“Web designers help bring Internet to life.”
The world changed dramatically in 1989.
That’s when Time Berners-Lee, a software engineer at CERN, a large particle physics lab in Switzerland, invented the World Wide Web. Of course, that revolutionized how we communicate, an idea hatched originally by Berners-Lee so that scientists taking part in CERN experiments could exchange data and results via computer once they’d returned to their home labs across the globe.
Just four short years later, in April of 1993, World Wide Web technology was available to anyone royalty free. The evolution of this revolutionary phenomenon made necessary the design of individuals websites, a practice that will always continue. And that’s the chosen career of Riverview’s Cassie Ward of Inkedkoi Designs (www.inkedkoidesigns.ca).
Born and raised in Edmonton, Alta., and moving to Moncton to 2007, she explains what she can accomplish as a web designer. “I have the ability to present your business through the Internet as a functional, stylized presentation of information about your company and having it available 24-7 globally for everybody. Nowadays it’s an utter necessity for a business to have a functional, well-designed cohesive website, or even a social media presence like Facebook to maintain your customer base.
Cassie points out that it’s always better to hire a professional to present you online in the best possible light and ensure that your website is user friendly for the convenience of your customers. The last thing a business wants is frustrated customers leaving their website because of lack of functionality and cohesive presentation.
When a client makes contact with her requesting a website design, she first gets a good idea of what they’re looking for, envisioning how she can present that information to their best advantage. There’s much to consider, including fonts, colours, images, questions to be answered on the website, and what programs at her disposal to stylize a website, and the end result is a fully functional website that provides that all-important extended access. “Nowadays, a lot of people are using their phones to look websites, so I also have to think about Responsive design…”
Cassie began her interest in web design in late 1998 and was largely self-taught. In 2005, she studied offset printing and, continuing to expand her knowledge base, earned honours in Graphic Design in 2012 from McKenzie College School of Art & Design in the Hub City.
The benefits of an outstanding website are enormous. As Cassie explains, “… anybody in any business needs an online presence to be able to market themselves because any business that doesn’t have their [business] online is missing a huge marketing tool that I’m able to create.”
“I love being able to take a collection of ideas and information and present it in a user-friendly format and adding my own creative touches to it. I can take your idea, your vision, and I can design for you.” One important point is that a website can actually contain too much unnecessary information and a good web designer will choose salient faces that should be there: a well laid out site that gauges customer interest in the most concise form. Customers and clients want to learn more about your business when presented with a professionally designed site, and “… the next step for them is to get [customers] to like your Facebook Page.” SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is also key, as in keyword search capabilities, in order to increase a website’s ranking in search engine result pages. Also, websites can also become dated, so it’s important to stay on [par with] with trends to maintain customer interest.”
A talented web designer can really help a business, but it’s generally misperceived that affording [web development] service is well beyond reach of most people in terms of price. Not so, says Cassie – but it is a wise investment. “If you’re looking to gain customers, profit and more of a customer base, it’s an investment that’s going to have a big return for you. Realize that you’re missing all these customers by not having website or even Facebook page. My biggest philosophy is that even if you’re a small business, I want to present you like a Fortune 500 company [without spending like a Fortune 500 company]. A lot a people think it’s going to cost them $10,000+ to create a website,” says Cassie, “but it’s not like that at all.”