Starting any type of business can be daunting, especially a small business. There’s a lot that goes into establishing and managing a successful enterprise. One of the most important requirements is a website. It’s hard to believe that there was ever a time in the world when a website wasn’t a staple for every business.
As a result of technological advancements, your website must have incredible design and functionality. Let’s take a look at key considerations during the design of your business website.
1. Design Aesthetics
As you can probably imagine, website visitors won’t stay for long if they don’t like the look of a website. Brodey Sheppard from Sitecentre who provides a one-stop location for all aspects of web design in Geelong, Australia, says: “Problems usually arise if it looks unprofessional or cheaply designed. A website that’s aesthetically pleasing will grab the visitors attention within seconds because it isn’t cluttered and the content is clear.” On the flip side, if a website is overwhelming and the visitor finds it difficult to locate what they want, there’s little chance of making a sale.
2. Fast Load Times
In addition to looking great, a website must also have fast load times. Generally, consumers are impatient and won’t wait for a website that doesn’t load quickly. Simply put, loading times should be a top priority. This requires proper site design, which includes the right bandwidth and server architecture.
Having a mobile-friendly website design is no longer optional. Consumers not only access websites from their mobile phones, they also purchase products and services from them more frequently. Making sure your website is accessible from any mobile device should be on the top of your to-do list when having your website designed. It can literally make the difference between success and failure as a small business.
4. Contact Page Visibility
It’s obvious that a business website needs contact information. It’s important that contact information is placed in a location that’s visible immediately. This is usually achieved by having a contact page. However, that information should be in several locations. The header and footer are great locations for the phone number, email address, and mailing address. Other information that’s often included on this page is business hours and directions if you have a physical location.
5. Lead Development Feature
There’s a reason why you’ll find an email capture feature on most business websites. It’s because that’s the perfect lead development feature. Having a prospective customer visit your website without asking for an email address is a lost opportunity. In the design of your website, there should be more than one place where visitors are able to provide their email address, but the solicitation of that information should not become overbearing.
6. Relevant Content
A key element of a website, especially for a small business, is content development. This can be in the form of a blog or service pages. It’s an important component because it’s the way search engines index your website. If you have content on your website that does not contain the proper keywords, you’re less likely to get the traffic needed to grow and sustain your business. Similarly, if you have too much information on your website that’s of no interest to your target audience, they will probably leave and never return.
7. Brand Alignment
Branding is critical when developing a business. At some point, you want your marketing materials to be recognizable by consumers. This requires you to ensure consistency with all elements, including your website. That means the appearance of your website should be cohesive with your marketing materials. Here are a few examples of how that’s achieved:
- Similar color palette
- Consistent style of images
- Selected fonts
- Logo placement
- Tagline use
Website design has many elements that should be considered. It’s best to work with professionals that are familiar with best practices, including Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM).