthly fee, you get a complete package with all the tools you need to manage your online store. You don’t have to worry about spending thousands of dollars for a website design, with the help of these SaaS (software as service) tools you can launch your online store and start selling your products online in just one day.

Whether you sell digital or physical goods, these platforms can help you reach customers from all over the world. No coding knowledge required, adding products to your store or customizing the themes to fit your brand can be done via easy to use, intuitive interfaces.

BigCommerce Pricing

Pricing Plans

There are 4 different pricing plans for Bigcommerce:

  • Bigcommerce Standard: $29.95/mo
  • Bigcommerce Plus: $79.95/mo
  • Bigcommerce Pro: $249.95/mo
  • Bigcommerce Enterprise: varies

All Bigcommerce plans include no transaction fees, unlimited products, file storage and bandwidth, unlimited staff accounts.

The Standard plan offers various sales channels (branded online store, eBay and Amazon, a point of sale, Facebook/Instagram, Pinterest, Google Shopping. It includes the following features: responsive website, single-page checkout, Apple Pay, coupons, discounts and gift cards, shipping label discounts, real-time shipping quotes, professional reporting tools, blog, product ratings and reviews, free Sitewide HTTPs and Dedicated SSL, shipperHQ shipping rules engine. It covers up to $50k online sales per year, lets you choose from leading payment gateways and you also get 24/7 live agent support.

The Plus plan offers all of the above, plus customer groups and segmentation, abandoned cart saver, stored credit cards. It covers up to %150k sales per year.

The Pro plan offers all of the above, plus Google customer reviews, faceted search (product filtering), custom SSL. It covers up to $400k sales per year.

The Enterprise plan includes all of the above, plus custom facets, price lists and unlimited API Calls.

Shopify Pricing

Shopify Pricing

Shopify has 5 pricing plans with different features each:

  • Lite: $9/mo
  • Basic Shopify: $29/mo
  • Shopify: $79 /mo
  • Advanced Shopify: $299/mo
  • Shopify Plus: varies

The Basic Shopify plan offers the following features: 2 staff accounts, unlimited number of products, unlimited file storage, + $49 retail package, a good Shopify Shipping discount, print shipping labels, 24/7 support, fraud analysis, manual order creation, discount codes, website and blog, abandoned cart recovery, and a free SSL certificate.

The Shopify plan offers the following features: 5 staff accounts, unlimited number of products, unlimited file storage, + $49 retail package, a better Shopify Shipping discount, print shipping labels, 24/7 support, fraud analysis, manual order creation, discount codes, website and blog, abandoned cart recovery, a free SSL certificate, gift cards and professional reports.

The Advanced Shopify plan offers the following features: 15 staff accounts, unlimited number of products, unlimited file storage, + $49 retail package, the best Shopify Shipping discount, print shipping labels, 24/7 support, fraud analysis, manual order creation, discount codes, website and blog, abandoned cart recovery, a free SSL certificate, gift cards, professional reports, an advanced report builder and third-party calculated shipping rates.

As you can see, the Shopify plans are by far a lot cheaper, but you should analyze the included features in each plan, because the Lite plan, for example, only gets you an embeddable shop button to add to your own website.

Shopify has a free trial period for 14 days with no credit card required, while Bigcommerce offers a 15 days free trial period.

shopify vs bigcommerce

shopify vs bigcommerce

Fees

Transaction fees

Bigcommerce has a no transaction fees on all plans. On the other hand, Shopify charges you a fee if you don’t use their Shopify Payments system. The 0% free available for the Shopify Payment System works only if you live in one of the following countries: United States, Puerto Rico, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore. If you don’t, then you have to use a third-party payment system and you will be charged depending on your plan: 2% for Basic Shopify, 1% for Shopify and 0.5% for the Advanced Shopify plan.

Credit card fees

Besides the transaction fees we mentioned above, credit card fees will also be applied. These are the fees charged by your payment processor for all credit card payments and vary depending on the provider you use. They vary from 2.4% + 30c per transaction to 2.9% + 30c per transaction for Shopify and from 2.2% + 30c per transaction to 2.9% + 30c per transaction for Bigcommerce. These are the US rates; if you’re from another country different rates may apply.

