One of the problems with coining a term like “user experience” or its acronym counterpart “UX” is that it opens up the floodgates for other trendy experience-related acronyms to enter the web design lexicon.

CX, DX, EX, HX, JX, PX, UX, (U)XD…

Is all of this really necessary though?

While I don’t think you need to go adding EX or JX to your vocabulary anytime soon, it’s still a good idea to educate yourself on what these X acronyms mean and how to use them to your advantage in business.

The X’s of Web Design and Marketing

The two most common experience acronyms in web design and marketing are UX and CX. What you may be surprised to learn, however, is that the “X” in these acronyms doesn’t always stand for “experience” nor does it always pertain to the end customer.

Let’s review what each of the X acronyms means and then we’ll talk about which ones you actually need to worry about and use.

Customer Experience (CX)

CX refers to the quality of interactions a customer has with a brand, from the very first encounter to their very last. As such, customer experience is the most important of all the X’s to monitor, measure, and maintain.

Think about all of the places where the CX could go off the rails:

  • A broken form on the website dissuades them from trying to connect with a brand;
  • A support representative fails to respond in a timely fashion, leaving the user feeling helpless;
  • The customer makes a purchase every month for two years, but has noticed a degradation in quality over time.

This is why it’s so important for businesses to have a game plan from Day 1 — especially one that ensures a consistent delivery of products and services throughout the lifetime of a customer relationship. Any misstep in CX could cost a brand a customer’s business and loyalty.

Digital Transformation (DX)

DX refers to a technological evolution within a company. Although it’s not a term you commonly hear thrown around, it’s happening around us all the time.

If you’ve ever made a digital shift within your own business (say, from one OS to another or from a manual process to one that’s automated), you know what far-reaching effects it can have. Your time, money, and sometimes even your clients can be impacted by the change if you don’t prepare for it in advance.

Imagine what happens when it’s not just a sole business owner or freelancer who’s affected by a digital transformation.

Emotional Experience (EX)

There are two ways in which “EX” may be used in design or marketing. This is one way.

Think of emotional experience as a subset of user experience. Instead of focusing on developing a clear set of steps that take a user through their journey, EX design and marketing focus on the elements that evoke strong emotions: Powerful color palettes; Nostalgic images; Messages of urgency.

Any time you build something with the intent of pulling on someone’s emotions, that’s emotional experience design — and it’s a really common thing we do today, even if we don’t all go referring to it as EX.

Employee Experience (EX)

This is the second use of EX you may encounter, though it’s not very likely unless you’re working in a digital agency environment. Even then, this is the kind of term that only corporate might use.

While it might not be a commonplace phrase, the concept is a good one to flesh out, whether you work in a team atmosphere or you have aspirations of hiring your own team someday. All employee experience really refers to is how team members feel about and respond to a work environment and their organization as a whole.

Essentially, EX is UX for an internal organization. And by researching what employees want, collecting feedback on how they feel, and reviewing data on their productivity and job satisfaction, companies can effectively improve the employee experience — which should have a trickle-down effect to CX.

Human Experience (HX)

I’ve heard it said that HX is all about taking UX and CX to a new level.

Even though they’re both meant to create a more pleasing end user experience, the belief is that there’s still too much focus on the technology instead of the humans we should be serving. That it’s only when we stop focusing on how technology can attract and convert and please more customers that we can fulfill the real purpose of a company.

While honesty, transparency, and ethics are the kind of ideals every brand should strive for, it’s not always realistic to prioritize them what with how difficult it is to convince users to convert. There’s just too much information competing for their attention right now. So, while it’s nice to think about being able to market and sell a company to human beings instead of generalizing them as “users” or “customers”, that’s just not feasible for newer and smaller companies.

That said, I think HX is still a worthwhile concept to keep in mind. While you might not be able to do much with it now, it can certainly be a game-changing differentiator once a brand has long been established.

Job Transformation (JX)

JX and DX go hand-in-hand.

Basically, as companies adopt more and more digital solutions, and those solutions become more complex (thanks in part to AI), jobs are going to change. So, rather than hire IT specialists who can manage on-site hardware and software, businesses will be looking for AI specialists and cloud service providers who can help them make the most of their all-digital operation.

Partner Experience (PX)

PX may refer to one of two things. For this one, the partner in the experience could be a business partner, product supplier, SaaS provider, etc. Basically, any third party who you have a relationship with.

As far as web design and marketing goes, PX can affect you in a number of ways.

For example, if you were to manage web hosting on behalf of your clients. You notice that their site’s gone offline, so you reach out to the customer support representative from the web hosting company, but they’re either non-responsive or have no clue what the heck is going on. Who do you think your client is going to be upset with? No matter how much you try to pass the buck, you’re the one who’s set yourself up as the go-between, so it’s going to fall on you.

Now, let’s say you’re a solo web designer and want to partner with a copywriter since clients keep asking for help in that area. In that case, PX could affect you in a similar fashion. If the writer were to fall short in their duties (or vice versa), not only would your relationship with them be compromised, but the relationship between you and the client would as well.

Bottom line: the relationships you have with partners and suppliers plays a critical role in your success, so you do need to spend time focusing on those experiences.

Public Experience (PX)

PX, in this instance, is more likely to be used by agencies that specialize in branding and market research. That’s because this one has to do with how a brand is perceived by society. And all of the other acronyms contribute to it.

For instance:

  • An employee believes they were unfairly fired and puts the company on blast on Facebook. It gets picked up by a major news source and the story goes viral.
  • A website is hacked the day before Black Friday, leaving thousands of users without a place to buy all of the gifts they were hoping to get on sale that holiday season.
  • A company releases a new app which parents are calling for a ban on because it reinforces unhealthy stereotypes.

From the product itself to how the company engages with the public, there are many ways in which the PX may be affected. While each of the contributors — including you the web designer — have to be cognizant of how their choices and actions may affect the public image of a brand, it’s more likely the branding team will need to worry about PX.

