Template Websites VS Bespoke Websites

If you’re launching a new business or giving your company’s online presence an overhaul, the chances are that you’ll be on the look out for a new, eye-catching website. An essential part of every ambitious business’ online arsenal, a sleek, slick and stylish site will help to boost your company image and tempt more customers through your digital door.

When building or commissioning a website, business owners are faced with two main choices: template websites and bespoke sites. So what exactly are the pros and cons of these two design options and which is right for your growing business?

Aesthetics – Template Websites VS Bespoke Websites

Though there are a huge variety of online templates available, pre-made sites still can’t compete with their custom cousins when it comes to looks.

If you hire an experienced, innovative and capable designer, they’ll be able to mould your site to suit you. Not only will this help your new website to reflect your brand and your corporate message it will also ensure your company aesthetic isn’t diluted by trying to make it fit someone else’s design.

In terms of back room aesthetics, bespoke sites are generally written with much cleaner code. Unlike template sites, which are often heavily edited and modified, bespoke sites are specifically written for their purpose, allowing them to perform more efficiently and reducing the chances of a technical glitch.

Functionality – Template Websites VS Bespoke Websites

There’s no denying that advanced template sites come with a range of impressive plugins and add-ons. Though these can help to make a site more suitable for your needs, they are unlikely to work exactly as you want them to. This can become frustrating, especially if you need your site to perform specific functions or work in a particular way.

Bespoke sites on the other hand can be carefully crafted to suit your needs with special features developed and incorporated to make your site work for you.

Versatility – Template Websites VS Bespoke Websites

Bespoke websites are as versatile and as flexible as the web itself. Limited only by the know-how and imagination of your designer, bespoke sites can be built to do almost anything.

As your business’ needs change, the site can be adapted to fit your requirements, ensuring that your online presence evolves and develops in line with your company.

As templates are more rigid in design, they are by nature less versatile. If your company changes direction, focus or image, adapting your template site to reflect this could be a challenge.

Cost – Template Websites VS Bespoke Websites

As template sites can be built quickly and with minimal technical know-how, they are very affordable. However, if your site doesn’t do what you need it to, is difficult to use or glitchy to navigate, your customers could chose to shop elsewhere, leaving you out of pocket in the long run.

To find out more about bespoke web design or to start a brand new project of your own, take a look around our site or get in touch with a member of the Clockwork Moggy team today.

 

Biggest Web Trends of 2015

Biggest Web Trends of 2015 – Single Screens, Scrolling and Saying Goodbye to Chrome

With everything in the world of the web moving so quickly, keeping up with the latest fashions, trends and innovations isn’t always easy. Things that are new and exciting one day are yesterday’s news the next and sites that haven’t been updated for a year or two can begin to look very dated very quickly.

To make sure that your website, app and other online trappings look as fresh and as vibrant as possible, we’ve put together a list of some of the biggest and best web trends of 2015 for you to feast your eyes on.

No Chrome

When talking about web design, the term ‘chrome’ refers to all of those containers, borders, headers and footers that can be found encasing many a web page. Recently, designers have begun rejecting this standard format, opting instead for cleaner layouts and less visual clutter.

This crisp look is ideal for a number of contemporary sites and helps to focus the user’s eye on the content displayed. Sleek and slick, sites without chrome are perfect for retailers, bars, cafes and any business that wants to get their message across with minimal fuss.

Single screen layouts

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The majority of the sites that you visit on the web will have at least one column down the side and will often have a vertical or horizontal menu somewhere on the page.

Single screen layouts on the other hand are unadorned, with a single background image or piece of text adding impact to the design. This minimalist looks gives sites a more televisual feel and is perfectly suited to businesses that want to create a strong brand identity and company aesthetic.

Websites built for scrolling

The mobile internet has already had a big impact on the world of the web with more and more sites responsively designed and optimised for users surfing from their phone or tablet computer.

As increasing numbers of people use their thumbs instead of their track pads or mice, websites will begin to be designed with thumb scrolling in mind. This means that targets (the links that you want to click on) will be further apart and often individually positioned on the page, making it easier for mobile users to find the information they’re looking for quickly and easily.

Big backgrounds

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The use of big, bold images and videos on websites has been on the up for several years now. What we’ve seen a lot of in 2015 is the use of photos, illustrations and videos as the sole background of websites.

A fantastic way to give a site a huge amount of visual impact, big backgrounds are sure to have a big impact throughout the coming year.

If you want to make sure that your site is up to date and ready for the now, the nearly now and what’s next , get in touch with the team at Clockwork Moggy today.

