Advertising and web design aesthetics

By Laura Smith

If you’re trying to up your marketing efforts, chances are you may be resorting to more advertising or a new website. Sometimes these projects are taken up by an in-house employee and often times they are created by a contractor. Either way, the element of good aesthetics and design is a vital piece to your creative.

First take advertising, both print and online. If you’re flipping through a magazine, chances are you are drawn to ads that are colorful, engaging or relatable. Digital ads are the same way. The industry average for an online advertising campaign’s click-through rate (the number of clicks on an ad divided by the number of times the ad is shown) is 0.09 percent. It is proven that when you run ads that are more visually appealing, the CTR is much higher. My suggestions? Use color- vibrant color that pops and catches the eye. Use photos- viewers are drawn to the engagement and interaction of other people on ads. Most importantly, make sure there’s a call to action on your ads. What’s their incentive for clicking on the digital ad or visiting the website listed on the print ad? Make sure there’s something they can gain from the ad, preferably in large enough text  so that they are drawn to read it.

So you want to create or re-do your website? If you decide to take the do-it-yourself route rather than hire an outside web designer, you have a few options. The most important thing to remember is that you will want to buy your own domain name (.com, .org. .biz etc.). Usually you can purchase a domain name monthly or annually and it shouldn’t cost you more than $15. You can also get the site locally hosted and design it through a program like Dreamweaver using HTML coding or JavaScript.

The easiest way may be to use existing platforms such as WordPress or Wix. WordPress allows the user to utilize Flash as well as HTML to edit. WordPress is incredibly versatile in terms of making your website look unique and customizable. Wix uses only Flash capabilities but there are thousands to templates to choose from and it is very easy to edit.

Either way, the most important thing to remember about website design is similar to advertisements. Make it fun, colorful, flashy (but not too flashy) and interactive. If a viewer is not impressed with your site, they may leave in less than 30 seconds. Also make sure to make any social buttons such as Facebook and Twitter very visible, preferably at the top of the page “above the fold” so they can be easily seen and clicked on.

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