Before any design project is started at Design the Planet—we do our research. We immerse ourselves into existing brands, click through competitor websites, and research related industries’ content and navigation to make sure we have a solid understanding of design, navigation, content and functionality. Research is essential in keeping the design on pace, language on track, and budgets in check.

To keep the Design on Pace, we research competitor companies to be sure our design isn’t too closely related to the client we’re working for. There should be no confusion between the client we’re designing for and their competitors—we want our client to stand out from the rest. An exception to this practice could be for an organization or association. If our client fits one of these categories, there may be a need for an “all encompassing” look so their members will feel correctly positioned when associated with this group.

In keeping Language on Track, we research similar industries reviewing everything from visuals and layout, to content and navigation. When viewing content and navigation, we pay particular attention to language or jargon that may be commonly used within a particular industry. In some cases, “Projects” or “Services” may be more appropriate for a construction company; rather than using “Portfolio” or “Case Studies” for an interior design firm.

To keep Budgets in Check, research is done—by us and the client—making us less likely to miss the mark on the first round of samples to the client. Whether we’re researching brands to review aspects of fonts, colors, and illustration style; or researching competitor sites to discuss navigation, content and functionality—this initial research will make sure our budgets stay in check.

This initial research is what gives our team a better understanding of the project at hand, and allows us to push our clients to the next level.