Black Friday Special Offer

Black Friday & Cyber Monday we’re running a special offer, 20% off on our Logo design package.

In order to qualify you must confirm and pay your deposit by 12 midnight on Monday the 30th of November 2015

Simply fill in the form below and we will contact you to discuss the details of your project.

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  • We reserve the right to keep the information you've supplied on this form so that we can reply to you.
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Trends in Fonts and Typography in 2015

Whether you notice it or not, typography is an integral part of your internet experience. Every website you navigate to has chosen its font for a reason, with every embellishment, adaptation and innovation designed to influence your impression of the site and affect the way you think about the brand.

As with any kind of design, typography styles change over time. To make sure that your website and printed materials are contemporary and on trend, take a look at the most influential typography trends of 2015.

Handwritten Fonts

Though handwritten fonts have been around for a while, 2015 has seen a big increase in their use and popularity.

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Logo Design for Katharine Roberts by Clockwork Moggy

Perfect for startups, small independent businesses and larger companies trying to create a more personal feel, hand written fonts are best suited to titles, headings and other small segments of texts and when matched with a hand drawn logo or icon can look spectacular.

Dramatic Fonts

Though many designs rely on images and graphics to create eye-catching looks for their sites, type can also be used to great effect when building a dramatic and arresting design.

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Logo Design for Candy Inc by Clockwork Moggy

Large, oversized text and fonts that have been adapted to suit the context of the site and the client company are fantastic for creating drama and visual interest using text alone.

Photo Overlays

As the internet becomes more photo and video heavy, increasing numbers of designers and web designs are creating home pages that are built around a single image.

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This is example is from a Dutch wind surfing website (http://www.isurfnl.com/)

Typography is then used over that image to create a striking, simple design with a huge amount of impact.

Back to basics

As well as beautifully embellished fonts and intricate headings, we’ve also seen a move towards a more basic typography style throughout 2015. Using strong, simple lines and clear, concise fonts, designers have been creating a range striking typefaces with a unique graphic element.

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Logo Design for Camilla Seton By Clockwork Moggy

 

Perfect for modern companies and businesses that want their site to look a bit different, this look is one that’s set to grow in popularity throughout the coming months.

Vintage Type

The use of vintage type has increased considerably over the last few years. Full of character and with a distinct quirky touch, this kind of type is ideal for companies that want to connect with their audience and show that they have the personal touch.

As a central part of any digital or print design, typography needs to be selected carefully and thoughtfully. To find out more about choosing the perfect font for your next project, talk to a friendly member of the Clockwork Moggy team today.

 

 

Why Super Fast Broadband is a Must with New Technology on the Horizon.

Once upon a time, in the days when dial up internet was the most technologically advanced innovation ever to have graced our homes and offices, a website that loaded in 20-30 seconds was considered ‘fast’. Thankfully, those times are long gone and today most people in the UK have access to fast internet and a range of web based services.

What’s more, with more and more parts of the country switching to super fast broadband, things are about to get even faster. Making it easier to stream HD films, surf the web and take advantage of new programmes and technologies, super fast broadband is the internet of the future.

What is super fast broadband?

Super fast broadband is defined as broadband that provides download speeds in excess of 24Mbps.

The UK Government recently announced that it wants super fast broadband to be available across 90% of the country by the end of 2015 and across 95% of the country by 2017.

Why do we need super fast broadband?

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Apart from making life easier for offices and households with multiple internet enabled devices, super fast broadband will become increasingly important for accessing everything that the web has to offer.

Without super fast broadband, users could struggle to use a number of basic web based services like Netflix, Spotify, Skype, Facetime and Apple iCloud. When super fast broadband is installed, multiple users will be able to use these platforms simultaneously without any noticeable slowing.

As more and more web based technologies are created and rolled out, having instant and unlimited access to the internet will become increasingly important. What’s more, as super fast broadband becomes more commonplace, it will become more affordable, allowing homes and offices across the country to take advantage of everything it has to offer.

What technologies are there on the horizon?

From small start-up companies in East London to huge mega corporations in the US, businesses around the world are working to take advantage of the opportunities offered by superfast broadband.

The range of technologies that will come about as a result of superfast broadband is almost endless. From gaming and HD video streaming to ecommerce and complex cloud based tools, companies and individuals will soon have access to a huge range of programmes and resources atcloud_storage_thumb the click of a button. This is fantastic news for companies that offer HD content and for businesses that rely on web based transactions for their income.

