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The Evolution Of eCommerce Websites

 

bandwidth, close-up, computer

You might think technology is easy and convenient to use but it is rather complex. Business-wise, we went from manual and laborious operations to fast and easy online transactions. That is how technology changed the business game or the entire game in general.

With all that being said, have you ever heard of serverless technology? According to Wikipedia, the term “serverless” is frequently used to mean cloud services or platforms that allow developers to be completely free of concerns around an operating system and run code that is only instantiated as needed and billed based on execution time.

Functions as a service (FaaS) are a subset of the broader serverless term, meaning a capability that supports running individual code functions (not entire applications). The most commonly used example of a serverless capability (an FaaS specifically) is AWS Lambda from Amazon Web Services.

So what is the deal?

It is not easy for new methods to immediately capture the hearts of clients especially if companies have religiously used these conventional methods ever since the start of their businesses. Which is why the success of the serverless community can be quite of a shock to the conventional mediums because statistically, serverless technology has sky-rocketed to the top of the business leader board. But how did it exponentially grow? Three reasons: LOWER COSTS, FASTER DEPLOYMENTS, and GRACEFUL SCALING.

Why is this important?

Aside from adapting to what is hip and current, one of the reasons why this is ideal is it will minimize your cost and expenses. Because it is serverless and it is a technological advancement, it is cheaper than the traditional hosting. You can read a bunch of testimonies online about how companies have cut down their costs because they turned to serverless technology.

HOW WILL THIS WORK FOR YOUR BUSINESS?

  • CMS

  • A content management system (CMS) manages the creation and modification of digital content. It typically supports multiple users in a collaborative environment. CMS features vary widely. For the first step, use a caching system to create static pages from the CMS to be served by a cloud service provider. You have various options to use but if you want it to be easy to use and affordable, use something like Amazon Eslasticache.
  • CATALOG

  • Sometimes when your website displays a ton of products and variations, it can cause a major setback to the speed of your browsing. You need to figure out a way to minimize this obstacle. The best proven way is using micro-services so that every interaction that the user can have with the website can be split into smaller sections.
  • CARTS

  • Carts might just be carts but they eat up a lot of your CPU. In your traditional store, MySQL bottlenecks and everything can go downhill from there so to stop that from happening you can use something like AWS Lamba or Dynamo DB. You can do your own in-depth research on how this helps your carts, especially for those who usually place a ton of orders but generally, it is just easy to set up, it is more budget-friendly and it is just what you needed to complete an effective use of the serverless technology.

So why are there people who still aren’t jumping on the bandwagon?

Aside from it being cheap, it is also timely to use a system that is advanced and more effective. The serverless community is relatively new in the market and it would be a commitment to use such technology on people’s business’ websites which is why it is completely understandable if people would still have a hard time to switch. Yes, it is tough to enter a new realm especially when your whole business is at stake but our world is getting more advanced year by year and in one way or another we would all need to catch up.

What You Need to Know About Chatbots

Two White Message Balloons

We all live in a world that extremely dependent on the wonders of technology.

Everything that we do now basically has technology as its best medium and support. One of the greatest things that technology has brought to our lives is the convenience of communicating with one another. In today’s age, there are countless of platforms that can be utilized for communication and they definitely make our lives a million times better. The first thing we need to discuss about is CHATBOT and its basics.

How is this relevant to your website and its success? How will it help?

Back to the discussion, now, what is CHATBOT? A chatbot, according to Google, also known as a talkbot, chatterbot, Bot, IM bot, interactive agent, or Artificial Conversational Entity is a computer program or an artificial intelligence which conducts a conversation via auditory or textual methods. In layman’s term, it is a medium for communication.

So what is its relevance to your website?

Competition is getting out of hand. There are a lot of businesses out there that offer various services and they even have tricks up into their sleeves because the competition is tight. Using CHATBOT might just be one of your tickets to outshining your competitors.

HOW IS THAT EXACTLY?

Use it as an extension to your website. Use this to your advantage and the most perfect way to put this is to use it as your internet personality or your social voice. You need to be able to answer questions like, “How should we get this across our customers?”, “What tone should we set for them?”, “Should be even bother use emoticons?”, “How are we going to communicate this to our clients?”.

