“Don’t judge a book by its cover” is a quote often used to say that we should look deeper before we pass judgement, but unfortunately when your potential customers look for a product and find a few sites on what they are looking for, they will be judging your business on its virtual cover. Because of this, it is of paramount importance to ensure you have the best site for your business which complements your physical storefront.
Here are five basics to take care of when designing your website.
BASIC 1: Know your website’s purpose
When you embark on creating your website, you need to clearly define the purpose of the site. Is it to inform your customers of the products you have available? Is it to sell goods to a customer? Or is it to promote your services? When you clearly understand the purpose of your website then you can work on a sketch of what pages you will need for your site. It is critical to ask each page what is its purpose and what call to action do you want your customer to take? Should they email or call you? Should they make a direct purchase from your site? When you have drawn an idea of how you would like your website to look you can move on.
BASIC 2: Know your customers
You may have heard this often but it is a critical part of any successful business. If you don’t know your customer and then you won’t know how to write content for your website which will appeal to them. You need to consider what topics they are interested in and how they will search for the particular product you are selling. By creating clear personas of each customer you will ensure that your content is specific to their needs.
BASIC 3: Have a clear brand identity
When you hear the words “Coca-cola”, your mind’s eye automatically thinks of the logo with the white cursive font and red background. This is called a strong brand identity. When you consider designing your site, you should think of no more than three colours you would like to use and two to three fonts. These colours and fonts should be used across all platforms where your brand is visible. You should write the colour CMYK/RGB numbers down and the font names you use. You should also consider the type of images you would like to use for the website.
BASIC 4: Make it mobile-friendly
Many people use their mobile devices to surf the internet. It is important that your website is responsive and can change to the different dimensions of the screen where your potential customer is viewing your website. Here is the link to test the mobile-friendliness of your site.
BASIC 5: Get the technical stuff right
Your cover may look magnificent but there are some technical aspects to consider to help your website to be seen by more eyes. You should ensure that your site has an SSL certificate. This will help build trust for your site, especially if it is an e-commerce site. You should also ensure it is crawlable and search engines can index the pages of your site appropriately.
The next step is to work on search engine optimisation (SEO). Your website content must be informative and useful. You should also make sure it contains the keywords you want to rank for. You can learn more about SEO here. The final technical aspect to consider is your website’s speed. Customers can be very impatient and if your page doesn’t load in 3 seconds, they may move on. You can test your page speed here and here. These two sites will advise you on how to increase the speed of your site.
By going through these five basics you will be well on your way to creating a website that will be exceptional.
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