The good part about Bigcommerce is the competitive rates that decrease as you grow. They give some special credit and debit card processing rates with PayPal to help you reduce costs, thus as you grow, your rates will get lower — down to 2.2% + $0.30 per transaction.

Ecommerce Software

Templates

Free templates

The free templates gallery is quite restricted for both Shopify and Bigcommerce, the first offering 10 free templates while the latter only 7. Shopify’s free templates are more varied than the ones offered by Bigcommerce. If you take a closer look you will notice that the 7 free templates offered by Bigcommerce are in fact just 2 with different variations in terms of color.

Premium templates

Both platforms offer plenty of premium templates you can choose from with prices ranging from $140 to $180 for Shopify and $145 to $235 for Bigcommerce.

Bigcommerce comes with a templates library with over 100 themes, but these include the variations, so in fact, there are less unique themes offered. Shopify provides you with 50+ templates to choose from, each with a different and unique design.

Once you have selected a template, you can customize it to fit your branding. Fortunately, there is no need for a web designer to do this, the editing interfaces are extremely intuitive and easy to use, so no coding is required unless you want to make some drastic changes to the designs.

Free Ecommerce Templates BigCommerce

Features

Bigcommerce and Shopify offer a wide range of features that give you everything you need to manage your online store. Here are their best features you should analyze before deciding which one of these e-commerce platforms is the best solution for your business.

E-commerce website management

Both platforms offer a full-featured e-commerce solution via a content management system that’s easy to use. You can add products, categories, add and edit pages, launch your blog, create offers and discounts, add SKU for each product, and more, all from a single dashboard.

You can easily manage your orders and inventory via a powerful control panel. The information is always accurate and you have complete control over your stock. Also, both platforms are ideal for drop shipping businesses.

supermarket template BigCommerce

Bigcommerce’s top features:

  • Integrated with Doba and Ordoro.
  • Integrated with ShipperHQ and ShipStation for shipping, Avalara for tax automation, and more.
  • Varied payment processor providers. Plus, it 0% transaction fees on all plans, no matter the provider you opt for.
  • Supports Braintree for processing credit card payments.
  • Integrated with digital wallets.
  • Option to edit the products in bulk.
  • Unlimited products options.
  • CSV and XML imports
  • One-on-one launch services
  •  One-page checkout
  • Lets you sync your inventory with Facebook, Pinterest, eBay, Amazon and Square POS
  • Loaded with marketing features
  • Optimized for conversion
  • Migration and onboarding help
  • Dedicated account management for Enterprise plans
  • Can be easily connected with apps for ERP, CRM, 3PL and more.
  • Support when you need it

Ecommerce Website Templates

Shopify’s top features:

  • You get customer profiles, customer accounts and customer groups features.
  • You can easily connect your shop with Amazon, Rakuten Super Logistics, and Shipwire.
  • It lets you fulfill multiple orders with just one click.
  • Integrated with Ordoro, Inventory Source, and eCommHub.
  • You can easily refund orders and the inventory is updated in an instant.
  • Comes with an app so you can manage your store from anywhere.
  • You can send automated store emails.
  • Smart categories. The product categories you create are automatically populated with the products based on the filters that were set.
  • Unlimited bandwidth, product inventory, and customer data
  • 24/7 award-winning customer support
  • Shopify Shipping and discounted rates
  • Comprehensive dashboard
  • Built-in SEO features
  • Automated marketing tools and free educational materials
  • Add, list, edit, and organize your products with ease and track the inventory
  • A drag-and-drop ordering of product images
  • Keyword tags for optimized searching inside the store
  • Integrated with Fulfillment by Amazon.
  • Customizable views of your orders f
  • Real-time notifications for orders using WebHooks
  • Order cancellation with automated chargeback options
  • Asset system with a lot of features
  • CSV imports

Multi-channel ecommerce solution

Multi-channel selling

Bigcommerce lets you sync your inventory with Facebook, Pinterest, eBay, Amazon and Square POS and process all the orders from a single dashboard. You can easily sell on social media and other marketplaces.

Shopify offers over 20 channels to sell on with the Shopify Plus plan. You can set up instant purchases through Facebook, Instagram, messaging apps, Pinterest, and more.

Content marketing

Both platforms offer a blog option to grow your organic traffic. Having a blog and posting on it regularly, along with a strong and efficient content marketing strategy can really help your business in the long run.

