An Easy-To-Use Graphic Design Project Checklist for Websites
If you’re a creative of any type, experiencing “blank page” syndrome is both a common and terrifying experience.
That’s because it can be hard to create without any guidelines.
And oftentimes, those guidelines and direction will come from the team that you are working with. In marketing, your goal is to provide an end product – and whether that’s a landing page, newsletter, e-book, or website redesign – having solid communication and guidelines in place will ensure that the product is delivered on time and congruent to your brand.
Keeping this process moving along smoothly is certainly a challenge, but one that can be mastered if you follow a strategy.
What follows is a graphic design project checklist for you to keep your team and any designers that you’re working with on the same page.
The Website Checklist for Graphic Designers
The first page of the template is an overview of the industry’s recommended best practices for web design.
From your choice of images, to the readability of the font that you use, you’ll want to understand the direction that your website is taking your brand, and if you’re giving your users an experience that makes an impression (so they’ll come back).
Look and Feel
Good design comes from a good marketing strategy and an understanding of your company’s brand messaging. Part of your brand’s messaging is the overall look and feel of your site. From how you piece the various elements of your site together to its overall consistency, this part of the checklist will ensure that you’re on track with your marketing goals for the site.
Designers should design with their user in mind, and consider the site from their audience’s perspective. The layout of a site is especially important and plays a role in how easy your brand’s message is to understand.
If your users are visiting your site on their smartphones (and a good number of them probably will be), creating a layout that is responsive and mobile-ready will make their visit a more memorable one.
Your site’s interface needs to be easy (even enjoyable) to use for anyone who visits.
Zappo’s is an online retailer for clothing and household items, and have long been recognised for their excellent customer service. Their mobile site is optimised for searching through their products, to make it as easy as possible for users to find what they’re looking for.
Giving their customers exactly what they need to find those perfect pair of winter boots is why Zappo’s has been recognised time and again for their dedication to customer happiness.
Colour Scheme, Typography and Visuals
Your site’s colour scheme, typography, and images should all follow your brand’s (and industry) standards. All of these visual elements, when they are used consistently and effectively, can go a long way towards engaging new users and fans alike.
Even details that seem as simple as your site’s font can make a difference in experience for your user.
“Just like an awesome photo or graphic can really make your design stand out, so can the right font,” writes Lindsey Kolowich for HubSpot. “But the wrong font can also make your design stand out … in a bad way. If you’ve ever seen a design with really out-of-date typography, you know what I mean.”
Design Elements for Email and Social Media
The second page of the checklist refers to all of the different design elements that you’ll need across email, social media and any other elements of your marketing strategy so that you can keep these consistent with your website design.
Keeping track of all of the different design elements you need for your online branding, across every channel, can be overwhelming. That’s why on the second page we included a checklist of items that you’ll need for each marketing channel you might have a presence on.
Your email marketing strategy will require an element of design that aligns with your overall branding strategy. You’ll want to make sure that you have a number of templates and forms at the ready, so that when you’re ready to launch an email marketing campaign you’ll have everything you need to execute it with brand consistency. From your welcome email to new subscribers, to your thank you page, and to any follow up emails – branding should be congruent.
Social media plays a major part in brand congruency and consistency, which are two of the biggest drivers of trust. You should strive to have consistent branding, images, logos, fonts and photos across all of your marketing materials and channels – social media is no different.
You also want to think about how you can make the most of the unique branding components of each social network, such as the cover photo on a Facebook Business Page. Makr is a mobile app, and their business page on Facebook is an example of effective design choices that align with their overall branding strategy.
“Many of the best Facebook cover photos include a single subject as the focal point,” writes Ginny Maneo. “They also use negative white (i.e. empty space) as an advantage to make the subject, any copy on there, and other elements unique to Facebook (like the CTA button on Facebook business Pages) stand out even more.”
The goal of your site’s landing pages is to get visitors to take an action… Sign up for your email list, download something, schedule a meeting – something. The role of design in this scenario is to combine the elements together on this page that help increase the chance that someone will take that action. On top of being consistent with your other branding initiatives, landing pages also need to use social proof, simple forms, call-to-action buttons and minimal distractions to perform at their best.
An attractive colour scheme and eye-catching call-to-actions, like this button and form on the Trulia website, are the result of good design decisions.
If your marketing strategy involves events and speaking engagements, your design team will need to focus on creating collateral to accompany these projects. From keynote presentations to the event registration page, following your brand’s guidelines, even at in-person events, will keep your brand consistent and your fans engaged.
Design Standards and Your Marketing Goals
Sticking to your design standards and keeping your marketing team on the same page, will help to not only maintain a strong brand, but a successful and happy marketing team.
How do you keep your branding and design objectives on track? What guidelines do you adhere to to ensure that your branding goals are a priority for your team?
Content Marketing Sales Funnel
Your content marketing sales funnel is all about getting people to know, like and trust you by nurturing them with the right information at the right time.