How the apprenticeship programme supports our web development

How the apprenticeship programme supports our web development

At Brand Ambition, we believe in the power of nurturing talent to drive innovation and excellence. It is built into the core of our culture, we love learning new skills and diversifying our approach to become better, and more knowledgeable marketeers. 

Our recent strategic expansions in web development have not only enhanced our service offerings but also propelled us towards an ambitious revenue goal. A key player in this growth story is Sophie Wright, whose journey from a designer to developer has made her a pivotal team member and showcases the effectiveness of government led apprenticeship orgrammes as source for upskilling and training staff members.

What Do The Coders Guild, ASDA, and The Government Have in Common?

These three entities play pivotal roles as strategic partners in Brand Ambition’s impressive revenue growth. The Government provides the framework through its Apprenticeship Scheme, enabling businesses to hire and train new talent in vital skills for the digital age. For more information on how the Apprenticeship Scheme works, you can visit the UK Government’s Apprenticeship page.

The Coders Guild, a key player in this framework, recruited and is currently training Sophie Wright, a standout apprentice who has made significant contributions to our projects. Discover more about The Coders Guild and their training programs at The Coders Guild website.

Meanwhile, ASDA, utilising the Apprenticeship Levy, funds Sophie’s training. The Apprenticeship Levy is a UK tax on employers which is used to fund apprenticeship training. For further details about the Apprenticeship Levy and how it is transforming the workforce, see the overview provided by the Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education.

This investment not only supports her professional development but also enhances our operational capabilities, leading to tangible growth in our revenue. Together, these partnerships exemplify a successful collaboration between public initiatives and private enterprise, demonstrating a shared commitment to fostering talent and driving economic growth.

7 Things You Need Reminding About SMEs and Apprenticeships

 

  1. Extensive Funding: SMEs can access funding that covers 95% of apprenticeship training and assessment costs. The Levy pot can cover the other 5%, so the training is 100% funded.
  2. Extra Incentives: Additional £1,000 incentives are available for hiring young apprentices.
  3. Diverse Training Options: Access to funded training in over 600 job roles allows for significant business diversification.
  4. Increased Productivity: 78% of employers report that apprenticeships boost productivity.
  5. Flexible Training Schedules: The funding system for SMEs offers flexibility in training choices and schedules.
  6. High Retention Rates: Apprentices often stay with their employers, reducing hiring costs.
  7. Untapped Funding: Over £500 million in funding was unclaimed last year, offering significant growth opportunities for SMEs

A Closer Look at Our Web Design Department’s Unique Approach

At Brand Ambition, we’re not just about creating websites; we’re about crafting powerful digital tools that propel your business forward. Our “SEO First™ Web Design” service embodies this philosophy perfectly, ensuring that every website we build is not only visually stunning but also optimised from the outset to enhance your online presence.

Our process begins with a rigorous analysis of your current sales tactics and branding efforts. This foundational work helps us align our web design precisely with your business objectives, transforming your website into a robust lead generation engine. We dive deep into keyword research, competitor analysis, and content strategy from the very beginning, ensuring that when your site launches, it hits the ground running with impactful SEO.

What sets Brand Ambition apart is our commitment to delivering a comprehensive suite of services wrapped into every project. From initial design to content population and ongoing SEO support, we ensure every aspect of your website is meticulously crafted to not just meet but exceed your expectations. Our websites are more than just digital spaces; they are vital, dynamic parts of your sales team, designed to be as functional as they are beautiful.

Our all-inclusive approach means you’re not left to fend for yourself post-launch. We understand that your website is a living entity in the digital ecosystem, requiring ongoing nurturing to thrive. Therefore, we offer continuous support and consultancy, ensuring your site remains relevant and effective regardless of the ever-changing nature of the digital landscape.

So, if you’re ready to elevate your online presence and drive tangible business results, let’s get started. Brand Ambition is here to transform your digital strategy from ordinary to extraordinary. Contact us today and discover the difference a truly integrated web design approach can make.

Maximising Apprentice Impact in Web Development

At Brand Ambition, Sophie’s transition from a seasoned designer to a burgeoning web developer exemplifies how strategically leveraged apprenticeships can significantly enhance our service delivery. Sophie, while new to development, brought a rich background in design which smoothed her shift into web development, supported by a well-structured apprenticeship programme.

