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Color is one of the most powerful tools in a web designer’s toolbox, but finding the perfect color scheme for your client’s site isn’t easy. Take a look at 10 examples of great website color schemes to inspire your own designs.
Finding the perfect gift for the web designer in your life isn’t always easy.
To help you with your holiday shopping, we’ve scoured the internet for the best budget-friendly Christmas gift ideas for the web designer in your life. Here are our 12 favourite Christmas gifts to give to your web designer pals this holiday season.
In February, we sent an email to a handful of partners and asked them to share a short video explaining their experience working as a Shopify Partner. We received several amazing submissions, but one stood out from all the rest.
Meet Johnny Helleland, a freelance web designer and Shopify Expert from Norway.
In his video, Johnny gives us a glimpse into his life as a freelance web designer and explains how Shopify has played a part in his success. Check it out!
When we launched our playoff with Dribbble last month, we asked designers to share the most important lesson design had taught them over the years. From the zany and weird to downright inspirational, we received many amazing submissions from members of the Dribbble community. Each design was carefully considered for its creativity and originality, demonstration of technical skill, and popular vote. After much back and forth, we settled on the finalists.
Without further ado, here are the winners of the 2015 Shopify and Dribbble Design Contest!
Way back in May, we threw down a challenge to our design community to submit their best builds for the design battle of the year.
Five months and thousands of submissions later, we are proud to announce the winners of the 2014-2015 Ecommerce Design Awards!
Whether we start drinking coffee out of necessity or pleasure, there’s no denying the importance of this caffeinated beverage in our lives. But if you’re the kind of person who consistently drinks four or more cups of coffee per day, it might be time to cut back.
To help you get a handle on your caffeine addiction, we’ve compiled the best energy-boosting substitutes to help you reduce your daily coffee dosage. Next time you get a hankering, try one of these eight alternatives instead.
How do you build a community that unites designers around the world? Easy: you make t-shirts.
Well, it seems easy on the surface. For a company like InVision, however, bringing designers together is their life’s work. Whether it’s by building great prototyping tool or filming an entire documentary about how designers are changing the landscape of business, InVision has made it their mission to support designers everywhere, any way they can.
Their latest initiative — Marketplace — is no exception to this trend. At first glance, Marketplace might appear to just be a simple online t-shirt store. But when you begin to delve deeper, Marketplace is really the heart of a thriving online design economy that supports in two ways: it creates a space for designers sell their designs while simultaneously showcasing great products that designers will enjoy.
“We know designers like well-designed things, especially from designers they love,” explains Aaron Stump — VP, Creative Director at InVision. “We have all these amazing connections with designers and illustrators in the community. Why not make something that brings these people together?” From that simple idea, Marketplace was born.
We caught up with Aaron Stump and Robbie Manalo from InVision to get the details behind the design of Marketplace.
What is Marketplace?
Aaron: InVision Marketplace sprang from a desire to be a part of the design community beyond what happens inside the InVision product. It’s a place where people can purchase or win t-shirts and posters designed by some of the best designers and illustrators in our industry. Simply, InVision wanted to create a product — or series of products — that designers would love to wear.
We have a motto at InVision — “Design makes everything possible” — and we decided to use it as the inspiration to the designs you will find in the Marketplace. It’s a cool opportunity to bring that motto to life through great designs from some of the most amazing designers out there.
Where did the idea come from?
Aaron: The inspiration behind Marketplace was to celebrate designers and what designers do. We really believe that designers — especially product designers in particular — are shaping the success of business. If you look at many of the companies using InVision, like Twitter, Netflix and Uber, they are all succeeding because they put design at the forefront of what they do. Marketplace was a fun idea where we got to celebrate the fact that what we do can impact and change the way people do life.
How did you get started?
Aaron: We knew right away we wanted something that could stand on its own, and have its own voice, make-up, and artistry. We also knew we wanted a design system that put the art of the individual designers and illustrators at the front and point of prominence on the website.
Knowing that we were going to create a new brand with its own personality outside the InVision brand, we started by focusing on the logo and overall branding look. Through a lot of ideation and concepting, we landed on a minimalistic and monochromatic approach to the brand. The logo is a simple mark using our InVision brand font, Brandon Grotesque, with a frame around it. We also created several seals and secondary marks to complement the primary logo. Once we had the logo and direction of the brand’s personality in place, we started working on the website as our core property of the brand.
Where did the inspiration for the store design come from?
Aaron: Like the logo, we wanted to create a design that really stood back — the kind of design that gets out of the way and allows a designer’s art to be at the front, making the designer the hero of the experience. So when you come to the site, you see our simplistic logo, which allows beautiful imagery to shine through and display the art in a way that conveys a lifestyle feel that really connects to our audience.
When you scroll down, you see the products in a nice, simple grid. Again, we wanted the art to be the focus here. When hovering over a product, we display info about the artist and the option to toggle between the t-shirt and poster options of the designer’s art.
When you go into a detail page, the UI is super minimalist — all of the call to actions and information about the product are nicely displayed and anchored on the right-hand side, and then two-thirds of the page is completely dedicated to the art of that designer making the designers and their art the heroes and focus of the whole experience.
Can you give us a breakdown the design process?
Aaron: I always start by writing a list of all the things my design has to include. In this case, we needed the ability to buy the products, win the products, share the products, learn more about the designers contributing to the Marketplace, and introduce InVision.
Once I have my list, I always start by doing rough sketches with pen and paper. I start configuring layouts in different ways to accomplish all those “must-haves.” Once I have a good idea what I want to do, I take those rough sketches and create thumbnail flows. It’s extremely important for us to see the entire path from entering the website to browsing through purchase and engagement beyond that purchase.
When those thumbnail flows are together and I have the full experience understood as well as a clear path created, we’ll create hi-fi designs and put it all in InVision. That’s when the design really starts to come to life. We can click through the design to get a real sense of how it will work and feel for the user. This part of the process always includes comments and feedback from the stakeholders in the project. It's a great opportunity for collaboration and fine tuning on the details of the design in the prototype to arrive at the perfect design solution. After fine tuning the design experience as a prototype in InVision and get approval, we hand the design off to Robbie’s team to build.
Why did you choose Shopify to power Marketplace?
Robbie: We’d recently done an Inside Design for Shopify on the InVision Blog, and someone suggested we use Shopify. We started looking into it, and it was exactly what we needed because we weren’t prepared to handle things like credit card processing or storing account information within our servers. We would have had to build a larger security team for that, and that would have been a major undertaking.
But we also still needed a solution that was flexible enough to allow us to implement Aaron’s fully thought-out design. Shopify wound up being the perfect solution thanks to everything it offers: from Liquid templating to all the snippet code, to the credit card processing and fulfillment integrations. We’d get to make a completely custom design, but the backend would be managed by Shopify. It was a lifesaver.
We have an in-house security team, and after we launched Marketplace, they contacted us and asked, “Why didn’t anyone tell us about this? We have to make sure everything is secure.”
I said, “You know, all that stuff is handled by Shopify.”
And they said to me, “That’s the best answer you could have possibly given us.”
Where there any challenges?
Robbie: Absolutely not! My team of developers already had some experience with Liquid templating because it’s used in a lot of other situations as well, so that made it really easy for us to create our custom design. All the tools Shopify has available in the admin interface were all very straightforward. And even being able to hook scripts into the check-out process was really handy because we could do things like track how many people completed an order or how many people abandoned carts.
The only tricky part was the email tool. We write a lot of emails at InVision and we commonly run them through a Litmus test to make sure they’re working across all devices, so we had to set things up so Shopify would send test emails through litmus for validation before we made them live.
Did you implement any unique features?
Robbie: As Aaron mentioned earlier, we have a “Win it” button in addition to the traditional “Add to cart” CTA on our product pages. Since Shopify has an open templating system, we were able to code that button directly in there. After that, we tied the button to a lot of third party APIs, so when a customer fills out the form for “Win it,” it actually submits to our lead generation software and we can pick the winners from that. But customizations like that were simple because we had full control over the templates. Aside from that, we didn’t have to change anything about how the system worked.
Did you use any other tools to create the website?
