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Author: Yogesh Mankani

Yogesh Mankani is an IT Professional who has been into the field of blogging since last four years. He loves writing about latest advancements related to Android, Design and Technology.
5 Tips to Deal with Design Clients

5 Tips to Deal with Design Clients


Often as a software developer, it is not always easy to keep calm while dealing with anxious clients.

All developers have faced clients who aren’t necessarily easy customers. But they are the ones who are willing to pay for services, so it’s best to work hard to please them in a diplomatic way. Here are some tips to make development smoother for everyone involved.

1. Acknowledge Them

Learn to distinguish clients who may be more anxious than most. Most clients are logical beings who respond well to honesty and can make sound decisions when faced with a problem. The more difficult ones won’t react well if they feel their concerns aren’t being address. Listen and acknowledge their concerns and be patient if they ask for an explanation repeatedly or demand something that appears to be unreasonable.

2. Basic Requirements

Take the time to explain the process that needs to be accomplished in a clear and encompassing if a client appears to be uneducated about the work that needs to be done. Explanations should be open-ended, allowing the client to give feedback, ask questions or feel a part of the equation. No one wants to feel as if they are being talked down to or ignored. Treat them respectfully and have confidence in the skills being provided and they will feel included even if they at first seem unreasonable or ignorant.

3. Money First

Make sure finances are discussed up front and if a client seems like they may back out mid-project or will be overly difficult to deal with, ask for a deposit or the bulk of the fee before the work begins. Not everyone will be pleased with paying the entire fee upfront, but 50 percent is not unreasonable. An installment plan could work equally as well, a third when the work starts, a third when it’s two-thirds complete, etc. That way if a problem develops, a designer won’t be left holding the bag for work that has been completed.

4. Finish The Work In a Reasonable Timeframe

Often difficult clients will continue to change the concept of a designer’s project, adding or deleting features which creates more work than originally discussed. Be open to changes, they are the client, but if they become too demanding, step back and ask for a meeting to refocus. Lay out clearly what is reasonable to accomplish for the amount of payment and deadline discussed and then suggest a reframing of the project to accommodate everyone’s needs. As a last resort, if a client is particularly hard to please, finish the work as soon as possible and move on.

5. Just Do What They Say

Sometimes it does just boil down to it’s their project and their checkbook. There will be times when a designer will have to include aspects or make choices that seem inappropriate for a project. Don’t sweat it, they are paying the bills and it’s their end product. Go with the flow and get it done in a professional manner in a reasonable timeframe.  Stay within the guidelines they provided, even if it appears as if the end results may not be what was originally intended.

Remember, a little respect and a lot of professionalism goes a long way when dealing with anyone, especially a client who appears to be difficult.

 

 

6 Tips to Cut Website Costs

6 Tips to Cut Website Costs


One of the most important marketing tools for a new business is a website. Depending up on what kind of website and the style and features, there is a wide range that a company can spend. Hence it is important to strike a balance between creating the most useful website possible while saving money in the process. Here are some tips that may help.

1. Designing

Everyone likes to have choices. The same goes when developing a website. Always consider viewing more than one design. If the goal is to come up with something new and fresh, don’t be afraid to incorporate aspects that draw attention on other websites. But also consider that the more designs that are incorporated, the higher the cost. Try to stick to one power packed yet unique design which will be enough to popularize the website.

2. Work Smart, Work Less

In the past, once the website design is completed, developers had to code each feature individually. Then they would have to compile them and check their compatibility with one another and at the end check the entire look and feel of the website before launching it. This use to take up a lot of time and required hard work, ultimately upping the cost of the website. Nowadays, however, a lot of website building platforms are available which help to simply create the look and feel of the website and the platform will do the coding, reducing workload. This also allows developers to add features like E-commerce and CMS.

3. Simple and Small Beginning

When starting a business, usually the needs are pretty basic and the capital is pretty small. So the main aim behind building a website should be to fulfill the basic requirements and keep the cost to a minimum without compromising on the quality or style. Thinking about the future while creating a website now will only increase its cost. It’s a wiser choice to start out simple and small and expand when the capital starts flowing.

