My process is my passion, because this is how we’re going to achieve your online business goals. This is a snapshot of what you can expect at each stage of the process, should you choose to embark on a design journey with me.
Strategy and Planning
We start by clarifying how your website will help you achieve your business goals. We also agree on a project plan so we know what will be completed by when.
I check in with you with a written summary of our project objectives, scope and direction to make sure we’re on the same page.
I interview you to get to know your brand (almost as well as you do!) so that I can create high-converting web copy in a voice that feels just like you (signature package only).
Brand kit design
I send you a presentation of your new logotype, colour palette and fonts. You’ll have time to provide feedback and request tweaks.
Lead generation strategy
I’ll help you craft an irresistible offer so that when we launch your new website you’ll also have a ready-to-go marketing campaign (signature package only).
We hop on a zoom call and I walk you through your new website, page by page. This when you see everything come together!
You’ll get a chance to sit with the website and review it on your own, so you can make sure you’re 100% happy with it before we launch.
We’ll publish your site so everyone can see it and I’ll also teach you how to make updates so you can make changes anytime you want.
I live in Mackay, Queensland, Australia. This puts me in the same time zone as Brisbane, Australia (AEST).
Short answer: Webflow.
Long answer: After struggling with WordPress for years I recently switched over to Webflow and haven’t looked back. The market is filled with site builders that promise to be universal solutions for any design challenge, but when it comes to practice, they fall short on both the design and development side. Only a few tools actually keep their promises. Webflow is the next-generation tool for building a sophisticated web experience that allows users to design, build, and launch websites visually. If you’re after a CMS that is low maintenance, easy to edit, is user friendly, SEO friendly and plays nice with other software, then Webflow is for you.
Here are my top 3 reasons why I prefer Webflow over WordPress:
1. Site speed and security — Webflow hosted sites are backed up on Amazon Web Servers (AWS). So immediately you’re gaining Amazon’s high level of security. Also once you press Publish on your site all the content, code and assets get sent over to Fastly.com. Fastly.com is a Content Delivery Network (CDN) which has points of presence all over the world. Which means when a user visits your website, they are accessing your site from the nearest server, based on where they are located. There isn’t just one server that your website is hosted on, these are points of presence located everywhere. In a nutshell this means your site has the highest level of speed and security.
2. Plugins and code cleanliness — If you’ve ever used WordPress before you’ll know exactly what I’m referring to here. WordPress has a huge worldwide plugin community. There are endless WordPress plugins out there. Webflow comparatively doesn’t. Anyone in the WordPress community can make a plugin and they’re not reviewed, monitored or regulated. Whereas, with Webflow everything is still closed. Meaning Webflow’s internal team codes their own plugins. This allows Webflow to control, regulate and maintain the plugins - keeping the quality of the code clean. Also, the top WordPress plugins (contact form 7, Yoast SEO, Akismet, WooCommerce etc ) come built in with Webflow. In a nutshell this means you’ll never have to worry about updating plugins and hope and pray that they don’t break your site.
3. CMS ease of use — WordPress is an old and complex platform that is not easy to use. As a client you shouldn’t have to learn a new language just to use your website. If it takes you hours to learn how to use it, then there’s something wrong with the platform. Webflow has a CMS editor so all you have to do is click and edit and press publish. Which is why you don’t need much training, as it’s a simple to use platform.
Short answer: No
Long answer: Platforms like Squarespace and Wix are easy to use website builders that are based on existing pre-made web templates. They can be a great solution for someone who wants to use their existing templates and change the content. Squarespace in particular has some really beautiful templates. Webflow, on the other hand is a design and development platform that allows web designers to create custom built sites from scratch. I prefer Webflow as it provides me with the tools to create custom made websites from my own vision.
Short answer: No
Long answer: Shopify is a fantastic e-commerce platform, however it's not something I have experience with.
All clients make their payment in 3 parts:
30% deposit to book a slot in my calendar
35% at the start of the project
35% before site launch
I book projects several months ahead of time, and scheduling ensures that I give you the proper amount of time that your project requires. As a result, I turn away clients for your reserved time slot. If you back out of the project, you may leave an empty spot that could have been given to another project. The deposit ensures clients are serious and committed to the project.
Domain name: you’ll need to purchase a domain name.
Webflow Hosting Plan: you’ll need to purchase a hosting plan.
MailChimp (email marketing): you’ll need a paid MailChimp account so we can automate your email campaigns.
You have a clear niche
You clearly understand the problems your clients are facing
You have great packages to offer your clients
You're clients are getting awesome results and you have testimonials to proof it
You're offering outstanding value
You have professional photographs of yourself
Web development is a process and requires careful attention and planning. Sometimes it is the first experience people have with your brand, so it’s not something to rush. I book projects several months ahead of time, so if you would like to work with me please get in touch at your earliest convenience so we can schedule your project in.