This will also set your hospitality as a brand. This will help all websites set their tones for their brands and that is exactly what you want to get across to your clients as an eCommerce website. CHATBOTS are a great communication tool. It will not only help you as a web designer or a web design agency, but it will also help your clients with their business endeavors. It helps businesses get in touch with their clients effectively and efficiently as opposed to your conventional email marketing which is also a great tool but it is just too dated for the modern age.

STEPS ON GETTING STARTED:

  • LEARN

    Before you jump on any wild decisions, you need to think things thoroughly. Acquire even the basic knowledge that you can have about CHATBOT so that you will not have any trouble dealing with its complexities in the long run.

  • PARTNER UP

    If you have reached the conclusion that CHATBOT would be a great addition to your website, it is best if you find the best CHATBOT building company that you can surely rely on.

  • GET TO PITCHING

    Last but not the least, scroll through your existing client list and think about which would benefit from automating parts of their business processes using a chatbot. Basically, spread the good word about CHATBOT.

The On-Site Search Feature on Your Website

Close-up of Text on Wood

The best feature that you can possibly add to your website is easy navigation.

  • No one would want to go through a website that has one too many complications. You have to consider the level of expertise of majority of your users in terms of computer literacy and most of them only know the basics.
  • It would be such a pain if your customers would always rely on google to redirect them to the links that relate to your site. Which is why a navigation bar with a descriptive page names is the first step toward keeping visitors engaged, but if you have a lot of details on your site, it’s vital to include an on-site search feature as well.

THE PROS OF CONSTRAINED SEARCH

  • In today’s time, you can literally search everything in Google. You can type in just a few words or type in a whole sentence, press enter and that is about it. You can have your desired results. Sometimes though, it can be very overwhelming to see the sea of results posted on the internet.
  • This is why constraining your search can also be very helpful. You can do this by limiting the search box according to different classifications desired by your users. This will make it easier for your clients because it will give them more relevant results that are related to their desired topic.

OPEN-ENDED SEARCHES

  • While constrained search is very useful, most websites use open-ended search strategy. It could also be too limiting if you only allow one or two searches which is why open-ended search method is still widely used. But if you plan to use this type of search, you need to make sure that the accuracy of the search will lead your customers to the most relevant results that they could find because it would be very frustrating to only look up for a particular word and then you are swarmed by a million other articles that are not even related to the topic.
  • Your on-site search must be set up to look for the exact phrase first. Although the articles that aren’t related could still show up, they should be filtered to land underneath the most relevant results. The same process is important for eCommerce sites.

CONSIDER DIRECT SEARCHING TO SPECIFIC PAGES

  • You can either use constrained or open-ended search, whichever is more suited for you website or you can also skip the search page if you like. Why? Because you can easily link all of the direct pages to your article and in just the click of the mouse, it will automatically direct you clients to the necessary points of your business.

THE BOTTOM LINE

  • Whatever you decide on, the important thing is that there should be an on-site search feature on your website. If you search something and there are many unrelated search results, adjust until you get your search feature to work properly. Provide more specific results because that’s what people want when they are search a website.

 

The Best Free Web Fonts

alphabet, close-up, communication

Making your website inviting does not have to be expensive; sometimes it could even be free!

Yes, you heard it right. You can definitely add typographic styling to your design without breaking your bank. First of all, there are quite a number of subscription-based systems that can offer you a wide variety of amazing exclusive typefaces. Amongst these sources are TYPEKIT, FONTSPRING, etc. They will present a decent set of eye-catching types that will surely make you want to give in. But not all of us can afford to spend a lot of money on just a typeface, not everyone can afford to subscribe to these models. For those of you with stricter budgets, there are fonts that are available for your websites that will require zero dollars.

For your convenience, listed below are the 15 best free web fonts:

  • ARCHIVO NARROW

    Is a font family that is typically used for high performance typography. It has over 1001 fonts available for you to choose.

  • PALANQUIN

    This is a font family designed for the digital age. It consists of seven text weights and can be extended with a heavier display family, Palanquin Dark.

  • OSTRICH SANS

    It is a modern sans serif typeface that comes with different styles and weights.

