When making the foray into the online world of business a website is normally the first on the list to have designed & developed.
But why is great web design so important? What are the cornerstones to a great website?
You’ve done it! You’ve taken the plunge to create an online business and now you’re on the mission of getting a website created. You’ll normally realise pretty fast that there’s a tonne of different web designers, agencies and other companies that are vying for your business and actually choosing the rightweb designer for youcan be tricky to say the least.
The Importance of Web Design
As technology evolves so does consumer expectations when it comes to websites and how they perform. Because of this, it is imperative that your website is on the cusp of that evolving technology as well as offer a dose of outstanding usability. A website is fundamentally your shop window on the internet – and nobody wants (or indeed wants to see) a shoddy shop window.
Website design, when done correctly, can reap enormous dividends for any online business and today I’m going to help you with the cornerstones that create flourishing websites. Each of these points should be discussed with your agency or designer to ensure that they have covered all of these bases:
Design & Usability
When building a website the lines between a great design and great usability can sometimes become blurred and can cause a catastrophic end result of users simply not engaging with your website.
Design and usability should go hand in hand to compliment each other – a site may look outstanding aesthetically, but if users cannot easily find what they’re looking for, you will lose that visitor within 2-3 seconds – and that’s a lost sale.
Discuss with your web designer or agency about usability prior to the site being built. Look at stop colours and varying other design elements that can help make your website flourish.
Navigation and User Journeys
I almost put this under the design and usability umbrella, but in fairness, I believe that this requires it’s own explanation with guidance on how to plan navigation. Without doubt, navigation is one of the most important things to think about when having a website built. At this juncture you should be mapping the customer journey through your site and deciding what’s going to be the most effective journey for your users.
Discuss with your web designer the navigation and what will go where – you’ll find that once you’ve thought and planned out navigation, this improves the overall look and feel of any website – which is great for business.
Building a brand is what most companies dream of. Becoming a household name where a large chunk of their search traffic comes from brand related searches – at this point – you can say to some degree ‘you’ve made it’.
However, in your new foray into the online world of business you’ll need to start somewhere to begin building that brand – and a website is the best place to start.
Talk about branding and brand uniformity with your web designer and discuss how to best keep the brand unified across the site to ensure that customers begin to engage with the business – branding is unparalleled in importance when it comes to successful web design.
Calls to action
Any online business needs a call to action. Whether this is to purchase online, pick up the phone and enquire or simply drop an email with an enquiry, there is normally always the need for a call to action (or CTA).
A great web designer will help you establish good calls to action throughout the site to ensure that customers are enquiring and or purchasing. A web designer should be experienced in what types of CTA’s work effectively and should utilise this knowledge within your build.
Search Engine Optimisation
Having a web designer with know-how when it comes to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is absolutely crucial. During the process of a web build it should give you peace of mind that your website is being built with search engines in mind – meaning that when you do eventually launch your site you stand the best chance of success within search engines such as Google and Bing.
Ask your web designer what they know about SEO and what steps they’ll be taking to ensure your site is ready for the search engines – it’s a pivotal elements of your websites future success.