Sparks October 2012 -

Sparks October 2012

In the News

Yes, you still need a mobile site
Last issue we introduced the concept of a mobile website: A site that is designed specifically for smartphones. Recently we sent a mailer to many of our clients giving the lowdown on this important evolution in web design. Here’s the skinny:

A mobile site simplifies the content from your desktop site and formats it for the small screen size of a smartphone. When a smartphone user navigates to your site, the mobile version automatically displays.

The numbers tell the story. You need a mobile site. Now.

  • 50.4% of mobile subscribers have smartphones, up from 23% in 2011. These numbers are skyrocketing. Nielsen May ‘12
  • 54% of mobile subscribers are in the 18-24 age bracket. Trying to reach students? You need a mobile site. Nielsen November ‘11
  • 78% of Australians own smartphones. Trying to reach an international audience? You need a mobile site. Pew Research October ‘12
  • 20% of all website visits come from mobile devices. FiddleFly October ‘12
  • 50% of all website visits will come from mobile devices in 2013. These numbers are only going up, folks. FiddleFly October ‘12
  • 80% of smartphone users leave a traditional desktop website without going deeper than the home page. Ouch. MarketingProfs August ‘12
  • 84% of businesses with mobile sites saw increases in revenue and customer satisfaction! FiddleFly October ‘12

A note about Responsive Web Design (RWD):
With the explosion of mobile devices (phones, tablets, etc), designers have been moving towards Responsive Web Design. RWD takes the same content of your desktop site but formats it differently based on the size of the screen. It can cover everything from a desktop site all the way down to a mobile phone.

Check out this site from Forefathers: Resize your browser window wider and narrower to see how the layout changes. For instance, as you go narrower, the navigation buttons are stacked rather than horizontal. This is the future of web design. Some businesses are not ready for it yet, however, because it takes more up-front investment. It takes more time and creativity to design for target sizes and the coding of the site is a little more complex. But if you have the budget, RWD is the way to go. It ensures your site looks good no matter what device is being used.

The good news, as noted above, is that those businesses with mobile sites saw increases in revenue and customer satisfaction. Smartphone users are willing to reward businesses who make their experience positive and easy.

It’s time. Ten years ago it was mission critical to have a desktop site. The fast-changing world of technology has moved on. It’s now time to create a mobile presence. Contact us to get started.

What you’ve missed on Facebook
Here are some of our recent Facebook posts. “Like” us to get in on the goodness.

  • Top 9 brand blunders of all time
  • Our three new national design awards
  • Facebook reaches 1 billion monthly users
  • Is design out-designing itself? Furniture that looks cool but lacks practicality
  • The 2012 design debate: Romney vs. Obama




This month’s winner: Kim Ecenbarger!
Our VisoVerbo champ wins a digital print featuring this one-of-a-kind design. Have a favorite quote or saying? Send it in! If your quote is chosen, you’ll receive a digital print of your custom design suitable for framing! Check out your competition here.

Client Spotlight

CS Property Management
CS Property Management is a Bloomington-based company that specializes in reasonably priced apartments for residents who a enjoy a quiet, convenient, well-maintained apartment home. They outgrew their original website, which was directed more at the mass market and had an amateurish look. They wanted something more sophisticated without looking “luxury.”

We built off the logo redesign we created for them in 2010, opting for a clean look with plenty of space around search engine-optimized copy. We changed the color palette from a somewhat garish green to a more muted green and burgundy scheme. We also developed the tagline line of “Affordable, Clean, and Convenient Apartments” to sum up CS Property Management’s position as a provider of well-managed mid-market properties. New photography presents the properties in their best light.

The interactive features give site visitors easy access to information about each property. They can also apply online, request a showing, submit maintenance requests, and more.

The new look has been very successful. We’ve carried it over into marketing sheets, advertising, and business cards. Combined with a an interior design makeover of the CS Property Management offices, they are now better positioned than ever!

Check out the redesigned website by