Grow Your Business By Using Google+

By Jessica Ann
July 2, 2014

Google+ is a relatively young social network, first opening its doors in 2011. But it already has 300 million users. And while that doesn’t compare to Facebook’s numbers, it’s more than Twitter. And it’s a sign of why you’ll want to incorporate branding into your Google+ page to help your business grow.

The right approach with Google+ can help you build a community, enhance your search performance and make it easier than ever for customers to find and contact you.

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The (Social) Search Giant 

At the end of 2013, Google still had more than three times the search market share of its closest competitor, Microsoft’s Bing. That’s a big lead, and while no good Internet marketer will ignore other search engines, it’s clear that Google should still be a strong focus for any business looking to increase its visibility. One of the biggest reasons for a business to build a Google+ profile is the integration of Google+ into Google’s search results. Companies with a Google+ profile will have it featured when people search for that company. This eliminates all concern about whether someone is really getting the company they’re looking for.

Think of like this: Google+ is like the new kid in school. But his/her parents just bought the arcade where all of the other kids hang out. That poses a problem: few want to be seen as the first to embrace the outsider. But taking that chance might just mean VIP treatment at your favorite spot.

For many businesses, Google+ has yet to prove itself, and setting up a presence will be a risk of time and attention. But that risk will likely pay off when it comes to search results, not to mention being among the first to put down a stake at the younger social network.

A related and even more important component of the Google+/search results integration is Google Authorship. This service allows you to tie your Google+ profile directly to articles you have written. Coupled with a strong cross-linking between your personal profile and your business profile, this can drive traffic whenever your articles turn up in search results. Google includes an image in the special “author box” for such results, and setting this to your business or employer logo further expands the branding power of Google+.

Maps, Mobile and More

Brick-and-mortar businesses will want to pay attention to this part: Google integrates address and contact information from your Google+ profile directly into Google Maps results. This means people searching Google Maps on mobile devices will be able to begin navigating to your business with only a few taps of the screen. And they’ll be able to call you with only one or two taps. This ability to make your business accessible to prospective customers is unprecedented, and Google+ is at the forefront.

Places for Business also includes a customer reviews platform which allows business owners to respond to any review. That makes positive reviews visible to the world, and negative reviews easier to address. And Google says 97% of consumers search for local businesses online. That makes ignoring Google+ and its many integrations a bad idea.

If you’ve ever searched for a great Mexican restaurant or the perfect café while wandering a new city, you’ll know exactly how valuable that is. The plain old search results blend into the pack. But the ones with a Places entry get featured on a mini-map, with an instant “Call” button, as well as buttons to add it to your Google Maps favorites or get directions. That’s real-world value to someone hungry or un-caffeinated, and it’s the difference between new business and being passed over for someone else.

The platform displays no advertising, allows you to edit posts and use markup to enhance presentation (a no-go on Twitter and Facebook, respectively) and also offers a slick live video tool called Hangouts On Air. Hangouts are perfect for streaming events or recording product demonstrations. While Google+ may be the new kid on the block, Google has provided so many useful tools for business owners that it’s really a no-brainer: Google+ can help your business grow because it improves your search performance, helps customers find and contact you and provides a crisp, media-rich posting platform.

 

Why Your Web Design Needs Quality Links

By Jessica Ann
June 30, 2014

The “world wide web” wasn’t called that by accident. It’s an interconnected group of pages, pointing at other pages via links. Links, especially inbound links from other sites to yours, play a large role in how search engines rank you in their results. This means that even if your usability is perfect, and your site is stunning, if you’re not using quality internal and external links, it’ll be hard to get traction on search engines. That’s why your web design needs quality links.

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But what’s a “quality link?”

At its core, a link, or “hyperlink” has two primary components: the linked web page, invisible to readers of the site, and the linked text, which is what readers see. So technically, it’s possible to make a link with only those two items. But it’s not possible to make a quality link with only those two elements. Use a combination of metadata and good old CSS styling to make your links quality.

Oh So Meta(data)

You can include several metadata elements in a link to increase its quality. Metadata is just information about information. So, link metadata describes the nature of a particular link. It can be used to make links more useful or understandable for both browsers and people.

For example, the rel= attribute tells browsers the relationship between the current page and the one at the other side of the link. A blog entry, then, might include in its header or footer the name of the author, linking to his author page. That link should include a rel=“author” attribute confirming authorship. Another example is rel=“nofollow”, which tells Google to ignore that link when calculating the target page’s PageRank.

