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The Future Cloud  profile image
T

The Future Cloud

North West

‘19 Certificate of Excellence

Since 2010, The Future Cloud has been combining a passion for creating high-quality websites with the desire to help you succeed online. We are based in the North-West UK, but we work with clients worldwide. We aim to deliver you the best digital solutions from web development, to IT support, to graphic design. Our clients are our priority, and we work closely with them to deliver the perfect website for their business. We ensure our clients are involved every step of the way throughout the process to meet their goals and business needs. The Future Cloud goes the extra mile for their clients by offering a multitude of additional services to support your business online. Including hosting, technical repairs, social media marketing and mobile solutions. We have a strong passion for developing engaging websites that will help you to succeed by helping to increase website traffic and getting the most out of your digital marketing, to reach a wider audience. Our passion and dedication have led us to deliver hundreds of cutting-edge websites, engaging mobile experiences and bespoke graphic designs.

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Hear from
a professional

What makes a great website?

1. RESPONSIVE DESIGN
The concept of using responsive design is not new to 2016. Since the Google update known as “Mobilegeddon” back in April of 2015, everyone has been hustling to upgrade their websites so that they are easily viewable and usable regardless of the device it is being viewed on (mobile, tablet, desktop).

This will continue to be a basic requirement of a great website in 2016. With new and improved mobile devices coming to the market on a regular basis, having a responsive website design is a must.

Looking for a website redesign using mobile first technology? View our Responsive Website Design page for more information.

2. MINIMALISM
Many businesses are taking web design back to the basics with minimalistic designs and layouts. Websites are featuring fewer pages, with simpler designs and more blank space.

Some websites are also implementing what’s referred to as “Flat Design”. Flat web design uses two-dimensional/flat images which are aesthetically pleasing to look at, in combination with lots of open space, and bright colors. Flat design also meets the requirements of a responsive web design, which makes it a great trend to follow in 2016.

3. USER-FRIENDLY
Usability has always been of key importance in a successful website. Websites with an intuitive design, and with images and aspects that are pleasing to the eye are going to attract more customers than those without these features.

A simple, intuitive, and functional navigation is another important feature to focus on for 2016. If customers can’t easily make their way around your site, they aren’t likely to stay long.

The speed at which your pages load also have a strong impact on users in the coming year. Quickly loading pages and simple ways to get to specific information will be critical in setting your website apart from the competition.

4. PERSONALIZED USER EXPERIENCE
In 2016, personalized user experience web design may become the norm. Rather than everyone receiving the same experience when visiting a particular website, a personalized user experience design allows for the content and experience to be designed specifically for a particular user.

According to a study done by Janrain & Harris Interactive, over 70% of online consumers get frustrated with websites when they are presented with promotional content that doesn’t resonate with their interests. The best part about websites that offer a personalized user experience, is that they are typically able to adapt to the user’s interests and needs without the user having to do much at all.

5. EXTRAORDINARY CONTENT
Content marketing is likely to expand in 2016, with more focus being placed on high quality content. Websites that provide users with useful information in a variety of formats, including video and images vs. text when possible, will have greater success than those that don’t meet the needs of today’s website viewers.

Marketing automation will also continue to evolve, and many websites will incorporate customized landing pages, banner ads, and other promotions to supplement email campaigns. The traditional newsletter or simple email marketing campaign will likely not be enough to capture new customers in 2016.

6. BOLD COLORS
In the past, bright and bold colors on websites was sometimes perceived as childish or unprofessional, depending of course upon the industry of the business. However, websites with vibrant colors have become more popular and more acceptable in recent years.

Vibrant and bold colors are becoming more popular in web design.

When viewed in high definition, bold colors can have a powerful impact on the user. And, in the case of a flat design website, bright colors can make all the difference.

7. FULLSCREEN VIDEOS AS BACKGROUNDS
Websites with fullscreen background videos that play upon opening the URL are becoming more and more popular due to increased Internet speed and advanced browser technology. Plus, they are mesmerizing, and meant to attract and retain the attention of the user.

8. CARD-BASED DESIGN
You’ll see a lot more websites using card-based design. A benefit of this type of design is that the card design is ideal for users with mobile devices and varying screen sizes, because they can be easily adjusted to each screen.

Card-based design also goes along with the theme of simplicity and minimalism we discussed above. By providing viewers with short and simple bursts of information that can easily be digested, cards provide an easy way to promote user action, which is usually to click through to a landing page or more in-depth information on a particular topic.

9. WALL-TO-WALL SITE STRIPS
Wall-to-wall site strips provide a better user experience by dividing website layouts into several rectangular sections. These full-width image strips can be different lengths, and serve to break the site into clear sections of content. Not only are they pleasing to look at, but they also function as a simple and functional design aspect that breaks up content into more digestible bites.

