BUILDING A GREAT WEBSITE
Congratulations, you have Google My Business set up and your social media channels are live, now its time to take the next step and look to develop your company website. A well-designed website not only gives you a 24/365 visibility to customers but can also drive revenue and increase trust in your business, essential if you're looking to acquire new customers not just work with existing ones.
But a website must be given a lot of thought as a bad online experience not only impacts your ability to get customers but can reduce the credibility and trust people have in your business and brand. Below we address some of the key points I believe make a good website. All of these points can be researched in more detail, trust me its worth it.
WHATS IT'S PURPOSE?
Before you design and build a new website, you must first understand what you want it to achieve, is it to inform, drive leads or even online sales. Its important to know this from the start as the website design, content, cost and call to action will depend on what you want it to achieve. Remember a website should have one primary objective, (something that drives your business) and 2-3 secondary objectives (things that support the primary objective, like sign ups or download catalog)
It only takes 7 seconds for people to form an opinion and a hell of a lot longer to change it, therefor good design is critical for any website. Firstly, people judge on appearance and poor quality, amateur looking websites with low-resolution images will give a negative first impression of your business and potentially impact customer acquisition.
Secondly, good design is also about making the website easy to navigate and take action. There is no point in having a beautiful website that makes it hard for potential customers to get the information they need to take action. A well-designed website should take visitors on a journey from awareness to education on your services and USPs and finally action.
Bad site design makes you look unprofessional
YOUR WEBSITE URL
Like any brand name, the URL (web address) of your website should not be overlooked. It should be brandable and unique, short and easy to remember, highlight what your business does and include relevant popular search terms to help you show in Google. It's a lot to balance but you need to give it some thought, a catchy URL is like a catchy brand, easy to remember.
People research online to find out more about your business therefore the more information you can provide, the better.
Information on your services, opening hours, special offers, client testimonials, areas you cover, menu, even company history can not only educate potential customers but build trust and position you as an expert.
Price can be controversial to add, but in my opinion critical. People are happier to engage if they have an idea of prices before they get in contact and usually think something is more expensive than it actually is.
Good quality, well organised and unique content is not only good for potential customers but also Google. The better the content you have on your site, the greater the opportunity to rank in the "free" Google search results for relevant searches, increasing your visibility and customers.
Just remember, always try and frame your content as "what's the problem I'm addressing", "why is it important" and "how I can help".
Content is king when it comes to ranking in Google
A KILLER HOMEPAGE
When designing a website, special time must be placed on the main page or "Homepage" as this will be the most visited page on your site. This one page must contain the essence of your offering, provide important contact details and allow potential customers to take action. Its a lot of things to achieve in one page.
Even on the homepage, not all space is equal and special attention must be placed on the "Herospace". This is the part of the page that's visible as soon as the page loads on your computer or phone screen and is the single most important real estate on your website.
The Herospace should contain a large image to grab your audience attention and show the essence of your business, it should highlight your unique selling point and contain a call to action to get potential customers engaging with your business. If possible add a marketing hook to promote action, this marketing hook could be a free consultation or delivery, or a downloadable guide for example.
The homepage is the most important page on your we
Google has become the gateway to the internet and these days even if people know your web address they will still use Google to get to it.
This is where things can get a little technical but it's very important to ensure your website is built in a way that is SEO friendly to ensure it appears in the Google search results for relevant searches. We have talked about the importance of content, but it must also be written and added in the right areas of your site for maximum impact. The site may load quickly, work well on mobile devices and be built ethically. The good news is platforms like Wix and Squarespace can help you with the basics.
It's important to focus on this as whilst its maybe less fun than the actual website design, there is no point in spending money on a website if no-one can find it.
At Blue Digital we provide website design and build services tailored for small businesses, ensuring you have access to professional, well designed and SEO friendly websites as cost-effectively as possible. We also believe in making sure you can update them yourself as your business changes, meaning no hidden maintenance costs to change information, just do it yourself.