Here’s how Sophie is integrated into our projects:

  1. Strategic Development Partner: We partner with a strategic development expert who works closely with Sophie, guiding her through the complexities of web development. This partnership ensures that our websites are not only aesthetically pleasing but also technically sound.
  2. Internal SEO and Content Teams: While Sophie focuses on the technical and design aspects of website building, our internal SEO team handles content writing and SEO migration. This collaboration ensures that each website is optimised for search engines right from the start, making them ready to rank higher and perform better.
  3. Branding Support: Our internal branding team supports Sophie by providing branding and imagery that align with our clients’ visions. This synergy between design and branding ensures that each project resonates with the targeted audience and reflects the client’s identity perfectly.
  4. Continuous Learning and Support: Sophie’s development is bolstered by continuous learning opportunities and support from her mentors and peers within the company. This environment not only accelerates her growth as a web developer but also enhances her ability to contribute effectively to our projects.

Sophie’s role at Brand Ambition is a prime example of how apprentices can drive real value in a business setting, particularly when their training is aligned with strategic business goals and supported by experienced professionals. Her journey from design to development underscores our commitment to nurturing talent and adapting our workforce to meet evolving business needs effectively.

Looking for Web Dev Support?

If you would like to check out our full range of web support and services, then just click the link below.

5 Tips for Better Website Design

5 Tips for Better Website Design

With the landscape of social media algorithms growing ever more volatile, it’s become more important than ever to have a good home for your online presence. Having a website gives your business a solid, centralised base – a one stop shop for customers to find out all they need to know about who you are, and what services and products you offer. More importantly, a website gives you absolute control over your content and messaging to customers. With your own website, you don’t have to worry about a platform changing significantly in a way that could negatively impact your business model, something that is increasingly becoming a regular occurrence for many businesses with an online presence spread across various social media platforms.

In 2024, there are more ways to build and design a website than ever before. The good news is, you don’t have to be an amazing artist or designer to be able to build an amazing looking website. Regardless of the platform you choose and how technical your web build is, fundamental design principles can help take your website to the next level.

Whether you’re building from scratch or using a pre-made layout – Here are 5 tips that can help you improve your website design:

Think of the Customer Journey

A photo of multiple wooden signposts against a blue sky

Good web design isn’t just about the overall appearance of your website – it’s also about the structure, and how you navigate it.

In marketing, there is a strategy structure known as a ‘funnel’. The marketing ‘funnel’ shows the steps of interaction a customer is guided through to reach your desired goal – whether that’s a sale, or engagement with a particular post or platform. A common marketing funnel looks something like this:

A Diagram of a Marketing Funnel. On the Right, in shades of red progressing lighter downwards is the primary funnel - labelled top to bottom, Awareness, Consideration, Conversion and loyalty. On the left are the behaviours each level of the funnel achieve, displayed progressively lighter in green top to bottom - Attract, Inform, Convert and Engage.

Good web design operates on a similar structure. Most websites have a particular goal or purpose – whether that’s to signpost customers to other services, to sell via ecommerce, to function as a blog, or more. Regardless of the purpose of your website, It’s important to take visitors on a journey through the site to tell people who you are, the services you have to offer, and how people can get in touch with you. This can be achieved with the layout and design of your website!

All websites should have a solid Home Page – which acts as the landing page for all other areas of your website. Your homepage should have a clear ‘Hero’ section, with a clear description and introduction to who you are and what your business is. The rest of the page can then be dedicated to signposting other areas of your site – whether that’s a product page, your blog, or how to get in touch with you.

A good overall website hierarchy can look something like this:

A diagram of an example website hierarchy. It's shown in a tree flowchart - with home page at the top, four category pages lower down, then sub categories lower down from that - 3, 2 and 1.

In this example, the homepage is the primary landing page. Then all other pages link from the homepage to other category pages. These could be product hubs, a blog, a service landing page or a contact page. Under these category pages can sit other sub categories – like specific product pages, blog articles and more.