10. UNUSUAL/LACK OF NAVIGATION
Traditional navigation menus are located at the top or side of a website page. Recently, however, more and more websites have been experimenting with unique navigation menus, and in some cases there is no navigation “menu”, but rather a different way of directing or “navigating” the user towards the information they’re looking for.

Another emerging and increasing popular web design trend is the use of ghost buttons. They are transparent buttons that blend in with the background, for a cleaner look. Again, this design trend goes well with the flat and minimalistic designs that seem to be gaining popularity.

To stay relevant in today’s world of web design, it’s worth investing in the latest website technology and functionality. You don’t have to do it all, but implementing at least a few of the above trends will have you well on your way to presenting a great website in 2018.

What questions might you ask a client when starting a new project?

1. What does your business actually do?
2. What do you want your site to accomplish?
a. Get more inbound leads / quote requests / phone enquiries?
b. Increase brand awareness?
c. Educate their audience?
d. Encourage sales?
e. Collect email addresses and build a list?
f. Encourage onsite or social media interaction?
3. What makes your company remarkable (unique)?
Examples could include:
a. Being the cheapest.
b. Having awesome customer service.
c. An amazing guarantee or returns policy. Tip: Think Zappos and their 12-month shoe return policy!
d. Being the exclusive supplier of a product in a certain area.
e. Supplying the best quality product around.
f. Fast or Free delivery.
g. Offering unique add-on packages no one else can.
4. Who are your competitors?
5. What websites do you like and why?
6. Who exactly are your customers and what are their pains or what do you want make it easy for them to use the website?
7. What features do you want your website to have?
8. When do I start?

What do you love most about your job?

What we love about or jobs is mainly providing our clients perfect work. Our clients are our priority, and we work closely with them to deliver the perfect website for their business. We ensure our clients are involved every step of the way throughout the process to meet their goals and business needs. The Future Cloud goes the extra mile for their clients by offering a multitude of additional services to support your business online. Including hosting, technical repairs, social media marketing and mobile solutions.

Why should our clients choose you?

WE ARE UNIQUE

We offer a different approach that will separate your business from the rest.

QUALITY ORIENTATION

We are driven and quality oriented, priding ourselves on our high standards of work.

CLIENT STAISFACTION

We work closely with our clients to achieve their goals to a high standard and to build long-lasting relationships.

STANDARDS

We complete every project efficiently without affecting the quality. We set ourselves aims to ensure our standard of work remains high.

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Web Design FAQs

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How much does web design cost? This is something that can be incredibly difficult to put a figure on due to the nature of the service. There are also differences based on whether you are looking to work with a freelancer or a web design agency, and also whether you need a large, complicated site or something more simple.

We can help you to connect with the right designer to suit your needs. A clear idea of what you need, and how many pages and features are required, will be influential when it comes to pricing. This will help you to get an accurate quote for web design.

These two terms may seem like they are used interchangeably but they are two different things. A designer will be focused on the visual and creating a UI to suit the user, whereas a web developer is usually focused on the actual core of the website, making it function and using coding to enable it to do what it is supposed to.

When working with a web designer, if you want the whole package of a fully finished and functioning website, check that this is something they can offer before you employ their services. Make sure you have understood if they are offering web design or development, or both.

  • Responsive - A responsive web page design means that the site is viewable on a number of devices. The design automatically sizes to the screen and the designer doesn’t need to make formats for different devices and desktops.

  • Liquid or Fluid - This is a style of design that will shrink or stretch to the shape of the browser, and the page will look enlarged or shrunk, rather than items being rearranged. The size of the items in the design alter in relation to one another depending on the browser being used.

  • Fixed design - Fixed pages do not alter according to the browser automatically. On some devices such as tablets this can make it harder to see the content as you need to scroll around the page or pinch the screen in order to zoom in on sections. Though it is sometimes essential, fixed design is becoming less common.

Whether you are working with a freelancer or a big agency, they will have a portfolio for you to view. This allows you to see other, similar projects they have worked on and decide if they have the skills you need.

There are a number of web design certifications and they may be happy to share any they have attained, but there isn’t one standardized industry body.

If you are worried about a designer’s credentials you can also check their feedback from other clients, which you can view on their Bark profile.

Should you work with a freelancer or an agency? This is one of the decisions you need to make when looking to plan a web design project.

Working with a freelance Web Designer
This may be an option that can save you money. Freelancers are often able to charge less as they don’t have the same overheads as an agency.

Working with a Web Design agency
Web design agencies may have a bigger set of skills to draw upon than a freelancer as they will usually have a number of staff and designers working for them. They may also be able to show you a bigger portfolio, but you can expect to pay more when using an agency.

Definitely! One of the advantages of hiring a web designer is that they are able to provide services to their clients from any location. However, if your website is for a local audience, then you might want to hire someone nearby rather than further afield, so that they better understand your target market.

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