Creating a tastefully designed website that your customers expect.
If the internet held a red carpet event, Google’s search bar would be that Versace gown that everyone talked about. They have your number when it comes to user satisfaction. The question is, where do internet voyagers go after they use Google’s simple, but certainly elegant, search bar? Or better yet, where do your social media pages and your digital ads lead to? Understanding that your business is ultimately in two places at once is essential to your company’s growth.
Your business’s online image must match the professionalism that your brick and mortar location portrays. That credibility that you’ve worked so hard to build in the 3rd dimension can often be completely sidestepped because of your website design blunders. So, below we will go over some of the fundamentals that you should consider when improving your website or landing page.
Branding is the mother sauce of your website’s design.
At the base of your company is your brand. A quality scheme consists of unique graphics and simple, easy to read, typography with colors (not more than 3) that match the message you want to develop. Your number one goal as a business, online and otherwise, should be thinking creatively and interacting with your customers while integrating your brand.
Always incorporate your business’s fonts, colors, graphics and textures into every piece of media you push out. You do it on your promotional products, your stationary and advertising efforts, so why not add that extra touch to your videos (especially YouTube thumbnails) and your photos you post on social media, or blog. Your website should reflect your brand from everywhere and vice versa.
Now, what are some creative ways to show you care about your brand on your website? Try designing around the emotion of your brand. For example, if you sell HVAC and Heating systems, use a color table that is warm on heater pages, cool on HVAC pages, and harmonizes with the colors of your brand. Then use the graphic of your logo creatively.
Idea: Consider hiring a graphic designer to make clever versions of your business’s logo.
Two parts SEO, one part updating and a pinch of link building.
Mix all parts until incorporated and you have your content experience. What is content experience? Think of it as your website visitor’s journey through the information, videos, articles and brand messages or calls to action. Your customers trust that you are going to provide them with what they are looking for, and then some, fast and painless. Establish yourselves as the skilled virtuosos in your area with up-to-date blog articles and expanding services.
In other words, don’t go stale (another fantastic food pun). Staying “In the know” increases your credible reputation and reinforces those great online reviews that stick out. Write about your experiences and then share those gems to your social media pages. Did we mention Google’s Panda Update makes this a must for business’s looking to improve their search rank? And of course, do all of this at your own pace.
Lastly, look into improving the mentions of your website around the web. Backlinks are roads to your website and advertisements are highways. Build them and they will come. Go list your business on Google and other sites like YP.com and even Yelp. Be sure to have a consistent NAP (Name, Address and Phone Number). Get on local sites and have your website mentioned and contribute to content providers in your industry just to name a few.
By the way, Facebook links to your site aren’t considered backlinks unfortunately, but Google+ and even twitter referring links are! Although, they might not be the strongest ranking persuaders, they can’t hurt.
Tip: When adding content or information like descriptions and blog articles, speak to your customers!
And for dessert, a delightful user experience.
Baking is a science right? Well so is optimizing the user experience, or UX in website development vernacular, and it is becoming a job title all it’s own. Design your website with simplicity in mind and be thorough. Recognize that UX should be implemented with the content experience logic stated above. Then be sure to take that experience and apply it to the mobile user.
You should be asking yourself what your website visitors are looking for and how you are going to get them there. More importantly, once they get there, are they satisfied? When they come a knockin’, you need to be ready to move ’em. Take that new service, product news or promotion that you are advertising everywhere and place it, large and in charge, at the top of your homepage with links that direct them to a page with more information as well as calls to action and contact forms and numbers.
Have a keyword mentality. Are your customers getting the information they want and how do they know? We’ll tell you in one word. Words. Use them smartly and efficiently and you will reap the rewards.
So don’t put your website on the backburner.
We know it’s on your radar. Improving that dated site or finding simple ways to incorporate your brand or even becoming more relevant on Google are always going to be important. Ask questions. Weigh your options.
The amount of DIY website builders out there right now is crazy. Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, GoDaddy. They all give you a basic website that you can construct and manage with WYSIWYG (What you see is what you gets) editors. This could be exactly what you need. Most have responsive, modern functionality and themes.
If you want a fully developed website with logo design, better SEO functionality and more customization options, you may want to contact a professional. At least get a consultation. It takes the village to build the house. But sometimes there can be just too many cooks in the kitchen. Wait, what?