Top 10 Things to Consider When Designing a Website

1. Define YOU

It is impossible to create your business website without first defining who you are and who your business serves. Your new website will need to have a clear message that quickly and efficiently communicates who you are and can engage your ideal client.

Do you have an Ultimate Value Proposition?

What is the main value that you offer potential clients and how will a website demonstrate this?

When you have a clearly defined set of values and your marketing showcases your authentic story, you will be irresistible to your ideal clients.

2. Understand the Basics of SEO

If you are investing in a beautiful new website then you will want to know how well it is working. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) will allow you to be located in search engines like Google and Bing. You or your website designer will need to know how to design a site that not only looks great, but will also attract traffic through proper SEO.

3. Content is King

Having fresh and consistently updated content will benefit your website in multiple ways.

First, content rich sites are more attractive to search engines. Having well written content that capitalizes on important keywords and phrases will increase your likelihood of reaching your ideal customer. Once a customer is on your site, you will want them to stay there. Engaging blog posts and video will make your customers stay on the website longer and encourage them to scroll and click deeper into the content.

Quality content makes you more of an authority in your field, encouraging prospects to trust you more.

4. Give the User Powerful Calls to Action

So you have finally attracted that perfect client to your new website. Now you need to tell them what to do.

What is your goal?

Do you want more phone calls? Do you want them to input their contact information into a form? Do you have a lead magnet or means to get the user to give you their email address?

Big, bold, powerful Calls to Action are vital to convert that prospect to a paying client.

5. Don’t Ignore Cell Phone and Tablet Users

With mobile traffic quickly surpassing desktop, your new website should be mobile friendly and fully functional on tablets and cell phones.

Recently, Google began penalizing websites that weren’t mobile friendly, which could have a huge impact on how penalized businesses are found in their search engine.

Through the use of responsive web design, you can now have one website designed that will adapt to both mobile and desktop browsers. When working with a website designer, make sure that they are considering mobile users as a part of the design and development strategy.

6. Keep It Simple

The day of “everything but the kitchen sink” cluttered websites is over. Modern design trends are built around long scrolling, graphically simple websites with efficiently organized content. By focusing on key messages and Calls to Action, your new site should be able to convey your ultimate value proposition, engage and convert visitors with a quick scan of the homepage. Make sure you thoroughly consider what parts of your business create the most value for the prospect and make these elements the focus of your designs.

In short, don’t make interaction with your site complicated.

The cool slider or animation you want to dazzle your clients with may actually cause the site to load slowly or distract from one of your Calls to Action.

7. Testimonials

It is a fact that your prospects are reading reviews and care about your other customers’ opinions.

Look at the rising popularity of sites like Yelp and you will see a culture obsessed with opinion. You should collect testimonials and reviews at every given opportunity and let your happy clients tell the story of your business and help you build trust.

8. The Influence of Video

People love to watch video. YouTube is the second most popular search engine on the internet. Perhaps no other medium is better suited to personalizing your marketing and relating your story to prospective customers. Short interview style clips can work wonders in conveying authority and answering a prospect’s questions.

By neglecting a video presence on the web you are missing out on a huge opportunity to rule search engines and authentically convey the value of your services.

9. The Power of Professional Photography

Nothing will ruin a beautiful website faster than bad stock photography. Your website should be authentic and personable, creating a clear impression of who you are. Invest in a professional photographer that will create team portraits, shots of your office, and depict your office in action. Photography is a valuable tool in telling you story and skimping on this can cheapen your brand and prevent your ideal client from connecting with you.

10. Measure and Track Your Success

Now that you have considered all of these important tasks, how do you plan on tracking your success.

After all, if something on your new site isn’t working you will want to take immediate steps to tweak it.

Setting up a unique tracking number on your website will allow you to see the number of phone calls you take from your website alone. Tools like Google Analytics will allow you track everything from the demographics of your visitors to their flow through the website, and the amount of time they spend on each page.

There are countless other tools you can use to measure the success of your website so the more you know the more quickly you can adapt the site for success.