User Experience (UX)

You’re probably already familiar with UX. This is the term we use to describe how a user (visitor) feels as they walk through a website or app. And how each step they take and each interaction they make, adds up to an overall experience.

In order to “create” a user experience, designers, developers, writers, and marketers need to be able to step inside the shoes of their users and build a journey tailor-made for them. I’ll explain in more detail how that happens in the next point.

(User) Experience Design (UXD)

The subject of user experience design is a common one discussed here. Just recently, the following UXD topics have been explored:

UXD is a discipline that requires a lot of research, attention to detail, and testing. And the end result is a website or app that’s highly usable, accessible, and enjoyable. That’s because every element, step, and interaction has been carefully thought through. And not only that, the experience is constantly reevaluated, tested, and updated to continually serve the end user.

As far as you’re concerned, I’d say that UX/UXD is the most important acronym for you to concern yourself with.


The fact of the matter is, there’s a lot of value in accepting the underlying principles of these acronyms. However, I’m not sure we need to make “designer speak” sound any more complicated than it already is.

After all, your clients don’t want to hear you talk about how DX is affecting the way we build the UX of websites. They want real speak. They want to know what exactly you’re going to do for them; not spend extra time asking you to elaborate on what all of that design jargon means.

Plus, if you do get caught up in all of these “experiences”, you might not get anything done. What I’d suggest is to focus on the ones that matter:

UX — even if you’re not an official UX designer by trade — is incredibly important.

CX is another must, though the only CX you can fully control is your own. You’ll have to trust that the clients you work for will deliver the rest on their end.

I also think DX is a good one to keep in the corner of your mind.

Technological advancements aren’t going to stop anytime soon and you’re working in a field where the tools you use and the tech that affects your business are constantly changing. So, while you might not talk about “DX”, you do need to accept that it’s going to have a profound effect on how you work, how you develop processes, and what you’re able to do for clients.

Like I said earlier, the underlying concepts of each of these X acronyms are valid and do hold some value for you as a web designer. As you work on growing your business — by adding more services, hiring employees, upgrading your tech — it would serve you well to keep these in mind to ensure you maintain a positive experience across the board.

Featured image via Unsplash.


Are you looking to boost traffic on your site to attract more buyers to your business?

Digital marketing is not just a word roaming around networks. You have to understand the types of digital marketing. You need to use the latest methods to stay on top of digital marketing competition and stand out from the crowd.

In this article, we will discuss the main facts of digital marketing. Here I will also tell you the importance and the 9 types of digital marketing. Also, you will know how digital marketing an effective part of your overall marketing strategy.

What Is Digital Marketing

Most people don’t understand the right meaning of digital marketing and they got in trouble. Digital marketing is any type of marketing for products or services that uses electronic devices.

Digital marketing is nothing new. Digital marketing started when electronic devices entered our lives. Most of the people assume that digital marketing is all about content marketing and social media. While these are the types of digital marketing, they are not all-encompassing. Digital marketing can be online and offline.


We will also go through the offline digital marketing so that you will know in-depth about digital marketing. You need to know both forms of digital marketing for a perfect marketing strategy. If you still have confusion about why digital marketing matters at all, then read on!

Why Digital Marketing Matters

The time that we spend connected to our electronic devices increases every day. In fact, Americans spend 11 hours each day using electronic devices.


That might scare you, but we spend every waking hour on electronic devices. Digital marketing is more important and efficient than ever before. Without digital marketing, you will look like standing alone. Look at the following types of digital marketing and think which one strategy should work for your business and best for your industry, your audience and your company.

Types of Digital Marketing

Now it’s time to dive head first into 9 types of digital marketing.

  1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  2. Search Engine Marketing and Pay-Per-Click Advertising
  3. Social Media Marketing
  4. Content Marketing
  5. Affiliate Marketing
  6. Influencer Marketing
  7. Email Marketing
  8. Viral Marketing
  9. Mobile Phone Advertising

1. Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization or SEO is the process of growing your online visibility in terms of (organic) search engine results. SERPs or search engine results pages appear to users after they search for a given keyword or phrase using a search engine like Google or Bing. Each user interact with an individualized results page based on the written keywords, the user’s location, the time of searching, and their browsing history.


Organic search results appear in a list and are ranked using the search engine’s algorithm. It’s algorithm changes with the user search and engagement with online content. The higher you rank on a SERP, the more organic traffic is directed to your site and the more chances of making an organic visitor an active customer.

How to get your company’s website at the top of a user’s organic search results?

By optimizing your website using SEO

Search engine optimization includes many factors from keywords to content to links to your website around the web. It includes both Off-page SEO and On-page. On-page SEO refers to the steps that you take for your own website to boost your organic SEO. Off-page refers to the connections that you make and perform actions for your website to empower using SEO.

SEO trends change as algorithms change to fit user needs. In this way, SEO is not about building a website for the sole purpose of ranking high in a search engine results list. SEO is about designing the best possible website for your user. If you want to stay on top of SEO trends, you want to improve your website’s online visibility and traffic.

2. Search Engine Marketing

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) covers the ground that SEO ignores and the paid traffic from search engines. With SEM you purchase brand advertisement space that appears on a user’s search engine result pages (SERP). The most common paid search platform is Google AdWords and next is Bing Ads.

search engine marketing

Search engine charges an amount to display an advertisement in a number of places on a SERP generated specific keywords or phrases. One of the SEM examples is pay-per-click advertising. PPC is a digital marketing method where search engines charge a company each time their ads clicked.

Social media another part is PPC advertising. Now the ads show up in news feeds for the targeted audience to market your brand in a specific region.

3. Social Media Marketing

Social media is an important part of digital marketing strategy. You must know the ins and outs of social media marketing. Social media provides amazing exposure to your brand. Social media allows you to connect with consumers in a more interactive way. You can gain valuable customer feedback that allows you to improve your support, product or services.


Through social media marketing, you can easily gain your targeted audience and post content according to your specific niche. Every activity that you do to increase your website traffic or business on your social media channels is considered as social media marketing. Whether you are on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn these efforts all count as social media marketing.