You can also tell browsers whether to open the link in the current tab, a new tab, or a specific, already-opened tab by using the target attribute. People generally expect links to open up in the current tab, and commentators on best practices discourage the alternatives. Average users will use their Back button. While more advanced users of the Interwebs will know to open links in a new tab by holding the Control or Command keys, on Windows and Mac respectively, when clicking the link.

However, it could be useful to define this attribute in some cases, such as when you’re building a web application that benefits from managing multiple tabs.

You Gotta Have Style

CSS stands for “Cascading Style Sheets” and it’s important to speak this language if you want your website to have some style. Links have five states of being. They can be at rest. Then there’s visited, hover, focus and active. Just like humans, links act either alive or dead.

Each of those states describes something your readers do with their mouse or keyboard. Your CSS should define different colors and font styles for each one. Some designers take control of the underlined look of most links by using border-bottom instead. This gives you more options for styling the line, but retains the familiarity of that underlined style.

The color of each link state should also fit a common palette. No two states should be identical. Color is the perfect quick reference guide for links. It tells your readers whether they’ve already clicked a link, or whether they’re waiting for the new page to load. Use contrast with the surrounding text as well as with the background to make your links stand out.

When quality links are used on your website, then the overall web experience gets better for your readers. Metadata and visual elements, when used properly, give browsers and humans an easier web experience. And that means your readers will keep coming back in style every season.

 

Integrating Your Brand into Your Web Design

By Jessica Ann
June 28, 2014

Your website is the first contact your customers have with your brand. Your brand strategy should focus on consistency and simplicity, coupled with some give and take. Coordinate your web design and your brand by letting the style of your web design inform your branding elsewhere. Here are some ideas:

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Worth A Thousand Words

If your website features a full-bleed header image (the main photo at the top which stretches from edge to edge of the page), use that image across your social networking accounts, as well. Facebook, Google Plus and Twitter all allow similar header images at the top of profile pages. Consistency across platforms will make your brand instantly recognizable, which helps to stand out amongst the online noise.

Many social and blogging platforms will suggest users follow certain people based on shared tastes, web surfing patterns and other information. Integrating your brand into your web design lends credibility to your profile when it appears among those suggestions. It will provide a signal that the suggestion is indeed Your Awesome Brand, and not a similarly named competitor or impostor.

The Power of Palettes

Your website and social media accounts are extensions of you and your brand. They’re all meant to build the same relationships, generate the same leads and market the same products or services. If you’re doing it right, your written copy or imagery alone will stand out as yours across a variety of platforms.

The color palette you use on your website and in any printed or marketing materials is an easy way to strengthen the ties between different aspects of your brand. All of the aforementioned social platforms allow some degree of color customization. Use that customization to make the transition between your website, Twitter profile and YouTube channel seamless.

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Bringing It All Together

Header images and color design aren’t the only elements you can use to integrate your brand into your web design. A great logo will be the perfect bookmark icon, profile picture and email signature image. Consistent typography across images and website text is also a good idea.

In fact, consistent copy is key. If you have a slogan or a call to action, make sure it’s worded the same across your brand’s different accounts. Your customers should never feel like they’re navigating away from you, as they visit your online communities.

How to Design a Better Mobile Checkout

By Jessica Ann
June 26, 2014

We’re no longer shopping by walking the aisles and lining up at a register. Instead we’re shopping through our mobile devices. Mobile e-commerce increased by 81% in 2012, bringing in $25 billion. As we look to the web design trends for the rest of the year, it’s more important than ever to think about how to design a better mobile checkout.

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The best way to maintain that kind of growth is to make the experience as friction-free as possible. People shopping in a store will get frustrated and impatient if made to wait in long lines or if it’s difficult to get their questions answered. Just as some brick-and-mortar stores get a reputation for a top-notch shopping experience, an online shopping provider can build a reputation for easy checkout.

Here are some ways to improve the mobile checkout experience and increase the chances your customers will complete the process:

Mobile E-commerce is Increasing

The first step to improving checkout experience is to fully appreciate the situation. Mobile commerce is expected to reach more than $86 billion by 2016. That’s 24% of all retail e-commerce, and the growth will likely continue.

The popularity of tablets undoubtedly contributes to the increase in mobile checkouts, with $24 billion spent from the large-screen mobile devices in 2013. With smartphones having lost their early lead, designers have to keep in mind the rise of tablets as the dominant mobile checkout use case.

