Top 8 Places to Feed Your Inner Artist (Plus, Win a Gift Card and Travel Mug)

Here's a little secret: web designers like to be bossed around. Nicely. Under certain circumstances. They like to be told of your color preferences. They like to know what styles of fonts to avoid. They want to know what things you find hard to use on the web and the things you prefer to visit.

Cheat Your Way to a Professional-Looking Web Project

Here's a little secret many people don't know about building projects for the web. You don't have to do everything from scratch. There are so many tools out there that do the tricky stuff for you, that you really don't have to be an HTML wiz to have a polished looking website.

Here are some excellent tools to help you fake web excellence:

Table Builders

Tables are the nemesis of many well-meaning web worker. They can be tricky to build from scratch, but no need with these.

4 Winning Elements of a Navigable Site

Newspaper articles need to explain who, what, when, where, why, how. Anything less than those elements doesn’t tell the whole story. Websites also need to tell a story. Someone visiting for the first time should be able to know what you’re about and what you do without thinking too hard. Thinking too hard, in Web terms, means clicking off your page. Here are the questions you should be able to answer easily if your website is well built: 1. What is the site all about? What’s its identity and reason for being? 2. Where do site visitors begin?

Why It’s OK to Talk Money Early

Everybody’s strapped for cash these days, but budgets vary widely. Some non-profits are run out of a basement and have a budget of exactly zero, and others are housed in city high-rises and have budgets in the millions. They all need websites. Any given day at Talance, someone from either camp may call with a new web communications project. Before we know how we can best help whoever is on the other end of the phone, we need to know how much money they have to put into the project. Some people simply can’t afford the kind of work they want done.

5 Painless Ways to Squeeze More from Your Website

Getting your website to work for you doesn't have to mean a complete overhaul. Here are five small updates you can make without suffering.

1. Add a feedback form

One of the very best ways to get more use out of your website is to give its visitors a way to interact. If you add a contact form to your contact page (here's an example), you’ll open up opportunities for accepting comments. It’s welcoming, will help limit spam, and can increase the amount of feedback you receive from your site. A pretty big payoff for something so small.

Assembling a Web Dream Team

When people at an organization start sharing information about their website, they’re generally surprised at how much their ideas differ. That’s one of the key reasons you need to assemble a reliable website committee to guide your organization through the process of building or redesigning your website. These people can help you decide who your audience is, clarify the purpose of your site and determine how it meshes with your organization’s mission.