Everyone benefits from social media marketing, but B2C companies stand to take the most advantage. Always focus on what your targeted audience talking about on social media. Try to engage in the conversation. Use social media marketing as a way to identify what content you put out does well by analyzing the likes and shares.

4. Content Marketing

Content marketing is the practice of providing a unique piece of content for users to generate sales and leads. Unique and quality content is one that is shared by users. Nowadays content marketing works a lot with other types of digital marketing like SEO and Social media marketing.


Always make sure that you keep your target audience in your mind while creating content. Remember who you are talking to and what they are interested in. Consider the right keyword while writing content so that the user gets the right information.

Lastly, share your content across all of your social media channels for more exposure. Content marketing is an ongoing process. It’s not only about sales but also about engagement and educating your consumers to build your brand, trust, and equity. Create relevant, quality content that helps you to stand out and also boost your SEO.

5. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a process of paying commissions for conversions. In affiliate marketing for every sale of products or services, you get commissions. The rate of commissions in affiliate marketing is different for every brand. Most of the bloggers and Ecommerce website owners prefer affiliate marketing to increase their profits.


Before joining any affiliate you must read the terms and conditions of every brand because some of the brands send violations if you do those activities that they restrict to do. It would be good if you could read all the terms and conditions of any brand before joining their affiliates.

6. Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is another type of digital marketing. Influencer marketing uses an audience with enormous online experts for your target market to drive sales and traffic.


Influencer marketing is one of the most popular types of digital marketing on social media channels like Snapchat and Instagram. Most of the companies hire Instagram people with a large following to promote their brand by posting photos of their product. Companies now engage in Instagram to hire the influencers that control the social media channels of the company for a certain amount of time. In this way, you get new followers and audiences that help your brand spread worldwide.

Make sure you do detailed research about your targeted influencers before deciding to do business with them. Do all the necessary verifications regarding their social channels followers so that you will be safe from fake accounts.

7. Email Marketing

Email marketing is another type of digital marketing that allows you to update your email subscribers on a daily basis about your company. To start email marketing you must have email subscribers and to get email subscribers you have to perform digital marketing experiments that help you to get more subscribers. The best campaign of email marketing involves a list of subscribers earned by your content. People who opt-in to your email subscription prove more likely to become active buyers.

email marketing

8. Viral Marketing

Viral marketing refers to a post that is trending and getting more engagement and viral enough to get a massive amount of shares online. In Viral marketing, there are more chances of getting an enormous spike in website traffic for a short period of time. This is difficult to do but the benefits alone make the effort worth your time.

B2C companies gain better results from viral marketing. B2C companies use social media to reach an enormous audience across all of their active platforms.

9. Mobile Phone Advertising

Mobile Phone advertising is also a type of digital marketing that happens on mobile devices. Mobile phone advertising includes SMs marketing that is an asset to local marketing. Through SMS marketing you can easily market special offers, coupons, and updates about the company.


UX Design: Types of Affordances in User Interfaces

Obtaining professional knowledge and skills, designers face a variety of specific terminology. We have already published the posts with key terms for the topics of usability and web designbusiness termsnavigation elements, and color terms. The new article continues the theme of psychology in user experience design and adds a new issue to UX Design Glossary.  Today we are talking about affordances, subtle cues that help users to interact with an interface.

What Is Affordance?

Affordance is a property or feature of an object which presents a prompt on what can be done with this object. In short, affordances are cues that give a hint of how users may interact with something, no matter physical or digital. For example, when you see a door handle, it is a prompt you can use it to open the door. When you see a receiver icon, it gives you a hint you may click it to make a call. Affordances make our life easier as they support our successful interactions with the world of physical things and virtual objects.

Check the screen of Watering Tracker below. In split seconds, you will understand that the needed action is done – the tick shows it. The icons in the tab bar will give you clues about what you can do with the app: check your set of plants (this tab is active as it’s colored while the others are not), add a new plant or check your profile. These are affordances in action.

Design Case Study: Watering Tracker. Mobile UI for Home

History of the Terminology

The term was first introduced by the psychologist James Gibson who deeply researched visual perception. He first used the term in his book ‘The Senses Considered as Perceptual Systems‘ in 1966. In 1979 he clarifies the definition of his terminology in the book ‘The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception’: “The affordances of the environment are what it offers the animal, what it provides or furnishes, either for good or ill. The verb to afford is found in the dictionary, the noun affordance is not. I have made it up. I mean by it something that refers to both the environment and the animal in a way that no existing term does. It implies the complementarity of the animal and the environment.” According to Gibson, humans tend to modify their environment with a wish to make its affordances suit them better and make their life easier. Learning the affordances of the environment becomes an essential part of socialization.

Being applied to design, the term referred to only those physical action possibilities of which the user is aware of. In this perspective, the term got its further development in the explorations by Donald Norman in the 1988 book, ‘The Design of Everyday Things‘. According to the expert, “…the term affordance refers to the perceived and actual properties of the thing, primarily those fundamental properties that determine just how the thing could possibly be used. […] Affordances provide strong clues to the operations of things. Plates are for pushing. Knobs are for turning. Slots are for inserting things into. Balls are for throwing or bouncing. When affordances are taken advantage of, the user knows what to do just by looking: no picture, label, or instruction needed.”

With the advent of various user interfaces, affordances got a new vector of development. We did hundreds of operations with diverse actions, tools, and things. Now we also do tons of operations just clicking the mouse or tapping the screen. It makes UX designers work on the new ways of presenting affordances that accumulate patterns and knowledge people have from real life in digital interactions. This experience is dramatically different so the approaches change too.

web design tips

Types of Affordances in UI

Affordances in UI can be classified according to their performance and presentation. Anyway, their main goal is to actualize the knowledge and experience people already have to simplify the interaction flow.

Explicit (obvious) and implicit (hidden) affordances

Based on their performance, we can find obvious and hidden hints in UI.