With superfast broadband on the not too distant horizon, offices, schools and households across the country can look forward to convenient, efficient and reliable broadband 24/7. This means consumers can enjoy the best of the web in a spilt second and digital marketers and web developers can enjoy more creative freedom backed up by an instant internet.

Could technology really make humans redundant?

If you’ve seen The Terminator, The Matrix or Transcendence, you’ll know it’s only a matter of time before the machines turn on their human creators and take over the world.

OK, whilst this may not be entirely true, the rise in artificial intelligence has got some of the world’s leading minds a little worried, especially as advances in technology and AI show no sign of slowing down.

In the world of business, technological innovation has long been making its precence felt, with machines taking over a variety of roles from humans over the past decades. With technology becoming ever more human-like and complex, is there a chance that artificial intelligence could really take over from humans, putting us many of us out of our jobs and leaving humans having to barely lift a finger?

Virtual PA

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When Apple first introduced their built in virtual PA, Siri, it revolutionised the way that we interacted with our phones.

Over the years, Siri has become more complex and more capable, increasing the number of tasks she can accomplish all by herself. From posting to Twitter and making restaurant reservations to reminding you about birthdays, appointments and other special occasions, Siri can now do almost anything a real PA can do, apart from make you a nice cup of tea that is.

Digital currency

The rise in contactless payment technology, online banking and digital currency is already making purchases, international money transfers and payments quicker and easier.

In the long run, this could mean that we no longer need to carry cash at all, something that could put cashiers, shopkeepers and bank clerks out of a job.

Cyborgs

Sci-fi fans and technology companies around the world have long dreamt of creating cyborgs. Part human, part machine, cyborgs will help people to overcome their weaknesses and become more powerful, enabling humans to conquer their physical limitations and achieve the impossible.

In recent years, Honda has developed a pair of cyborg legs that do just that. Designed to help people with reduced mobility to get around and to help factory workers who have to stand, kneel or crouch all day, these innovative appendages are already having an impact in the real world.

What does the future hold?

Though cyborgs that help people with disabilities to lead more mobile lives can’t be a bad thing, some businesses are also trying to create human like robots that can perform certain specific tasks without the help of an operator or wearer. Designed to be butlers, entertainers and factory workers, these cyborgs really could put effect the workplace world-over.

Though the rise of the machines may be inevitable, in the mean time there’s no reason why you can’t have a high tech website made by the technologically talented hands of us humans. To find out more, get in touch with the team at clockwork Moggy.

National Cat Day

Today is National Cat day and this is our Moggy Jess celebrating. National Cat day is to help the public to recognise the number of cats that need to be rescued each year and also to encourage cat lovers to celebrate the cat(s) in their life.

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Positive Reactions to Negative Space Logos!

Whether you run a business, charity or a social network, your logo is one of the most important parts of your branding.

We all know that a good logo should be eye-catching, memorable and communicate something about the personality or character of the business that it’s representing. A nifty way to achieve all of these goals, while keep your logo looking sleek and professional is to utilise the negative space in the design. Effectively doubling the communicative power of a logo, negative space holds a huge amount of potential for forward thinking graphic designers and creative companies.

 

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What is Negative Space Logo Design?

When creating a logo using negative space, a designer will use the alternative colour in a graphic to create dual images and representations of a product or service.

Less obvious than traditional logo design, negative space techniques are often only noticed at second glance and will force the viewer to think twice about a company’s logo.

In black and white logos, designers will often use the empty white space to cut out images and shapes from the black part of the graphic in order to create a more interesting, meaningful and individual design. The American Institute of Architects Centre is a great example of making the most of monochrome and uses negative design to transform the teeth of a key into a city skyline.

Why is Negative Space Logo Design effective?

Negative space design is effective for a number of reasons, and up there on the list of why designers love the look it creates – it allows designers to combine a relatively simple graphic with an intricate and clever cut out element.

By making a logo simple and complex at the same time, negative space can help a business to create an eye-catching and memorable design while giving them the space to add a bit of style and personality to the graphic. The result is often more subtle and more stylish than other types of logo design, helping to bring more of the company’s character into their branding.

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Who uses Negative Space Logo Design?

Negative space logo design is suitable for businesses in a range of industries from all walk of business life. From organisations like The Guild of Food Writers and the famous Panda at WWF, to businesses like Spartan Golf and Yoga Australia, the technique has been used by organisations around the world to add an interesting, intelligent and alternative element to their logo design.

If you’d like to give your logo a lift using negative space design, or you just want to find out a little bit more about logo design, get in touch with the team at Clockwork Moggy today.

