Clikzy Creative is a full-service design firm &
Award Winning Business Website Design Agency.
Email us or call (703) 567-4330 for a quote today!
Financial organizations know what they need and want in a website and although they can verbalize this, they often don’t have a visual in mind of how it’s supposed to look. That is where web designers come in; they take the info, the graphics the company wants and a color scheme and make it all come together into something customers can’t take their eyes off of.
Color IS Necessary
In particular for this calendar year, color schemes are big. Some companies try the old subconscious association method for color on their website. If money is green, then some part of their website is green too. The idea here is focused on getting people to think more about money and finances when they see and think about green than any other color. Of course if a financial institution is positioned in, say, Great Britain, this doesn’t exactly work as the pound notes are a series of rainbow hues that make you think you’re spending Monopoly money. In that case a color scheme of a different approach works better.
Some banks or financial advisors will choose the colors of their buildings and signs to incorporate into their web designs. This is fine, as it continues the thought and design of the firms they work for, but might leave the page a little boring if blues and grays are the colors the designer has to work with. However, that isn’t to say that with a little creative freedom, it can’t turn boring into professional and interesting.
The non-traditional approach to color is becoming very popular this year. Bright, bold colors that invoke certain emotional connections for consumers to certain events in their lives psychologically cause them to stop and stare. Color patterns in a background or watermark appearance have a similar effect. These types of color design have to be used sparingly and appropriately to grab the browser’s attention in just the right way.
Give Them Pretty Pictures
People are highly visual creatures. They are emotionally drawn to and moved by great inspirational photos that remind them of certain life goals. Mountains, sunsets, houses as big as castles, families- these are all things that make consumers think of what they want to save and invest money for. Something as simple as a scenic view as a header on the opening page of a financial website will get them thinking and exploring the site for what that financial company has to offer. It draws them in on an inspirational whim, so to speak.
It’s important to know how a website should be laid out. For ease of navigation, are there subheadings on the page with drop down menus? Are there hyperlinked pages in list format? Is it block style, basic grid layout, or something more complex? You don’t want your customers to feel like they have to spend hours hunting for the information that should have been easily accessible from and/or visible on the first page.
The initial design choices should be carried out on the rest of the website’s pages. Inconsistency in design is suggestive of inconsistency in business, and no one wants that. Popular layouts this year include images of the financial company’s CEO and a short bio or business motto next to it, layered effects of pictures underneath blocks of information and links, and the ever thriving modern blog format which makes it look more user friendly and inviting. For a more wealthy investor look, clean lines and minimalism are preferred.
Social Media Links
Any respectable online banking or financial firm knows that social media plays a large part in the lives of their consumers. Clearly readable and present links on the opening page help them connect to the institution’s social media web pages. Once there, consumers should be able to easily click back to the online web page. The icons for these links can be placed anywhere but are usually found in a top or bottom corner so that customers have to scroll through the page to get to them and thus may actually read some of what they see along the way.
Responsive Web Designs
Absolutely necessary in the age of mobile technology, websites should be responsive so that the consumers can open access on any smart device or computer screen without manually making the page fit their screen. Web pages that haven’t been designed to be responsive shows a lack of understanding on the financial company’s part for the way their customers prefer to connect to them. It’s somewhat in bad taste, and thus this is a major trend for the 2012 year of financial web design.
Customers Want Trust
Keeping a traditional design in mind makes customers feel more comfortable with what they are viewing and establishes trust. This is a worthwhile consideration and should not be overlooked entirely.
Appealing to Youth or Wisdom
It’s also important to keep in mind the targeted audience of your firm. Do you want the college graduates who need a safe place to bank or do you want the baby boomers who are looking to turn their investments into a summer home in the Hamptons? Graphics like an iPhone will get the younger generation’s attention while pictures of comfortable living will draw in the older generations. Just like TV shows and TV stations, knowing who your target audience is is invaluable in your design.
Last, but definitely not least, navigation is vital to your site. The simpler the navigation the better. Sites are currently trending toward the simplest means of navigation possible. Click and link is the most accessible means to your consumers and ensures even the least tech savvy person can navigate your site without a problem.
Where you locate these links and means of navigation on your opening page is also critical. If they are in tiny type on the very bottom, consumers are not going to be too happy with searching for them and trying to click on them to get to the right page. Designing a financial website should be like riding a bike; your customers know where they want to go, what they want to get, and want to get there quickly and easily without falling off the page or being redirected.
In today’s day and age, it can be hard to resist the urge for a “quick fix” when taking on the daunting task of creating a new marketing and branding strategy for your business. After noticing a decline in business, many companies will want instant gratification by implementing a temporary fix to their problem and call it good.
This approach can prove detrimental to the long term health of your business. Sometimes you have to do more than just scratch the surface.
What would you do if you noticed your tire was leaking air. You would first take a look and see what was causing the leak right? Is there a nail in it? Is there a hole in the sidewall? Then you would probably take it to a professional to see if the leak can be fixed or if you need a new tire all together.
What if this leaky tire was your company and the air escaping out was your customer base. You wouldn’t just slap some duct tape over it and continue driving down the road would you? Sure, this temporary fix might get you a few more miles out of the tire, but at some point you are going to need to fix the leak permanently. You will need to find out what is causing your customers to leave, remove that nail, and retain the integrity of your customer base.
Leaky tire, what is this guy talking about? When it comes to creating a new marketing and branding strategy for your company to improve your customer base, you have to resist that urge for the quick fix. Realize the value of taking it step by step and really put in the effort needed to identify and solve the problem. Otherwise, you will be investing in a lot of duct tape.