Explicit affordances are based on widely known and typical prompts that direct the user to a particular action. For example, when you see a button designed as an obviously clickable element, aka visually similar to the buttons in the physical world, you understand you can click or tap it to interact. If it is supported by a text or icons the affordance becomes even more clear: it informs you what will be the feedback from the system.

web design ecommerce tubikstudio

A CTA button of this e-commerce webpage is clear as a clickable element and the copy says what this button enables a user to do

Implicit affordances are not that obvious. They are hidden and may be revealed only in a particular flow of users’ actions. The cases when we get tooltips or explanations hovering on a layout element are the ones. Other examples are diverse multilayered elements of navigation such as drop-down menus or expandable buttons that aren’t seen all the time or from the first seconds of interaction but are unveiled after a particular operation. Perhaps, one of the most debatable points here is the hamburger menu that hides the access to functionality behind the special icon.

web design animation

Hamburger button in the header hides the extended website menu

Graphic Affordances

Graphic affordances are presented with visuals applied to an interface and helping users to scan its functionality. Graphics of all kinds are perceived faster and memorized better than copy so their importance cannot be overestimated. Among them, we could mention the following.

Photos: theme photos, items photos, avatars, and title pictures present the visual support, from information that generally users can do with the app or website (buy, communicate, show, watch, study, write, etc.) to specific features. Let’s say, if an app enables a user to save and share recipes, it’s cool to set the immediate association using appropriate photos like in the example below.


Branding signs: logos, corporate signs, and colors applied to the website or app present an immediate hint about the connection of the UI to a particular brand which may be a strong affordance for its loyal customers.


The logo on the splash screen and in the header sets the link to the brand

Illustration: theme illustrations and mascots have a big potential of giving clear prompts to users. Below, you can see a popup informing users about Halloween stickers in Toonie Alarm with a well-known visual prompt – a Halloween pumpkin.


Iconinterface icons present perhaps the most diverse group of visual affordances. These pictograms are highly symbolic and mostly use the hints taken from the real world so that users could understand them quickly. Even more, after some icons lose the connection with the original physical objects they still present productive affordances if remembered by a big number of users: a floppy disk for “save” is a good example. A heart or a star will immediately link you to favorites, a magnifier will prompt it’s a search and a camera icon won’t take you long to understand that it’s for taking a photo.

learn chinese app ui design

Icons are also used as effective hints for classification of the content: categories and sections work much faster with the support of proper graphics.


Button: being among the core interactive elements, buttons came to interfaces as a well-recognized element. Before the era of GUI, it was used in a variety of physical things from simple calculators to complex dashboards. We all know well what to do with a button. The point is to make it visible and obviously seen as a button in UI. Shapes, contrast, colors and copy all present a great help here.


Field: basically, fields present spaces in which users can input the necessary data. To make them effective, designers also activate the power of affordance: fields should look interactive such a way that people understand immediately they can type in the text inside. The interface of Recipes App below shows the search field: it’s clear that the field is an interactive element due to the shape and contrast and also it is supported with a search icon and the text prompt giving an instruction.

food recipe app design

Notifications: there are numerous methods to hint the user that there is something missed or worth attention via notifications. Look at the cart icon in the interface for the Tasty Burger app below: a yellow dot on it gives a quick prompt that it isn’t empty.


Copy (Language) Affordances

Although users perceive images much faster than words, copy also doesn’t lose its positions having a great influence on an interaction flow. The point is that images sometimes need to be decoded with the help of the text so as to avoid misunderstandings. Another thing is that not everything may be shown in pictures. Finally, the copy has an incredibly diverse potential in transferring information, labeling the instructions and calls-to-action, explaining the functionality and supporting the efficiency of the layout with typographic hierarchy. However, the text should be given in a reasonable balance not to overload the interface.

Interactions with copy are very natural for people in their everyday life, for much longer than graphical user interfaces exist. Copy clues and prompts help to understand what to do or what to expect, what information to keep in mind: we read many of them, from signs, adverts, and instructions to newspapers, manuals, and books. In digital UI, it works the same way. It is a straightforward way to communicate with a user. For example, the сalendar screen of HealthCare app shows the variety of language affordances: except for major information about patients, we can see the copy prompt inside the search field, the call-to-action copy on the button and a textual clue given in empty fields of the calendar showing that a user can add an appointment for the day just tapping the space.

Design Case Study Health Care App. UI for Doctors.

Pattern Affordances

Pattern affordances are based on the power of habit and present a huge factor in effective interaction design. Their biggest advantage is saving users’ effort to keeping many things in memory simultaneously. As we mentioned in an article presenting mechanisms of human memory to UX designers, the capacity of short-term memory is limited. So, the more patterns users learn, the clearer is the navigation for them and the better they deal with new input. There are many typical affordances of this kind: for example, we are all used to the clickable logos in website headers which usually open a home page. From one interface to the other, we know that underlined piece of copy is usually a clickable link, the information about contacts and privacy policy of the website is often found in a website footer, and three vertical points in the app layout mean “more” showing additional functions. Saving these patterns means making users feel they understand the interface. So, if there’s a need to break the pattern affordances, think twice and test it well: originality should be reasoned and clear for users.

recipe app UI tubik

Animated Affordances

Animation applied in user interfaces creates a strong connection between the physical and virtual world. In most cases, it imitates interaction with real things: pulling, pushing, swiping, dragging, etc. So, interface animations both basic and complex present a group of powerful affordances.

The example below shows the switch in Toonie Alarm app. When the switch is on, it changes several parameters together: the color of the tab, the color of the toggle and the animation of the sun activated. This way it immediately informs the user and also adds emotional appeal to the operation.

Switch design toonie alarm app

Another example shows the notification that appears in the flow of interaction in the Home Budget app and reminds the user about particular limitations. Its animation features pulsation and this way attracts user’s attention to the important warning.


Here’s one more case – pull-to-refresh animation. Appearing on the screen, it informs a user that the UI is being updated and adds some fun to the process of waiting.


