By: Martijn Broeders
Author Bio: We DesignScan your website with our self developed tools for: design flaws, usability, GUI, images, code age, a.o., and report back to you with a detailed report on- and off-line.
What element, that a great website will need, is the most important for you?
Poll results visable after vote
If you are a business owner, your website is absolutely one of the most important tools you have to get more clients or customers. So what separates a good website from a bad website, or a good one from a great one? What element, that a great website will need, is the most important for you?
The website design should be easy to navigate and the menu items should easily accessible from any page. The viewer should always know exactly where they are on the website and have easy access to where they would like to be. A site map is a great idea and will be used if available. This sounds elementary but most websites could be improved in this area. Remember, there is a ﬁne line between an interactive menu and an annoying one, so functionality should be the idea.
People are visually oriented creatures, and utilising great graphics is a good way to make your website more appealing. Your website has about 1/10th of a second to impress your visitor - and potential customer - and let them know that your website - and business - is trustworthy and professional. However, it's important not to go overboard with too much. Scrolling text, animation, and ﬂash intros should be used sparingly in your web design and only to emphasise a point for maximum effect.
This is the backbone of your website. Not only does your content play a major role in your search engine placement, it is the reason most visitors are seeking from your website in the first place. Your website text should be informative, easy to read, and concise. Well, thought out web content and copy will do more than anything else to make your website design engaging, effective and popular.
No matter how informative, beautiful, and easy to use your website design is, it's useless unless it's web-friendly. It is important that your web designers know the keys to making your website work on all the major browsers, and that they utilize meta tags, alt tags, are fully versed in SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Many factors effect your search engine placement and visual appearance of your site, so make sure your web designers know their stuff.
A truly effective website design engages your visitors immediately and continues to hold their attention through EVERY page, as well as inﬂuences them to contact you. This is called 'conversion', and is probably your website's ultimate goal. Again, there is a ﬁne line between ʻinteractionʼ and ʻannoyanceʼ, so the level of interaction should never outweigh the beneﬁt.
Not all visitors to your website are interested in, or have the time to peruse the entire site. They may need to access only a phone number or address, or just a certain bit of info. For this reason itʼs important to place key information in plain site, in an area thatʼs easily accessible. Weʼve all had the experience of not being able to locate some needed information on a website, and the result is always a frustrated visitor. The experience is annoying at best, and a disgruntled visitor wonʼt stay on your site very long and is unlikely not to return, much less do business with you.
A great website anticipates what your visitor is thinking and caters directly to their needs, and has elements arranged in a way that makes sense. If a visitor is searching for one of your products or services on a search engine or directory where your site is listed, it's important that your website have a landing page that is directly relevant to what they searched for rather than forcing them to filter through all of your information. Remember, the shortest distance between two points is a straight line.
Your website should be a direct reﬂection of your business and your brand. Your visitor should immediately make a visual connection between your logo, print material, and brick-and-mortar location. A website that does this not only contributes to the memorability of your branding, but adds a level of credibility and enhanced image of that of your overall business.
The number one complaint of website design customers is the time it takes to get the site up and running. Unfortunately, a ﬁrm that takes unusually long to complete your website is par for the course. The longer it takes to complete the website, the more business - and value - you lose. A website that isnʼt on the web isnʼt going to bring you any business!
Your website can be the most important client generator your business can have, and must place the primary emphasis on bringing in new clients and making additional services available to existing clients through increased awareness of all the services you offer. Providing them with the tools they need to do business with you in an easy and enjoyable way will increase your website conversion and bring you the kind of success you seek.