  • PT SANS

    A Russian sans serif typeface that comes with unique attributes of contemporary humanistic designs.

  • FIRA SANS

    A humanist sans serif typeface designed by Erik Spiekermann, Ralph du Carrois, Anja Meiners and Botio Nikoltchev of Carrois Type Design for the Firefox OS. Available in four weights: LIGHT, REGULAR, MEDIUM, AND BOLD.

  • MONTSERRAT

  • Derived from the urban typography of the region in Buenos Aires and is by Julieta Ulanovsky. This was inspired and created out of the image of the street signs in the said region.
  • ABRIL FATFACE

    This is the typeface that is very ideal for creating headlines. It has 18 beautiful font family to choose from that can be used for a lot of designs.

  • PLAYFAIR DISPLAY

    This is also best fit for creating headlines especially if the space is very limited. It has extra- large height with shot descenders.

  • GT WALSHEIM

    It is a geometric sans serif designed by Noel Leu and this is widely used in the blogging community.

  • MERRIWEATHER

    This is best fit for those long and detailed types of reads because this particular typeface has readability as its greatest feature.

  • JOSEFIN SANS

    It is inspired by the Swedish design. It is geometric, sophisticated and aesthetically pleasing to the eyes.

  • GRAVITAS ONE

    This is also best suited for headers and all sorts of advertising lines. This is a font that’ll look great in a medium to large scale; perfect for headers, tabs and striking titles.

  • JURA

    This is created by Daniel Johnson and is inspired by Kaya Li Glyphs. It has four different weights that make it versatile.

  • LEAGUE GOTHIC

    It was originally created by Morris Fuller Benton. It is a sans serif typeface with four different styles.

  • FJORD

    This particular typeface is ideal for long reads. It is a serif typeface that was created originally for printing and for the readability of longer texts in smaller spaces.

The Importance Of Color Contrast in Web Design

Colors palette

Oftentimes, we do not really think of color as much as we think about other important elements of a classic web design because we think that it does not have that much of significance to the overall relevance of your website.

How much more if we talk about COLOR CONTRAST?

It may seem a little basic to discuss but in web designing, there are actually tons of factors to consider when it comes to dealing with color contrasts if you want your web site to be near to perfection.

WHY IS IT SO IMPORTANT?

  • There are rare cases that some graphic designers stick to a minimalistic approach in their respective designs that they end to opt for monotones and such and that is completely fine.
  • Most of the time however, we need to incorporate colors not only because they add a little flare to the entire design but most importantly because they affect the chance that a viewer might want to click on your site. In doing so, you are only just splashing colors everywhere you want because contrast is crucial to the image that you want to display to the entirety of your website.

THE HOWS OF COLOR CONTRAST

  • The very first things that you would need to jot down are your product or service and your website itself. Mentioned in the earlier parts of this article is the vitality of a color contrast’s role in web design.
  • Let us say for example you have a product that is predominantly packaged in the color yellow, will it be ideal to post in on your website if the dominant color of the latter is also yellow? I don’t think so. Whatever you are selling will only be lost in the background. This is why color contrast is a thing because it keeps you from joining together incompatible colors that will only distract your clients away from what you actually want them to see.
  • There a lot of color combinations that when combined together would cause a total chaos to your overall website and will only do more harm than good. Do your research about colors or shades that will never work well together and make sure to steer away from combining the two in any of your websites.

HOW ABOUT THOSE WHO ARE COLOR BLIND?

  • There is a certain percentage of our population that is color blind. Majority of these people are men. These are the people who are not able to see the colors’ true colors. Although statistically, the number of people who are completely color blind is relatively low, that does not mean that we should take them for granted.
  • Red or green are the usual colors that do not appear as they are to color blind people. So always include them to you consideration if you want your design to be effective and universal.
  • There are also shades that are painful to look at. Combinations of red and blue, purple and red, blue and pink, and other similar shades are examples of annoying color combinations. Avoid these combination whenever you want to say something important.

The Wonders of Call-To-Action Buttons

Silver Magic Keyboard

What is a call-to-action button?

A call-to-action button or CTA button is a piece of content intended to induce a viewer, reader, or listener to perform a specific act, typically taking the form of an instruction or directive. It is a button that directs customers to certain topics or to specific links to your website. This is also a great marketing tool, if used strategically.

