May 9, 2022
Recently Monica and I took part in a playful design competition where we both created websites for a fictional burger joint. We left the voting of whose was better up to our online audience! The prize? A 15-minute footrub from the loser.
This was such a fun experiment, and ultimately we both learned some very valuable lessons. In this blog I’m highlighting four lessons that really stood out to me, and that I believe will be impactful to you in your business journey.
(Make sure you stay tuned till the end to find out who won the competition 😉)
Even if you are not a website designer yourself, you can take these lessons and apply them to your own website! We promise, if you put them into action, your website will improve. A few of these lessons are not website specific though. No matter what your business is or does (maybe you’re an artist, a life coach, a yoga instructor or a virtual assistant), there is something to be gained from these lessons!
Monica’s website: Big Burger Co.
Austin’s website: The Burger Bunch
You can’t have just one or the other. Monica’s design (Big Burger Co.) has an incredible aesthetic! The layout and use of colors is fun, and the branding is very well put together. Monica put more time into thinking about and planning the visuals than I did on mine, and it paid off. According to Express Yourself Websites, the design of your website is the first thing people will notice, and Monica really understood this!
In contrast, my design (The Burger Bunch) may seem a little bland. It’s darker, less “poppy”, and there’s not as much that’s eye-catching to it. However, the top image of the burger appeals a bit more to visitors. The large image of a burger tells visitors immediately what they’re in for and exactly what the business’s main offering is. I then gave website visitors two clear paths to choose: order takeout or order catering. Offering choices, but not too many, was a very specific strategy choice I made.
And you know what? Different people loved each of ours for those very reasons! And an even better website than either one we created would be a blend of the two: stunning visuals and a planned out brand identity combined with a strategic layout and presentation. That’s what your website should be aiming for.
If you spend some time looking through effective websites, you’ll realize that the intended audience plays a huge role in how the site is designed!
Let’s use pizza as an example (food examples are the best). Everyone loves a good pizza, right? And in many places, the most available and cheapest pizza you’ll find is Little Caesars. They sell mostly pizzas, but also offer different calzones, breadsticks, and a few various items. People come into a store intending to be there for a few minutes and leave.
In my hometown in Cameron Park, CA there is a heavily trafficked and delicious pizza bar called Wally’s. This pizza place is intended to attract a much different audience. Their niche is people who love pizza and sports. People come to Wally’s to hang out and spend an hour or so with others. They offer pizza, just like Little Caesars, but also offer craft beers, cocktails and salads.
These two pizza places have a very different design and aesthetic, both on their website and in their physical locations. And that’s because they are made for different people!
Big Burger Co. is comfortable, casual, and energetic with warm colors, while The Burger Bunch is designed with cool colors for a classier audience who might be higher paying. Neither design is better than the other, they are just made for different audiences. If you take the time to get to know who your intended audience is, you’ll have greater success in creating something they will enjoy.
Five Design Co. has a great article about why it’s important to define your audience, and even how to do it! Check it out here!
This is exactly the reason why we’ve created a branding questionnaire for our clients! Before even touching a web page, we will work with you to discover who your intended audience is, or should be, so your design really stands out and attracts them! Get in touch with us if you’d like to talk about how we can help you create a brand identity for the right people.
It can be hard to receive feedback for something you’ve created, especially when you’ve put a lot of hard work and personal investment into it. But the fact of the matter is, receiving feedback (and more importantly, listening to that feedback), will excel your growth and skill development!
Receiving feedback is a powerful way to conduct market research. When you receive comments about what individuals did or did not like, you’re getting real time answers to how your design will be received and how it can be improved. This is gold! Use those, implement what you’ve been told, and make your design even better next time! Part of the beauty of designing and creating is that you can always expand your abilities and get better.
It can be difficult to not take things personally. But if you manage to take that feedback constructively, you’ll ultimately grow much faster and have a better understanding of what your target audience wants.
And speaking of feedback, we want to hear yours! If you’d like to leave us a message or get in touch for any reason, please don’t hesitate to do so! We love hearing from you. You can get in touch through our contact form on our website or message us on Instagram.
Taking part in this design challenge opened up our eyes to how much we’ve leaned on each other in our designing.
Don’t get me wrong, one of the best things about being in business with your spouse is having a built-in partner who checks things, offers feedback, and gives opinions.
But as we worked on our design pieces individually, we couldn’t hide behind the other person. We couldn’t ask for advice or feedback. We had to do our best to design on our own. And this taught us both to take a chance with our own ideas! It taught us to have confidence in ourselves and our abilities.
It can be really hard to put yourself out there. But it is so rewarding when you trust in yourself and you end up feeling really proud of your work. You’ll make mistakes. We sure did. Neither of our designs are perfect. And chances are that whatever you’re creating, whether it’s a design piece, a writing piece, or an entire business, you will make mistakes. It won’t be perfect. But be brave, trust in yourself, and you’ll be amazed at what you can do!
This is more of a fun fact for you guys, but Monica and I LOVE working together! And we work very well as a team. Monica has so many strengths that I lack, and vice versa. We both have strengths and weaknesses that compliment one another, and that makes for a great business team!
If you’re interested in learning more about us, our business journey, or how we work together, check out our about page here.
So who won the competition? In the end, my design ended up getting the most votes. But honestly, it was such a close call! We really learned a lot about our different strengths and weaknesses, and that’s why we design as a team!
Competition can teach us a lot of things, and the two of us certainly learned a lot from our design challenge. I hope you can find ways to apply these lessons to your own business and journey.
Monica and I had such a fun time with this design challenge, and there are definitely plans to continue them in the future! What should our next challenge be? Let us know in the comments below or on our IG page, then make sure you follow us on Instagram to keep up on the challenges, or even suggest a winning prize!
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