4. Do the work in phases

Divide the website development process in multiple phases so when a phase is done, the look and feel can be checked and changes can be easily made. In the initial phase, keep the features to a minimum. If those features are well compatible with each other then go on adding more features.

5. Seek Financing Plans

It’s obvious that not many of the website designing firms will allow clients to keep a tab with them; however it never hurts to ask. A lot of times, cash flow is the only obstruction in the initial phases of a business. If a new company is capable of negotiating the cost of the website into small installments then it will help keep the upfront costs low and it may allow for more features on the website.

6. Do it Yourself

There are aspects of websites which absolutely need to be built by a professional. However, there are parts which are comparatively easy to build and can be done by the client their team. For example creating the population of the content is one of the basic things that a client can do along with developers. This will help in reduction of the workload as it is a tedious and lengthy job and will help cut the cost of the web designing process too.

These are some of the tricks that start-up companies can apply to reduce the cost of their websites. Hopefully they will lead to a classy and workable website at a low cost.

Useful WordPress Drag and Drop Plugins

Useful WordPress Drag and Drop Plugins


Drag and Drop is one of the most preferred ways of editing, customizing or creating pages on WordPress. It is equally appreciated by developers and non-technical staff due to the fact that it seldom requires any coding to produce a page. They are simple and yet effective. This helps to create professional looking pages and saves a lot of time in the process.

1. Page Builder by SiteOrigin

Built by SiteOrigin, Page Builder is probably one of the most popular plugins which is used to build pages for WordPress. It allows users to create interactive grids and column based pages to which galleries can be added. This free plugin is compatible with most WordPress widgets and works smoothly on mobile platforms as well. It is multilingual, regularly upgraded and requires no coding.

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2. Aqua Page Builder

This is one of the coolest Drag and Drop WordPress plugins which allows users to create an innumerable number of WordPress theme templates in a simple and hassle free manner. The fact that it uses the same interface as that of the WordPress admins page helps users to be comfortable with the site. It allows designers to use countless filters while developing and is well integrated with WordPress import/export.

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3. Live Composer Lite

Easy to install and activate and even easier to use, this WordPress plugin helps designers to build pages while they are on the page so that they know exactly how it will look to the visitors. Live Composer Lite doesn’t look like the admin’s page so designers won’t have to switch back and forth to check the user’s interface. After activation it allows users to simply Drag and Drop the required editing on the page they are working on.

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4. Beaver Builder

This is a front-end Drag and Drop page building plugin for people who doesn’t know how to code. It allows designers to create beautiful layouts of WordPress pages with a variety of customized widgets which are compatible with those of WordPress. It also allows the freedom of using the 15 preloaded page templates already available on the site. Users can also add certain advanced modules along with a bunch of basic ones.

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5. PixGridder

Just as the name suggests, this plugin is more like a grid builder which allows users to classify the various contents of a page into well defined grids for further use. This Drag and Drop plugin is one of the easiest grid builders available which allows designers to use tinyMCE to customize pages in form of columns and rows. Designers can also customize each of the columns or rows individually with the help of default WordPress text editor.

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6. WR Page Builder

WR Page Builder is a simple Drag and Drop plugin which allows designers to edit and create WordPress pages very easily but with the same efficiency as that of an advanced editor. It allows designers to add various modules to the page they are creating and customizes them with ease. The best part of this plugin is that a users doesn’t need to know coding to use it.

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7. Minimax

If you know how to use WordPress, you will know how to use this super simple plugin too. Requiring no coding knowledge, Minimax is compatible with all the themes of WordPress and it allows users to export and import the page layouts along with the building of landable pages and pages with all the important modules. Just a few clicks will allow users to edit the pages with super ease and use the predefined modules to improve the look and feel of the modules.

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These are some of the most useful Drag and Drop WordPress plugins which can even be used by a layman or a non-technical staff to make a page with all the necessary modules and components. They create pages which are compatible with both the desktop and mobile versions of WordPress.

