Lately I have heard the word “clean” a great deal in design meetings. Other repeat offenders are “modern” and “make it pop”. Unfortunately, these terms can mean different things to different people.
Just like bringing a photo with you to the salon to help illustrate what you mean by “reddish blonde highlights”, it is a great idea to provide links to sites that illustrate these concepts for your web designer. This gives them a jumping off point rather than have them guessing what your idea of “[INSERT BUZZWORD HERE]” is exactly. You get your initial mockup much quicker when they feel sure of their direction and it will probably be much closer to what you are expecting.
Here is the article that inspired this post – 30 Clean Website Designs for Inspiration. If you’re looking for clean sites this is a good place to start.