TIPS YOU SHOULD FOLLOW:

  1. Use a CTA button design that will be cohesive to your overall design.
  2. Keep your CTA button related to the industry you are in, or in line with the business that you are in. Keep it natural within interface.

HOW TO MAKE YOUR CTA BUTTONS MORE CLICKABLE?

  • PROPER WORDING FOR YOUR CTA BUTTONS

    Remember all the talk about incorporating photos to make your contents more aesthetically pleasing for your clients? It does not apply for your CTA buttons. Texts and just mere texts are the way to go. You need to make it expressly clear so that the person who will click it will know exactly where he or she is heading to. For short, it needs to be direct as it is directive in its very nature.
    If you want your clients to know the benefits from availing your products or services, use the word “GET”, if you want them to browse a little further, use the word “SEE” etc. Just be direct to the whole point of your activity.
    Remember to keep it short but you can also use arrows to point out your CTA buttons to jazz it up a little bit and to make it a little more attractive to your clients. Using CTA buttons generates roughly 2.5 times conversion revenue than just typing out simple texts.

  • CONSIDER THE RIGHT COLOR TO USE

    Colors appeal to people differently which is why it is important to choose the perfect color for you CTA buttons of course considering the entire theme of your site. This basically means appealing to your demographics.
    If your audience is mostly men, choose something that will appear more to men or if your target is mostly adults, use a color scheme that will appeal more to their liking.

  • PLACEMENT OF CTA BUTTON

    It is well recommended by marketers to use at least two CTA buttons for every page of your article. One is utilized for encouraging your customers to learn more about what you are offering, you place the CTA buttons before the body of the entire page and the other is to convince them to buy or avail whatever it is that you are offering and that is placed usually at the end of the page.
    You also need to make it even more convenient for those who wish to buy or avail your offers by putting up links on how they can get their hands on your products or how they can avail your services.

  • USE ANIMATION

    Have you ever heard of the HOVER EFFECT? It is actually where you can change the button’s color on the mouse-over. This is to draw more attention to the CTA button attracting or enticing the readers to click on them directing them to what you want them to see. A blinking or shifting motion also is a great stimulus to our senses and it prompts our bodies to move.

B2B Web Design Guidelines that You Should Follow

blogging, blur, business

When designing a website, it is crucial to know who the target buyer is. Are you selling to a business, or a consumer?

B2B, if you ask investopedia, refers to a type of transaction that’s conducted between companies. Business to business is the polar opposites of business to consumer (B2C) and business to government (B2G) transactions. B2B marketing can make your business, if executed perfectly.

To do that, here is a list of procedures you should always keep in mind:

  • DO NOT IGNORE VITAL METRICS

    This basically means keeping track with all of your performance analysis. Have determinants, measures, and all sorts of identifiers to gauge how your transactions, operations and overall performance are going. Don’t neglect numbers and percentages that could make or break your entire business. At the end of the day you should be able to answer questions like, “which of these activities would I gain more profit?’, “what can I do to increase revenue?”, or “how can I maintain my sales?” etc. These are only a few of the many questions you should always keep on track with.

  • DO NOT FAIL TO BLOG

    Being religious when it comes to blogging your contents will give you higher probability of boosting the search engine of your rank site more. This means that you can be more visible to the world in just a click of the mouse so don’t neglect blogging your contents because this could be your business saver.

  • ALWAYS MAXIMIZE YOUR VISUAL CONTENTS

    Most people have photographic memories. We tend to process information better if we comprehend and appreciate what our eyes see. Researchers have proven that marketing and other promotional activities associated with images tend to attract more customers than those you only use texts as their props. Always make sure to incorporate images and infographics to your marketing activities because this is essential to the success of your business.

  • DO NOT PROMOTE EXCESSIVELY

    One of the things you should stop doing is promoting your business too much. While it is a great way to build your business or your business’ credibility, it can be overbearing at times. Most of the time, customers don’t really want to hear much about your business or how your business grew from its humble beginnings, they care more about how you are going to serve them. Instead of boring your customers with your endless self-promotion, use a customer-focused approach because at the end of the day your customer’s satisfaction is what really matters.