10 Sites to Download Artful Vectors

10 Sites to Download Artful Vectors


Vectors are an important element of web designing and having a huge collection of these artful designs at hand surely helps in the completion of a web designing task quickly. Here we’ve tried to showcase the best free sites available which provide Vector designs which can be used for both personal and professional use. These sites offer designs which are devoid of royalty rights so they can be downloaded with ease.

1. VectorStock

When  designer is looking for the best quality Vectors at an amazingly low price, VectorStock is a convenient site. The institution specializes in images, illustrations and graphics which are exclusively Vectors. They can be downloaded as ZIP files.

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2. Vecteezy

Looking for Vector designs from artists all over the world? Interested in submitting Vectors for the world to check out? Vecteezy is the perfect platform to use. Apart from providing free Vectors for a project it also provides a forum to discuss designs with other artists.

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3. FreeVectors.net

FreeVectors.net is a forum which allows artists to submit their Vector designs for free so that others can use them for commercial or individual purposes. The latest vectors are put on display in the front page. This site also allows users to leave comments.

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4. VectorVault

VectorVault allows designers to find unique and stylish Vector art with ease.  Search for the desired Vectors, pay and go. It’s that easy.

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5. DesignBum

DesignBum owned by Issara Willenskomer, who has been creating Vectors for over eight years, provides users with Vector designs and tutorials which will truly inspire them. Download project source files or view the details one by one or altogether from the link provided on the site.

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6. LogoTypes101

LogoTypes101 is a website which provides designers with cool Vectors which are compatible with most website hosts. It allows users to download the Vector designs in forms of CDR, AL or EPS formats. It also hosts forums for users to check out cool logos and design tips.

vector

7. Q Vectors

When looking for a website which provides cool and free Vectors as well as tips to create designs, Q Vectors is the place to be. It has the Vectors classified under various categories so choices are easily found.

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8. Free Vectors.com

Free Vectors.com allows users to pick and choose designs from the huge collection available. It is safe as well as secure and is available for commercial uses too. It also has Vectors which can be used in projects meant for various medias.

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9. Dezignus

Stanly created Dezignus as a personal blog in the year 2007 which was later converted into a community for the use of various artists and people who are looking for unique and chic Vectors for their projects. The authors work with the motto of making the web a prettier place to be.

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10. Designers Revolution

Designers Revolution is a free Vector site whose the motto is dedicated to creating one of a kind designs and web resources. The designs provided by the site are all handmade and customized according to the need of the customers.

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We hope these sites will provide assistance in creating or downloading Vectors for projects.

8 Useful Free Wireframing Tools

8 Useful Free Wireframing Tools


Web designer or developers are aware of the immense importance of the wireframing  tools in the process of designing and developing a website or web or mobile-based app. A good wireframing tool will not only provide a strong support to a developmental project but will also help clients to easily understand the design work.  Here are some of the best free wireframing tools that are a huge help to designers.

1. Lovely Charts

When it comes to a wireframing tool used in the preparation of diagrams such as flow charts, site maps, charts for the purpose of organization and wireframing the same, there is probably no better application than Lovely Charts. Just as the name suggests, this free online application helps in creating professional looking diagrams that are easy to make.

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2. MockFlow

MockFlow helps in the development of web applications and sharing information with the clients. MockFlow is a wireframing tool which helps in keeping track of app development procedures. When used with the AppPlanner designers can create simple imaging of the interface to allow clients to easily understand the process.

wireframing-tools

3. Axure

What really helps while developing an app is feedback from the end users so a developer can make changes to make the app more user friendly. Axure RP is a wireframing tool which helps designers do just that. The tool not only allows the easy development apps for the web or mobile platforms but it also allows designers to develop a prototype with all the dynamic contents so theapp  can be tested by app users and sent to clients for feedback.

wireframing-tools

4. Mockingbird

With the aim of creating the most user friendly wireframing tool, the developers of Mockingbird have created a tool to help designers to develop as well as share their projects with clients. Mockingbird helps designers to not only create a mockup or wireframe of a website or mobile or web based app, but also allows designers to link, preview, and disburse it to clients so they can offer feedback.

