Browsing articles in "Web Design"
Jul
11
2014

A Roadmap To Becoming An A/B Testing Expert


  

A/B testing, also known as split testing, is the method of pitting two versions of a landing page against each other in a battle of conversion. You test to see which version does a better job of leading visitors to one of your goals, like signing up or subscribing to a newsletter. You can test two entirely different designs for a landing page or you can test small tweaks, like changes to a few words in your copy.

Roadmap To Becoming An A/B Testing Expert

Running A/B tests on your website can help you improve your communication with visitors and back up important design decisions with real data from real users. With the multitude of tools available (detailed later), split testing has become easy for even non-technical people to design and manage.

The post A Roadmap To Becoming An A/B Testing Expert appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Jul
10
2014

How To Profit From Selling Digital Products (Part 1)


  

At the end of 2012, I was talking with a good friend of mine who runs a small custom woodworking company. We were discussing business over the last year and a few things we learned. While his business did about double the revenue that mine did in 2012, I made considerably more profit.

How To Profit From Selling Digital Products (Part 1)

That’s when it sank in how unusual my business really is: Instead of having a 10 to 20% profit margin like many businesses, I had an 85% profit margin in 2012. That actually could have been much higher, except that I spent some money on equipment (I needed that 27-inch display) and hiring freelancers. After creating each product, I have only 5% in hard costs for each sale. And the product can be sold an unlimited number of times.

The post How To Profit From Selling Digital Products (Part 1) appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Jul
9
2014

The WAI Forward


  

It’s one thing to create a web application and quite another to keep it accessible — independent of the device that the user is using and its capabilities. That’s why Heydon Pickering, now the accessibility editor on Smashing Magazine, wrote an eBook Apps For All: Coding Accessible Web Applications, outlining the roadmap for well-designed, accessible applications.

This article is an excerpt of a chapter in the eBook that introduces many of the ideas and techniques presented. Reviewed by Steve Faulkner, it’s an eBook you definitely shouldn’t miss if you’re a developer who cares about well-structured content and inclusive interface design. – Ed.

The WAI Forward

Because the W3C’s mission from the outset has been to make the web accessible, accessibility features are built into its specifications. As responsible designers, we have the job of creating compelling web experiences without disrupting the inclusive features of a simpler design.

The post The WAI Forward appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Jul
8
2014

Breakpoints And The Future Of Websites


  

When the iPhone came out in 2007, the demonstration of its web browser by the late great Steve Jobs gave the not-so-subtle impression that Apple wasn’t too perturbed about its users pinching to zoom and swiping to scroll as part of the browsing experience. Responsive web design aimed to solve this problem by smartly applying flexible grids, fluid layouts and, of course, media queries.

Breakpoints And The Future Of Websites

However, responsive web design has turned out to be somewhat of a case study in the law of unintended consequences, with one of the perverse unanticipated effects being breakpoint paranoia. But even without the undue influence that media queries exerts on your selection of these breakpoints, it dawns on you after much introspection that these might not be the droids we’re looking for.

The post Breakpoints And The Future Of Websites appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Jul
7
2014

Case Study: PixelMogul, A Simulation Game For iOS


  

Are you a web designer or developer who dreams about creating a mobile game and bringing it to the app store? We have good news: Your road to the app store might be shorter than you think! And if you can recall your experience with ActionScript and the Flash platform from days of old, then you’ll even have a shortcut.

Case Study: PixelMogul, A Simulation Game For iOS

Building a native app with Flash might sound weird at first. In this article, we will share some insights on how we built a game for iOS that is written entirely in ActionScript.

The post Case Study: PixelMogul, A Simulation Game For iOS appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Jul
3
2014

Techniques For Creating Custom Textures In Photoshop


  

Textures are everywhere — the concrete of a sidewalk, the fabric on your chair, even the glass (or plastic) surface of the screen you’re staring at right now. It’s natural that textures appeal to us because we see and feel them every day. And it’s no surprise why textures have become such an important element in design — so important, in fact, that I want to share with you the tricks and tools to create your own textures using Photoshop.

Techniques For Creating Custom Textures In Photoshop

Photoshop isn’t just for retouching images or manipulating photos. It can be used for so much more, such as creating your own textures — as long as you know where to look. In this article, I will present a foundation of techniques to help you build custom textures. I’ll go over three Photoshop features that I rely on to do most of my texturing — filters, layer styles and brushes. Before we jump in, I want to demonstrate the importance of textures.

The post Techniques For Creating Custom Textures In Photoshop appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Jul
2
2014

Don’t Be Scared Of Functional Programming


  

Functional programming is the mustachioed hipster of programming paradigms. Originally relegated to the annals of computer science academia, functional programming has had a recent renaissance that is due largely to its utility in distributed systems (and probably also because “pure” functional languages like Haskell are difficult to grasp, which gives them a certain cache).

Don't Be Scared Of Functional Programming

Stricter functional programming languages are typically used when a system’s performance and integrity are both critical — i.e. your program needs to do exactly what you expect every time and needs to operate in an environment where its tasks can be shared across hundreds or thousands of networked computers.

The post Don’t Be Scared Of Functional Programming appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Jul
1
2014

Server-Side Device Detection With JavaScript


  

There are many strategies to choose from when developing a modern, device independent website nowadays. How should capabilities of the device or browser be determined? Should the presentation logic be server side or client side? Traditionally, mobile optimization had to happen server side.

Server-Side Device Detection With JavaScript

Over the last couple of years, Responsive Web Design and tools like Modernizr have become very popular. Recently, combination techniques (often called RESS), where optimization is done both server-side and client-side, has become a trend. The recently launched WURFL.js tool, fits into this category.

The post Server-Side Device Detection With JavaScript appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Jun
30
2014

Facing Your Fears: Approaching People For Research


  

When working on a project, have you ever felt that you and the rest of the team were making a lot of decisions based on assumptions? Having to make choices with limited information is not unusual — especially in complex projects or with brand new products.

Facing Your Fears: Approaching People For Research

Phrases like “We think people will use this feature because of X” or “We believe user group Y will switch to this product” become part of the early deliberation on what to develop and how to prioritize.

The post Facing Your Fears: Approaching People For Research appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Jun
30
2014

Desktop Wallpaper Calendars: July 2014


  

We always try our best to challenge your artistic abilities and produce some interesting, beautiful and creative artwork. And as designers we usually turn to different sources of inspiration. As a matter of fact, we’ve discovered the best one—desktop wallpapers that are a little more distinctive than the usual crowd.

Desktop Wallpaper Calendars: July 2014

This creativity mission has been going on for six years now, and we are very thankful to all designers who have contributed and are still diligently contributing each month. This post features free desktop wallpapers created by artists across the globe for July 2014. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free. It’s time to freshen up your wallpaper!

The post Desktop Wallpaper Calendars: July 2014 appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

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