When you have decided to go ahead with a new school website design (or any marketing material!) you will speak to one of our sales managers who will talk to you to obtain a brief and get a feel for the school. At this stage we really look for any details you feel may be useful in order for us to fully encapsulate your school. As a designer, interpreting this brief is key to produce a design that you are over the moon with. I have recently worked with a school who said I’d “hit the nail on the head” after receiving their website design – which is the biggest compliment as a designer! We love making our clients happy!
When initially starting a website design, I think about the big picture first – how would this school like to be perceived – academic, corporate, community based, friendly, diverse, playful, outdoorsy!... This can help guide us into which colours we use, photographs, typography and general style throughout. As we design each stage of the website we keep this and their current school branding in mind.
The brief usually details the areas particularly that the school would like to focus on their home page – things like a Headteacher’s Welcome, Term Dates, The Schools Values, House Points, Social Media and Quick Links are some of the key websites features our schools choose from. How we bring these to life is down to us. As we start designing these areas we always consider how elements will work when built; such as how they will animate or move, any hover effects, parallax scrolling or lazy loading. All these elements will encourage our decision making throughout as we try and create a balance so everything works in harmony together.
User experience is an important factor too when designing as we strive to make everything as easily accessible as we can. Anything that is of key importance is one or two clicks away! A good example of this is a designed we did for Blessed Hugh Farringdon School. Everything is easy to access – the side bar on the home page is great to navigate yourself up and down the homepage without having to scroll. The school wanted a more traditional yet clean and modern feel. There are white spaces to make the site feel fresh whilst using both Serif and Sans Serif fonts help keep this balance. Subtle lazy loading throughout and hover effects on their Twitter section and animations on their ‘Thinking about our planet’ area add some visual interest to the site.
As designers we work closely with our web developers in order to translate our designs from a flat image to a responsive website. It’s a team effort from brief, to design, to development to make your website come to life!
We want our school’s to be thrilled with their new websites so encourage any feedback and work alongside you throughout the process to answer any questions big or small.
If you’re thinking about a new website or any other marketing material, please get in touch - we’d love to hear from you.