Cantilever Messaging

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Our Tagline: Warm, welcoming websites – the new WWW.

Overall Brand Statement

We are a small team with a handcrafted approach to web design and development. We have worked with a wide range of clients – large organizations (IBM, American Express), startups (Flatiron School, a WeWork Company), educational institutions (NYU, George Mason), non-profits (IMF, American Cancer Society) and beyond.

Our sites are fast, user-friendly, and innovative, but also easy to change. They are designed from scratch to fit the client’s brand perfectly, and to encourage their customers to act. We obsess, we are opinionated, we seek the truth, we do things right.

We were founded in New York City in 2011. Today we are headquartered in New Jersey with staff of eight distributed across the US and Canada. We have a unique asynchronous working style that gives everyone on the team autonomy without leaving them untethered.

We work for clients around the world who value quality, user experience, respect for all, and a long-term focus.

Content Pillars

These are more than just abstract platitudes. These are the core topics that we focus on in all of our public communication, especially our marketing. These values underpin our content strategy.

Any communication that goes out should reflect one of these topics. The topics overlap with our internal values but are adjusted to communicate the benefit of those values to external groups.

Client-oriented

Digital Hospitality
Clean, Portable Code
Site Speed
Web Accessibility
Effective Project Management
Partnership
Flexibility
Transparency

Recruiting-oriented

Remote Work
Work/Life Harmony
Diversity, of Everything

Design Approach

At Cantilever, we start the design process by first understanding the problem and needs that a project presents. In the planning stages, we place ourselves in the shoes of the user and frame possible solutions around their experience and how to align that experience with the client’s goals. From there, we isolate brand attributes by working closely with the client to understand how site visitors feel about the site, and use this to determine a visual and interactive language for the design. We think through everything from the big picture down to the smallest details, making sure that everything that a user looks at, interacts with, or reads carries a well-crafted and easy-to-use experience, with a consistency that makes everything feel "just right".

We take an iterative approach throughout the process, showing early sketches even in rough form to ensure that our ideas are good and achieving your needs. As designs are finalized and the project goes into development, we stay in close communication with the development team to make sure they understand the intentions behind the final designs, and will work with them as details need extra information or final tweaks in the production stages.

Development Approach

To produce great user experiences, we control every aspect of production, from strategy through final hand-crafted code. We create flexible, streamlined codebases that are built to last and evolve.

Our development work employs a unique modular process that allows major aspects of the site to change without requiring rebuilding in other areas. Our sites have complex and intricate designs, but below the surface is a logical, orderly system of code components. Each component plays a small role in the overall presentation. This “separation of concerns” makes our sites incredibly stable, but also flexible. We can create and modify features easily without overwriting or hacking around our earlier code. We can upgrade to new frontend technologies seamlessly as browsers improve. Our sites are built to evolve. Our system is unique, but comprehensible and approachable. We regularly train client development teams in it, and have consulted with clients to install the system in their products.

We like to partner with our clients over the long term, continually reacting to user feedback and analytics as well as changing business goals. Ideally, constant iteration can mean that the site never has to be “redesigned” again: it would be constantly evolving, keeping pace with current technology and style.

Our Quality Assurance (QA) philosophy is: “test early and often.” Starting from the core atomic elements, we put every aspect of a site build through its paces independently, checking for consistent behavior and usability across all devices. By the time the project is assembled, most of our sites have very few defects, de-stressing those last few weeks of a project.

Our “Why”

  • Tech
  • Design
  • We are energized by helping companies succeed and by learning about new industries and business models. We get unusually invested in solving our clients’ problems on and off the website itself.