I am more than sure that every website owner asked himself at least a few times if not several times questions like “How do I get my site to work better for my business”, “What can I improve at my website” or “It’s pretty obvious, why people don’t get it?”.
As soon as you understand some basic principles everything will come together more nicely and comprehensible. Here’s a list of things you might want to think about and consider : People come always on the first place, Keep it simple and usable, Build for findability, Everything serves a purpose.
Now that the main ideas were spoken, let’s try to detail them a bit more.
People come always on the first place
Like it or not, your website it will be always designed for your buyers and not for you. Design it for interaction.
No matter how much you would like to argue about this there’s no place in the online world today for “I don’t like it”. Even so designers and web companies heard this a lot from their customers and not only from small or mid-size customers but even million dollar companies. Well, guess what, it’s not important if you like it or not. The fact that you might like it is a very hoped conincidence but in fact like it or not for the purpose of your website that’s completely irrelevant. You’ll ask yourself how’s that comes? It’s pretty simple in fact, your website is built for your customers or prospects and the main focus of the website should be on them as well on properly presenting them whatever you are trying to sell to them.
Keep it simple and usable
Usable websites as well as usable designs don’t need a map. User interface design is meant to guide people not to confuse them.
Here’s a lot of talk. What simple means ? In our opinion simple means effective, means presenting your information ins such a way that it looks presentable, it is comprehensible and most important it brings your message quickly and clearly in the fastest possible time. There is no secret that people that are looking for something over the internet – whatever they are looking for – are in a hurry and have very short attention spans.
Your website should present to them what interests them. They’ve most probably got to your website by doing a search. Considering for example they searched for “professional writing” don’t let them read two paragraphs of text until they will finally reach relevant content. If you can’t achieve their attention in a very few seconds they are likely to hit close window or to return on the search page looking for a more relevant result.
Keep it briefly, short and if it’s possible to even illustrate your message somehow using graphics, illustrations, pictures then you already got them.
Build for findability
Building a findable website is not extremely hard but it requires a lot of patience, attention and one of the main keys is Information Architecture.
Without any doubt being found is essential to any business and no one can argue that this can play a major role in evolution of a business, both offline and on-line.
Having an extremely clear code, using proper tags and clearly marking in code several parts of your code makes it search engine friendly which is a major advantage. Going forward use proper page descriptions, keywords and so on. This way you can be sure that web spiders will love your website. Most of the internet traffic comes from search engines, so whatever you can do to make this properly it’s definitely gonna pay the effort.
Everything serves a purpose
What doesn’t make any sense to be there it shouldn’t be there. Information architecture along with usability serves the purpose of making things easier for the people that visit your website.
Being brief and concise is not only a concept, is a goal. You don’t need to build a large number of pages just for the sake of being indexed or having more content available. But creating proper pages and website structure keeps things clean and organized. If people are gonna ask on your website “how did I got here?” you have a problem. Remember that people don’t usually order from start. It is possible they will not buy anything for the moment but to keep in mind or note a product for later reviewing. Being sure they can find the way back to that product later is essential.
Think about it, you’ll never buy from someone if you return on their website and you can’t find again the product you’ve just seen yesterday. If your website is presenting a lot of services/products group them and be careful not to look overcrowded.
I think that this article really covers the basics about having a website that performs. Further than that trying to write proper requests is another major step if you’re trying to get a request for proposal ready. As much as you can detail your concept and idea about your business you will just shorten the time needed to get an effective proposal.
Always try to keep in mind that nothing just happens. It has to me made to happen as well as your website has to be properly built in order to achieve remarkable results that everyone’s after.
I am keen to hear your questions about this article and I’d love to see in your comments what you consider essential for a performing website. Don’t hesitate to comment and address to us your questions about this topic.