How are you handling shipping and fulfillment?
Realthreads is printing all our t-shirts, and they’ve been absolutely awesome at helping us to get the designs looking exactly the way we want them to. Then we’re using Amplifier to help with the fulfilment. They have an app — which is in the Shopify app store — that utilizes our code to create a fulfillment service integration, so all they needed was access to our admin to go in and set up the integration for us. This gave us a really nice two-way communication. When we send an order their way, it’ll sit in their queue until they process it and ship it out. When they process it, Amplifier presses that information back to Shopify and Shopify kicks out the notification email to the customer that lets them know their order has shipped. It’s a really slick integration.
What’s next for Marketplace?
Aaron: We’re going to continue to expand Marketplace and launch more great designs in our store. Look out for new shirts from some amazing designers in the coming months.
You might also like: 12 Budget-Friendly Gift Ideas for Web Designers
Shopify Unite 2018
Tickets for Unite 2018 are sold out! In the coming weeks, we’ll have more information on how you can take part virtually in Shopify’s third annual Partner and Developer Conference, running May 7-9. In the meantime, relive the magic of last year’s conference.Watch last year's keynotes
Last week we kicked-off our inaugural Partner and Developer Conference:Unite. Hundreds of partners from around the world joined us in San Francisco for two days of inspirational talks and dynamic conversations that explored Shopify’s roadmap and the future of commerce. In the words of Shopify CEO Tobi Lütke, “it was probably the most overdue conference in the tech industry.”
One of the biggest takeaways from the conference was how important our partner ecosystem is to the success of our platform. That’s why we decided to livestream the main stage talks on Day 1 of the conference — to share the action with all of our partners who couldn’t be at Unite in person. It’s also why we recorded all of the main stage talks and gathered them together to share with you today.
In case you weren’t able to tune in during the livestream — or if you just want to relive the excitement — here are the recordings of the main stage presentations and product announcements from Day 1 of Unite.
Create more value than you capture: The Shopify Partner Ecosystem — COO Harley Finkelstein
Harley Finkelstein, Shopify’s COO, explains the importance of Shopify’s Partner and Developer ecosystem.
The future of commerce — CEO Tobi Lütke
In this keynote, Shopify CEO Tobi Lütke shares Shopify’s vision for the future.
Introducing the Online Store Editor & Scripts — Jean-Michel Lemieux
Jean-Michel Lemieux, Senior Vice-President of Engineering, demos the new Online Store Editor and Shopify Scripts. The Online Store Editor will give designers the ability to build more innovative, customizable, and merchant-friendly themes, while Shopify Scripts will allow designers to write server side code on Shopify, giving them even greater control over the way their online store functions.
Build for mobile with the iOS and Android Buy SDKs — Brandon Chu
Brandon Chu, Product Manager at Shopify, introduces Shopify’s iOS and Android Buy SDKs. These SDKs will allow developers to create native mobile shopping experiences, and include Apple Pay and Android Pay.
Introducing the new Sales Channel SDK — Satish Kanwar
Satish Kanwar, Director of Product at Shopify, introduces the new Sales Channel SDK. Starting today, developers can begin building new sales channels for Shopify, so merchants can use Shopify to sell anywhere their customers are.
AMA with Tobi Lütke
Director of Apps, Atlee Clark sits down with Shopify CEO and founder Tobi Lütke for an Ask Me Anything session. Questions range from how prominent computer programming is in his daily routine to the significance of Virtual Reality on the future of commerce.
Here’s what our partners are saying about Unite
The Future of Commerce: 4 Things We Learned at Shopify Unite by Matthew Bertulli, Demac Media.
That’s a wrap!
Unite 2016 was an amazing experience and we can’t wait to do it all again. Want to make sure you’re there in 2017? Sign-up to our Unite mailing list to be the first to receive exclusive updates about next year’s conference.
Many designers believe that reading fiction is a waste of time.
But despite the belief that fiction doesn’t offer anything of value, there are actually quite a few reasons why you might want to pick up a book and lose yourself in an invented world every once in awhile.
Here are four reasons why reading fiction inspires great design thinking.