The blog feature offered by Shopify is a tad better than the one Bigcommerce offers, because it also supports an RSS feed, so you can easily send automated RSS newsletter campaigns to your readers. Other than that, the blog options are pretty similar.

Analytics

Any successful online business needs detailed reports in order to analyze what’s working, what doesn’t and how to fix it. Both of these platforms give you the tools you need to create reports about your customers, marketing strategies, search data, finance and even abandoned carts.

There is a custom reports option for Shopify, if you need even more features, while Bigcommerce comes with the Insights tool that’s more detailed and which can be accessed for an additional fee that varies in cost depending on the plan you’re on.

Google Analytics integration is offered by both platforms.

Ecommerce Apps Marketplace

Ecommerce Apps Marketplace

App stores

App stores are available for both Shopify and Bigcommerce and will help you add more features to your online store or easily integrate them with other popular and useful apps.

The App store offered by Shopify contains over 2000 apps, while the one offered by Bigcommerce only 600+.

You can use apps for various purposes. For example, if you need shipping apps like ShipperHQ, Ordoro, Endicia, ShipStation and ShippingEasy, you can integrate them with ease via Bigcommerce. ERP integrations with NetSuite, Brightpearl and Microsoft Dynamics, accounting apps integrations with QuickBooks, Xero and Sage or CRM integrations with Salesforce, NetSuite and Zoho are also available.

if you need some extra marketing and conversion-focused apps, you will get plenty to choose from. Start A/B testing, connect Hubspot, add retargeting tools, and more.

If by any chance you won’t find an app for your needs, both platforms offer powerful APIs so you can build your custom integrations.

So here is our detailed comparison between Bigcommerce and Shopify. We hope this Shopify vs. Bigcommerce review will be useful to you and will help you decide which platforms offer the tools you need to launch your online store.

  Image Inq   Nov 16, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More

How to Choose the Best Website Template for Your Website

A web template can be described as a boxed or pre-designed webpage which can be used by any company, organization or individual to connect or plug in whatever images or copy they want to, to create their own unique site. Web templates help both developers and web designers to automatically provide custom pages that meet the basic needs for companies, with much less hassle than coding a brand new website from scratch. Templates also allow non-developers and novice website administrators to create their website vision without professional assistance.

Because templates are such a smart, affordable idea for many companies or individuals looking to create new websites, there are thousands of them to choose from when building (or re-building) your site. The question becomes: How do I choose a template and when I find one I like, how do I know it will meet my needs? While the answer to these questions is different person to person, we’ve put together 6 crucial considerations you should make to determine whether a template is a good fit for your needs.

6 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Website Template

how to choose the right website template

how to choose the right website template

The Content Width 

Content width refers to featured themes which allow the individual to determine the highest width for any content within the theme. There are primarily 2 kinds of content widths that run common for most templates: Full Width and Boxed Width. Depending on what kind of website template a company wants, full width content does very well for contemporary creative designs while boxed width content is suitable for (some) blogs or portfolio sites. Generally speaking, full-width sites are preferred but this point is less about which one you should choose, and more that you should note the difference when shopping around for a good template. Once the content width is clear in your mind, you will have a better picture of the right web template to choose. Many sites where templates are common (such as Squarespace or WordPress) will allow you to filter the templates you’re looking at, to just see the width you want. Some templates also allow for either width to be present, where you can choose.

Search Engine Friendliness

best wp template for seo

best wp template for seo

More than anything, you want to impact more people with whatever business service you provide – that’s the point of doing all this work on your website. Consequentially, search engine optimization is vital to choosing your web template. You have to consider adding important SEO techniques and features to increase both visibility and ranking of your website. Use models that will provide you with hierarchy, ease of navigation as well as avoid changing your template to suit every category. Doing so will only complicate navigation for users. You may need to hire an SEO expert and along with your web designer, they will work hand in hand to draft a punchy template that will not only patch up your website ranking but also keep it relevant to your niche market. One of the most important things for SEO is that your template functions just as nicely on mobile as on desktop.