Back to the Future, the Future is Now!

Virtual Reality for Businesses – Back to the Future, the Future is Now!

If you’re a fan of the movies, or were born in the 80s, you’ll know that the future is fast approaching – well, Back to the Future that is. Today is ‘Back to the Future day’.

Back in 1985, the 21st October 2015 (the date that Doc and Marty travel forward to in the movie) felt like a lifetime away. Though the film was wrong about some things – those self-drying clothes and flying cars are yet to materialise – it was spot on with others. Smart glasses, video conferencing and 3D films do all feature in the real 2015 and, with any luck, hover boards  and Self-Lacing Shoes will soon be perfected too.

As well as making the world a more futuristic place, these innovations have had a big impact on business. Technology, and virtual reality in particular, have transformed the way that retailers and service providers operate in industries around the world. With Marty McFly due to pop through the space time continuum any second, now seems like the perfect time to take a look at the current impact of virtual reality on business and have a sneaky peak and what the future might hold.

 

Virtual mirrors

The high tech toy uses computer wizardry to show customers how an outfit will look on. They can move around, try out different colours and different combinations all without having to queue for the changing room or getting hot and bothered as they get stuck in something a bit too snug.

 

The Hyper loop train

Loop-Train

It may not be a hover board, but the Hyperloop train is just as futuristic.

Proposed by billionaire inventor Elon Musk, the system uses magnets, air pressure and a partial vacuum to catapult passenger pods through specially built tunnels. Powered by the sun and with potential top speeds of 750 miles an hour, the Hyperloop could one day replace planes as our standard method of high speed travel. It also means you could travel from London to Paris in less than 20 minutes!

 

Headsets

Most other virtual reality developers are focusing on headsets that transport the wearer into a different world with augmented reality.

These fully immersive virtual reality systems can allow customers to get a 360˚ view of a product or development, attend meetings and conferences, interview candidates and take part in complex training sessions, all without leaving the comfort of their office.

A number of developers are currently working on their own virtual reality headsets, so it won’t be long before they’re appearing in an office near you.

To find out more about technology and business get in touch with the Clockwork Moggy team or take a look at our website. Celebrate Back to the Future Day in style and rock the retro look!

Things You Didn’t Know About Facebook – And Why You Should Care in The Social Media World

The largest social media network in the world and one of the biggest influences on contemporary culture, Facebook is one of the most important innovations of our generation.

From helping people to connect with friends and family to giving businesses the chance to engage with their customers and tailor their products and services to suit their target audience, Facebook has revolutionised the way that we communicate, advertise and socialise.

But how much do you really know about this social media giant? To help you get a better understanding of the site that has saturated our social lives, here are a few interesting things you might not know about Facebook.

There’s been lots in the online press about how one in seven people on earth is on Facebook. But did you know only 40% of the world’s population is actually online? That makes it all the more incredible that one in seven people on the planet have a Facebook profile.

Facebook receives over one billion users a day and Mark Zuckerberg recently announced that Facebook has broken the record of one billion users in just one day. That makes it the second most visited site on the web. It’s not hard to guess who takes the top spot – Facebook’s one billion daily users make it the second most visited site on the internet, just behind search engine Google and well ahead of third place YouTube.
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But did you know, the average Facebook user only sees about 10% of their Facebook stories via the Newsfeed.

According to official Facebook information, most users only see 10% of the stories that could appear on their newsfeed every day. These stories are carefully curated from an average of 1500 potential updates a user could see, with each person’s news feed personalised to reflect their interests, closest connections and most popular stories.

Plus:

  • There are 70 different languages available for users on Facebook as the social network hopes to tempt even more of the world’s population onto its site.
  • Every 20 minutes on Facebook one million links are shared, two million friends are requested and three million messages are sent.
  • On a daily basis there are 350 million photos uploaded, 4.5 billion likes, 10 billion messages sent on Facebook.

Increasing numbers of people are using Facebook as their primary means of online communication, sending messages, sharing photos and keeping in touch with friends and family.

With such a high percentage of the world now on Facebook, the social network’s online dominance seems unassailable. So whether you love it or hate it, this is one online phenomenon that looks like it’s here to stay.
Brands need to take note of the power of Facebook in reaching and engaging with their existing and potential customers. With consumers almost 75%  more likely to buy something based on a Facebook recommendation, it’s important that your social media profiles are saying the right things about you and your brand. Make sure your branding is compelling across all your customer touch points, from your website to your social media skins and not forgetting the important printed parts of your brand toolkit.

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