Simplify the Process

When someone has decided to buy something online, they have already overcome all sorts of obstacles. It takes a leap of faith for many to even consider offering their credit card information over the Internet. And then there’s the chance what they’re buying won’t look as perfect for them as it did on the website (or the model, for that matter). So once they have committed to a purchase by heading to your checkout page, the process should be as barebones as possible.

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Don’t ask unnecessary questions, offer annoying up-sells or opt customers into mailing lists. Remember, they’re on a smartphone or a tablet. That means screen real estate is precious. And their attention cannot be lost in frivolous requests. You’ll need to ask for their name, shipping and payment information. Anything else will take up space and frustrate your customer. The worst sin of mobile checkout design is unnecessarily complicating the process. So, include no more that what’s needed to complete the purchase.

Be Our Guest

The only thing worse than making someone fill in unnecessary fields to complete a purchase on a mobile device is requiring them to make a profile with your site. Don’t require account creation in your checkout process. It’s like requiring people in a physical store to take out a loyalty card just to complete their purchase. Many customers don’t want to be bothered, and will go to another store if you keep making these types of demands. Your customers want to buy things as quickly and with as little interference as possible.

Design your mobile checkout experience like you would a physical store. Make the default user a guest, and provide a link somewhere to create an account for those interested. But don’t require anything at checkout except what you need to charge and ship.

Moving Along

The best mobile checkout experience will require one simple page of information and show a big, bright “Purchase” button at the bottom. Compare the Moby and Kay Jewelers checkout pages pictured in this article. The longer the page, the more likely the process will hit a snag. There is always the chance of customer fatigue (“Why do they need all of this?!”), typos and second-guessing the purchase price. By the time they are checking out, customers are eager to give you money, so make it as simple as possible.

If you need more than one page to complete the purchase, provide a clear indication of how far along the process is at each new page. Also offer the ability to move backward as well as forward. This assures the customer they are nearing a successful purchase, and gives them a chance to correct any errors they may have made in a previous screen and maximizes their sense of control.

If you’re aiming to design a better mobile checkout, keep the above ideas in mind during the design process. It will produce the best possible mobile experience for your customers, and will future-proof your design as mobile commerce continues to grow in the coming years.

Why Summer is the Best Time to Start on Web Design

By Jessica Ann
June 23, 2014

Whether you’re creating a new site or iterating on one that already exists, web design is an ongoing process. But you’ve got to start some time. Here’s why summer is the best time to start on web design.

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Getting Some Fresh Air

The number one reason why summer is the best time to start on web design is the ability to work outside. You may want to start in the early morning or work in the early evening to avoid the worst of the heat, but getting out of the office is a great way to liven things up. This is especially true if you’re wrestling with a web designer’s version of writer’s block.

Many employers have outdoor areas for breaks and lunch, and those with picnic tables have a built-in outdoor office for those beautiful summer days. Many laptops and tablets have excellent battery life and enable you to work for hours without being tethered to an outlet. And it’s a lot more fun to work from home when you’re sitting out on the deck or in the garden.

Inspiration is Everywhere

Maybe you prefer to work inside even during the summer, and that’s fine. But there’s something far more inspiring about the bright vivid colors of summer, especially after a long, gray winter. Even the people are more lively during the summer, going to the pool, to barbecues or just playing outside.

Your own vacation can do a lot to recharge your creative batteries. Time away from the daily grind, especially in an exciting or unfamiliar environment, might be just what you need for the next moment of brilliance. Beautiful new places and interesting new acquaintances are a great way to get open to new inspiration.

Prototyping is Easier Without Gloves

Carry a moleskin or other notebook around during the summer. Summer means no gloves or mittens, and no cold hands if inspiration strikes while you’re outside or in the car (not while driving, of course!). A quick hand-drawn sketch is a great way to capture quick layout ideas. If you’re more of a tablet person, that will work just as well, although you may want to keep a stylus around, too.

Notebooks are also great for the beach, where sand and saltwater makes using computing devices risky business. Try coming up with a web design drafted on paper with your toes in the sand and your head in the clouds. PhotoShop is a web designer’s best friend, but it’s not sighted very often at the beach.

You may have your own reasons why summer is the best time to start on web design. Perhaps a cold beer on a sunny day opens you to more unusual and potentially engaging designs. Maybe coffee outside the local breakfast shop gives you the chance to let your mind wander. Or you’re the kind of person that is just happier during the summer. Regardless, see what you can come up with this summer. And have some fun while you’re at it.

