When mapping out your website content, you may know a general sense of what pages you want, and some idea of content, but what about the way your site will look? A web designer can take your thoughts and turn them into a visual representation of your brand, but they can’t read your mind. What is the best way to convey the look and feel you want your website to have?

A design board!

Even better than collaging cut out magazine pictures onto posterboard, you can use a digital tool, which links to websites. If you have sites you like the look, feel, or functionality of, you can put those on your board, to give your designer jumping off points. It’s important not just to say what sites you like, but also to say why you admire them — is it the font? The color? The content?

This online collage can also be used to pull pictures or colors from the internet that best represent you and your brand. These may not be the actual pictures you use on your site, but suggest the style, color, and tone of the images you and your web designer should be looking for together.

One of the best tools for creating this mood board is Pinterest. It lets you create “boards,” based on topic, and then “pin” website links and pictures to go with those web links, onto each board. You can create a private Pinterest board that you can share with your web designer or graphic artist, pulling in websites you like and why, or colors and textures you want to use on your site. Creating this board can be a brainstorming tool, and help put the focus on your finished product.

If you’re looking for some suggestions on color, you can even search Pinterest for color palettes, and get ideas of color combinations. Another option is to use the Pictaculous color palette generator by uploading an image you love, and pulling colors out of that image. See this post here for more ideas on color.

Creating this Pinterest board is not the same as a vision board, which is a tool to envision something you’re building, or to inspire you to move forward. This is a tool to take what you like, and look at all the images together and see what you want to incorporate into your website. Look at it from the lens not just of your own personality, but of what your ideal client would be inspired by. What colors communicate the language and tone of your website voice?

Your Pinterest profile then has a collection of boards, that tell a story of what inspires you, and that others can “re-pin” and share. It’s a great way to personalize your business. You can share sites as resources, and then quotes and styles that define your inspiration.

Get pinning now — if you’re not already — and follow me here on Pinterest.