Following this top-down, hierarchical website structure not only takes your customer through an easy-to-follow journey through your site. It also follows good SEO design practice, which helps boost your website’s level in search engine rankings, making your website easier to find.

Keep Your Design Consistent Throughout

A selection of different Geocities Landing Pages

It’s really tempting when designing a new website to use multiple different styling options and different layouts on every page. It’s easy to fall into a trap of thinking that variety will add excitement to a web design, and make it more interesting for customers. Often, this can lead to the opposite outcome. A website full of conflicting fonts, colours and layouts can create a confusing user experience, which can reflect poorly not just on your website, but your business as well.

A macbook with Infinity Innovations Homepage on the screen

When choosing designs for your website – make sure you use the same fonts, colours and themes throughout. Your website is an extension of the other aspects of your business, so it’s important to make your web design consistent with any other branding you might have. Do the fonts and colours on your website match up with the ones you’re using on business cards, or other stationary you own?

Most modern web themes and layouts available online have a good selection of these pre-selected, so do research to find the ones that best suit your websites and business.

 

Think Accessibility

A screenshot of the CMO Paris Homepage

A Screenshot of the CMO Paris Homepage – https://www.cmoparis.com/la-marque/

In recent years, web designers have begun to experiment a lot more with websites. After years of very minimal, stripped back web designs – developers and designers are now playing with animations, scroll effects and transitions a lot more.

The end result of this has lead to a lot of very cutting edge, exciting web design. However, some of these website experiences can be difficult to navigate for users who might not explore the web with a traditional mouse-and-keyboard setup. Elements like Parallax scrolls, videos and complex animations can add hefty loading times for users who might not have the fastest technology or internet connection to access them.

As these trends become more widely in-demand, website templates and pre-built layouts are also now beginning to appear with similar complex layouts and animations. Even more ‘static’ web layouts can often sometimes be difficult to navigate for those who use assistive technology – with missing alt text, lack of tab navigation, and flattened text unreadable via screen readers.

When Designing a website for your business, it’s important to ensure that your website is accessible for anyone who might visit it. It’s better to have a more stripped-back website that is clear and easy to navigate than it is to have an exciting, heavily customised one that is a nightmare to look through. Avoid heavily-animated pre-built layouts where possible. Use animations and videos in sparing quantities, and make sure that none of your design choices are made in sacrifice of accessibility.

 

Design Heuristically

A screenshot of the sainsburys website homepage

A Screenshot of the Sainsbury’s Homepage – https://www.sainsburys.co.uk/

Every person browsing the internet can visit hundreds, sometimes thousands of different websites. Most businesses these days have some degree of online presence – be that Supermarkets, major high street retailers, to ecommerce giants with only online outlets such as Amazon or Temu.

Through browsing the web, we all subconsciously pick up habits based on the things we most commonly interact with. Over time, these habits become expectations. Within a few seconds, we can use quick assessment to make judgements about what kind of business a website is for, how that website should function, as well as what kind of services or information we can expect to find there. This is what is known as Heuristics – or, Heuristic Behaviour. Patterns of habits, behaviours, or expectations we form without thinking, based on repeated experiences.

We can use Heuristics to help design a website experience that communicates the type of business you are to a customer subconsciously. This can be helpful, as it can handle a lot of the legwork required to make customers to develop a sense of familiarity with your business and website, in a very small window of time.

If you are a tech business, for example – your customers may already have an experience of other similar tech companies or brands in your field. Researching companies like Apple or Dyson, and identifying the ways they layout and sell their products can be helpful in establishing design patterns that could work for your own website.

The goal isn’t to copy their branding or website verbatim – it’s to identify patterns, signifiers and layouts that you can use when designing your own website to help communicate to customers what kind of business you are, without them having to consciously think about it.

 

Think Responsively

Ffour different sized screens sitting on a shelf, each with the same web page on display. There's an Imac, a Macbook, a Tablet and a Mobile. The backdrop is grey, and either side of the screens are an office lamp to the left, and a potted succulent plant to the right in a silver pot.

These days, people access websites on a vast range of devices and screen sizes. Your website could potentially be viewed on a large 4K display, or a small mobile phone screen, and many different sizes in between.

