Whether you are a web designer searching for new ways to revamp your company’s website or you are totally new to the whole web design idea, there are many strategies you should keep in mind when designing a new website. Web design is important because it influences how your audience will view your brand. It can be the one deciding factor in someone staying on your page or exiting immediately. To attract a large number of viewers to your site for a period of time that is not only long but also productive, you need to arrange your site wisely and attractively. Here are 10 tips to think about while designing your next site:
- Plan out the sites organization
An important element of your website should be that it is easy to navigate. You want your audience to be able to find different categories easily. The most important information should be on the website’s homepage. It is vital that you strategically decide where everything is placed on your site. This will help draw traffic to the places where you want to gain the most attention. Color scheme and word font should also be carefully considered. You want to use colors and fonts that are easy for your audience to see. You also want to be creative and stand out so that your site can help to achieve your goals.
- Emphasize the benefits of using your service
A sufficient website should not only represent your business in a positive light, but it should also highlight the level of business that you want to do with your audience. You should include descriptions of your services and how they can specifically benefit your audience. What do you want to help your client accomplish? How do you plan to do that? The more information your website has about how your services can directly benefit your audience, the better. Including positive customer reviews or any awards that you have earned on your website can also help strengthen your credibility.
- Carefully choose where your website is developed
It is important to keep in mind whether your website should be developed in the USA or overseas. You can certainly get things developed a lot cheaper if you use an overseas developer. But, you’ll have the added hassles of having to interact with a person whose first language is not English, there will be a time difference to deal with, and you’ll also have a cultural divide to accommodate. Using a USA-based developer will eliminate those issues, but you’ll pay more too. That’s where mixing it up by using a hybrid approach might be your best bet. Look for a company that provides domestic project management, but outsources some of the heavy coding overseas for savings for you.
- Understand your audience
With every decision that you make regarding your website, you must keep your main audience in mind. If you know that your site is going to attract mostly children, then you want it to be kid friendly and extremely easy to navigate with less words. If you know that you are going to attract more adults, you want to have more specific information present. Consider what services your audience wants to know most about and have this stand out more on the website. Making sure that your website is appealing to your target audience will improve the likelihood that they stay on your site longer and even reach out to you as a business opportunity.
- Utilize photos and videos
Besides just words, providing strong and captivating photo and video content can really make the difference on your website. Most people prefer watching videos more than reading information on a website. Being able to visualize and hear about what you offer might resonate with them more. In fact, studies show that people remember 80% of what they see and only 20% of what they read. Showing pictures of people with your product or using your service makes your business come alive and helps to make it seem more useful. Adding pictures and videos of your team can help make your company seem more personable and approachable. Using meaningful images can also help to create the atmosphere that you are going for and can create certain moods in your audience. Cinemagraphs can also be used on your site to capture and keep your audience’s attention even better.
- Keep your site safe
There are many steps you should take in order to make sure that your site stays safe from hackers or losing all of its content. First and foremost, make sure that your website has a backup. Nothing is worse than putting months and months of time into website content for it to be deleted forever. Next, ensure that only a few people are given administrative rights and access to the website. Only people who contribute to the site regularly should have access to prevent the website from getting into the wrong hands. There should also be a strong password for the website administrative access. Make sure to keep your website up to date with the newest software updates.
- Consider keyword research
One of the key aspects of search engine optimization is using the most appropriate keywords. By taking the time to figure out which words you should include, you are helping draw the right people to your website. You should do some research to see how your target audience searches for products or services. From there, you can prioritize certain keywords for search engine results. Utilizing SEO plug-ins will give you tips that can help make your content more visible from searches.
- Design your site as mobile first
Since we are living in a mobile first world, your site should be able to function properly on a mobile phone, tablet, or smartwatch even before desktop. People are constantly checking web pages on the go so it is important that your site is designed to function this way. When using a mobile-first design strategy, website creators can increase the chances of their site ranking higher on Google. Conversion rates can also be increased for businesses by utilizing this strategy. In 2018, it was found that 52.2% of global web traffic was from mobile phone devices. This should tell web designers that only designing for desktop users will not cut it anymore.
- Utilize WordPress
60 million organizations are now choosing to use WordPress to power their business or personal web pages. The platform has gained popularity for a variety of reasons. WordPress is an easy to use platform that allows expansion and updates regularly. It is SEO friendly and offers ready to use plug-ins. WordPress provides tools, security, and analytics that help to grow your business.
- Use strong copy
While pictures, videos, and color scheme can all make your website look great, these elements are just not enough. The actual copy within your website is what will make the difference in drawing people to your page and keeping them there. Your website should contain good copy that speaks to the specific audience you are trying to reach. You should mention key issues that the audience might need your service for. You can explain what services you offer and how they would be helpful to your audience. Your website’s copy should be straightforward. All copy should be grammatically correct with no errors and written in a professional manner. If your audience likes your copy then they will stay on your site longer. This will increase the likelihood they use your service.
There are many key elements to remember when designing a website, especially for your business. You want to design the site with your audience in mind. You want to inform and persuade. Most of all, you want to make sure to explain how you can help your audience reach their goals or needs.
Sammy Chmara is a marketing consultant at Purplegator — a mobile first marketing agency in Philadelphia with offices in Des Moines, Buffalo, Dallas, and Honolulu. Sammy is both a Blue Hen (U of Delaware) and a Purplegator.