4 Ways to Make Building Your Website More Fun and Creative
Isn’t it crazy to think that in today’s world, most people will build a website at some point in their lives? It’s almost become a rite of passage! Getting a driver’s license, finishing school, opening up a credit card… and building a website.
I love what I do (building websites). I want my clients to enjoy it as much as I do. So instead of talking more about website best practices and SEO tips, I want to suggest four things you can do before creating your website to make the experience much more fun!
Put on your favorite music (I alternate between Motown and classical) and ask yourself, “What do I want from my website?” Write down a list of all your hopes and desires for a future site. It can be practical: I want to make $1000 a month with my website. It can be emotional: I want people to feel loved and cherished when they’re on my website. It can be weird: I want people to feel like they’re on roller blades when they’re on my website.
This is a valuable step for all of your business endeavors, and I encourage you to give yourself permission to take time, and to dream big!
Get a colorful collection of pens (Muji is my favorite place to go for pens) and forget your limitations. Before you look at an endless list of all the beautiful websites you want your site to be like, take a moment to just think about what you want! Throw away all your practical concerns (that’d be too expensive… that’d be too complicated… that’d be too weird... ) for a second. Just sketch out what your ideal website would look like. Do you want animations? Do you want a video? Do you want pink everywhere? Go wild!
When you do start working with a designer, you may realize that parts of your vision can’t be executed—but as the old saying goes, aim for the moon, and you’ll be more likely to land on the star of your unique website. ;)
Now that you’ve taken stock of the dreams and visions within you—see beyond. Take a look at different kinds of websites. Make a list of what you like and don’t like about each one. This is the time to develop your tastes and try to verbalize your opinions. (Quick tip: This step will be immensely helpful when you’re working and communicating with a designer like me.)
One of the reasons Bianca and I came together to create Sunbird Creative was simple: we were tired of working and creating on our own. It’s so hard to sustain excitement or refine ideas in the single chamber of your own mind. To some, outsourcing is obviously a great thing. But if you’re like me, outsourcing is a scary thought; trusting someone to execute your vision is oddly painful and emotional. One way I’ve found helpful in overcoming this obstacle is treating the outsourcing process as something creative. Instead of framing it as “I know… I know I need help…” try thinking this instead: What kind of person, with what kind of character and skills, would I LOVE to work with?
Take your time with this exercise. Create profiles of the types of people you would love on your team. And then finally, go out to find them as your budget allows!
Most people build a website for very practical reasons (to give information, to generate sales, to build community). But that doesn’t mean it can’t be a fun, creative, and even life-giving process.