How To Choose a Good Website Template
She was a lovely client who had a passion for her message. She fell head-over-heels in love with a website template.
Her ‘old’ website design seemed more appropriate for her message, but she convinced herself, and me, that the new website template was perfect.
10 days and 50+ hours of work later, we met for the first time to reveal the website of her dreams.
“Oh…that’s nice,” she said in an unexcited tone.
My heart sank.
What could I do to make her site better?
She agreed that I did everything she requested, paid me in full and on-time.
A few weeks later I entered her URL in my browser. Her old site was back up.
It was a great decision on her part, but in that moment I decided I would never build another website my client did not like.
That’s when brilliance struck.
I had been a graphic designer for over 15 years, and knew how to quickly mockup designs in two dimension using Photoshop and InDesign.
Until you have worked with a lot of website templates, you don’t realize how unique each design is. For example, some website templates allow for long headlines and subheads on the home page. Others accommodate only a few words. Some templates require large square images. Others require a rectangular shape.
All of these subtle design differences have a big impact on my customer’s message and how their story is told.
Instead of forcing my customers images and message into a design that’s not working, I now quickly mock up different template designs in two dimension. Together my customer and I choose the template that’s best BEFORE committing to purchasing the template and building the site inside my customer’s website portal.
Thus far I am batting 1,000.
Author Website Design
Below is an example of four different website templates I mockup up in Photoshop for author Ruth Backstrom.
I am excited to say that my customer loves her new website and is confident she chose the best design to launch her book. Click here to see her latest website design and the website template we chose.