 

Emotional Branding and Your Business

By Jessica Ann
June 18, 2014

It seems like a slam-dunk: show your competitor’s pricing and feature set besides your lower pricing and more robust feature set. Any viewer will see they should go with your product, right? Wrong. The missing link between that marketing approach and a successful one is paying attention to what emotional branding can do for your business. The key is to not only show the facts, but to tie them together with an emotional investment in your brand.

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We all understand that logic can lead to better decisions, but that doesn’t stop many from relying instead on emotion. The Vulcan aliens from Star Trek embraced logic in all areas of life, and often scoffed at the human reliance on emotions. The famous science officer and diplomat Spock was the son of a Vulcan father and a human mother. He knew the value of weighing each decision with appropriate amounts of logic and emotion. Good branding is like Spock, always keeping its logical and emotional foundations in mind.

Spock as Brand Manager

You can’t hire Spock as a brand manager, but you can use his lessons on embracing a dual nature to build a better marketing strategy. Few people will want to come right out and say they are emotional about their decisions, but that doesn’t make it less true. Instead, says Rick Sloboda in the linked article, you have to offer a logical hook people can use to rationalize their emotional decisions. But no one shows his or her friends a clever commercial because it’s logical. We share things because they make an emotional impact. And we want to share the experience of emotions.

This is why it’s important to focus on that emotional aspect of your branding – but not to lose sight of the need for a logical hook. Doing so can provide your customers with everything they need to make the  decision to go with your product or service.

The Pros and Cons of Emotional Triggers 

Positive emotional triggers aren’t hard to name. They’re things like love, passion, and innovation. According to author and behaviorist Barry Feig, these are ways of differentiating your product among a sea of equivalent competitors. Pressing such “hot buttons” will cause people to remember and prefer your brand.

But it’s not always a good idea to rely on an emotional trigger. Sometimes emotional branding should be approached with more nuance than simply stamping a name on the side of a product. Steve McKee of Bloomberg Businessweek once wrote about an experience he had taking his son to buy basketball shoes. The first pair his son chose looked perfect for the job. But the Dennis Rodman branding immediately turned McKee off. It no longer mattered to him that the shoes looked comfortable and had a sleek design. The Rodman association immediately altered McKee’s behavior despite his initially logical approach.

Emotional branding can do a lot for your business if you take the time to implement it. The primary issue to consider is what emotion is motivating your customers to buy products like yours. From there, it’s important to be consistent about which emotion you choose to incorporate into your branding. Eventually, you can get to the point where your logo on a product is enough to overcome logic and close a sale.

How to Understand Plugins in Web Design

By Jessica Ann
June 16, 2014

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It’s important to learn how to understand plugins in web design. There are many options and a variety of platforms that let you add functionality easily through built-in search-and-install tools. Other platforms require you to paste some code directly in your site’s theme. The code that’s added to a website allows you to do certain things that you couldn’t do before – this is what a plugin does.  

It can seem daunting at first. After all, there are thousands of articles and forum posts about plugins for every aspect of a website. And you’re not alone if the mere mention of pasting code into your site makes you nervous. Plugins are powerful because they can usually enable and disable features on a site-wide basis, saving a lot of time and energy.

Vacuums and Web Design

Let’s talk about vacuums. Yes. Vacuums are a great way to think about how to use plugins in web design.

While there are some pretty fancy vacuums out there these days, the concept is still the same: use spinning brushes to pull dirt particles out of the carpet and suck them up a tube into a bag. It’s a simple machine for a basic job, and anyone can do it.

But, just like with plugins, not many people fully understand – or appreciate – all of the bells and whistles involved. And the similarities don’t stop here. Vacuums often come with an assortment of attachments. Some are extensions for reaching into ceiling corners, while others are wide brushes for attacking the dog hair that finds its way under the couch. Still others have a slight curve to them meant to clean around difficult angles.

A Tumblr Example

Most blogging and website tools will work just fine for many people right out of the box. But if you’re interested in measuring the traffic to your Tumblr site, you’ll have to go into your bag of attachments to find the right plugin.

Tumblr doesn’t have it’s own built-in plugin system, but some themes let you paste a Google Analytics account number, and you can always paste the code into your theme yourself. It’s like a vacuum which accepts parts made by other brands.

