Part 1 of 3
These first few tips may seem like no-brainers, but you’d be surprised by how few businesses apply even these most basic of elements.
Look Relevant… or at least of this century
You don’t necessarily need the latest website design with full-width images and parallax scrolling effects, but it’s important to present a good first impression. Having a narrow layout, flash animations, and a logo that suggests, “our summer intern did this!” is the quickest way to ask your visitors to go look somewhere else.
My auto mechanic of over twenty years is a great guy and his technicians have all the most up-to-date certifications. But with the exception of some minor content, you’d get the impression from his website that they don’t work on anything newer than 1999. I can only guess at how many potential customers he could be turning away.
If your site conveys a feeling of neglect, your customers may believe this also applies to your services or products and will click away.
Give Visitors What They Want
Most visitors to a website primarily want one of three things; get information, contact you, give you money. Regardless of which one you prioritize for your particular business, make it as easy as possible for people to follow through on what they’re after.
Unless you can justify it through an exact understanding of the behavioral trends of your visitors (you are performing a monthly site analysis, right?) don’t force them to work to find what they came for. Because unless they are highly motivated, chances are they won’t try very hard. Every click is time used.
It only takes a couple of wasted clicks to push a customer to a competitor’s website.
Be Everywhere With Mobile Compatibility
Depending on which research you read, the number of consumers wanting to access a website on a phone or tablet is approximately… everyone within reach of a mobile device. The experience is going to be different (and should be) but the fundamentals expressed in #1 and #2 above still apply.
If your site isn’t designed to take advantage of the different display possibilities, consider a third-party option if applicable. This will allow you to craft a user experience that gives your visitor exactly what they want while highlighting those features of your business which you want.
Look into having your site built on the WordPress platform, utilizing a visual theme that is customized for your brand. Many themes are designed to be responsive and both, the platform and theme, are easily updated to take advantage of security and functional improvements as they become available.
Your site’s new presentation will be user-friendly, modern-looking and subtly communicate this same message about your business.