Big or small, staying relevant in the 21st century seems daunting. Consumers face more than 6,000 messages per day! As a small business owner, you have to level the playing field, which starts with your website. Assuming you have a website, be honest, is that design and content compelling that you would objectively want to look around or even contact your company?
If you answered no, better make that tomorrow’s #1 priority, otherwise, you’re missing out on valuable time you could spend interacting with customers. Beyond making a website look “pretty,” several key web usability features can bring your website to the next level. Here are a few to help your website come out on top and engage your web visitors (or have them contact you).
Your Website Needs A Clear Message
Seems obvious, but try the litmus test. If you click on the home page, can you look for 10 seconds, close the browser, and know exactly what your business does? If the message doesn’t jump out and you cannot instantly recall as much, then imagine how your web visitors feel. They will not think twice about hitting the red X, closing out the window, or the back arrow to look at other companies from their Google SERP. Sure, your homepage has to be visually compelling and attractive, but the organization remains key.
Your website design must reinforce your brand’s message. It may seem like a no-brainer, but there should be a domain name, logo, tagline, call-to-action, top navigation, and breadcrumb navigation all on the top of the homepage, reading from right to left (never horizontally).
The bottom of every web page, otherwise known as the footer, should contain contact information for your physical address, phone numbers, legalese, and how to contact your business electronically. Having icons that link to your business social media pages can reside here in the footer; but depending upon the activity level and importance, these icons may be appropriate in your header.
Does Your Website Have a Blog Page?
Businesses blog because it adds fresh content to the website. This fresh content shows that you, yes you, can dive deeper into related concepts or reasons why to work with your company, can be a thought leader within your industry, create stickiness so visitors stay longer on the website, gain trust with your web visitors, educate, and create opportunities to build backlinks for SEO. Accumulating quality backlinks send a signal to Google that web visitors view your content as both compelling and valuable. As such, Google will propel your website to the top of page 1!
Moreover, blogs enable visitors to get to know your brand on a personal level, especially if you create blog articles about important company milestones. Was your brand recognized at an award ceremony? Or maybe you just reached 25 years of business? Don’t be afraid to toot your own horn! Share your experiences, reach out to your viewers, and reap the rewards.
Your Website MUST Be Mobile Friendly
Nowadays users are constantly on their phone more than they are on a computer. Mobile search and websites make up close to 50% of all web traffic. Without a mobile-friendly, or a responsive website, iPhone or Android users will be forced to pinch with their thumb and index finger to read more. Search behaviors have changed, and so must your website’s design. If you are a local business, a mobile-friendly website offers visitors an ease of use they have come to expect. There are a few essential factors that mobile websites should portray to be successful:
- Is the content easy to read?
- Is the website easy to navigate through?
- Does the website load in less than 5 seconds?
- If you were a visitor, would you spend time on it or would you walk away?
If you answered “NO” to any of these questions, then you’re overdue for a website redesign. Google jumped on the mobile bandwagon and now rewards mobile-friendly websites with better search rankings!
Does Your Website Contain Enough Copy?
Many businesses are afraid of having too much copy on their websites because they assume users will not read it, or worse, find it boring. Actually, it’s quite the opposite. Web visitors search because their intent is to identify a business that can fulfill their search query. Web visitors want a website that clearly outlines your services and has a value proposition. Your website copy should be both informative and sufficient in length.
Are There Calls-to-Action on Your Website?
A call-to-action is not Tarzan yelling across the jungle. A call-to-action should motivate web visitors to take some form of action regarding the services or products you offer. You need to give visitors a reason to engage with your brand. A call-to-action can relate to signing up to receive notifications, downloading a white paper, watching a video, answering a survey, or filling out a contact form. Ideally, you want every visitor to engage with your website on some level, if not a simple call to your business.
The About Us Page on Your Website
Your About Us page offers the opportunity to engage the web visitor with your corporate history, details about your core values, and deliver a story about your passion for the products or services you sell. A few things you might want to include are:
- Who is involved?
- How did the company start?
- What is the purpose of the company?
Don’t Forget About Your Raving Online Social Reviews
A review/testimonial section can be crucial for small businesses. Visitors usually look for reviews or comments about products, customer service, and/or the business itself. While reviews are not required, they do increase the probability of a transaction because they offer objective feedback from past or existing clients. You don’t actually need a testimonial page, but rather testimonials spread out across the website on a variety of pages, either as a call out within the text or in sidebars next to the page’s web copy.
Important Features For Your Next Website Redesign
Websites on the Internet must look professional and outshine the competition. There isn’t a cookie cutter formula for web design, but adding these features will help spruce up your site. Take an extra step and try adding other unique elements such as background videos and everyday photos to enhance your website’s effectiveness. If you want a website to reflect your level of service, take the time to give your website a makeover, and you’ll reach superstardom in no time!
Thinking about redesigning your website? You’ve come to the right place! Let the web design experts at Premiere Creative produce a website that’ll win over web visitors. Contact us today and give us a call at (973) 346-8100 to begin building your website that will blow other small businesses out of the water.