  • DO NOT NEGLECT EMAIL MARKETING

    It will be hard for new customers to commit to buying your products for the first time. It is important to pay attention to maintaining your email marketing this will bridge you to your prospective and existing clients. This can help you generate the highest return on investment.

  • DO NOT FAIL TO SECTION YOUR AUDIENCE

    While it is safe to say that you need to match your business and your business style to your demographic, or to your target market, it is wrong to think that they want the same things, or they are ready for the same things. This is not something that is universal. You need to segment them, classify them and tend to their respective needs.

  • DO NOT IGNORE THE POWER OF SOCIAL MEDIA

    Do not ever underestimate the wonders of social media. This is not just to build a social media profile; this will also open countless of doors for your business. This will help you become more visible to the market because social media is where everyone is at nowadays. This will not only help you better interact with your existing clients but will also connect you to prospective ones with just a post away.

Website Design Changes Guaranteed to Boost Your Revenues

Low Angle View of Laptop Keyboard

We are now living in a very advanced age, where everything is accessible in just a click of a mouse. Thanks to the power of technology and all of its wonders. But what corresponds to a lot of the advancements of technology is the declining utilization of the conventional medium such as the decrease of use of advertising.

HERE IS THE STATISTICAL RESULT WHEN YOU GOOGLE THE DECLINING RELEVANCE OF ADVERTISING:

  • Most of the rates are average — in other words, they combine statistics from both low-performers and high-performers to come up with an average. But the numbers of advertisements are increasing (resulting in more ads competing for user attention!)
  • Facebook really started taking its advertising game seriously when most of the “experts” began to declare advertising dead yet…
  • it reported a massive $8.6 billion in advertising revenue in the fourth quarter of 2016 alone.

Fear no more because hope is still here. You don’t have to lurk in the corners and cry over your decreasing ad revenue because I am giving you tips on how to keep boomerang your way back to the top.

  • ABOUT TIME TO REDESIGN YOUR ADS

    Banner blindness is a phenomenon in web usability where visitors to a website consciously or subconsciously ignore banners like information, which can also be called ad blindness or banner noise and that is according to Google. Now why do people ignore banners? You would think that it is because there are a lot of annoying ads that are popping up but no. It is actually because they are poorly designed. People click on things that interest them and if you don’t catch their attention, they will just continue scrolling down.

    Say for example, you visit a particular website with yellow as its dominant color, would you pay attention to an ad with a yellow color scheme? At first you might have taken a look at it but it will eventually grow on you and before you know it, you will forget that it is even there. It does not pertain specifically only to the color of you ads and your website. The point is you need your ads to standout, which is why coordinating your ads to the theme of your website is not always the best way to go.

  • SENSORY ADAPTATION

    Continuing our discussion on banner blindness, as mentioned above, it is not about the annoyance of all the advertisements that is keeping your customers away from seeing your stuff. Have you ever heard of SENSORY ADAPTATION? This is a phenomenon where our bodies eventually get used to certain things that trigger our sensory organs to the point where these things bother us no more. This can also be the logic behind your declining ad revenue. This causes people to ignore banners.

  • PAY MORE ATTENTION TO OPTIMIZING YOUR MOBILE ADS

    You have been living under a rock if you have not realized by now that mobile phones are basically the most important material thing in every person’s purse. With that, majority of these people browse the internet though their mobile phones which is why it is imperative that you focus on optimizing your mobile ads. This is not a hard transition because you can easily switch to responsive ads where they automatically adjust to the gadgets that your users are using.

Guidelines in Creating an Effective Web Form

Eyeglasses With Black Frame Beside Macbook Pro

Even if it is a popular belief to never judge a book by its cover, it does not really apply all the time. Especially if you want to create a website that people would want to visit repetitively. Sure, the content is the most integral component of your site but it would really be such a bummer if a site that could offer amazing contents has a really poor presentation of such. You would also need to consider your web form design as it is one of the factors that could make or break your website, no matter how great your contents may be.

Follow these guidelines for the perfect web form designs.

