A good first impression can work wonders!”
– J. K. Rowling.
First impressions matter whether it comes to people or your business.
When it comes to your business, your website is the first thing a user will come across these days. And rest assured, he or she will make an initial judgement of your brand off your website.
Hence, it is critical that you pay attention to your website as it acts as a front door to your business. The last thing you’d want is to drive away your site visitors that could’ve potentially been your customers.
However, these days a “good” website isn’t enough to convert visitors into engaged customers and brand ambassadors.
What you really need is a “great” website.
Hundreds of thousands of website builders and pre-made templates have made website creation as easy as ABC, but that came with its own limitations.
Sure, if all you want is a website that looks professional enough to give your business a basic start, go ahead. But, if you want to stand out from your competition, you need a website that is as unique as you and your business.
For your website to be successful, your website should not only look refreshing but also should provide a seamless user experience for visitors. Good website usability is what separates your website from your competition. Good usability means making it convenient for viewers to find the information they need quickly and easily.
There are various ways of improving your website design. This article shares some of the most important factors and characteristics to keep in mind while designing a website:
Ensure Your Website Is Well Designed And Functional
Your website is a reflection of your company, your products, your services, and ultimately your brand. Utmost care should be taken to make and keep your website visually appealing, polished, and professional. Utilize white space, and streamlined layouts with high-quality images that look and convey your gist.
And don’t forget that your site must respond quickly and correctly. Build to the best web standards, proofread rigorously and test regularly for website speed or functionality.
Treat every page with the same respect as any page could be a potential customer’s first and only impression. Slow, broken, or poorly designed web pages will leave your visitors frustrated and only encourage them to leave.
Ensure Your Website Is Easy To Use
Site visitors are always in a hurry, so don’t make them work for simple information.
User Experience (UX) plays a key role in helping visitors stay, understand and interact with your website. Create distinct, logical navigation with a clear structure. Use consistent layouts and visual cues for functionality across the site.
Your website should satisfy both ‘searchers’— the ones coming for something specific, and ‘browsers’— the just-looking crowd. Help visitors with their queries and then keep them engaged by suggesting related content and minimizing loose ends.
Ensure Your Website Has Fresh, Quality Content
Be concise, interesting, and relatable. Use language that resonates with your audience — avoid jargon, corporate speak, and acronyms. Visitors have a short attention span: spell correctly, be accurate, and stay updated.
Some tips: Blogs and social media are great when it comes to sharing fresh content as they keep attracting visitors thereby helping your SEO strategy. And yes, all this will need some investment and effort but it’s totally worth it.
Ensure Your Website Is Mobile Friendly
In this time and day, your website has to look great and work seamlessly on every medium!
The growth of handheld devices like mobiles and tablets has surged more than ever and you never know what medium your next big customer could be using.
Optimizing for mobile will help with both, user experience and your SEO rankings.
Ensure Your Website Is Optimized For Search Engines and Social Media
Just creating a good-looking website that’s easy to browse is not enough. Your website needs to bring in traffic otherwise all the efforts you put into designing, UX and content development will be for nothing.
This is where Search Engine Optimization(SEO) comes in. To make the most out of SEO, start with the following tips:
- Use title and meta tags on every page and alt tags for every image.
- Optimize your content with keywords that real people are searching for.
- Use relevant keywords in your content and the URL.
- Use CSS(Cascading Style Sheets) for layout and HTML for keeping your code clutter-free.
Make it as easy as possible for visitors to share your articles as social media can drive huge traffic and positively impact your search rankings. And don’t forget to add the obvious sharing links(yes, even if they’re rarely used).
Ensure Your Website Has Distinct Calls To Action
Your visitors will do nothing on your website until you guide them to it. This only works if you know what the purpose of your site is. Is that purpose clear to your visitors? Your purpose should be clear to your visitors within the first few seconds of their arrival on your website.
Your website’s purpose will go hand in hand with the specific actions you want the visitors to take. So don’t be shy about using multiple call-to-action buttons or messages but don’t overdo it!
All the above-mentioned tips will mean nothing unless you have a specific goal for your website. Your website should only be designed with a specific end goal at its core.
Your website’s underlying purpose should be evident at all times. Don’t try to hide it or make users guess it.
So there you have it!
These 7 basic principles will help you get more value out of your website as you inch closer to creating the perfect website that you and your customers deserve.
By implementing these principles you’ll be sure to create an excellent website that is appreciated by Google and humans alike.