Regardless of what business you own, whether it is a beauty blog, freelance photography, yoga classes, or a thrift shop, a website is vital for your business’s success, and building a great website is what will help you go to the next level!
There is no surprise this is the case, with over 4.66 billion users online. Not only does this mean that a website is a great opportunity to drive more traffic, but also to be able to compete effectively in the 21st century.
Benefits of a great website
There are many important reasons why building a great website can benefit your business, for example:
- Inexpensive and easy way to promote your business online
- You can reach a wider audience as your website will work 24/7 all around the world
- Track your customer behaviour and various insights such as age range and location, to help improve and enhance their experience and your business services and/or products
- Increase your brand visibility and recognition
So, whether you are just starting out or already have an established online business, here are 7 tips to building a great website for your business.
#1 Pick the right domain name
Your domain name is the first thing that all your customers will see, so it is important to create a good first impression. The right domain name should be easy and simple to use and spell while being related to your business to instill trust. With many purchases conducted or personal information being shared online, this factor is crucial. Make sure the URL is not too complicated to spell or remember, as this can deter users from finding your website. You also want to ensure your domain name equips you for growth by encompassing a range of purposes.
#2 Pick the right hosting and content management system
A website host allows your website to be viewed on the internet, while a content management system allows you to create a beautiful, branded design and functionality. Your domain name is connected to the two, so when a user searches your domain name, your information appears. Hosting and content management systems can significantly vary in price, depending on the provider you chose, the type of business you own, and how large your business is. This is because all of the above factors have different requirements, for example, if you are a large store that sells a range of products online, you will require customers to be able to search for and make payments online, compared to a blog or service-based business.
#3 Find a trusted web developer
You can of course build a website yourself, but it will take a lot of time and research to do so. If you do not have the time, while you run your own business, then you can outsource the task to a web developer. It is important to find a web developer that you can trust, and that understands your business and your vision. This is because you want a website that will attract and engage your audience, as well as convert them into sales.
#4 Brand your website
Your website should reflect who you are as a business and what solutions you can provide to your customers. There is no use in only having a website with a pretty design and pictures, customers must be able to quickly identify who you are and what you offer. You can do this by clearly stating your business name and description as the first thing they see when they land on your website. The first page doesn’t have to have too much detail, as you can link this off to your about me page. Your about me page should also be linked in the navigation and the footer.
Branding your website also means incorporating your unique brand colors, logos, and themes. Make sure that these colors are used throughout and complement the design of your website. Your web developer or designer will be able to help you with this.
#5 Functional and engaging interface
Your interface needs to be both functional and engaging if you want to keep customers on your website and convert them into sales. Make sure you have a clear menu so users can find what they want quickly, as well as a clear way to navigate around your website. Make sure it is easy for your customers to make a purchase and to contact you.
An interface, after the domain name, will be the next thing your customer sees. The interface alone can convert leads or drive customers off your site. Make sure that your colors are eye-catching and compliment each other, and ensure your fonts are easy to read. Graphics must also be compressed to ensure the speed of your website is not compromised. This can not only drive customers away (who enjoy a slow-loading website!) but also hinder your visibility within the search engines.
#6 Optimize for search engines
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the way to increase the visibility of your website in the search results. There are many things to think about when it comes to implementing SEO, which is why it is important to research Google algorithms or hire an SEO agency that can put together a strategy for you. The tasks usually include:
- Competitor and industry research and analysis
- Keyword research and implementation
- Writing high quality and relevant page copy and blogs
- Finding and fixing technical errors
- Ensuring your website is mobile-friendly
- Creating an internal and external link structure
- Building reviews and local presence
- Keeping up to date with search engines changes and algorithms and adapting the strategy accordingly.
#7 Continue to test and develop
An important part of what pieces all of the above factors together is the customer journey. The customer experience is at the heart of everything you do, to ensure their experiences are enhanced. It’s not enough to create a beautiful website and leave it. You will need to regularly review your customer’s journey and test the user experience. Sometimes issues arise unexpectedly, search engine algorithms change, buyers’ interests evolve and more competitors come on the scene. There are many different reasons why testing is important, as well as a range of methods to use, for example, Userzoom’s click testing software which allows you to ensure your website design is working in favor of your customers, rather than against them, in a cost-efficient way.
There are many things you need to consider when building a great website, but most importantly, it needs to be optimized to be found organically, as well as consider the journey of your customers from the first point of contact through to conversion and beyond. A website has the power to increase your brand awareness, as well as win over your customers if done correctly.