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A lighter look at the life of web designers…


Many website designers live in a world where most of their social interaction is with other web designers. This means that when it comes to dealing with clients it can be difficult for them to get their point across, without jargon, or in a way that many of us would understand.

Some of the best web designers have got it spot on by learning how to talk to their customers and ignoring that age old phrase; “the customer is always right”. However, many will still try and jargon their way out of things and won’t ever explain to you (the client) what it is they really mean. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular phrases heard worldwide, from the mouths of web designers, and what they really do mean.

“Your site is living in a bad neighbourhood”

When you hear this phrase you may instantly be running and hiding for cover. What do web designers mean? Are there criminals in your neighbourhood? What do the web designers know that you don’t?

Never fear! A neighbourhood simply refers to the server where your website is hosted, but a bad one can have a pretty negative impact on your website. Some servers may host websites that use bad (black hat) techniques or spamming, to get their way to the top of search engines, and this can lead to that whole server being penalized. Take the designer’s advice when it comes to where to host your website, even if it is going to cost you a little extra. They’re not trying to make money from you, it is to stop you from being penalized and ending up on page 11,947 of Google.

“You have a high bounce rate”

Put the space hopper down, we’re not talking about how high you actually bounce here! A bounce rate refers to how many visitors leave the website from the first page that they view. A poor bounce rate means that many of the visitors don’t bother looking through the rest of the website and simply go back to where they came from. This could be due to a number of things including poor navigation or badly written content. It may be that you need to rethink your menu system or have the content re-written so that visitors stay for longer and browse through the site.

“Yes…that could work….”

It is important to remember that the web designer is (hopefully) the expert when it comes to what works best for your website. With ‘the customer is always right’ ringing in all of our ears it can be difficult to take on board what has been suggested to you. If your designer says that WordPress will work best for your site then it is only you that they are thinking of. In most cases it doesn’t make any difference to them what you decide, but they want to make sure that it is perfect for you. Web designers are perfectionists and this is what makes them so good at their job. If they have suggested something then it is probably going to be in your favour to take that suggestion on board!

“You’re not getting a lot of hits”

Finally, one you smugly understand! Well, kind of. Hits are not actually representative of one single visitor to your website, it is actually a request for a single file from your server. This means that pages that have lots of files (lots of images and so on) can generate lots of hits. It is important to understand the differences between hits, visitors, visits and page views before putting a marketing plan into action. You may not be getting a lot of hits simply because there are not very many files on that page for the server to download. Or it may be that your website isn’t very good and not generating much traffic at all. Ask your web designer to explain the differences and then work together to put a marketing plan in place.

So, there we have it, the beginning of a new era of communication between clients and their web designers. Next time your web designer begins talking jargon simply show them this article and ask them to break it down. Or just put a jargon request in the comments and we’ll help you seem really smart and clued up!

More reading: Checkout my web page on website design UK.

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