You’ve probably experienced this before: After clicking on a link, you’re led to a website with either Comic Sans, flashing images or primary colour-combinations that make you wish you never laid eyes on it.
At this point, it doesn’t matter how great the idea, product or service is, you’re not interested... and there’s no way you’re ever going back to that hell hole of a website again.
It takes viewers less than two-tenths of a second to form a first impression on your website, according to eye-tracking research conducted by Missouri University of Science and Technology in 2012.
Not only do first impressions play a role in hooking in viewers, it can also affect how the credibility, trustworthiness as well as professionalism.
Whether you’re an entrepreneur, designer or artist, a thoroughly thought-out and well-designed site showcasing your business, portfolio or idea can come a long way.
Here are 10 European-made tools and resources – in no particular order – that want to help you design and create a killer website:
Since its founding in 2006, Tel Aviv-based Wix has grown into a website-building platform with more than 56 million users across 190 countries (and a publicly listed company). Its cloud-based tool with HTML5 capabilities – which offers both free and premium options – is targeted to users who want an easy, code-free way to build a website.
Based in Gdansk, Poland, UXPin is an online tool aimed at simplifying the work and collaboration process for design professionals with a focus on the UX community. Founded in 2010, the startup claims customers such as Google, Yahoo!, Salesforce, Sony and IBM. In February of this year, UXPin announced a $1.6 million funding round led by Freestyle Capital.
Hamburg-headquartered Jimdo provides easy-to-use tools with the goal of "enabling anyone to create a customized presence online". Founded in 2007, the German company claims to be profitable since 2009 without the help of venture capital and has reportedly helped build more than 12 million websites. Recently, Jimdo released a new interface as well as a series of fresh templates.
Designed as a browser-based tool for designers, Froont wants to help accelerate the process or prototyping and creating responsive websites. The Riga-based startup, founded in 2012, lets users share responsive web designs as well as collaborate on projects via the platform. At the moment, Froont offers a four-tier pricing model, which includes Free, Scout, Freelancer and Agency.
There are more than 600 font families on Google Web Fonts' directory and – as an entrepreneur, designer or developer – you probably don't have enough time to go through all of them to select the perfect ones. Thanks to Chad Mazzola (Director of Product Design at Swedish mobile payments company Klarna) and 'Beautiful Web Type', then, for easing the process and examining some noteworthy typefaces in action.
Run by the UK's ZillaMedia, Dunked is a platform targeted at individuals in the creative industries – including designers, illustrators, architects and 3D modelers – who want to showcase their work via an online portfolio but may not be tech/coding experts. The service offers three paid pricing plans and claims to have more than 85,000 users.
Colordot, created by London-based designer and entrepreneur Devin Hunt, is a digital tool that allows users to experiment with colour palettes with various motions of your cursor. The intuitive and minimal interface of the site is particularly useful for testing and capturing palettes for potential web designs.
Similar to Wix and Jimdo, Italy-based Flazio is a platform for people who want to create a website easily but may not have comprehensive programming or tech knowledge. Founded in 2012 by a brother-sister duo, Flazio has reportedly helped to create more than 120,000 websites.
Lithuanian startup ImpressPages offers a web-based CMS system that wants to help both developers and content managers with building a website and maintaining its contents. Founded in 2009, ImpressPages has received €200,000 in funding and claims to have helped over 47,000 people with their websites.
Based in Tel Aviv, Webydo is an SaaS startup offering tools for designers and agencies who want to create HTML websites without writing code. Founded in 2010, Webydo claims to have over 115,000 users on its platform and picked up a $7 million Series B investment earlier this year.