Menu Bar Design   

While contemplating on how beautiful you want the web template to look, it’s important to consider function. At the end of the day, the visual appeal of your website will be subjective while the speed, functionality, and relevance will be what motivates your visitors to return. The menu bar design serves the purpose of attracting visitors back to your site, because it’s basically the road map. If you can’t navigate a website, you’re very likely to just leave and get your information or products elsewhere. Remember, the more visitors you have, the more effective your site is which will eventually influence your returns and the popularity of your service or business.  Therefore, the menu bar design is important because it determines how visitors perceive your content and whether or not you have the answers they’re looking for.

The Cost  

free wp templates

free wp templates

Quality isn’t always cheap. Rather than go for an immediate mediocre cheap web template with the assumption that once you are all set and going you will upgrade, this might instead land you on spending more and eventually losing everything to start completely over. Paying for quality might be expensive as you’re just starting out but in the long run, it saves you tons of money and stress. Again, view it as a quality investment which will yield long lasting fruits in the long run. That said, there are many quality free website templates on the market – it’s just important to choose value and quality over price alone.

The Home Page Header Layout  

This item is a strategic decision directly related to your business type. Picking a home page header might do good to your business or cause more harm than good. This is an important reason why pocking one should be done meticulously without haste and not solely on the basis of design or imagery. Think of your header as a first impression – yes, it must look great and represent you well, but it should also scroll out of the way, and not overlap the functional items within your website. Many people’s headers are poorly sized, or they stretch an image across the header in an unfit way, so that the website ends up looking amateurish at best, and worst case – it doesn’t even allow visitors to click where they need.

Flexibility + Customization     

top customizable templates on wordpress

top customizable templates on wordpress

There are thousands of competitive sites with similar web template designs. What is it that can make your site stand out? The more flexible, customizable, and limitless your template is, the more likely it will be that your site won’t feel so “template-y” and basic. Your unique originality will give style and flair to the traditional template so that your site can emulate your brand. Ensure that your customization options are varied and multiple which will permit future changes in specific elements of your website in the future. This is an important factor to take into consideration when choosing a quality web template because only flexible customized options will provide this possibility in the long run if you need to add non-default items. Your worst-case scenario will be to fall in love with a template, purchase, install, and find out that you can’t make the changes that would make it work for you.

As you’re asking yourself which template to select for your website, do not overlook these and other important features. It’s important to make a holistic, long-term decision that will suit your needs for many months.

  Image Inq   Nov 14, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More

How to Create a Mood Board to Inspire Your Website Design

Whether you’re working on a brand new website or a stylish redesign, inspiration and dreaming up the style you want to portray is always the first step. This may sound like a difficult task if you’ve been in an inspo-rut. On the other hand, you could be brimming with inspiration but struggling to organize all of your fun ideas into a cohesive plan.

As you read through this guide, you will realize that it is easy to hone-in-website design inspiration and manage it into digestible concepts and drum up new ideas to make your site its best. This mood boarding process works well whether your website is for your personal brand, your own company, or for a client! Mood boarding is the best way to synthesize everyone’s input, too.

What is Mood boarding? 

Mood boarding refers to a creative process used by web designers to collect a wide range of images or pictures as well as other things that define and express a personal or brand identity. If you are thinking to develop a website for yourself, then creating a mood board will help you dream up the color palette, the stylistic elements, and other visual notes. The use of cohesive visual elements on your website is ideal for inspiration, communication, guidance, and affirmation for the ideal target audience.  The key purpose of using images/visual elements is to effectively express the mood and position of your inspiration to the target customer – so, by drawing inspiration from a mood or attitude first, will make sure that your audience feels spoken to on every page of your site.

The Purpose of Mood boards in Web Design

why web designers mood board

why web designers mood board

There are several reasons why mood boards are created by designers. Typically, the purpose of a mood board is to help you put up an inspiration website that wow clients and drive your work. Plus, establishing a color palette, and ensuring that you stay on-brand with everything you design, can all be driven from the mood or overall visual aesthetic. For example, if you’re creating a website for a bakery and the mood of that bakery is vintage, cozy, and European – you could throw together images that evoke those motifs into a mood board and you’ll know that if your website sticks to those colors, those feelings, and those aesthetics, it will please the client.

How to create a website design mood board

mood boards for web designers

mood boards for web designers

Coming up with a mood board involves a lot of creativity because there’s no right or wrong format for a mood board. You could cut pictures out of magazines to make a collage, doodle together a bunch of different inspirational elements, or make your mood board digitally via Pinterest, in Illustrator, or in an Instagram collection. The process should then be to take the information about what your client wants in a website and translate that into a visual mood with inspiration trimmings. You can decide if it benefits your business to share this mood board with your client or whether it will just drive your internal decisions.

