If you want to succeed in business you must know that a website is one of the most important aspects of your business.
Gone are the days of mom and pop shops where everybody buys furniture from the same local store down the street. Your website is a tool that enables people to know that your business exists.
Potential customers will make a decision whether or not to do business with you based on your website.
There are many different aspects that come into play when creating your website. Having a professional web designer develop the site for your business is the best way to use the Internet as effectively as possible.
When reviewing your site here are 30 things to keep in mind.
As smartphones and tablets have entered the market, more often than not people are viewing your website from various types of devices. Make sure that your website is optimized for all potential mediums that people may use to check your site.
Having an embedded video can add to the quality of your site if it is relaying a specific valuable message. Make sure that the video is of high quality. It is better to not have a video at all as opposed to a tacky one.
Feedback and testimonials
Give your website visitors the opportunity to give you feedback and testimonials. Having content on your website that is published by a third party helps give your site credibility.
It is very easy to find cheap stock photography on the Internet. However spending a little more on quality images can go a long way. If an image does not add any specific value to your website you may as well not have anything there at all. Most website designers know specific types of photography that goes best to promote your services.
Your web designer probably already knows what is the best type of font for your web page. However, if you are still looking for something a little different make sure that it is still legible. If you try and be too creative the reader simply can not read your website.
Keep things simple. Do not overload your reader with vibrant colors and various designs. A simple template or having the main design to follow is a good standard to keep.
A contact form is an absolute must for any type of business website. Sometimes potential customers do not want to go to their personal email in order to get into contact with you. It eliminates one thing your customer has to do in order to message you. Outside of having a contact form also make your actual email address available.
Include your personal story
Type up a personal biography of yourself or how you got involved in your business and your website designer can integrate it into the site. Customers enjoy learning a little bit about whom they are doing business with. Your story could also be very inspiring and generate more business in itself.
Pictures of you and your team
On top of the personal story that you provide on your site, have someone take a picture of you and your team. This will enable customers to put a face to the name.
Templates are a good thing
Sometimes it can be difficult to describe exactly how you want your site to look to a designer. With different templates, you can have a good idea of what the finished product will look like. This makes the web designer’s job much easier and can immensely decrease your frustration. There is nothing more frustrating than having a site built that you don’t like and then having it built all over again.
Find a web designer you like
When you are browsing different web pages you will often be able to find the designers name at the bottom of one of the pages. If you cannot find the designer on the actual site, contact someone from the website to see who designed it.
Ask to see some sample websites
Once you have found a designer that you are interested in have them send more examples of work they have done in the past. Once you see multiple pieces of the designers work you will have a better understanding of the style of work they develop.
Consider projects scale
Keep in mind you want to have a general understanding of what type of work the designer typically does. For example, if you are a small start-up you do not need and will probably not have the budget to employ the main designer for Amazon or Google.
Own your domain name
One of the first steps is owning your domain name. Once you have a domain name that you like and is marketable then you have a platform to work on.
Be aware of hosting platforms
You may already be familiar with some hosting platforms. Understand the platform that your website designer is using even if it is just the basics.
Make sure that your website has a couple of pages. Keep in mind that your customer may know nothing about you. Your designer can develop various basic page formats. For example Home Page, About Us, Contact Us, etc.
State your purpose
Your website is there to generate business. Make sure your potential customers can immediately see what you can provide to them.
Have a purpose
Outside of stating the purpose of your website make sure that you know its purpose. Are you trying to inform people about your product/service or have them purchase items on your web page itself? Knowing the purpose for your site enables you to know what type of content will benefit it.
Do not add content to your website just for the sake of it. Your website should provide your customers with value. This in itself will bring more viewers to your site.
Consistent website updates is an important SEO marketing strategy. When Google sees that your website is constantly being updated they make your website more viewable on Google searches.
SEO marketing strategy
All in all your designer will develop some type of SEO marketing strategy to make sure as many people view your site as possible.
Check out your competitors
Some of your competitors in the market may already have a very well developed web presence. Don’t feel ashamed in having your designer use some of their ideas. They may be winning a lot of product sales because they are doing something that you are failing to do.
Website load time
Once your site is up and running check how fast it downloads. Download times that take too long will deter viewers. Nobody likes sitting at his or her computer waiting for content to load.
If you do not have a logo already this should be one of your top priorities. This will help with your brand imaging. A good graphic designer can develop a series of different logos for you in a couple of hours.
Let your customers breath
When you read your site make sure that it is not too cluttered with content. Also, there should be enough space between paragraphs so it does not feel congested when reading it.
Think local but write global
When writing the content for your site, make sure that is legible to all types of audiences around the world. Make currencies very clear to your reader as well as dates and times to make sure anyone from around the world understands what you are saying.
Use proper spelling and grammar
This really goes back to the basics and is something you can check yourself. A website looks unprofessional if you have incorrect spelling and grammar throughout the page.
Make sure your links work
Once your designer has published your site make sure to check all links so that they lead to the pages they say they do.
Understand your site
Being that a designer has developed your website what often happens is the business owners do not know what is actually on their website. Make sure you understand your website well. When customers inquire about site content you want to be in the know, after all, it is your business.
Since the web is always changing proactivity is important. Start looking into designers and get the ball rolling! It doesn’t cost anything to start.
photo credit: World Bank Photo Collection Yosr works as a consultant for an export promotion agency via photopin (license)