As we’ve discussed in the past, a website serves as identifier and business card for your company or store. People want to learn about you on their own time by doing research online, the credibility of your business will be on the line depending on what your customers find during that process and the impression your website makes on them, in many ways it’s like the storefront of your brick and mortar business.
When you bring your company online, take the time to do it right, so it represents what your business is all about. Do research, look at your competitors’ sites and know your clients. Here are six of the most important things you should consider when designing your website:
Who are your clients, both current and potential, and what do they want to know.
Thing of the whole website from your customers’ perspective, what would they like to see there? What’s in it for them? Always remember that it only takes a second for a consumer to make a decision about a product or service, make sure to keep the end user in mind at all times. What will encourage them to navigate around the site more?
Choose some of your usual customers and ask them what would they like to see there, by doing this you’ll get a great idea on how to design your business’ website.
Cool tidbit: once your site is up, you can use Analytics to see what they’re looking at (and not looking at) and adjust accordingly.
Make sure your online message is clear.
What is the purpose of the site? What are the brand values of the business? When you answer these two questions, you’ll be able to determine the best way to communicate this.
Include full contact information.
Whether your business is a small one operating on one location, or a big one with multiple stores across a state or a country, it’s essential that your website includes the information users need to visit or contact you like phone number, map, directions, email. Make sure that it’s easy to find, especially on mobile.
Use clean and eye-catching graphics.
We already told you where to get them, remember that websites are all about image. Choose a theme and pictures that reflect your company and stick with it all around your website.
Make sure your website meshes with the rest of your business.
A close relative of #4, the image of your website must be consistent with your physical location(s), if your storefront on main street is black and yellow, use those colors and help customers associate your business’ both off and online presence together.
Search Engine Optimization.
As it’s been already discussed, SEO brings your business visibility, when people search your kind of products and services, you want to appear as high in the search engine results as possible.
Remember that most customers when doing research to make a purchase decision don’t simply searcher once, visit a few some websites, and decide. No, they search, browse through a bunch of websites, then search again using different terms, visit more websites and then again and again…
Imagine if your site continually shows in all results for these searches, it will bring traffic to you and ultimately customers which is what you want!