A WordPress Example

WordPress is the fancy vacuum of plugins. It has a vast library of plugins (more than 31,000 as of this writing). They are broken down into categories based on what aspect of your site they are used to enhance, including sidebar, comments and Twitter. Like vacuum attachments, you can turn them on or off, add new ones and throw away (delete) those you don’t use anymore.

The good news is that Fat Cow has tutorials to get you started. The built-in installation and removal capability makes it a great way to learn how to understand plugins in web design.

The Power of Plugins

Like vacuums and their parts, websites and their plugins are most effective when used by someone who knows what they want to accomplish. If you already know most people find you through links to your website shared on social networks, you can use a plugin to make sure that your sharing buttons are accessible on each page, or on your site’s sidebar.

You can easily add comments to your website with a plugin such as Livefyre or Disqus. These plugins make it super easy to delete or deactivate, with no need to go through and change every single page of your site.

Another perfect use for plugins is font customization. For instance, Google Web Fonts is a free database of typography you can use on your site. You can select one or more fonts and then get the code you need to add them to your site. Once again, WordPress has plugins dedicated to Google Web Fonts, making it easy to add, change or remove fonts from your site.

Plugins in web design are an effective and versatile way to enhance the design of your site. And like vacuums, most sites are compatible in one form or another, and the possibilities are almost endless.

 

How to Understand Digital Design: Creativity is Not an Option

By Jessica Ann
June 12, 2014

It’s important to understand how to target your audience through web design. It could be that thinking of it as merely a tool is missing the point. Many advances start as a tool, but then either trigger adaptation of processes and workflows – or fade away into irrelevance.

One or two employees or stakeholders will mention in passing that they are using this new tool, or that new technique. Eventually, someone will ask them why, and for more details. A decision maker will see the light, and the entire team will soon be “on-boarded” with the new stuff. Suddenly, an early adopter’s little-known toy can become the linchpin of an entire company’s success.

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Design Goes Digital

Design is, at its core, the art of practicality. There is always a driving purpose to which a design is directed. The modern smartphone is most often designed as a “candy bar” because the shape is easy to hold and manipulate with one hand. Over time, smartphones have become larger as use cases have shifted (the original iPhone didn’t even have apps). Photo browsing and reading are now dominant activities on smartphones and the larger screens improve user experience.

Before the digital age, design was a solely tactile pursuit. Whether drawing up building plans or sculpting product prototypes, designers worked with their hands and often in three dimensions. The rise of digital tools and techniques didn’t, or at least shouldn’t, change the approaches taken by great designers. In other words, those who excelled at design before digital are still in a great position to lead.

The Tools Change, But the Goal Remains the Same

Digital design is so much more than a tool. Instead, it is a perspective. Digital design leaders don’t simply know which software works best for a project, or which programming languages to use on the front-end and the server side. They understand great digital design still has the goal of furthering an artistic or business objective. The digital doesn’t displace the practical. It just empowers designers to get there more accurately and efficiently.

The creative types will dominate if they understand this. And those lacking creativity will remain inadequate despite having all the digital tools in the world. Digital design requires at least a working knowledge of the essential languages of front-end work, like CSS and HTML, the ability to mock up designs in graphic design software and to adapt them to many display contexts. But at the end of the day, discerning client or project goals and maintaining that thread throughout the design process is, as it has always been, the most important part of design.

Awareness as Adaptation

Understanding digital design then isn’t necessarily about being a PhotoShop expert or mastering CSS animations. Remember Flash? It came, it saw, it conquered, and then it became an outdated design mode overused by restaurants and unusable on mobile devices. Yes, it’s still the basis of some of the most fun distractions on the Internet.

Digital design is less about being distracted by every possibility. And more about being aware of what is out there, what is outmoded, and what is on the horizon. The real adaptation isn’t in mastering everything that comes along. But in being aware of it and knowing when you’re the expert and when it’s time to call for help. Digital or not, the most important part of design is using creativity to achieve practical goals.

 

Heartbleed Vulnerability and Your Website

By Jen Merry
April 10, 2014

The first question you may be asking yourself is “What exactly is the Heartbleed bug?” The following quote comes from directly from heartbleed.com:

“The Heartbleed bug allows anyone on the Internet to read the memory of the systems protected by the vulnerable versions of the OpenSSL software. This compromises the secret keys used to identify the service providers and to encrypt the traffic, the names and passwords of the users and the actual content. This allows attackers to eavesdrop on communications, steal data directly from the services and users and to impersonate services and users.”  

