We’ve all experienced that frustrating feeling of landing on a website and not being able to find the information we’re looking for. Maybe the links are broken, the content is arranged in such a way it’s impossible to find things, things are slow to load or maybe the website is just plain ugly to look at.
Your website is a powerful extension of your brand. How confident are you that yours is attractive to customers or clients, and is easy to navigate?
Well, it’s your lucky day. We’re going to let you in on a few secrets to make sure your website is the best it can be. Mark the performance of your own website against each of the four criteria below to determine whether or not your website is at its best.
- Best Practice Design & Functionality
Websites can become outdated very quickly, both in terms of design and technology. If your website is custom built, make sure you stay on top of best practice techniques and incorporate these into your design every 6-12 months. If you are using a template from a themed site, such as WordPress, be sure to update the theme each time the developer releases an update. This will keep your site looking fresh and incorporate the latest functionality. You should also update your content on a regular basis. This means reviewing your text to make sure it is up to date, relevant and interesting, as well as rotating the imagery you use throughout your site to keep things fresh.
- Responsive Design
Today, consumers view websites on a variety of devices with different screen sizes, from phones to tablets to desktops. It is critical that your site looks great and is easy to navigate on each of these platforms. When people visit your website it should be a positive experience with no difficulty navigating around the site. Be sure to test how your website looks on different devices, and adjust your layout accordingly.
- Clear Navigation
Whilst your website makes logical sense to you, it’s important that not all brains work the same, particularly new users who are not familiar with the way you do business. For this reason, it is important to consider how easy it is for people to find what they need on your site. Is content organised in a logical method? Are your menu bars clear and comprehensive?
Spend some time researching your customer path. What information will they search for? How are they moving around the site and why? Much like the purchasing journey you aim to achieve in person, this process should be equally smooth and enjoyable online.
- Visual Appeal & White Space
A picture speaks a thousand words and this couldn’t be truer for online content. People are time-poor and come to your site to find information quickly – don’t bog them down with walls of text. Images build your brand persona and help tell your story, but don’t over do it; white space is important too. It helps visitors focus on the important aspects of the page without becoming too overwhelmed. It helps guide the reader’s eyes as they follow the path of your content down the page.
We know, we know. You’re SO busy. But if you want to keep it that way, set aside some time and make sure your website is working as hard as you are and not driving potential new business away.