Feeling a little overwhelmed? You’re wanting a website for your business… but not just any old website, an exceptional website! A website that will give your business credibility, drive your brand and increase sales – delivering the works!
You know that simply having a web presence won’t guarantee your business success. In fact, having a web presence that’s not well designed could do quite the opposite. Plus, the over-abundance of websites on the internet now means that your website will need to be designed to best practice principles for you to even reach your target audience.
Did you know that over a third of people will stop using a website if its layout and content is poorly designed and unattractive? And with close to 50% of people feeling a website’s design is the most important factor in deciding the credibility of a business, the integrity and success of your business relies on professional branding and web design.
A web designer will design a website for you that is unique for your brand and will set your business apart from your competition, creating a website that will draw the customer in, keep them reading, influence their perception of your business and give you integrity. And once you have their trust, the world is your oyster. Or, put simply, the customer is yours.
But customers don’t just know a good website when they see one, they also know a bad one. Who hasn’t experienced that moment of frustration when a webpage just won’t load? Or it might have loaded eventually, but you got impatient waiting and flicked back to the Google search results and moved on to the next website – the competition.
Or perhaps you’ve experienced confusion when visiting a website and it just doesn’t function properly or inform you like it should… Why can’t I find their contact details? Why doesn’t this link work? What are their opening hours? Why don’t they have specifications listed here? The list goes on and on. So does the frustration, the uncertainty and the loss of potential customers.
So, let’s get down to business… What will determine the success of your website and ultimately your business? Outlined below are the top 8 best practices for designing a website.
1. Strong Branding
2. The Right Mix
We all know when a website looks good, but we might not necessarily know why.
A professional designer spends years training and developing their skills, honing their understanding of colour, fonts, layout and imagery, and how it all works together to create a certain message, a tone, a feel. When the right message is masterfully created it won’t just appeal to the target audience, it will draw them in, whispering silent promises of benefit, service and quality. And a beautiful blossoming relationship begins to unfold!
3. Quality Imagery
With more than a third of people being visual learners, featuring high quality photos and imagery in your website will engage your audience with your brand and content more easily, decreasing bounce rate and building a link between customer and company. We all know a stock photo when we see one, so opt for professionally photographed original images. If you’re hoping your customer will perceive your business as providing a unique product or service then using one-size-fits-all, banal stock photography should definitely be avoided.
4. Quality Content
A successful website will have clear, relevant content that delivers the right message; informing the customer of your business, your product or service and its benefit to them. Always focus on your customers’ needs and wants. What is their problem and how can you solve it? Your website content should be keyword-rich and target your audience, engaging them and persuading them to take action while demonstrating trust and building credibility. You can establish your business as an industry expert by posting relevant and useful information, such as blog posts, articles or whitepapers.
5. Ease of Navigation
The less time it takes the customer to find what they’re looking for, the better. People expect navigation to be simple and loading time to be minimal. An understanding of the hierarchy of your web content and how customers will expect to view it is fundamental to web design best practice. Navigation bars, search menus, contact information, sticky buttons and page load speeds all need to function seamlessly.
6. Mobile Friendly
With 32.89 million mobile connections in Australia, your website needs to be mobile responsive. Yes, you did read right! The number of mobile connections in Australia in 2020 was equivalent to 130% of the total population.* And on average 8 out of 10 customers will stop engaging with your site if the content doesn’t display properly on their device. A successful website will have a responsive design format, adjusting to the size of the browser automatically, allowing for ease of use and functionality.
7. Strong Call-To-Actions
A successful website will do more than just attract and inform an audience if strong call-to-actions are used. Call-to-actions are essential for converting website visitors into new clients or leads. What action would you like your customer to complete? Make an online booking, a phone call, download a form or perhaps request a quote? For your website to be truly successful consider these actions at planning stage, rather than as an afterthought.
8. SEO – Search Engine Optimisation
Another effective web design best practice utilised in all successful websites is SEO. A search engine optimized website puts you out in front of thousands of more potential customers, helping you to reach a wider target audience for promoting your products or services.
A well-optimized website can help your business rank well in the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) for a variety of search terms and attract a steady stream of new customers to your business.
A great website is essential to a successful business. It’s the most powerful marketing asset your business can have…driving brand awareness, sales and building relationships.
If you’d like to know more about how your business can achieve success from a well-designed website, contact practiceedge.