Elements of a Design Mood Board

how to mood board for web design

how to mood board for web design

Since each mood board is unique, a designer has to select what to add on the project. The objective is to include as many elements necessary to put across the look and feel of the design being crafted.  Here below are some of the ideas that can guide you through the process:

  • Images: Did you know that images woo clients more rapidly than describing your vision through copy? You can get photos from Instagram, Pinterest and other photo sharing platforms. As long as you don’t publish them, you don’t need to worry about their origins. This is just an internal project. Illustrations, vectors, logos, icons and your own sketches are welcome here, too.
  • Bits of Text: Choose the quotes, phrases or words that can tie into the message intended to be communicated. Designers ought to slot in specific fonts whenever they are using text in a mood board, to create more visual impact.
  • Colors: Use your creativity and mind’s eye to figure out the best colors that define or make your brand stand out. If your client or your own brand already has branded colors, start with those. However, those are not the only 1 to 3 colors your website will employ, so make sure you find those complementary shades to fit the theme of the site. Pair them together on your mood board to get a feel for how they’ll play together online. This way, you can settle on the exact hex codes for the colors that express the mood you want.
  • Shapes and Silhouettes: It has been found that natural shapes like leafy vines or ocean waves are ideal in reflecting the sense of tranquility. Angular, geometric silhouettes will bring a modern and urban feel to your site. If you’re looking for a classy and luxurious mood, play with elegant shapes like fleur de lis, filigrees, and other dainty curls.
  • Patterns and Textures: Likewise, add swatches of different patterns or textures to your mood board. If you’re looking for a regal mood, use a silk swatch or something in a marble pattern. For casual, comfortable websites – try a woodgrain texture or a familiar, nautical stripe. Recurring patterns play an important role in creating visual energy and familiarity, as well as movement.

Piecing it all Together

After you have gathered and sorted your images, you can arrange them on your mood board to achieve the desired organization and hierarchy. At this stage, it is important to work on key themes with larger pictures and position the smaller images along with texts to make your message visually clear.  Once you start layering, feel free to discard any image or bit of text that starts to look out of place, or explore in a new direction if you’re drawn to. The best part of a mood board is its impermanence – since these aren’t final products, there’s no wrong answer and no wasted time creating something that doesn’t work.

Crafting a mood board successfully for your website is an abstract and fluid process. Some designers would find this process excessive or taxing while others will see it is just the kick-off to ensure that the website they design will be on brand, mood-suitable, and inspired.

  Image Inq   Nov 12, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More

5 Essential Elements of Modern Package Design for Beauty Products

Beauty brands have been growing exponentially in the last couple of years. Last year, the industry was estimated to be worth $265 billion worldwide. The industry is defying gravity by growing at a skyrocketing rate. Use of the online sales and changes in lifestyles have steered growth in a speedy way. Timing as also played a major role as we’re living in a generation where everyone wants to look good. Diversification of brands has led to the rise of new brands that are steering the growth of the overall beauty brands. Social media has pushed the brands even higher by encouraging self-expression and an opening myriad of possibilities to young generation consumers who are tech-savvy. With the advent of influencer marketing, more and more people are buying makeup products to try their hand professionally or to follow along with the latest tutorial from a so-called “beauty guru” on Instagram or YouTube.

The growth has led to stiff completion in the market.  Competition has led to technological advancements that are shaping all areas of the industry. The demand in the industry has seen your mothers’ and grandmothers’ cosmetics companies acquiring the newer & more popular companies that are preferred by the young generation. The wave in the beauty industry has also revolutionized how the products are packaged to entice new customers as well as retain the older ones. With advancement in social media, marketing has been made easier in one sense – but it’s easy for a brand to disappear when all of its competitors are fervently marketing on social channels. Brilliant and innovative packaging is paying off well to capture and keep attention. As could be expected in such a visual industry, the look is half of what denotes the quality of a product – before anyone has even swatched for pigment or tested for long-wear.

