Traits Of A Great Website
Your website is not about you, but rather your users. You need to think about the people you want to visit your website, the target audience and think about what they want and why they are on your site to start with. Often, business make it all about them and talk about how amazing they are when really, nobody cares. People come to your website for a reason and that isn’t to listen to you trying to sell yourself, you need to let go of that mentality and start focusing on what your prospects want to see and what they want to achieve from going to your website.
Consumers today are looking for completely different web experiences compared to say, ten years ago. They want answers, and they want them now. Your audience doesn’t want to pick up the phone or email you to ask a question, the answers should be there.
What’s the point of your website?
When somebody visits your website they only have one aim for the visit and that’s to find out the information and quickly. Yes, the information required changes from person to person, but if you do not give them the required information with 3-5 clicks then you may as well say ciao now! Your prospects do not want to just sit and sift the website to find the answer, they want it quickly. This is because technology has made as lazy. To rectify this, all information must be easily accessible from the first page.
It’s that magical word that keeps cropping up again, but it’s the best way to answer your audience’s questions. Any question you have been asked about your business should have an answer on your website. This could be through blog posts; podcasts or videos. If you have a product, create a video on how to use it! Video is a great way to engage your customers and generate interest. Content isn’t expensive to produce, a little time and effort and you can write a blog like this one.
The User Journey
Not everybody who visits your website is ready to buy right now, whether you are B2B or B2C. The majority of B2B (business to business) site visitors are researching your business and are looking for answers to their questions. B2C (business to customer) visitors are much the same, researching your service or product before buying. Researching before we buy is in our nature as we want to get the best deal.
Each page that your visitor lands on will have an expectation, they want to know if they are in the right place. Ensure each page has a clear purpose and the user knows what you are asking them to do next. But never ask your users to do too much as it’s confusing and often, they will do nothing. Keep the call to action’s simple and clear but don’t’ bombard your audience with them. Having navigation steps at the top and bottom of each page can help guide them in the right direction to eventually convert them. If a website has no set purpose or guidance, your users will get frustrated and will leave, probably to a competitors site.
The User Experience
Your website is providing a part of the user experience right now. Judgements are made straight away about your company and this is based on your website, if you have a bad website then your prospects will think of your company the same. They want to see how easy it is to do business with you and learn what you are about.
To do this your website needs to; answer their questions, take them on a journey and finally to tell a story.
I should hand over to George, our resident web designer, but he’s off drawing icons or sticking a keyboard to his head….
Web designers are fantastic in knowing how to make a website look amazing. However, there is input that they need from you. Web sites are all well and good being pretty, but they must fit the company aims and branding. When speaking to your web designer you must be clear in how you want your business to be portrayed as it must be consistent between all platforms, online or offline. Most web design agencies will already ask these questions, but if they don’t you must let them know.
Your website should be responsive and ready for mobile, did you know over 50% of all web traffic is taking place on a mobile? There is no good reason not to have a mobile ready website and the amount of people using mobile for web-surfing is steadily increasing.
Google does take into account whether a web site is responsive and mobile-ready, so if you’re not you risk ranking much lower on the search engines, which brings me on to my next subject.
Search Engine Optimisation
Google’s objective is to bring relevant results to its users and make sure that these websites are ready to be used by a variety of people.
When your prospects are searching on Google they usually type in a question to get an answer. The way to rank for these questions is to title your pages, videos or blog posts with a question and then answer it within the content. If it’s relevant, Google will find it.
If you have a specific set of keywords you want to rank high on, try to use these in your posts but make sure it’s relevant to the page or you risk being ranked lower by Google for spamming keywords.
If you don’t quite understand SEO then I recommend speaking to an expert. You can waste so much time trying to rank for keywords when it would make more sense going to an expert.
If you do choose this route, make sure the tactics that they use are not black-hat techniques. Black-hat is when the keywords are put there just for the search engines and not for the audience that’s using your site.