Web Design Checklist: What You Need to Build an Effective Website
With some 97 percent of consumers now turning to the internet to search for local businesses in their area, an online presence is vital if you want to succeed, no matter what field your business operates in. However, it’s not enough to simply have a presence. A poorly designed or difficult-to-use site can deter rather than attract new customers.
Understanding the key elements that determine how effective a website will be makes it far easier to ensure they are incorporated into your own design. Read on for a few tips on the key principles to bear in mind.
The Need For Speed
Studies show that customers will rapidly lose patience with a site that takes too long to load and end up taking their business elsewhere. Take care with your use of images and other graphics to ensure there is nothing on your site that causes it to slow down.
Utilize tools such as Pingdom or Pagespeed Insights to monitor the speed of your website and get tips on how to improve. One way to ensure your site is always lightning fast it to build it with the help of an eCommerce platform such as BigCommerce. However, if you want your site to be truly effective and help take your business to the next level, it’s a good idea to work alongside a platform partner, such as Black Belt Commerce, who can optimize all the key elements of your BigCommerce eCommerce store to boost traffic further and increase your sales.
The logo for your firm should appear on every page of your website. Your site functions as a shop window but to ensure you distinguish yourself from the competition, it is vital to keep your branding front and center at all times.
Today’s shoppers also care deeply about who they are buying from as well as what they are purchasing. A detailed “About Us” page that tells an engaging story about the founding of the company, outlines the values of the organization and puts a human face on the enterprise is often the clincher that turns a wavering potential customer into a loyal one.
All the key elements of your site, such as navigation buttons, social media links tabs for other pages, should remain in the same location on every page. It makes it far easier for users to navigate their way around your site, to share details with friends and colleagues and to find exactly what they are looking for if you are consistent throughout the site.
Ensure the consistency remains in place on the mobile version of your website as an increasing number of users may access your eCommerce store through multiple channels in the course of a single session. An effective design means they will enjoy the same high-quality experience regardless of channel and that the transition between them will be seamless.
A steady stream of fresh content is a great asset to your site but you should also take the time to remove tired or outdated content as this reflects badly on your company and may even damage your search engine rankings. One tactic is to create an archive section where such material can still be found and keep your most popular articles within easy reach. This will prevent visitors from having to wade through dozens or even hundreds of pages of content to find the pieces they are most interested in reading.