To come up with an exceptionally great design for beauty products, every company needs to consider an array of elements before settling on the package design. Packaging must be designed so that it will attract traditional retail AND online retail customers. Every package design has to look beautiful and eye-catching while matching the style of the brand – luxury makeup brands should use rich golds and marbles, edgy brands should use black and silver with heavy typography, and sweet, happy brands should use lots of color and movement. Below, we explore five elements of beauty packaging and what we, in the design community, can learn from this burgeoning industry.

Brand Style

beauty product branding

beauty product branding

A beauty company’s brand is the culmination of their back story, their growth in the industry, and how they attract the customers they serve. A brand’s style must speak to the ideal consumer’s age, interests, and aesthetic. However, many brands also want to adapt to whatever trends on Instagram or throughout the internet, too. For example, an edgy gothic brand, a peppy young brand, and even a luxury brand have probably all created a Unicorn-inspired line and a galactic or holographic line in the last two years because those motifs were so unavoidable. The way they express these trends, though, varies according to the specific style of their brand.

The best way for a consumer to know what a brand’s vibe will be like – and what kind of products they’ll likely put out – is the first impression of their packaging. Style sets the way for the rest of the package design elements and defines the package decisions that go hand in hand with overall design goals and the messaging of each brand and each brand’s latest roll-out. Style determines the success of the overall package design.

Color

choosing the right color for my product

choosing the right color for my product

Color is the second modern element that is major in cosmetics brands. The color has to match the brand personality and style of the packaging. Every color choice should be integrated to the brand, but also has to be attractive and enticing to grab customer’s attention and outshine other cosmetics brands as much as possible. Color speaks a different language to different people. In beauty brand package design, choosing a color that goes well with customer’s preferences is a key. While the colors and shades of the products themselves – the lip or eyeshadow shades, etc. – will ultimately matter more, the packaging helps tell that story, too.

It is always wise to choose a color that is attractive but not so common among the competition. Years ago, nearly all makeup packaging was black or pink but now you’ll see greens, browns, greys and every sort of shade finding its way onto shelves. Some brands always express their latest products in the same color palette while others roll out new packaging color choices for every line they create.

Typography

typography and product design

typography and product design

After settling on the color, a font is a next element that plays a key role in keeping customer picking the beauty brand off the shelves. Once upon a time, all beauty-related fonts chose from a few classic and feminine-perceived fonts but now, brands are getting more playful. You’ll see bubbly, blocky, and even gory & mysterious fonts being used – which is fine, as long as the choices match the style and story being told.

A great brand packaging font for the beauty brands should be instantly recognizable to buyers and must be unique. The font has to be on brand, to identify fully with a brand – even if different fonts are used for different product lines within a product umbrella, the whole of them should still match the attitude of that brand. While fonts can be expressive and artistic, it still matters that they are clear and readable with ease.

Silhouette

designing beauty products

designing beauty products

Modern packaging brands of beauty products have centered more on the shape of the product more than ever before. This element influences the decision of customer who is shopping in-store as they pick up and feel each package but because everything is so visual, even online buyers are motivated by a sleek or curious silhouette. More than ever, makeup buyers are using these products in their own digital content so the more interesting a package can be, the more it will be picked up just for expression. Some brands have also developed a familiar silhouette, such as the hexagonal packaging that we’ve come to expect from a popular brand, or the bubbly packaging that a cutesy brand always puts out. It builds familiarity.

Packaging designs of beauty products have been revolutionized to fit customers’ needs and specification. A great shape design of the container of the beauty products makes it attractive to the customer and makes it easy to use. Creative shape design for packaging a beauty product is a win for both the brand owner and the customer.

Size

how to size your beauty product

how to size your beauty product

The size of the beauty brand design packaging has to fit customers’ needs and specifications. Modern package design for beauty brands has to consider easiness to carry – but less than in years before. Customers like travel-friendly products but they’re still seen buying 5×7 shadow palettes, too. It depends on the motive of the consumer at time of purchase – so variable sizing is smart. The size of the package varies with a different beauty product. However, size has to be unique and beautiful to attract customer and making it convenient to carry around.

Ultimately, these five elements are important to consider for any packaging – or even any 2D project. Brand and styling matter. Color and font matter. Silhouette and sizing matter. When you put all of these elements into harmony, your design will come out sharp.

  Image Inq   Nov 09, 2018   Design   0 Comment Read More
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