wireframing-tools

5. Wireframesketcher

Just as the name suggests, Wireframesketcher is all about sketching a prototype or mock up of a website or mobile or web app by allowing designers to work with multiple monitors to create their own templates, icons and more. This is probably the best wireframing tool available online. It is supported by a number of OS such as Mac, Linux and Windows and produces fast and effective results.

wireframing-tools

6. Cacoo

Probably one of the coolest free wireframing tools available in the market, Cacoo offers users the ability to create a number of diagrams.  Whether it’s a sitemap, a mind map or a UML diagram, it all can be done on Cacoo with ease and in a short period of time.

wireframing-tools

7. Gliffy

Gliffy is one of the simplest wireframing tools on the market. Designers can write a few simple lines to explain what they need and Gliffy will do it for them by creating the skeleton of the website so designers  can easily understand the relationship between the various components and work on the site accordingly.

wireframing-tools

8. UXPin

Looking for a wireframing tool that is power packed yet simple to use? UXPin is the best choice. It has hundreds of designs based on a number of platforms to choose from allowing designers to create a prototype design, collaborate it, share and upload the UX document and discuss it.

wireframing-tools

We hope these tools will help in the process of designing projects. These are some of the best free wireframe tools that are perfect for design jobs.

9 Free Photoshop Plugins for Web Designers

9 Free Photoshop Plugins for Web Designers


Photoshop plug-ins are a great way to enhance the method of designing. They help prevent repetition so tasks don’t get boring. They also help to manage layers of the images with ease so they can be customized.

1. Size-Marks PS

Size-Marks PS is great for adding a label to a particular image and preserving the image in each of the layers to resize or change color or customize it. It uses Marquee tool to save the various applied labels to the images.

photoshop-plugins

2. Oven

Managing assets on Photoshop can be a little bit of a headache, especially when if each layer requires a name change for the output to come out as desired. This may not always be possible and it takes up a lot of time as well. Oven plugin allows designers to do this without all the hassle.

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3. LayerCraft

This Photoshop plugin is valuable for mobile UI developers. It allows the exporting of the various layers in varying scales. The layers can be exported with compatibility to both Android and iOS to create apps for a variety of platforms.

photoshop-plugins

4. Velositey

Want to create website prototypes in Photoshop quickly and with ease? Try Velositey. This extension is free and includes a lot of predefined templates which can be used to create prototypes. It also has various headers, footers and contents which can be included in the project.

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5. QuickGuide

Drawing guides along the various sides of the image in Photoshop has never been easier. QuickGuide comes with various kinds of presets that allows designers to define the sides of the image which can include one side, two sides or all the sides of the particular image. This also aids in deleting defined guides or the all the applied guides. It also helps in toggling an image and saving it for the future.

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6. Lorem Picsum

Instead of generating various texts, Lorem Picsum helps in generating images in various forms. This Photoshop plugin allows designers to use the images in their projects which are selected from various famous TV shows and animated films like Futurama, Rio, Finding Nemo and Up among others.

photoshop-plugins

7. Pictura

Adding images in a project without having to leave a work window is a blessing, as far as designers are concerned. Pictura allows designers to do just that. This plugin helps to search a particular image and insert it into the design without having to leave or exit a work station.

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8. Ink

Creating a fabulous design in Photoshop is easy. But converting the design into a working prototype may be a bit harder. It requires a lot of formatting like changing the font sizes, the alignment of the components, the family of fonts used and the layer alignments. Ink helps designer to do all these with ease by providing the statistical data.

photoshop-plugins

9. Composer

Layer composition is an important factor in the process of designing. But the layers need to be saved separately as different files to be used in designing. Composer allows designers to save the various layers as a single file so that using it in designing jobs in the future with just a click.

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These are probably some of the best Photoshop plugins which help in designing the projects within deadline

Showcase designs on Dribbble easily with Dribbbox

Showcase designs on Dribbble easily with Dribbbox


As the social media website for web designers, Dribbble allows users to share their designs and get freebies. But the most advantageous perk of Dribbble is the fact that designers can get feedback and constructive criticism of their work which will ultimately improve their designs. Dribbbox is a handy tool that allows designers to showcase their work in their own portfolios easily.