Negative Affordances

Whatever strange it could sound, negative affordances also play a big role in positive user experience: they root in the fact that negative result is also a result. The purpose of a negative affordance is to give users a prompt that some elements or operations are inactive at the moment. For instance, the interface of the Homey app given below shows that the “Bedroom” button is active while the buttons of other rooms are inactive – so they present negative affordances. The security level also features that level 5 is totally inactive.


Here’s one more case: the tab bar shows the active button as colored while the others present negative affordances.


False Affordances

In a perspective of UX affordances, false and negative shouldn’t be seen as synonyms. No way. False affordance is what designers should avoid: these are the wrong prompts which lead users to the different action or result, not the one which is expected behind the prompt. Sometimes it’s done intentionally, but in most cases by mistake. For example, if the text in the web copy block is underlined, users automatically think it is clickable. So, they can be really annoyed to understand it doesn’t work – it means that they have been prompted the wrong way.

The brief introduction above lets us understand the significant role which affordances play in user experience design. We will continue this theme with more insights, tips and examples in our next posts, so don’t miss the updates.

Recommended Reading

6 Types of Digital Affordance that Impact Your UX

Affordances and Design

How to Perfect UX with Design Affordances

UX Design Glossary: Navigation Elements

UX Design Glossary: Interface Navigation Elements. Set 2

How Human Memory Works: Insights for UX Designers

Originally published in Tubik Blog


With the pace of change in trends and design world, it at times gets very exhausting for both designers as well as their audience to adapt and accept the ever-changing trends and to keep up with them. This is where Vintage design gains its popularity. By inculcating vintage design practices, you allow the audience to have a sense of comfort and ease. Earlier trends had a longer shelf life, and such design practices were carried out for several years, which made it easier to remember and more comfortable to relate to a product. Designers have begun to realize the power of this, and are actively using vintage design practices to stand out from the rest of the competition.

It is essential to understand the two terminologies, retro and vintage. Earlier, the two words used to mean different things, while vintage was drawing inspiration from something that existed as a product, retro was referred to the intentional implementation of old design styles and language, to give the product a retro feel.  The terms, however, can be used these days interchangeably, as many designers use a blend of both to create and recreate the brand image in today’s time.

Some eras and styles date back enough to be called vintage. Each era, each style has something unique to offer. Here, we will learn about some of these popular Vintage Design practices and how can they be used to make your product stand out.

1. Art Deco:

Art Deco was a movement in the decorative arts and architecture which initiated during the 1920s and further developed and gained acceptance as a dominant style in western Europe and the United States by the years of 1930.  The name for this movement comes from Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes,  held in Paris during 1925.  Art deco explained design by turning modernism into fashion. It was known for its use of geometric shapes and symmetrical patterns, also ideal human figures.  It was a modern style that focused on the rise of the machine culture and how it affected society. There was the use of yellow and gold to symbolize wealth.

Over the years, Art Deco has been used by several different industries and walks, such as monumental and public sculptures, studio sculptures, paintings, and even in architecture, mainly skyscrapers.  It is also many times used for decorations and motifs, furniture, textiles and fashion, jewelry, glass art, and also graphics and designing.

By drawing inspiration from this Vintage style, you can design your brand in a product by using proper symmetry, layered shapes, rectilinear geometry, intricate line art, aerodynamic curves, and metallic colors like gold and chrome.

2. Art nouveau:

Art Nouveau is a form of art that emerged from the angst of the 19th century’s modern art. William Moriss’s floral designs and the Art and Crafts design movement founded by his pupil were instrumental in the emergence of this art form. This art form gained prominence during the late 1980s and has had multiple natural forms as its inspiration. The design practice of Art Nouveau tries building a relationship between different elements and natural forms in the most harmonious way possible. The design style is recognized by its use of curved lines and the intricate detailing often inspired by plants and flowers. The center attraction of this art form is using natural beauty instead of intentional beautification. The art form uses very contrasting colors, ornate patterns, and a significant focus on young women, plants, and trees.

Over the years, this art form gained acceptance in many fields, and practitioners of each draw inspiration from this to date. It is widely accepted and used in Glass Art, Paintings, Jewelry, Interior Designing as well as Graphic Designing.

By using certain design principles that this art form followed like using artistic designs on everyday objects, breaking away and challenging the rigid structures and restrictions of classical arts, heavy use of pastel colors, and using flowing lines can help your brand stand out with a design that breaks from the rules and restrictions and emphasizes on the natural aspects of design.

3. Bauhaus:

Bauhaus is a design form that originated in Germany. It was a German art school that was operational from 1919 to 1933, which combined the fine arts and the craft. Walter Gropius founded Bauhaus, in Weimar. The term Bauhaus translates to building a house. It was created with the ideology of creating a total work of art in all aspects of art.

It gained popularity in modern design practices like modernist architecture, design, and architectural education. It left its impact on many other developments in interior design, graphic design, industrial design, and also typography. This movement has had a considerable impact on architectural trends in Western Europe, the United States, Canada also Israel.  Tev Aviv got the recognition of world heritage site in 2004, because of its abundant use of Bauhaus in its architecture.

Its core principle is to eliminate/avoid using anything that can be even slightly distracting. It believes in emphasizing the core aspect of the design,  removing any excessive element. It believes in the simplistic approach to design.  You can make use of this prominent design form by inculcating its specific characteristics, such as using a lot of primary colors, thick lines, geometric shapes, simple texts, and more.

Now that we have discussed three prominent art movements of the past to draw inspiration from, we can look upon certain distinctive features that can help add a retro and vintage look to your design.

4. Use of colors:

It is crucial to understand how the color scheme used to be like in the early days to recreate the same feel in your modern design. Generally, it is advised not to use very bright colors, as it goes against most of the vintage design premises. Another aspect of colors you need to keep in mind when designing a vintage look is the saturation aspect. Reducing the saturation to an extent helps the image look old, and this is a common trick that many sound designers use to date. Another element you could experiment with is texture. It changes the color and also gives a rugged, worn look to your product. You could put forth more effort and make use of only two colors for the entire design. Earlier, this used to be done to ensure the design is print-friendly.

