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Charli Marie

A sneak peek at my new website

publishedabout 1 month ago
3 min read

Hey Reader,

I’m SO CLOSE to shipping the new version of my personal website, and I want to share a few of my favorite design details of it with you today. I’ve also got the results of the poll in the last issue about how you start your web design process.

Design decisions I made for my new personal website

During my recent month off work, I decided to completely redesign my personal website (what a cliché!). The previous version didn’t accurately reflect my current projects, and it didn’t do a good job of selling the products and services I have available now.

This hero section original had a photo of me on it, but I swapped it out for an image of my font Grayscale when I launched it and realised I didn’t really have a good space to promote anything on my homepage.

My new hero section focusses on communicating the value I offer (helping creative professionals level up their careers), introduces me, and offers a main CTA to sign up for this newsletter. Over the past two years this weekly email has become one of my favorite things to create, and an incredibly valuable asset for my business. I’m honoured you show up to read it weekly and it’s my goal to try double the readerbase of the Dispatch in size over the next year.

The footer of my previous site featured a newsletter signup and some social media links and… that’s it. I designed it before I started writing the Marketing Design Dispatch so the CTA is vague and not very compelling.

My new footer, on the other hand, acts as a directory for all the various parts of my business. Weirdly it makes me very proud to look at! I can’t believe I make and do all of that stuff. It’s fun to see it all in one place. There’s still a newsletter signup, but with a more compelling offer.

As for the top navigation, it was pretty minimal on my previous site; a simple list of four links (and actually, it was a side navigation that was collapsed by default).

My new navigation not only gives space to my content, but is also a mega menu that communicates the value of my products & services even before someone even clicks on a link to learn more about them. I’m hopeful this will increase the sales of my font and bookings of my services.

Lastly (and there’s no ‘before’ screenshot for this because a dedicated newsletter page didn’t even exist on my previous site), I now have a page for the Marketing Design Dispatch on my site. My favorite part of it is the embedded tweets from readers talking about why they love reading this newsletter. I’d love to add more to this page!

If you enjoy reading this Dispatch, please tag me in a tweet encouraging your followers to sign up! They can join it right from my Twitter profile, and I’d love to be able to add more testimonials to this signup page 🙏

Of course there’s plenty of other design details on the new site that I’ll be excited to walk you through when it launches. But I hope you enjoyed this overview of some of the key parts!

How do Dispatch readers start their web design process?

The results are in from last weeks poll where I asked how you started your web design process. More than 200 of you voted, and here’s the results!

68.4% of you start with lo-fi drawings or outlines, 16.5% start in mid-fidelity using some color or design system components in your wireframes, and I’m astounded at the 15% of you who jump straight to high-fidelity ‘final’ looking designs!

This just goes to show, there’s no one ‘correct’ design process and there’s room for all of us to design in the way that suits us best.

In the spirit of sharing about my personal website though, here’s what the initial wireframes looked like for that!

I drew these in FigJam, which isn’t ideal for drawing on iPad right now but I have hopes that it’ll get there soon. It sure is handy to have the wireframe sketches accessible in the same tool as my final designs!

If you’re not a FigJam convert yet, check out my 101 video and get to know it.

video preview

I’ll be going live on YouTube a few times this week as I work on getting my site finished, and as I get really stuck into some design work for ConvertKit for the first time since I returned from sabbatical. I always tweet before I’m going live, but if you turn notifications on for my YouTube channel by clicking the bell you’ll get pinged when the streams start.

See you there!

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❤️