When you’re deciding to create a website, there are 10 golden rules to follow whether or not you are a web novice or expert.
If you are using our all-inclusive web design service, good prior planning will help you to get the best outcomes, from your website. As design experts we can help you along every step of the way and we always follow these rules.
If you have decided to tackle making your own website, these 10 rules will help you along.
1. Use a simple and clear design
You may wish to put as much as possible on your website to show off your design skills, but your visitors are not interested in this. All they want to see is how to call for an appointment, make a purchase or join the mailing list.
You need to avoid clutter and too many unnecessary images, as well as keep social media icons to a manageable level. Look at the sites you visit and the chances are the design is very simple and the important bits easy to locate.
2. Start with the Five Core Pages
Start off with five core pages, which will cover the basic needs of your business and ensure visitors have their expectations met.
1. Home — ensure this includes the preferred method that customers need to contact you.
2. About Us — what is the business about. Give this page a personal touch with photographs of your premises (inside and outside) as well as members of the team.
3. Products/Services — what you provide, giving prices, warranty, refund information and service agreements if applicable.
4. Customer Feedback — Quotes and reviews from customers who have used your business.
5. Contact Us — opening hours, phone numbers, email addresses.
3. Encourage People to Get in Touch Now
Your site is there to generate business, so make sure the invitation for people to call for quotes, or buy online are there and easy to see.
4. Include Sign-up Forms
Email is a great way of keeping customers loyal and generating extra sales. A sign up form on the home page inviting people to input their email address to receive your newsletter is great for your business potential and costs nothing. Encourage people to sign up for newsletters by offering discounts or other promotions in return.
5. Keep Information at the Top
The most valuable information to your business needs to be near the top of the page, or ‘above the fold’ – the point at which customers have to scroll down. If the first things they see aren’t catching their attention, they’re very unlikely to scroll and look for more.
6. Make Use of Images
Pictures say so much more than words and will help sell your products. They need to be of a good size so customers can see what they are getting and may buy from the competition instead. Even if you’re budget is tight, you may need to consider investing in a professional photographer as it will pay for itself many times over in the end.
7. Make Yourself Easy to Contact
Visitors to your website need to know how to get hold of you by phone and email. Make your business number easily visible on the home page and also state what times this is in use. Provide a contact form, rather than an email address which is prone to spam, for other times. Customers appreciate the personal touch and like to know you are real.
8. Add Customer Reviews
Studies have shown that word of mouth remains a crucial way of securing new business, with 92% of consumers saying they would act upon a personal recommendation. Add reviews from satisfied customers about your business, as it will increase the confidence of new visitors to your site. Make sure your site is listed on Google Local, Yelp and Yellow Pages, where reviews are left and utilise the best, and encourage your top customers to leave reviews.
9. Have the Personal Touch
An ‘About us’ section of a website is a crucial part. This gives potential customers the opportunity to see you as people and allow you to develop relationships with them. Explain in this part of the site how and why your business started, why you are passionate about it and include some photographs of you and your team. By doing this you are building trust and confidence.
10. Use the Power of Google
People need to be able to find your website or you won’t get any business at all. Search engine optimization (SEO) makes sure that the likes of Google and Yahoo! List it highly in their search results. Look around the web for articles on SEO which show you how to use keywords and phrases on your site that will ensure it gets a high ranking on search engines.
Make your website stand out from the crowd with one of our business website packages.