Learn more about the Heartbleed Vulnerability at heartbleed.com.

The second question you’re likely asking yourself is if FatCow was affected. We want to assure you that the security of our customers is a top priority. We began addressing the Heartbleed vulnerability issue immediately upon disclosure and have successfully applied patches to all of our platforms. The likelihood that private information was compromised is very minimal due to the lack of a public exploit at the time of the disclosure. We will continue to work to protect the security of our customers and their data.

Learn if your site is vulnerable by going to heartbleedcheck.com.

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Heartbleed Questions and Answers

Q: Is my server vulnerable?
A: There was a period when anyone relying on openssl was vulnerable. Upon disclosure of the vulnerability, we immediately patched our entire platform. At this time, our servers are not vulnerable and information is secure.

Q: Has FatCow replaced its own SSLs?
A: Yes, upon the disclosure of the vulnerability we immediately reached out to our SSL providers and began the process of having all of our internal and external SSLs reissued.

Q: Should I replace my SSLs?
A: That is a personal choice. If you feel it’s worth the time, or if you are dealing with sensitive data, then it’s a good idea to have your cert re-issued. The likelihood that your private keys were compromised is very minimal due to the lack of a public exploit at the time of the disclosure. However, if you do decide you would like to reissue, we will be happy to assist.

Q: Was my security or privacy compromised?
A: There was a period when anyone relying on openssl was vulnerable. Upon disclosure of the vulnerability, we immediately patched our entire platform. The likelihood that your private keys were compromised is very minimal due to the lack of a public exploit at the time of the disclosure.

Q: Should I change all of my passwords because of the heartbleed exploit?
A: Changing your passwords periodically, using strong passwords and keeping your passwords secure are things that we always recommend. While we can’t say for sure what the extent of the potential impact of this heartbleed exploit may be, we always feel that it’s a good idea to exercise best practices when it comes to password usage. If you haven’t changed your passwords recently (or even if you have), this is a great opportunity to do so, while you’re thinking about it.

How to Design a Website for Your Digital Product

By Jessica Ann
April 4, 2014

Using visuals as the gravitational center of your web design is a great way to design a website for your digital product. When you target your audience through visually stunning web design, you can reverse-engineer how your product or service is perceived. After all, visuals are one of the top five traits of good web design.

For example, if you’re selling a mobile phone, you’ll want gorgeous, high-resolution, full-bleed photographs of the phone in perfect lighting. A car demands many different angles. Real estate may even lend itself to those fancy 3D tours that are popping up all over the web these days.

But what if your product’s only physical characteristic is digital? In other words, how do you design a website for a digital product?

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Shoot your screen

Well, not literally.

Shooting your screen the civil way – by capturing screenshots – is one way to feature your digital product in action. When you showcase lots of gorgeous, high-resolution, full-bleed photographs of the digital product in action, your digital product comes alive.

Use visuals

You could also create a video on your home page of a woman sitting in the grass on a beautiful day, tapping her way through your elegant app. Or you can find a photo that has just enough whitespace to make your product visually pop.

But there are other more imaginative ways too.

Bring it to life

One impressive way to do this is to use top-notch programming skills to make those photographs or that video come to life. The best way to sell something digital is to let your customers use it. Show them how delightful and effective it is by allowing them to experience it first-hand. This is not selling at all  – but demonstrating the worthiness of the product for purchase.

The combination of HTML5, CSS, and Javascript in addition to AJAX make building an example screen of your software (whether it’s for desktop or mobile) relatively easy and it’s a great way to give users a taste of your product’s value.

If you prefer pixels over Python script, you can leave the coding to a contractor, or use an incredible service like AppDemoStore to create a working demo of your app for any device.

If you want to go a different route, focus more on the themes in which your digital product is most useful. Bring these features out with testimonials from recognizable names and voila! You’re on your way to creating a sincere web design that builds trust.

If your digital product is well designed from a usability standpoint, you don’t need to focus so much on explaining how it works. Rather focus on explaining why it works. What makes your product different from others? If you’re in a crowded space, differentiation is better than all the visually stunning images photos in the world. Of course, it never hurts to have both – photos and clarity with your messaging.

Whether you showcase screenshots of your product or feature the opinion of a trusted name, clearly explain why your digital product is different. Communicate this aspect throughout your website. You’ll peak interest and get new users on board in the most civil way – by building trust.