It’s no secret that in order to keep your business current and relevant in today’s world, you are going to need a website. What most people don’t understand, however, is that having a website just to have one is a waste of a useful tool that can drive sales, raise awareness, and build relationships with your visitors.
All too often we see business sites that just seem to lie there as a passive placeholder. If your business website does not benefit your business, or you are not seeing the results you were hoping for, it’s time to rethink your website and rebuild. This may seem like a daunting task, but don’t worry, we will be here along the way and we have broken down the steps for you so that you can do this all by yourself!
What is the purpose of your site?
This question may seem simple, but it requires a lot of thinking. You have to think about what your business needs. Do you want your website to attract people to your brick and mortar store or do you want to use the website for e-commerce and sell things directly on the site? Do you want your site to be a source of information for those who use your products or do you want your site to be a place where you can build relationships with your customers?
Keep in mind that your site can have multiple purposes, but it is best to prioritize them because you will be making a lot of design and content choices based on the purpose of your site.
Now that you have a purpose, you can start building your site. Always keep in mind the purpose of your site for every page you build out.
6 Essential Characteristics of a Good Business Site:
1. Easy Navigation is a must-have on any website. Visitors should be able to easily find the information they are looking for, and fast. Think about your own experience. How many times have you been to a website, took a few seconds to look around, couldn’t figure out what the purpose of the website was, and just left? Put important information on multiple pages, clearly label links, and organize your site. Put yourself in a visitor’s shoes and try to think about what information they would want and where they would look for it.
2. A Call to Action takes the purpose of your site to the next level. For example, if you want to use your site to drive sales, encourage people to check out your web store by placing links to the store’s page in eye catching places, or maybe even offer them a discount. Or is your goal to build relationships with your customers? Try giving them an incentive to become a member on your site or to sign up for a free newsletter. Giving freebies is a great way to get a visitor’s attention and to get them to take action according to your purpose.
3. Attractive Design is a no brainer. Visitors won’t bother with your site if they can’t make heads or tails of it. Make sure your site includes a great header that captures a user’s attention and some eye-catching graphics. Don’t overdo it, though! Having too many graphics or animations may distract the visitor from your content. You also don’t want your site to seem too uncoordinated and “overdone”. Another design note: make sure your content is easy to read. Visitors get turned off when the font colors and size are too hard to read. Make sure that when you write your content, you format it for readability, too. Make use of line breaks, bold words, and bullet points to make sure your visitors can skim through easily.
4. Sticky Content is the meat of your website. The content on your web pages determines the quality of your website. So what do we mean by “sticky content”? This is a phrase that describes great content that gets visitors to spend more time on the website or gets them to return. So how do you get your content to become “sticky”? You want to make sure that the content on your site holds value for your visitors. Try to provide useful information or interesting points of view. Plainly stated, if you have genuinely interesting and valuable information on your site, people will value your site and come back again.
5. Credibility is the key to doing business online. The internet can be a dangerous place full of scams, viruses, and shady dealings. A visitor will not do business with you if they do not feel that they can trust your site. So how do some sites seem more credible than others? For the most part, along with site design, it is the attention to detail. Scammers are often looking for a quick buck, so they do they put very little effort into their sites. There are small signs that visitors look for when they determine credibility. Some of these signs include a unique domain name (ex: www.thisbiz.com), an email address that coincides with that domain name (ex: firstname.lastname@example.org), and maybe even a toll free number. All of these things show that the business is invested in what it does, and makes the visitor feel more comfortable about doing business with it. You can obtain all of these credibility boosters easily through Webs!
6. Mobility is becoming more and more essential as time goes on. Some experts say that mobile internet browsing will be bigger than desktop internet browsing by as soon as 2015. Mobile browsing and mobile online shopping are some of the biggest online trends, so needless to say, it is important to be ahead of the curve and have a website that can be easily accessed on a mobile device. It’s okay if you don’t have the know-how to do this because Webs has a Mobile App that makes it easy: just activate it on the app page, make a few design selections, and you are good to go. Our mobile app was just updated with a bunch of new features, making it a must-have on any site.