What we do

We pay great attention to UI and UX design. The responsive websites and web apps we design and build deliver high levels of accessibility, follow web standards and feature structured data—because it helps everyone.

Read on for examples of what we do or jump down to see a client list.

UI & UX design

User interface (UI) and user experience (UX) design are important to us—we seek to maximise intuitiveness, simplicity and appeal.

Re-display a missed dialogue

For example, our treatment of a dialogue in our MVC for Wufoo site demonstrates our view that even small improvements in UI and UX are valuable, cumulatively they can disproportionately help the success of a project.

Modal forces simple choice

Another example of our UI and UX care is a login modal we added to our replacement iTunes U app login process.

Automatic readability

You'd have though it was a given that web designers will always make sure copy is easy to read, yet many don't. We ensure our designs adapt typography styling depending upon context.

Copy is a critical part of the interface

We knew our replacement iTunes U app would required the use of copy/paste and that it's audience was a wide demographic.

With this in mind we were careful to develop clear, succinct copy and employ CSS and jQuery so that no knowledge of interface paradigms was necessary. The UI we produced featured the auto-select of password text and allowed easy access to all, resulting in a simple user experience and zero support calls.

Login communicates

Aware of the wide demographic user base the login form received attention to detail such that everyone could use the site without support.

Responsive design

We design and build responsive websites and web apps that optimize and adapt what the visitor sees depending upon the capabilities of the device they are using.

When viewed on a small screen device sites such as IHA and Tofino Surf School prioritize important content and automatically apply adjustments, such as font size, to ensure content remains highly readable.

Google like responsive

Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal.

Source: Google

To make our results more useful, we’ve begun experiments to make our index mobile-first. ... If you have a responsive site ... you shouldn’t have to change anything.

Source: Google

Accessibility and web standards

Accessibility and web standards have been cornerstones of web development for us, ever since since reading the seminal Designing with Web Standards by Jeffrey Zeldman in 2004; closely followed by Dan Cederholm's Web Standards Solutions.

Structured data

Soon after, Dan Cederholm's work with microformats.org lead us to become keen advocates of the benefits bought by 'micro data', later the launch of schema.org and then HTML5 with microdata only served to emphasize the importance of this aspect of web production. Though just one example of microdata, the contact details at Great Tangley Manor coded as an hcard serves to show we follow best practice on our clients behalves.

Semantic markup

Early on in our work our adoption and use of semantic markup and latterly ARIA roles is further evidence of our advocacy for high accessibility.

We love web-standards for helping us deliver:

  • clear, attractive design—content that follows a logical hierarchy, helping both humans and Google understand meaning
  • easy-to-use interfaces—your website as a clear and accessible interface for your visitors
  • intelligent, semantic markup—using the best attributes of the modern web (the good bits of HTML5, modern CSS and JavaScript techniques, etc) to produce clean, semantic content ideally suited to multiple channels, from small screen devices to search engines and the printed page.

Graphic design

From layout of copy to creating graphics, almost all projects we work on include some aspect of visual design.

For some it involves developing existing work, for example soon after we began working with Great Tangley Manor—a client we were fortunate to work with after their site was initially produced by our great friends Kyan—we were helping them expand and develop their site by delivering additional design work.

For others we design original graphic content, for example for Ottawa Reflexologists we delivered a design that is original, not a cliché, and reflects the positive aesthetic of their work.

Logo & product

A delightful non-web project, we greatly enjoyed working with Aidata Limited, the UK software company who own codelegend.com, our involvement was the design of their logo and the key image for their flagship app, Ideal Flight.

Math colours

Math colours is a feature we developed to dynamically choose hue and brightness for text based on the image it overlays. You can read about it and see it featured on our homepage (when viewed on larger devices and desktops).

Copywriting & SEO

We provide our clients with anything from small items of content to, occasionally, a new set of pages. Two examples where we have provided copywriting support are Great Tangley Manor and LEX Reporting Services.

Our command of the English language is an important part of our work—it's no use convincing Goolge that a page is an authority on a topic if the writing fails to engage the visitor and they quickly leave.

Keyword research

Occasionally using tools such as Wordtracker we will research areas a client works in and identify 'sweet spot' keyword phrases, phrases that are searched for a lot but poorly represented on other websites.

We intelligently use a 'sweet spot' phrase as part of the fabric of a new page, ensuring the copy truly suits the phrase and is tightly focused on our clients offering. This 'white hat' SEO work is labour intensive and we are always at pains to note that we cannot guarantee any particular results, we also tell our clients that Google themselves say:

Beware of SEOs that claim to guarantee rankings…

Google Inc.

SEO automation

Beyond writing we also pride ourselves on building good SEO practices into our work, for example aiming for high accessibility and adhering to web standards as:

high accessibility is effective search engine optimization

A List Apart (web design journal)

We also code our CMF, vELVET, to intelligently auto-write title tags and provide great support for honing meta descriptions.

Clients

Read on for a client list or jump up for what we do.

New sites, developed sites

We create new online presencesIHA, LEX Reporting and Ottawa Reflexologists to name three. We also develop existing presences, for example Great Tangley Manor, Tofino Surf School, Hahnemann Center.

A longer list

A bigger selection of clients we have worked with (*and a couple of our own projects):

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