 

  • PROVIDE PROPER AND CLEAR EXPLANATION FOR FORM FIELDS

Imagine visiting a site for the first time, and then you are required to fill out tons of form fields. The ideal site would not only vaguely provide random blank spaces for you to fill up; they will also provide a clear instruction on what you should input.

  • INDICATE HOW STRONG OR WEAK PASSWORD

Users would want a site that will assure them of the security of their activities. The online world is very dangerous. Giving them the means to gauge the strength of their passwords is a must in creating an effecting web form design.

  • INPUT VALIDATION

This simply means you need to create a form that will check the validity of the inputs of the users before actually submitting it for processing. This way, users would immediately know the details they have overlooked before actually pressing enter. This is a time-saver.

  • FIXING INCORRECT EMAIL ADDRESSES

This does not need a lot of explaining to do. A great and effective web form’s job does not end at providing a field for their customers’ email addresses; it will also provide indication about the validation of the correctness of such email addresses. It should normally flash suggestions of the correct email address.

  • MAKE EASY AND STRAIGHTFORWARD INPUTS FOR USERS

This is especially ideal for mobile sites because the screens are usually much smaller than that of a desktop. It could be very tiring to fill out long and vague form fields. This also holds true for web sites. So create a system that makes it easier for your customers to input needed information.

  • ADAPTING FORMS FOR YOUR AUDIENCE

Analyse your demographic. If you cater towards older or younger customer base, make sure that the type or structure of your web form is really meant for them. Adapt to your market to make it easier for them to access your site.

  • KEEPING IT LOW

Design a web form that will covert uppercase letters to lowercase ones to make words less ‘out there’. This is especially important to form fields that do not really require bold words like in a particular comment section of a site. This will make it look more calm and civil.

  • MOBILE CARD PAYMENT SCREEN

Simply show the progress of the transaction and its payment.

  • RECOGNISING CARD TYPE

To save your customer more of his precious time, as he begins to enter his card number, the form field should easily determine your customer’s payment card. Less one form field to fill up.

The Difference Between a Mobile Website And a Responsive Website

Woman Wearing Purple Shirt Holding Smartphone White Sitting on Chair

If you are one of the many people that is going crazy over the confusion between mobile websites and responsive websites, have no fear because this article is made just for you.

Okay, one would think that it is basically the exact same thing or people would often wonder what sets one apart from the other. You would think that is equivalent to rocket science or whatever but actually it is rather simple. So to end your agony…

The major difference of a mobile site and a responsive site is their URL STRUCTURE.

As discussed by Christian Stack, Internet Marketing consultant,

“A mobile site exists on either a subdomain of your website’s root domain (m.yourdomain.com, for example) or a completely separate URL than your root domain (yourdomainsmobile.com, for example). While a responsive site is your main site and root domain; it’s just built in a way that allows it to respond appropriately when viewed on a mobile device.”

So basically, a mobile site is a secondary site or a completely separate site while a responsive site is your main site.

Do not confuse one over the over. Using mobile sites pose a lot of dilemmas. You may have two completely different versions of your site online and this may pose major issues such as risk of duplicate content issues. Why is there a risk to that? Google will index your site…

and if there two different sites to choose from, google might can confused on what site should be correctly indexed to its search engines.

This is basically redundant and time consuming since it will force you to update and maintain both sites. That my friend is not the most ideal thing to do because updating one site is exhausting; imagine having to update two that has basically the same contents.

Another difference between these two sites is their sizing.

The concept behind creating mobile and responsive sites is the ability to view contents on a smaller device, whether it is your mobile phone, your tablet or any mobile devices. In the case of mobile sites, they are designed to fit these smaller devices, for smaller resolutions.

If you view in on a desktop, your contents will shrink and it will not be readable. So it is advisable if you are only going to view it in your mobile devices. On the other hand, responsive sites are designed to fit all devices there is. It is versatile. It can be viewed on any of your mobile devices or you computers and it will not affect the readability of your content. Thus, your website visitors will have a pleasant viewing experience. They will stay and browse the different parts of your website, engage with your call-to-action buttons, and view existing promos.

The bottom line

I guess it is pretty much clear that the winner is responsive sites because it is convenient and versatile. It does not only win in terms of its sizing but in general Google finds responsive sites better indexed.