Are you a small business owner with a website? Are you happy with it? If not, don't worry – you're not alone. Many small businesses struggle with website design, mostly because they don't have the time or resources to create an effective website. But that doesn't mean you can't have a great website – it just takes some know-how and planning.
An aesthetically pleasing website can be the difference between converting visitors into customers. In this article, we'll explore why design matters and provide tips for making your business's online presence stand out in a competitive field!
Why Website Design Matters
Website design is an integral part of your company’s marketing presence. A well-designed website can convey professionalism and ensure repeat customers by making information clear, easy to find, comprehensive in its content coverage for all products or services offered--and most importantly - aesthetically pleasing! Here are six reasons why website design is important:
Sets an Impression
Your website design is an important first impression. Your customers will make a judgment within the first few seconds of landing on your site, so you should do everything possible to ensure that their initial experience leaves them liking what they see. It's important to ensure that your website is easy, intuitive, and has a modern design, so customers can enjoy browsing.
The design of your website can have a huge impact on how you rank in search engines like Google. The visual aspects and content management system (CMS) used on the site play major roles. Making sure your website is user-friendly goes hand-in-glove with SEO efforts by ensuring webpages rank high within their respective categories or topics, while also being appropriately structured according to SEO standards.
Sets the Tone
Your website is a window to your business and if it's not designed well, then you'll likely struggle with customer service. Expanding on the idea that design has an important role in creating first impressions for customers as well as quality interaction between them. We recommend investing time into making sure everything from the logo to the landing pages gives off this polished look, so visitors know they're getting their money’s worth.
The internet is full of scams, hackers, and misinformation. To be successful in today's world you need a well-designed website that conveys the message 'I am legitimate'. If your site has an outdated or poorly designed look, then customers may think twice about trusting what they see, and it could cost you business.
Keep up with Competitors
If you want to keep customers from going elsewhere, make sure that your website looks more professional than the competition. Learn what makes other businesses stand out and see what they do well so that you can do better on your website.
To build brand awareness, you need to be consistent in your branding across all channels. Your website is the starting point for much of what will make up an individual's impression of who you are. Your website should have the same fonts, colors, and layouts on every page to ensure consistency. The goal of your branding efforts is for visitors not only to know where they are but also to feel like their visit was worth it!
Website Design Tips for Small Businesses
Your website design is the first impression that people will have of your business. It's important to invest time in researching and invest money into a professional, high-quality website with an eye-catching layout, so customers are more likely to buy from you rather than someone else! The following 8 tips can help make this happen:
Have a Plan in Place
A plan is the key to success when it comes to designing or redesigning your website. The process should start with a detailed understanding of what you want from the finished product, how that will be achieved, and who those targeted customers are. The customer journey plays an integral role during every stage—from signup all the way to purchase!
Remove Unnecessary Elements
Your site should have an easy navigation experience so that users can find what they are looking for quickly, as well as any information about products or services you offer. Make sure there aren’t too many distractions such as animations, overly wordy copy, extraneous stock images, and too much meaningless jargon and promotional language.
Link to Social Media Platforms
Your online presence is your business's most valuable asset. As such, it should be cohesive and work together with you - not against or separately from what makes someone want to buy from you! Consider having social media buttons on your website, either at the top of your landing pages, the bottom, or both. This encourages customers to stay in touch with your brand.
Have an Effective Homepage
Having a scrollable homepage is essential for showcasing your site's content. This type of design adds an engaging element without being overwhelming or distracting, as it allows users to explore different sections at their leisure when scrolling down the page. Our designers recommend creating several sections along either side, so visitors can find what they want quickly while still being able to explore fully. Your homepage should include the following sections:
- Introduction/About Us
- Overview of Services
- Products/Product Features
- Case Studies/Success Stories
Take Advantage of White Space
White space is something you can use thoughtfully to make your content easier, cleaner, and more engaging. It's also an excellent way of determining where page elements will go on the page - so think carefully before filling up any blank spaces with text!
Google reports that 61% of users will not return to your mobile site if it takes too long or has errors. Furthermore, 40% leave for another competitor’s website instead! You should make sure you create a responsive design that looks good on smaller screens - this way everyone can enjoy using the same content and services from whichever device they choose.
Have an SEO Strategy
If you want to be successful in today's competitive market, SEO is an absolute necessity. There are so many aspects that need to be considered when creating or redesigning your website from top-to-bottom - but don't forget about search engine optimization. Think about what content would interest your customers most and design accordingly by including keywords throughout your landing pages. This will help your website rank higher with Google and other search engines.
Make your Website Secure
It's important to provide your customers with peace of mind that their personal information is safe. This means having an SSL certificate, which is a small data file bound by cryptographic keys and used for online transactions such as credit card purchases. This provides users with the ability to enter sensitive data without being accessed by hackers. A current SSL certificate is essential because it’s what creates the “https” application protocol and a padlock symbol in a user’s search bar. If your website does not have an “https” application protocol, Google will often flag your website as not secure and direct the customer away.
Work With Us
If you are a small business and are looking for a digital marketing agency that can help you design or redesign your website, you've come to the right place. We are experts in all things digital, from website design and development to SEO and social media marketing. We'd love to work with you! Contact us today to get started.