The design of your website is important. When most think about what makes a good website design, they think of something that is visually appealing or stunning. However, good website design should also be practical and provide a straightforward path for its visitors.
If a potential customer were to land on your website, would it be immediately apparent to them what you offer and what they should do? Does it convey the right message and the right action you want them to make?
A confused customer always says no and will soon be off onto the next site, which could be your competitor.
Crafting a design that converts well should be the foundation of your websiteâs design. For beginners, this may sound difficult, but it doesnât have to be and should only take a day or two, with the right guidance. In this article, Iâll share 7 advanced attributes to keep in mind when designing a small business website.
1. Simpler is Better
The first rule of thumb is to keep it simple. Have you ever landed on a web page that is so busy it is confusing? Do you stay around long enough to figure it out and try to find what you are looking for on that site?
Of course not! You leave because you are busy and do not want to waste your time.
Your website visitors will have the same reaction. Make sure their user experience on your site is easy to navigate, clear, and simple.
Also keep in mind that when people are faced with too many options, they experience information overload and will more than likely choose nothing at all.
Do not overwhelm your website visitors with too much information or give them many options.
Look over your website pages. Do you have information that either is not necessary or you do not need? If so, remove it.
Your goal should be to move from this:
There is no need to cover every inch of space on each page. It is better to make sure you do have empty or what is also known as white space on your site.
Effective web design includes using this "white space" (that does not have to be white; it just needs to be empty) to draw more attention to your content.
It makes your site less confusing and cluttered and helps it look clean and professional.
2. Map Out the Buyerâs Journey
Moving forward and putting together a website without a plan will lead to a confusing and less than stellar user experience.
Your goal is to meet the needs of your visitors and to convert them into paying customers.
Understanding the pages, content, and offers they will see will help you design a website that better nurtures your leads and takes them down your sales funnel.
Look at your analytics to get an idea of where users are landing, how long they are staying, and what they do next.
Are they leaving your website or moving onto the next step? If you find there is a specific page where you lose visitors, make changes and test them out to optimize the page.
Another way to understand your buyer's journey is to look at the information you already know about your current customers.
How do they get to your site? Which pages are they landing on and which steps lead to more conversions?
You can even send out questionnaires or ask them directly about how they made their decision to purchase your services.
3. Why Should They Buy from You?
No matter what industry you are in, there will be competitors vying for the same clients. What is it about your services that is unique?
This is also known as your unique value proposition, or UVP.
Visitors to your website need to be able to quickly and clearly see precisely why they should hire you and how it will benefit them.
The number one influencing factor that determines whether or not a visitor will stay on your website is your value proposition, according to ConversionXL.
Make good use of your website visitor's time and your online real estate by making it very clear in just a few seconds, what makes you different.
4. Be Consistent
Being consistent with your design elements on your website (and other places your brand lives online such as advertisements) helps build trust with your website visitors.
Improve the user experience on your website by keeping the core framework of your site consistent and logical.
Some examples of which parts of your site that should be consistent are:
- Font color and type
- Link color
- Content tone
- How external links open (in a new or the same window)
People like to do business with those they know, like, and trust. Design your website so that it is recognizable and user-friendly to help your potential customers want to hire your company.
5. Get Found Online
You can have the most user-friendly, consistent, and unique website, but if no one finds it, what good is it?
You need to create and follow an SEO strategy that will attract those most likely to be interested in your services.
This includes doing keyword research to identify the search terms your target audience is using when they perform a search query.
Ranking in search takes time and does not happen overnight. See a few suggestions below on how to get started:
- Optimize your web pages
- Get listed on Google My Business
- List your website in relevant local directories and be consistent
- Fix your technical SEO
- Create images and videos for competitive keyword phrases
- See what your competitors are doing online and do it better
Set goals for yourself and take one step at a time to increase your online rankings and improve your SEO.
6. Fix Broken Links
It is not uncommon for a link to break on your website without your knowing about it. When someone visits your site, they expect links to take them to a new page to get more information.
If they end up nowhere, it will negatively affect their user experience and could affect your rankings.
Google is paying more attention to the user-experience when ranking web pages. Broken links lead to a bad user experience. Identify and fix your broken links.
7. Calls to Action
When a potential client lands on your website, what do you want them to do next? If you do not clearly tell them, they will not know.
A call-to-action is the website element that guides your visitors to the next step. Examples of effective calls-to-action are:
- Watch this video
- Sign up for our webinar
- Request a demo
- Download our eBook
- Click here for more information
- Request a proposal
- See a list of our services
Now that we have shown you some elements to increase your conversions, you should start by analyzing your current website design.
Do you have enough "white space"? Are you doing what your competitors are doing and doing it better?
Remember, your goal is to convert more leads into paying customers. Modify your existing site to attract, retain, and convert your target audience.
Image MaxPixel CC0 License