Viral Essence


May 13, 2019

Although some print designers will claim that they can handle both, your print, and your digital needs, it is important to make sure that you find out if that is in fact true before you hire them to work on your projects.

“Design is Design” … they will say.

However, it is safe to say that anything that is a great print design is likely to be a lousy web design.

There are many differences between the approach to print and web design.


Print designers work with a set canvas. Their design can be striking and yet intricate and pack much more impact than a web page. Because of the set criteria, much attention is paid to the layout. Once the design is complete, it isn’t going to change.

Web designers work primarily with dynamic and interactive content. The content and the design can be changed, tweaked, even completely redesigned at any time. A web page is fundamentally a scrolling experience as opposed to a canvas experience.


The mindset of a print designer is very different from a web designer.

Print designers will know before starting the project what the size of the final piece will be. The designer will define the specifications and have ultimate control over how the page looks. They will know where the project will be displayed (magazine, brochure, bus shelter).

Digital designers use fluid design and they have to consider the size of the screen their work will be viewed on (from smart phone to tablet to a large TV screen).


User who comes across a printed piece had not gone there intentionally. They may have walked by a bulletin board and see a poster, past a table and see a brochure, flipped through a magazine and see your ad. For print design the goal is to grab attention.

When it comes to website, user usually arrives there on purpose. Web designer’s goal therefore should be to make the site interesting, intriguing, and enticing. The amount of space, the number of pages, web designers have to work with is virtually unlimited. That allows them to provide information that goes deep into detail, keeping the user on the site, which ultimately means you are more likely to convert them, without them wanting to go to your competition.

What this really means… the strategy for print is very different from web.

In print, with a limited amount of space, the layout and content must be able to share your message in one glance.

On websites, the most important part of strategy is strong call to action buttons on the home page and strategic navigation.

Users must be able to navigate through the websites fluently without having to back track. The call to action buttons must have strategic messaging which will lead users from one page to the next in logical order, and ultimately they will go where you want them to go.


Both print and web design have its limitations. Every designer must be aware of the many technical aspects as they pertain to their specific design.

In print the designer knows the final size of the piece and so they can determine what the appropriate image resolution must be. They know the method of print that will be used to produce their design and so they decide prior to starting, whether RGB colours or CMYK colour use will be used.

Digital designers on the other hand have to consider the equipment the site visitors will likely have. Depending on the type of business, your site may be viewed primarily on mobile devices, while others may be viewed mainly on desktop.

The image resolution is another aspect to keep in mind. The size of images and their resolution may affect the download speed as well as the quality which user will see on the screen.

Considering colours and fonts is equally important. Web safe colours should be used to assure that all content looks good on all screens.

There are many… many creative fonts available to designers. However if the user doesn’t have that particular font, the page will show scrambled and the user will most likely leave the site right away.

So as you can see….not all design is the same.

Both print and web design are very big parts of the tactical deployment of your marketing strategy. So in order for your clients and prospect to really get your message… make sure you look to a company who can handle strategy, design, and development; a company with experts in all of these areas. Your time is too valuable. Spend it growing your business, not getting caught up in the fine details of your marketing.

To see how Viral Essence Marketing Group can seamlessly handle your marketing form strategy to deployment, including web development, contact us and let’s have a conversation.

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