5. Use of Simple Shapes:

The retro design had heavy use of different geometric shapes such as circles, rectangles, starbursts, and more. Including shapes in your design that are not too complex as vintage designs were primarily known for their simplicity. It is okay and encouraged to break from the symmetry aspect at times and use asymmetrical shapes to break from mundane, common shapes. Generally, rounding off the turns and edges reemphasizes a vintage design instead of using pointed or squared shapes.  Squared shapes often feel modern and hence can take away from the vintage feel of your design.

6. Use of Typography:

Typography is one of the crucial elements of design to get right while trying to inculcate a vintage feel in your design. A wrong font can throw the entire design off, even if you get the colors right, use simple shapes, and follow every other guideline. Hence you need to ensure to thoroughly check through multiple fonts to choose one that makes your design look a bit old. Many vintage ads used to put emphasize on typography strictly, whether it be banners, flyers, or any advertising. It used to complement the brand’s identity. Hence it is essential to look for a font that doesn’t only feel vintage but also complements your brand. Some of the ideal fonts to experiment with are Bobber, Canter, Sesame, Zorus Serif.  You can take inspiration from signage and advertising. Neon signs, pinstripes on the car, and many more can be a good starting point for retro typography inspiration.

7. Use of Logos:

Logos were an essential part of the design to make a product stand out from its competitor in old times. Using the same concept and creating logos or emblems ensures a better presentation of products and services of sites and better promote products. Applying sober colors to retro logos and emblem creates a classic ambiance for the audience. The shapes and format of logos also need to adhere to the guidelines of old logos. The vintage logos have to appeal to masses, and they’re often known for their timeless nature that is not affected by time, trends, and era.  It is essential to include a sense of value in the logo to make it stand out and have a lasting impact. Many times designers use handwritten scripts to make it as authentic as possible. You could also incorporate hand-drawn logos to create a unique and vintage logo.

8. Use of Borders:

Using borders is a straightforward yet useful tool to give a vintage feel to a product. Successful designers use borders strategically to lie emphasize on the essential areas of the website, product, or any material they are working on. If you are dealing with images, you can have vintage frames to help give that authentic feel to your product. Generally, vintage frames or borders have a contrast between thick and thin strokes and experimenting with more than one texture. Often ornamental borders are used in vintage design frequently, and you can incorporate them as well if it fits your design language.

9. Use of Line Art:

Line art is a method of drawing, where the entire composition consists of straight or curved lines that are put against a relatively plain background, without using gradations in the shade, or hue for representing two-dimensional or three-dimensional objects. There is scope for using different colors, but traditionally line art uses the only monochromatic color scheme. It empathizes on form and outline, shading, texture, and over coloring. Vintage logos have been taking inspiration from this art form, and this is a movement towards gaining popularity of flat designs. Such line art uses thin lines and easy illustrations. It can be sophisticated or sketchy, elegant, or wild.

10. Nostalgia:

Though not a tangible design element, Nostalgia plays a crucial role when trying to get a vintage design correct. The primary purpose of a vintage design is to drive Nostalgia. Nostalgia among the audience, give them a relaxed and comfortable memory that they distinctively remember, and for them to be able to relate your product/design with that memory. Currently, the 80s trend is prevalent to pick on since the adults of now who have disposable income and purchasing power were kids back then. Tapping into their childhood memories and evoking emotion from there would guarantee better engagement. By adding a style statement that is distinctively exclusive to the target audience’s nostalgic period, you could increase your sales exponentially.

11. Visual Style:

Each era has its visual style. This helps vintage designs being easily identifiable. By drawing influences and following guidelines used by that particular era you want to target, you can easily create your design per it. Utilizing different era’s significant practices is one way to achieve a vintage design that is authentic and aesthetic.  You could base your design entirely upon the guidelines and style of the particular era you want to follow, and inculcate in your design, or you could use a blend of your authentic design and use a bit of the retro reference to complement your design. The possibilities are endless.

12. Perception of Aging:

An exciting way to make your product look vintage is to ensure it looks old and rugged. Generally, shiny and sleek products tend to look brand new. Gloss, for instance, always looks fresh and new. It gives a perception that the product is being made recently. However, if a fine print had pixelation, used duller colors, had a crumpled paper texture, and other such excellent techniques, it would create a perception of a vintage era. That it belonged to old-time, and it has aged and traveled through the test of time.

With this, we are at the end of 12 Types of Vintage Design practices to make your product stand out. You could have a product that you launched in a time that now falls under retro, and re-introduce the original packaging you did for that product as to drive Nostalgia, or you could be an entirely new business and yet derive inspirations from vintage design practices and make your product.

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Graphic designers are artists that create visual concepts to captivate audiences, create long-lasting memories and tell stories using typography, color, form and imagery. Even though all graphic designers tend to practice under the same general title, they work in different types of graphic design.

The difference between these types of graphic designers isn’t just in the name. Most often, the principle of the heart of design differentiates the type of graphic designs. As graphic designing operates in different niches, it is important for people who want to pursue this as a career to know all of these types. Though these types of graphic designing overlap, each type requires its own specific set of techniques and design skills. Because the graphic design industry is constantly progressing, as a designer you should be an adaptable learner so that you can change or add special skills throughout your career. So, whether you are an aspiring graphic designer or looking for design services for your company, you should know these 9 types of graphic design:

1. Marketing Graphic Design:

This is the most common type of graphic designing. When people hear the term graphic design, they link it to marketing graphic design. Graphic designers in the advertising and marketing niche combine the principles of design and art with additional information about the psychology of buyers and consumers trends. It doesn’t matter if you work as a freelancer or in an agency. In this type of graphic designing, you will learn about different customer profiles and trends every time you take up a new case. Also, those who work in-house, dive deep into a specific set of information to get to know the work intimately. These types of graphic designers create billboards, advertisements, signs and more. Today, they also design graphics for the web by creating shareable graphics for banners, social profiles, digital brochures, email marketing templates, and other digital content. It is easy to find jobs for such graphic designers as there is always a position for them at agencies. However, the freelancing scenario is very different. So, it is better to work for a company before to develop a great network and start working as a freelancer.

