In initial meetings, our team usually asks clients where they’ve drawn their web design inspiration. What have they seen that they like? What colors, shapes, and design choices work for them? Occasionally, clients arrive with binders, flash drives, and photo albums full of ideas. But, usually, we get blank stares. They’re just not sure where to look.
For a lot of companies, website redesigns are borne out of necessity. Maybe the site is old and important functions are no longer supported. Maybe the site got hacked and all the data is lost. Or, maybe customers have commented that the site is difficult to use or outdated. No matter the case, a lot of business owners don’t know what’s possible, what’s popular, or what works.
Well, the good news is that you can get web design inspiration from almost anywhere. Existing at the intersection of science and art, a good web developer can take the things you like – from anywhere – and work them into your design. Aesthetics, functions, navigation, structure, and more can all be influenced by a wide range of sources. But, if you’re still not sure where to look, we’re here to provide a few pointers.
Draw design inspiration from your competitors
If you’re in a competitive industry, there’s a good chance that your competitors have great websites. Whether they compete with your company locally or they’re thousands of miles away, you can get a lot of great ideas from competitors’ websites. Spend time scouring the sites of successful competitors, as they’ve obviously done things right. And, after you’ve really learned who they are, what they offer, and how they position themselves, ask yourself some questions.
- How do they draw you in? When you first land on their site, how do your competitors’ sites keep you around? What language are they using? What product images are they highlighting? How do they present and sell their products?
- How do they guide you? Once you’re exploring the site, how does it guide you toward important action items? Does it use sales-focused language to create sales? Does it offer discounts? Does it use search functionality and categories to make shopping easy?
- How does it make the sale? After you’ve been browsing for a while, how does the site secure the sale? Does it create a popup when you try to leave encouraging you to check out? Does it send an email if customers abandon their carts?
Play board games to find website inspiration
It may sound silly, but board games are an excellent way to find some web design inspiration. Requiring the same systematic, step-by-step thinking it takes to build a website, they can get your creative juices flowing and generate ideas that you wouldn’t have previously considered. If you find yourself absolutely deadlocked and unable to come up with any good concepts, hop on down to your favorite board game store. And, while you’re there, start getting inspired!
Once inside, browse the shelves and find a game that appeals to you. After you’ve found one, start reading the instructions and take note of how they move you from topic to topic. Just like your website, a set of instructions has a goal. Your site’s goal is to sell a product, the game’s goal is to teach you how to play it. As you read, ask yourself how you can build your site like an instruction book. Ask yourself how you can drive traffic from one topic to the next with the ultimate goal of making sales.
Seek web design inspiration from movies
Everyone has a favorite movie. But, did you know that your favorite movie can be a great influence on your website? If you’re stuck, grab a notebook, load up Netflix, and settle in. Start taking notes about your favorite movie’s color palette, symbolism, fonts, and more.
When the movie is over, pore over your notes to determine what elements you can apply to your website. If you really want to dig in, you can also read reviews and in-depth theories. You could incorporate the film’s font into your website’s hero banner. Or, if it uses a distinct color palette – we’re looking at you The Matrix – you may be able to draw inspiration from that when theming your pages.
Ready to turn your inspiration into an awesome website?
If you’ve found yourself inspired by these – or any – sources, it’s time to start building! As Kalamazoo’s premier web design agency, Creative Marketing Group can help you realize your vision. With a team of experienced graphic designers, programmers, and copywriters, we have the skills you need to build a website that works. So, if you’re ready to take the next step and start building, contact us today to get started!