My Secret Ingredient: Timelessness, Simplicity, and Elegance in Web Design
By Marc Carson
Occasionally a customer of one of my clients will contact me to tell me why they like my client’s website. I love it when that happens! Here is what I usually learn from them…
They have figured out my secret ingredient.
Is it the software I use? My graphic design background? My knowledge of web technologies?
Not really. What is it then?
The key to my unique offering, and my success in what I do is my value system.
As an example, here are some web design values that I don’t believe in:
- Cheap & fast web design in general (too risky for creative organizations)
- Web design for everybody (no target customer; bland, ineffective results)
- Web design as a side offering (lack of depth or experience)
These approaches to web design are extremely common. It is very easy to find web designers who offer those services.
Less common are higher-end web designers who offer the following:
- Extremely high value for the price (more on that below)
- Web design that is targeted at specific types of customers
- Web design as their only offering, or primary offering
- Thorough approaches to planning and delivering results
I think the first group—cheap, fast, loose—looks at the web as a temporary thing that will be gone tomorrow. They believe the web is like a commercial service that will eventually be bought out or obsoleted and replaced.
However, what they’re really telling their clients is, “I’m not sure my web design service will be here tomorrow.”
I used to think that way, even though I didn’t worry about it too much.
It bugged me that I worked in a field that changed so fast. Would the web be here tomorrow? What would my next job be? And so on.
Eventually, I changed my mind. I decided that there was a type of web design that I really appreciated. I learned as much as I could about it, and began to practice it myself. It is what I offer my clients today.
My secret, explained
High-quality web design is:
Achieving those three in a single website takes a great amount of effort.
And that specific, focused effort is my secret ingredient.