2. Corporate Graphic Design:

In this type of graphic designing, the designers need to create a strong corporate identity using visual mediums. Their work appears in everything the organization does, including all the digital and print media. If you work in corporate graphic design, you contribute to “house style.” A House Style means organizing design elements in a way that is discrete while also sharing a cohesive, common method. Corporate graphic designers work with logos, typography and company colors. These three aspects should come together to create a unique, strong brand and visual identity. Also, note that a brand identity is not just a random logo. A logo simply communicates the company’s personality and its fundamental values. It also reaches to the customers by linking itself to experience, memories and emotions. Many corporate graphic designers work together with sales and marketing to set outline of the brand’s identity. Corporate graphic designers need to have strong personalities to coordinate between multiple platforms and teams to ensure their work is translated seamlessly within the company. They also require excellent communication, creative and conceptual skills and a passion for researching organizations, trends, industries and competitors.

3. UI Graphic Design:

A UI (User Interface) is how a user communicates with the device or application. The UI design is the process of creating interfaces that are easy to use and provide a user-friendly experience. A user interface graphic design includes all things a user communicates with but in terms of graphics. It focuses on the design of the on-screen graphic elements such as menus, micro-interactions, and buttons, along with providing a seamless visual experience to the users. UI graphic designer has to balance the technical functionality with aesthetic appeal. UI designers specialize in mobile apps, games and desktop apps. They work closely with user experience designers that determine how the app works and user interface developers that write the code to make it work. They are responsible for designing web pages, themes, game interfaces and applications. UI designers must have both graphic skills and an excellent understanding of UI/UX principle to provide web development and responsive design. In addition to designing knowledge, they require the knowledge of programming languages such as CSS, HTML and JavaScript. Only if you have proper knowledge of these languages, you can progress as a UI graphic designer.

4. Packaging Graphic Design:

You might have seen some interesting packaging and wondered who designs them. They are designed by graphic designers that work in packaging niche. The packaging of the product says a lot about the product inside it as well. It is the first thing your customer will see when they purchase or receive a product, and first impressions do matter. In today’s world, the packaging is something companies use to stand out. Good packaging design will easily differentiate itself from the other products on the shelf that holds more number of items and hence increase the sales of the product. Additionally, packaging graphic has to meet the exact standard of practicality. Most designs in this field are oddly shaped but are practical and have efficient labels. For this field, you will require out of the box creativity with rational thinking. Packaging graphic designer has to do all this while sticking to the overall design of the brand’s identity to ensure recognizability, continuity and portability between packages. You might face many challenges in this designing because of the functionality. So, you will have to spend most of the time solving the problem and making sure there are balance and flow in the designs.

5. Apparel Graphic Design:

Apparel graphic designers design all the graphic or printed t-shirts that you see in the market today. Apparel designers are responsible for all the functions of textile printing from concept to completion. Designers in this niche work just like others where they start with a simple concept and work their way up to create a final product. Many of them also use a template because of the size restriction in printing apparel. Even a fraction of an inch can create a huge difference in the design, and it shows prominently, especially in clothing. Many people who work in this niche are dependent on the trends of other designers, and they need to work around it to make them stand out. They have to keep an eye on what people are wearing on the runway and the streets to keep oneself updated about the latest trends. While other fields, graphic designers can work on traditional logos and designs for years, clothing changes every season. Failing to keep up with the latest trends means failing to sell your work.

6. Environmental Graphic Design:

Environmental graphic designers visually connect people to places to enhance their overall experience of making spaces more interesting, informative, memorable and easy to navigate. It depends on the principle of wayfinding that refers to the system and information people use to make their way through different spaces. For example, the designs you see in museum exhibitions, Office branding, Retail store interiors, murals, Signage, Stadium branding, public transportation navigation, event and conference spaces are designed by this type of graphic designers. This type of graphic design is a multidisciplinary practice that combines architectural, landscape, interior, industrial, and graphic design. These designers come together with people in these different fields to implement their plan. Because of this, designers in this niche have education about both graphic design and architecture. They are familiar with modern design concepts and can read and create architectural plans. Environmental graphic design has formed static print pieces. However, digital interactive displays continue to be popular as a means of creating an engaging experience. If you want to find these designs, you can see them in places that have evolved to become a modern structure such as hospitals, universities, airports and town centres.

7. Print media and Publication Graphic Design:

Print media and publication graphic designer are the old school designers who work in the world of books, magazines, catalogues, newspapers and tangible print media. These designs are the ones that shape the way a magazine looks. They design both layouts and covers and stick to the area of publishing. For example, magazine designers stick to their area of expertise rather than trying to design a book cover. Publication design includes many components like typography, text, layout, illustrations, and photographs, printing and binding. Magazine design is more than just the front cover. It requires a lot of detailed work to put together a look that appeals to the customers. Print work dives deep into style, font and paragraph size for readability and visual appeal. It also includes kerning (space between letter and character) and leading (space between lines). Titles and headers get extra attention, and everything gets structured against white space. Additionally, poor printing and binding can make the best designs look messy and unorganized. The difference between the big publications and small magazine companies is usually the type of printing and trimming they use.

8. Motion Graphic Design:

Motion graphic designers are designers in motion. This includes audio, video, imagery, typography, animation, and other effects used in TV, film and online media. The popularity of this field has increased over the recent years as technology improved, video content became superior. This is the new speciality of graphic designers, formally reserved for film and TV. As technology has advanced the production time and cost has reduced, making the art form more affordable and accessible. Now they can be found everywhere on digital platforms that have created all sorts of new opportunities and areas. Motion graphic designers create Presentations, Promotional videos, Websites, Title sequences and end credits, Trailers, Video games, Banners, Tutorial videos, GIFs, advertisements, and animated logos. They begin by developing storyboards and bring their concepts to life with video, traditional art, and animation. Depending on the industry, graphic designers in this field require a strong knowledge of coding, 3D modelling, and marketing can be definite assets. Hence, you require several digital skills to advance your career in this niche of graphic designing.