When designing a website, it’s important to ensure that your layout throughout is responsive. This means that your website has no fixed asset sizes (like hard-coded pixel limits), and that the layout and contents on your webpages can be moved freely to different dimensions and sizes, depending on the screen view.

This can seem overwhelming when first encountered. It can be frustrating to design a beautiful layout for a desktop view, only for the same layout to break entirely when viewed on a mobile screen.

In web development, a common design approach is known as ‘Mobile first’ design. This means that all your web pages should be designed from the mobile screen first, then scaled upwards to work across tablet and desktop views after.

Luckily, most modern web design platforms and web templates are built with responsive views in mind. If you aren’t a web designer, it can be helpful to use a pre-built theme, or some of the in-built site builder features to make sure your website is kept responsive without needing to handle the layouts manually yourself.

When choosing layouts and themes, always research how responsive they are. Don’t just rely on your website looking good in one particular view. You can use your browser’s in-built inspection tools to view how your website looks across multiple screens, and make adjustments to your layouts as needed.

Web Design & Development with Brand Ambition

At Brand Ambition, we help businesses get the most out of their websites. If you’re looking for web design support – whether it’s to update a previous site, or start a new one from scratch, we can help you every step of the way. Get in touch with us for further information on all of our web design and development services.

What is a Responsive Website?

What is a Responsive Website?

In the age of digital marketing, audiences seek connection beyond plain sales pitches. They crave narratives that resonate on an emotional level, which is where the magic of storytelling comes into play.

The Art of Crafting a Story

The first step in our storytelling approach at Brand Ambition is digging deep into our brand’s values. We distil these into a captivating story that serves as the backbone of our marketing campaigns. Rather than an isolated narrative, this story forms an overarching theme that guides our brand message and lends unique flavor to all our communications.

Balancing Business and Emotion

Balancing the human element with business objectives in storytelling can be a tightrope walk. At Brand Ambition, we craft narratives that strike a perfect balance. While our stories are designed to forge emotional connections, they also align with our strategic goals, subtly guiding the narrative towards the value our brand delivers.

Ensuring Consistency

We weave our story into every piece of content we create, be it a blog post, social media update, or an advertising campaign. This narrative consistency helps underscore our brand’s values, resonates with our target audience, and differentiates our brand from competitors. The competitive analysis software we use offers crucial insights into maintaining this narrative consistency across various content formats.

Unifying Multiple Narratives

Coordinating various teams managing different channels can pose a significant challenge for maintaining a unified brand narrative. Our approach? We develop an overarching theme based on our brand story. This theme then gets rolled out across all channels, from social media to email marketing, ensuring our audience receives a consistent and unified brand message.

Leveraging Technology

At Brand Ambition, we harness the power of technology to streamline our storytelling process and create compelling narratives. We use AI-driven content generators and analysis platforms that aid in maintaining narrative consistency and enable us to craft narratives that resonate with our target audience while standing out in the crowded digital space.

The Power of Storytelling: By the Numbers

Still not convinced about the power of storytelling? Here are 10 statistics that demonstrate the immense potential of narratives in content marketing:

Brand messages relayed as stories can be up to 22 times more memorable than mere facts (Jerome Bruner, Cognitive Psychologist)
92% of consumers want brands to make ads that feel like a story (OneSpot)
Messages delivered as stories can be up to 22 times more memorable than just facts. (Stanford)
Consumers’ emotional response to an ad has a far greater influence on their reported intent to buy a product than does the ad’s content (Harvard Business Review)
Storytelling can boost conversion rates by up to 30% (Aberdeen)
55% of people are more likely to buy the product in the future if they love a brand’s story (Headstream)
64% of B2B marketers agree that storytelling can significantly help attract a larger audience (LinkedIn)
Brands that have a consistent narrative in their content marketing could increase the memorability of their content by 118%. (Prezi)
Companies that use storytelling in their marketing have reported a 20% increase in revenue (Forbes)
78% of CMOs believe content is the future of marketing and storytelling plays a massive role in content marketing (Demand Metric)
At Brand Ambition, storytelling is not merely a marketing technique—it’s a powerful tool to forge deeper connections with our audience and reinforce our brand identity. Your brand has a story too. Isn’t it time to share it?