AdFicient has been in business for a long time and the team decided that it was time to redesign the website. The old website was getting a bit outdated, cluttered, and there wasn’t a clear message. We split our website redesign process into roughly three phases: brainstorm & research, mockups, and design & development.
Brainstorm & Research
We started to brainstorm what message we want our website to portray. We knew that we wanted to stay away from looking too corporate, yet we also understand the importance of professionalism. What separates us from the competition is that we offer a more personal service and we are available 24/7, unlike the other 9 to 5 PPC management companies.
We sketched many different logo ideas to see if any of those sparked further ideas. Since we are in a search engine marketing industry, we wanted a logo to either be simple and type only, or have a meaningful icon mark with it.
We went through many different concepts, but we knew we had to decide on the branding before we went too far into the web design stage.
Logo Concepts 1
Logo Concepts 2
Logo Concepts 3
Logo Concepts 4
Logo Concepts 5
The most important thing when designing a brand or identity is to make sure your client loves their logo. The company logo is something that you should like and be proud of. It is the primary face of your company.
In the last few phases of our logo design, we decided to go with a clean type-only logo. We believe in making things simple and effective, and we applied that same principle to our logo and brand.
When it came time to think about our new website, we had many ideas but no clear direction. There was a lot of we like this and that, but not this other thing which is a normal design process most designers go through.
The main thing for AdFicient was that we didn’t want to look like every other search engine marketing and pay per click agency out there. We looked at top 20 PPC companies and most of their websites were outdated, bland, and looked like a generic template.
Original AdFicient Website
The original AdFicient website was very similar to our competitors’ websites. It had all the same features, but like those other websites, it lacked a clear direction and message. There was a lot of content clutter which caused much confusion among our web users as well as ourselves.
Website Design Concept 1
The first concept we designed was themed around the notion of “organic marketing.” A lot of work includes organic search engine optimization and driving traffic from other organic sources such as social media, Yellow Pages, Yelp, and so on.
Although we liked the design, we felt like it put a limit on our image and we weren’t just an organic marketing agency. Aside from SEO work we do, we are known as the premier PPC management agency. In addition, we also do a lot of creative work such as web design and development.
Website Design Concept 2
The second concept was heavily-inspired by infographics. We explored an idea of portraying our company’s vision and message in an infographic way. Although it was quite a unique concept, it was also a bit limiting. It would have been hard to make the website scalable for many of our unique landing pages.
We still feel that an infographic-inspired web design has a place on the web and several websites have implemented it successfully. As with all design, it depends on your industry and business message.
Website Design Concept 3
The third concept was the one that most-closely resembles the final website. In this concept, we felt like users know what we do from a quick glance at the homepage. The “search engine marketing” and “business development” words are large and bold on the homepage and right above the fold.
We also implemented a carousel that could display some of our work such as conversion rate improvement, website design, and other similar work.
Design & Development
Once we decided on the final concept, it was time to put the finishing touches on the design and start working on the development.
AdFicient was powered by Joomla CMS, but we wanted to move to the WordPress platform due to its ease of use and flexibility. We do our fair share of WordPress design so we knew exactly what to expect by moving to WordPress.
We proceeded by moving the most important content on our old website into the new WordPress-powered website in our development environment. That process involved manual work as well as several Joomla-to-WordPress migration plugins.
After that, it was time to begin coding. Our goal was to create AdFicient to support mobile devices so we had to code it with responsive web design methods such as CSS media queries. Another requirement was to make sure it looks good on retina displays which involved using many CSS3 techniques such as gradients, box shadows, and text shadows. What wasn’t possible to do with CSS3 had to be done with images scaled at 50%.
Although the website redesign process was exhaustive at times, it taught us all a great lesson. Never settle for a website you do not like. Design process is a constantly evolving process, so you never reach a 100% satisfaction. There will always be more work to be done and that’s a part of what makes our industry so attractive and interesting.