9. Vehicle Wrap Graphic Design:

Most common but unknown type of graphic design is automotive such as vehicle wraps or vehicle advertising. Both small and large businesses rely on this type of marketing, as it is very cost-effective. Vehicle wraps have a visually simple design. That is because people don’t have much time to stop and look on the vehicle for 10 minutes to understand the ad. Many wraps contain a few large texts (main content) as well as simple graphics linked to the company’s logo. Everything has to be well-coordinated from color to the font of the design. Designers who work in this niche specialize in minimalistic but effective designing. They have to work with accurate templates along with millimetre measurements of the size of the vehicle. The files are incredibly complex and large, and so any changes cost a lot to the company. These projects are one of the most challenging ones. However, they are some of the largest and fast-moving designs in the world of graphic designing. You need the knowledge of the structure of automobiles along with basic graphic designing skills.

So now you know that graphic designing is more than just designing logos and letterheads. It’s a professional you see everywhere but fail to recognize it. It is an ever-growing field, and the requirement for skilled and specialized designers is increasing day by day. The different types of a graphic design need more than just printing a product on a surface. They all come with varying hierarchies of design and principles that manage the whole process from concept to creation. Along with necessary designing skills, graphic designers need to solve problems and communicate their visuals in different forms from digital to print media to practical usage.

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When an e-mail pops up in your inbox, what do you usually do with it? Do you open it, ignore it, or shoot it straight into the “Trash” bin? It depends, right?

It depends on what’s written in the subject line.

See, the subject line tells you, at a glance, whether the sender’s message – or, more accurately, the sender’s purpose – is worth your attention. As a sender, you can either write the subject line right, or you can do one of the following things, which will definitely get your email pushed aside.

Recommended Reading: Send Anonymous Emails: 20 Sites To Keep Your Identity Hidden

1. Get Too “Cutesy”


“Bet you won’t be able to resist opening this e-mail! “

Why it doesn’t work:

It’s one thing to be witty. It’s another to come across as trying too hard, which is exactly the impression you’ll get from the sample e-mail above. When you’re in doubt about how to write your subject line, remember this: Clarity trumps cleverness. You can combine both, of course, but that takes some practice.

What can work:

“This e-mail will help you today”

2. Type in ALL CAPS



Why it doesn’t work:

Your e-mail may be the most urgent in the history of urgent e-mails, but if your subject line looks like the online equivalent of shouting, it’ll still get ignored. Use the “CAPS LOCK” button only when necessary (e.g. proper nouns like John Doe, Empire State Building, World Cup).

What can work:

“Very Important E-mail”

3. (Ab)use Punctuation Marks


” Please, Please, PLEASE open this e-mail!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Why it doesn’t work:

Punctuation marks have their place, yes, but as with the “CAPS LOCK” button, that place isn’t the subject line (most of the time). Besides, a subject line that looks as though it was written by a drunk 15-year-old at 3 AM doesn’t exactly earn you points in the professionalism department.

What can work:

“Please open this e-mail”

4. Promote, Promote, and Do Nothing But Promote


” Random Product for Sale!”

Why it doesn’t work:

Your recipient may be stingier than Ebenezer Scrooge, but if you at least specify a benefit in your subject line – rather than being a little too blatant in your attempt to part your recipient with their money – you’ll get a better response.

What can work:

“Don’t Miss This 50% Discount on [Insert Product Here]”

5. Be Vague


” E-mail “

Why it doesn’t work:

Okay, I know it’s an e-mail (thanks, Captain Obvious!), but what kind of e-mail is it? Is it an uplifting message about getting through another boring day at the office? Or is it an ongoing promo about a product I’ve been dying to buy for the past few months? C’mon, don’t make me waste my next few seconds figuring that out for myself!

What can work:

“A message about “

6. Be Generic


” News Alerts from The Daily News Deliverer”

Why it doesn’t work:

This one may be slightly more descriptive than a vague subject line, but it’s no better. Why? Because it doesn’t give the recipient an urgent reason to open your e-mail other than: “Hey there! We hope you’re willing to waste a few precious minutes trying to find something interesting in here!”

What can work:

“Breaking News: ‘Daily News Deliverer’ Figures Out How to Write Subject Lines”

7. Write Kilometric Subject Lines


” This e-mail will help you ditch that soul-sucking corporate job, find a beautiful wife, buy an equally beautiful house in a swanky neighborhood…”

Why it doesn’t work:

Yes, your subject line should be descriptive, but not to the point that it’s longer than the entire border of Russia. In fact, a study found that e-mails with 6-10 word subject lines are more likely to be opened than e-mails with 11-15 word subject lines. (Fun Fact: Most marketers are used to doing the latter.)

What can work:

“This e-mail will help you live your dream life”

8. Write Nothing


” [no subject] “

Why it doesn’t work:

If there’s nothing written in an e-mail’s subject line, it’s reasonable for the recipient to assume that there’s nothing worth reading in the e-mail either. That said, if the reason you don’t have a subject line is an honest mistake (e.g. you clicked the “Send” button too soon), you can always resend your e-mail, along with a sincere apology and a polite request to disregard the previous e-mail.

What can work:


A (parting) reminder on how to get it right

Okay, we’re finally done with how not to write e-mail subject lines. Now what?

We start writing them right, of course. We start writing subject lines that:

  • stand out, in a good way, from the usual drivel that clogs up people’s inboxes
  • concisely describe the e-mail’s contents, and
  • clearly spell out to the recipient what they’ll gain from opening the e-mail.

If you don’t want to bother with subject lines, you can always communicate with others the old-fashioned way: either through snail mail, or through face-to-face conversations.