What is Dribbbox?

Dribbbox is a library allows users to easily display designs under their own domain. All a designer needs is their own server and domain set up or access to the hosted server to download Dribbbox’s zip file and install it by uploading all the content of the zip code, including the assets folder, index.html, and the config.js into the server. Then insert a suitable username into the config.js and it’s ready to go.

dribbbox

Portfolio on Dribbbox

Dribbbox has a very simple yet workable portfolio structure. It mainly consists of three columns which represent a designer’s contact, designs and project from left to right. The contact column is fixed, but the column showcasing designs scrolls and the extreme right column can show entire projects one at a time to viewers. But the display doesn’t allow onlookers to comment or share the work. Another advantage is that Dribbbox is mobile friendly.

Dribbbox is a cool and easy to use library which doesn’t require you a knowledge of JavaScript for its utilization. Just add a user name, and if desired, a mail id. It can be customized using can also customized using CSS. Give Dribbbox a try.

10 Sublime Text Packages for Developers

10 Sublime Text Packages for Developers


It’s time to get technical: Sublime text is a cross-platform text and source code editor with a Python Application Programming Interface (API). It supports many programming languages and mark-up languages. Its functionality can be extended with plug-ins which are usually available free of charge. It is a very simple code editor with lots of features which can be explored with time. There are various shortcuts as well which are available for common editing, file crawler, spell checking, changing the theme of the text or the icon or sorting CSS. It offers a command palette which uses adaptive matching for quick keyboard invocation of arbitrary commands.

Sublime text also offers auto completion of entries according to user language and preference. Even though it is a complete package users can opt for enhancements by using plug-ins. Various plugins like Package control, SublimeLinter, Sublime Enhancements or Terminal, increase the advantages of Sublime Text. Let’s discuss some of the Sublime Text packages which any front end website developer should use:

1. AlignTab

AlignTab is used for aligning codes and is one of the most flexible alignment codes. Some of the features are :

–          Align using regular expression

–          Multiple cursor support

–          Table and Live mode

–          Custom Spacing, padding, and justification

–          Smart alignment detection in absence of lines

2. ColorHighlighter

This plugin previews hexadecimal color values by underlying the selected hex codes in different styles and colors. It also provides options for color picking and color format convertion to easily modify the colors.

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3. MultiEditUtils

With this plugin users can edit multiple facets together. Users can also split the selection using some default commands. This code is useful in extremely long codes and saves lot of time. With many features like the jump_to_last command the cursor will directly jump to last, while strip_region command will strip all white spaces.

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4.  Git Gutter

This plugin is useful when you are using Git. Git Gutter will flag all the gutter area whether it’s edit, addition or removal done in the code. This way users can easily compare their existing code with the original head code. There are various color themes available for icons which include Neon, Glacier, Cobalt, Fox2 etc.

5. Modific

Modific is very useful to track the changes done before the last commit. By pressing Ctrl + Alt + D users can compare all the changes and view the difference. Users can also preview the committed code for the current line and reverting code modifications.

6. Inc Dec Value

This feature will allow increasing or decrease numbers, hex color values, dates, etc. simultaneously. Users can even change letters to upper and lower case or capitalize all the data. Users can increase or decrease the value using the mouse wheels or pressing Alt + up/down arrow alternatively.

7. File Browser

With this you can navigate files or folders within the project directory. After installing this plugin a side bar appears where users can navigate through the files without moving from keyboard. This will definitely increase work productivity and work flow.

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8. IconFont

This plugin provides snippets for fonts like Typicons, PaymentFont or FontAwesome. It is just like the HTML snippets where the abbreviation will be expanded to full length for each icon.

9. DistractionFreeWindow

This plugin allows users to work without distractions. It is very simple and subtle.

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10. FilterLines

This is simple search tool that allows users to search a keyword or a string. It is useful to search through lengthy data.