There are multiple reasons for businesses to invest in a website. A website is one of the most important marketing tools for small businesses. While many agencies will talk intensely about amazing features and beautiful creative design that will leave a lasting impression on your customers, or even using clever social media campaigns, we see that just investing in your website with a simple design and interface structure to make it easy for visitors to use benefits most businesses especially those on a tight budget.
At the very least, your website needs to legitimise your business in the market. There is a time and place for highly creative or technical website but first and foremost – users who search businesses online need to understand, immediately, who you are, what you do and most importantly that you are a real business. Your website needs to be concise enough to inform your customers that the website is the first port of call in selecting you for any which product or service you are offering.
Your Online Identity is Crucial to Success
We are not saying that your website needs to present a grand website design with a technical beast behind it, or that you need to hire a full-time content writer to ensure you have blog content every second day – but you do need to take these tips into account and invest in your online identity to turn your website into the marketing tool it can become.
A design that appears to be visually modern also acts simply as a justification that your business is in fact open and operating. Many customers today are fickle and will quickly turn away from your website simply because it does not look like it has been updated in many years. They are quick to assume it is closed or that the content itself is outdated and therefore unreliable (think product pages, price lists etc). It is important to give your website a fresh coat of paint every five years at the least. General digital design best practice and trends change over this period, as do user expectations.
Bonus SEO benefits
Frequently updated blog content will also do you favours in SEO. Search engines use algorithms that identify keywords within meaningful content and rank this content higher within keyword search results. We all know how often we dive deeper into Google search results past page three – slim to none. Higher SEO rankings will attract more online traffic.
Keep your content current
This opens another tip for ensuring your customers will use your website as justification that you are legit – frequent content updates show that you are actively using your website for marketing purposes. Current price lists, notice of upcoming sales, and even blog content will show your customer that you are considering them as a user, and not relying on them to contact your directly. Their trust in your content and overall offering will increase. Current content will also minimise the amount of general query phone calls your business receives – giving you higher qualified customers who do pick up the phone to speak to you.
Your website design does not need to push design boundaries…
…but it should present your business as within the 21st Century (and of course, a design that does push boundaries is even better for your users to engage with). One thing is clear though – outdated designs will push customers away. Today’s users have formed habits from using websites and the user experience across dated websites clash with these habits. Your website should 100% be mobile optimised today as majority of users across most audiences will be using mobile to browse the web. Users will quickly exit a website that challenges them in usability and mobile user experience is a key consideration when considering a website design update.
Simple efficient design for easy use
Easy use, accessibility and design is key for maximising your outreach. When a website is simple and therefore easier to navigate, the reader is not faced with extraneous information. Simplifying your website designs can be a great solution to navigation usability problems. Here are some tips for simplifying your navigation:
- Use only one main navigation menu.
- Make sure navigation is consistent throughout the site.
- Use sub-navigation for individual sections to simplify your main navigation.
- Do not use dropdowns for navigation, which can easily hide a cluttered menu. Instead, force yourself to incorporate the navigation elements into the site’s design.
Users will also be most satisfied with a simplistic design due to the design making it easier for users to take in information. When a website refrains from using excessive decorative elements, the content takes centre stage. Content that is put to the forefront of a website is easier to scan by visitors. One study showed that 79% of test users scanned any new page they visited, while only 16% read the page word-for-word. It is better to work with these scanning visitors than to try to fight them. By putting your content front-and-centre, you make it easier for visitors to quickly scan what is there. These visitors will perceive your site as more user-friendly and are more likely to return in the future.
In an increasingly paperless world, when referring to a business the website and social media platforms are what present the business. Not only does this mean that the website must give a good impression of the business, but the website can also be used to increase exposure to the business and its model. The shareability of a website is increased through the frequency of its link being shared, for example through social media posts, and the content.
The content which will increase the visitors to your website is through:
- Content relevant to your audience.
- Captivating titles.
- Focus on concise and relevant information.
- Interactive media and videos.
- Consistent content and themes.
Where to find help
Developing and managing your platforms can be overwhelming but digital marketing agencies can give all the information and help that you need to build your profile. Ajencia is full of expertise and can be used as a tool to build your business. If you are looking for expertise to build your digital presence and would like some information about web design or a free no obligation consultation on getting a website for your business, then find our contact details in the following here. We look forward to hearing from you.