We are living in a generation of computers, internet and smartphones. Information is within our reach in a matter of seconds. Every business in the world is starting to use this advantage to market and present the product or service that they offer. How are they doing it? Yes, you guessed it, they use websites. This tool makes everything easier and accessible. So delivering a bad, unresponsive site is actually worse than having no website at all.
Let’s take a look at a few things to help you create a successful website.
The ‘Look’ Of The Site
Listen, I know that a website should focus on content more than aesthetics, but when you think of it, what is the first sense that perceives this? Correct, it’s sight. Your website should be inviting and pleasing to the eye. Who wouldn’t want to stay and read an article in a fresh, clean, inviting page? So here’s some tips for a good looking website:
- The page should contain a small thin header – small headers are the best to use because your visitors do not have to scroll down to start reading your content. As soon as someone finds your page they can start reading your article and that’s what you want.
- Choose nice colors – Whether it is for the background, the text, or the website as a whole, choose colors that are fresh and pleasing. Be simple with this so that they do not overpower anything.
- The font style and size – must be readable, either in a desktop or a smartphone.
- Put enough space – so that readers can breath and absorb the information in your website. Spaces provide a way to skim the content. Not everyone is going to read everything, so never present content in a single block of text. We live in an age of 140 characters these days with social media like Twitter etc. A huge block of content can become overwhelming.
- When you add images – to your content be sure that they are of good quality and are relevant to the paragraphs that you add them to.
- Use Bold and Italics or heading tags – to showcase main ideas, titles and subtitles.
- Avoid GIFs and flash – especially when they move rapidly. Back in the day these used to be utilized often to grab peoples attention, but these days we want the content to be the focus without uninviting distractions.
- Get rid of music – that automatically plays in the background. This can be quite annoying when you’re focused and trying to read something that you want to learn about.
The Website Content
This is the websites’ core. Be sure to be concise and straight to the point but don’t forget to add a dash of fun when you can. Websites are there to show and communicate with people around the globe for all types of products and services. You may even just want to share exciting or personal content so it needs to have the following:
Introduce yourself or your company
It’s best to include an “About Me” page to your site. Tell visitors what your website is about. Let them get to know you, but don’t talk about yourself too much. Remember, they are trying to find something for themselves.
Think of a good writing style
The website style makes your site unique to others. This will determine how you are going to communicate. Show your personality. Have a clear mind in thinking and deciding your style and go for it. Be sure to keep it consistent and precise.
Provide good content
No matter how beautiful your page, if you can’t sell your words, you won’t sell your product. Think and take time for good titles. Make it interesting and inviting to read. Make the content easy to understand and remember. Avoid using words that are unfamiliar and irrelevant. Focus on what you want to say and deliver it clearly. I have created a more in depth page on how to increase reader engagement here.
Have good advertising ideas
If you are advertising a product, explain what you are selling, and to whom do you want to sell it to. Indicate prices and other information properly so that they don’t have to ask a lot of questions when they purchase. Give them some samples. Show some positive feedback from previous satisfied customers, and let them do the rest. Targeted buyers often base decisions from advice and feedback of previous customers. Make sure the products have value! If you are promoting a scam you mide as well flush your brand and website down the toilet!
Update your content as often as possible
By doing this, you will push back stale content in your website and provide fresh news to everyone who is visiting. Plus, the search engines absolutely love frequently updated websites and as long as you are providing unique, original content you will earn better rankings. And we all know that better rankings will lead to more traffic…and traffic leads to sales!
Your website should be easy to navigate. The visitors don’t have all the time in the world to learn how your page works. Make it easy and simple. Complicated sites are a major turn off that makes targeted customers leave the page extremely quickly. You never want to have a high ‘bounce rate‘ because that tells the search engines that your are not providing any value to your readers.
A responsive web design provides optimal viewing. This offers easy reading whether in a computer or a smartphone. A responsive website is very accessible and very user-friendly. Also, in 2015 Google has stated that sites that are not ‘Mobile Friendly’ or responsive will not rank as well for targeted search terms. Your website should also have a fast pageload speed which is at least 2 seconds or less.
Hyperlinks are good and helpful in a website, however these must be used appropriately and moderately. Indicate links that have already been visited by a change in color. An unvisited link for example can be colored blue, and the visited ones in magenta. Improve the hyperlinks by adding anchor text, this way the readers and search engines will know what to expect before clicking the link. It is also important to interlink within the pages of your site. Not only does this keep your readers engaged and on your site longer but it helps with rankings as well.
Provide a Contact Page & Allow Comments
This way you can get feedback to improve your website or your products/services. Feedback is the best indicator on whether or not your site can become successful. Be sure to make time answering queries and comments, this way you become closer to the visitors. This gives them assurance that they are heard and accommodated and it also creates trust which is extremely important going forward in this business.
Don’t change your website interface too often
For the first 6 months to a year after website set-up, be sure not to change it, this will give familiarity to the visitors of your page and create what is known as a ‘brand’ to them.
I truly hope this article was useful in helping you understand some of the basic principles on creating a successful website. If you have any questions or would like to add some principles of your own that aren’t listed here please use the comment box below!