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How To Run A Content-Planning Workshop


  

Back when my agency started taking content seriously, we invested a lot time in developing a process to produce content. The biggest challenge was always figuring out how to get clients onboard with this new process.

How To Run A Content-Planning Workshop

Most of our clients were totally happy riffing on how to meet the business objectives of a project or how to approach the visual design, but they always struggled to get to grips with our process for producing content. We found that the most effective way to get their buy-in was to run a content-planning workshop.

The post How To Run A Content-Planning Workshop appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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Reducing Abandoned Shopping Carts In E-Commerce


  

In March 2014, the Baymard Institute, a web research company based in the UK, reported that 67.91% of online shopping carts are abandoned. An abandonment means that a customer has visited a website, browsed around, added one or more products to their cart and then left without completing their purchase. A month later in April 2014, Econsultancy stated that global retailers are losing $3 trillion (USD) in sales every year from abandoned carts.

Reducing Abandoned Shopping Carts In E-Commerce

Clearly, reducing the number of abandoned carts would lead to higher store revenue — the goal of every online retailer. The question then becomes how can we, as designers and developers, help convert these “warm leads” into paying customers for our clients?

The post Reducing Abandoned Shopping Carts In E-Commerce appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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Design Accessibly, See Differently: Color Contrast Tips And Tools


  

When you browse your favorite website or check the latest version of your product on your device of choice, take a moment to look at it differently. Step back from the screen. Close your eyes slightly so that your vision is a bit clouded by your eyelashes. Can you still see and use the website? Are you able to read the labels, fields, buttons, navigation and small footer text? Can you imagine how someone who sees differently would read and use it?

Design Accessibly, See Differently: Color Contrast Tips And Tools

In this article, I’ll share one aspect of design accessibility: making sure that the look and feel (the visual design of the content) are sufficiently inclusive of differently sighted users.

The post Design Accessibly, See Differently: Color Contrast Tips And Tools appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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Hybrid Mobile Apps: Providing A Native Experience With Web Technologies


  

According to a recent report, HTML is the most widely used language for mobile app developers. The main reasons among developers for selecting web technologies is cross-platform portability of code and the low cost of development. We’ve also heard that hybrid apps tend to be sluggish and poorly designed. Let’s prove whether it’s possible to deliver the native look and feel that we’re used to.

Hybrid Mobile Apps: Providing A Native Experience With Web Technologies

This article provides many hints, code snippets and lessons learned on how to build great hybrid mobile apps. I’ll briefly introduce hybrid mobile app development, including its benefits and drawbacks. Then, I’ll share lessons I’ve learned from over two years of developing Hojoki and CatchApp, both of which run natively on major mobile platforms and were built with HTML, CSS and JavaScript. Finally, we’ll review the most prominent tools to wrap code in a native app.

The post Hybrid Mobile Apps: Providing A Native Experience With Web Technologies appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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Improving Your Information Architecture With Card Sorting: A Beginner’s Guide


  

Information architecture (IA) is one of those buzzwords you’ve probably heard before. It refers to the organization of the information on your website and how it all fits together. When planning your IA, involve users of your website in the process as soon as you can.

Improving Your Information Architecture With Card Sorting: A Beginner's Guide

In this article, we’ll discuss card sorting, a tried and true technique for doing just that. We’ll go through some practical tips for running a card-sorting session, and also cover some examples.

The post Improving Your Information Architecture With Card Sorting: A Beginner’s Guide appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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Be A Better Designer By Eating An Elephant


  

I can’t imagine any other industry in which so much change happens so quickly. If you stop paying attention for a week, it can feel like you’ve not been listening for a year. There’s so much to learn. Falling behind is easy, too. We might be in the middle of a major project, so we put off learning about this newfangled thing called Sass or Node.js or even quickly experimenting with the new Bootstrap or Foundation that everyone is raving about.

Be A Better Designer By Eating An Elephant

Before we know it, we have these elephants of missing knowledge wandering around our minds, reminding us of what we should know and do but haven’t found the time for. Even just looking at beautiful work and seeing what new technique we could use ourselves can seem like too big a task when we’re swamped with projects. So, we tell ourselves we’ll come back to it later. But later never shows up. The guilt definitely does, but not that elusive deadline of later.

The post Be A Better Designer By Eating An Elephant appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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Freebie: Touristic Icons (100 Icons, PNG, SVG)


  

Icons are a lot like real monuments — they can both be easily recognized. Today’s icon set consists of a set of vector icons that represent monuments across the globe, so they can be literally used anywhere. This colorful set was carefully designed by Freepik and is completely free to use for commercial as well as your personal projects, including software, online services, templates and themes.

Freebie: Touristic Icons (100 Icons, PNG, SVG)

This icon set is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported. You may modify the size, color or shape of the icons. No attribution is required, however, reselling of bundles or individual pictograms is prohibited. Please always provide credits to the creators and link to the article in which this freebie was released if you would like to spread the word.

The post Freebie: Touristic Icons (100 Icons, PNG, SVG) appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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CSS-Only Solution For UI Tracking


  

The web is growing up. We are building applications that work entirely in the browser. They are responsive; they have tons of features and work under many devices. We enjoy providing high-quality code that is well structured and tested.

CSS-Only Solution For UI Tracking

But what matters in the end is the impact for clients. Are they getting more products sold or are there more visitors for their campaign sites? The final results usually show if our project is successful. And we rely on statistics as a measuring tool. We all use instruments like Google Analytics. It is a powerful way to collect data. In this article, we will see a CSS-only approach for tracking UI interactions using Google Analytics.

The post CSS-Only Solution For UI Tracking appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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Ready For Retina HD: Create Pixel-Perfect Assets For Multiple Scale Factors


  

The 6 Plus is the first iPhone that sports a “Retina HD” display — the sharpest display Apple has ever made. It forces designers to provide an additional set of image resources to developers to match that sharpness.

Ready For Retina HD: Create Pixel-Perfect Assets For Multiple Scale Factors

We needed only one set of assets for the original iPhone up to iPhone 3GS. And when iPhone 4 came out with the Retina display, we also needed 2x assets — images twice as detailed. Now, with the display of the 6 Plus being even more detailed than that of the iPhone 4, we will also need to provide 3x assets. The numbers 1x, 2x and 3x are also called “scale factors.”

The post Ready For Retina HD: Create Pixel-Perfect Assets For Multiple Scale Factors appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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Taking A Closer Look At Tech Conferences: The Nitty Gritty Details (A Study)


  

As I was flying back from the Smashing Conference in New York, I wondered whether it was a success. This wasn’t an original thought. We are always wondering what makes a conference good and what elements will make industry workers stay away.

Taking A Closer Look At Tech Conferences: The Nitty Gritty Details (A Study)

Good and bad are such subjective terms, though, with almost as many expectations as there are attendees. We decided that just looking at the numbers instead might be a good idea. This article will not present best practices for planning a conference, but rather will look at how it’s actually done most of the time. While this is not a guide to putting together the perfect conference, it gives a good overview of what seems to work and which elements are so unpredictable that they do not serve as reliable guidelines.

The post Taking A Closer Look At Tech Conferences: The Nitty Gritty Details (A Study) appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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