Certainly, I’ll provide you with an hourly rate, so if you need any additional help I’m just an email away.
A logo is a symbol. Think Apple’s apple symbol, Nike swoosh symbol or Twitter’s bird symbol. Not all businesses need a logo. Creating a logo can be quite a time consuming and expensive process. So if you don't need one, I have an alternative for you: the logotype. A logotype is more like a word (also known as a wordmark). Think Chanel, Google, Jeep or my logotype: Circular Digital. It’s becoming more common these days to use a logotype. It's a great alternative if you want to get online faster, without having to spend the money and time on developing a logo. It also creates a seamless web experience. A logotype is included in all my Web Packages. But, if you have your heart set on a logo you can always purchase my comprehensive Brand Identity package.
A brand identity package is a more comprehensive solution. Not all small businesses need this, so I’ve provided an alternative in all my web packages: the brand kit. So if you want to get online fast, the brand kit is the solution. Don’t stress it will still be awesome!
Yes, however this is something that we'll need to discuss beforehand. The brand and/or logo will effect the overall quality and direction of the site.
Brand strategy is like the foundation for your house, you can’t see it, but it’s essential for your success. Which is why I wrote a book about it: Brand Strategy Blueprint. In order for your customers to understand the value you bring, it’s essential your brand messaging is clear. If you’re confused, then your target audience will be as well. Clear brand messaging comes from essentially doing your homework — or brand strategy. You need to be clear on your mission, vision, niche, competitors, values, brand promise, tone of voice and personality. If you’re interested in purchasing my Brand Strategy Blueprint, you can do so over at madebycircular.com.au. When you purchase my Signature Web Package, designed specifically for online consultants and service providers we’ll do an in depth brand interview so I can write persuasive web copy and get your brand messaging just right.
Short answer: No
Long answer: Sometimes potential clients find my work through Creative Market. This is fantastic, however my Creative Market store is specifically created for graphic designers and not business owners. Made By Circular is my one-to-many business where I create templates for graphic designers to help speed up the design process. I create one template and I sell it many times over, which is how I keep my prices low. Circular Digital on the other hand, is my one-to-one Branding and Web Design business where I create custom work for business owners. Graphic designers require a template that they can use many times over for several clients, however business owners generally require a brochure, social media graphics, presentation deck or visual identity including a completed brand style guide, but not usually a template as such.
I get asked this question quite a lot and I’m really pleased that you like my work. However, there’s a few reasons why I don’t do this.
Firstly, the purpose of this document is to be used as a template, not a final product. It has been created for graphic designers to use as a starting point, so they can add their own logo, fonts, colours and imagery. This allows them to speed up the design process and present their own work to their clients in a professional manner.
Secondly, branding is a process of discovery. Your business has a unique target audience, products, services, niche, mission, values, personality etc. When I create a brand for a client I do a study of your business and then I take all this information and create a visual identity that communicates the overall brand message. It's not a process of choosing your favourite fonts and colours, it's a process of choosing elements that communicate your overall brand message. You work forward through the process, not backwards.
Thirdly, a visual identity consists of many separate elements - logo, fonts, colour palette, composition and imagery. However the secret to a great visual identity is that all the elements have to come together and work in a cohesive manner and send the correct message. It’s a fine balancing act. The colour palette needs to work with your imagery. The typography needs to contrast with your logo. The images need to have similar undertones so they work together seamlessly. The colour palette and typography need to express your brand personality and culture. And the list goes on. All these separate elements need to work together as a whole to unify, distinguish and support the overall brand message.
Fourth, the fonts and images used in this template are free resources. When something is free it’s very easy for someone else to duplicate. Free fonts are easy to acquire, but they’re also easy for everyone else to acquire. Which is great if you want to look like everyone else. The whole concept of branding is to create a unique identity and stand out from everyone else. If your brand is easy to duplicate then you’re not going to be unique. This is the very reason why I use premium paid fonts and paid imagery in all my branding and web packages. Also this particular font was designed by Hermann Zapf in 1958. It’s a classic font used by Estee Lauder and Aesop. This is great if you want your brand to have a classic feel, but not so great if you want something new and cutting edge.
Lastly, there may be a better option for you, you just haven’t discovered it yet. There is a whole world of fonts and colour palettes out there that you haven't met yet. Design is similar to fashion — it changes often and there is always something new and exciting on the horizon. It’s my job as a designer to create the best unique solution for your brand.
Many business leaders don’t know how to talk about their business, what they do and why it matters. Unclear messaging can lead to customer confusion and lost sales. I don't want that for you.
Download my free guide and learn how you can write impactful homepage headlines, so you can simplify your message, connect with your audience and build a better website.
Made for: coaches, consultants and online service providers.