Small Business Website Advice | 5 Big Website Design Ideas For Small Business Owners
Small Business Website Advice | Of all of the weapons in a small business owner’s marketing arsenal, your website is one of the most effective ones. A professionally designed website can be the critical difference that makes a visitor choose to stick around, browse and make a purchase instead of moving on to a competitor’s website. Sharing your website is like showing up to a first date. In other words: first impressions matter.
The Internet has revolutionized marketing, and setting up an effective website is the first step toward using the Internet to your advantage. Even brick-and-mortar stores can benefit from having a website that showcases their inventories and helps potential clients find their locations. However, much like fashion, web design is constantly evolving with trends and fads coming and going. When it comes to setting up a website that will leave a professional impression, you will always do well to keep everything up to date and on trend. Here’s what you need to know.
Focus On Value | Small Business Website Advice
One of the first elements of your website that visitors should see is your unique value preposition. Why is your business better than its competitors? Lower prices? Better quality? We don’t have to tell you that a successful business is built on a strong value proposition. You need to be able to answer why potential clients should care about your product or service, and how it can give them a good return on their investment. Be upfront and clear about exactly what you do and include this information on your website. What is your pricing system? Who do you sell to? Try to anticipate people’s questions before they even get a chance to ask them.
Minimize Distractions | Small Business Website Advice
Remember that you have just five seconds to explain your value proposition to visitors when they land on your website. The back button is the most widely used command on the web. It’s incredibly easy these days to be visually overloaded with images, to the point where our brains stop processing information when overwhelmed with too many options. If there are multiple calls to action, or the navigation has too many links to choose from, visitor’s attention is diverted in too many different directions. This means they’re too busy figuring out where to go, when they should be focused on your content and the benefits of your product or service instead.
Simplify Navigation | Small Business Website Advice
Primary navigation options are usually placed in a horizontal menu bar along the top of each page. Provide secondary navigation options below the primary navigation bar as well, or in the right-hand margin of your website known as the sidebar. Placing it somewhere else would be like putting the contents page of the book randomly in the middle. Internet users are also used to being able to search for what they are looking for and obtain meaningful results at the click of a button. Adding a search function to your website will help stop potential clients from looking elsewhere if they don’t instantly see what they are looking for on your homepage.
Keep It Fresh | Small Business Website Advice
Content is still king. Your job is to make sure that whatever copy you’re putting up on your website, is logical, and actually reads well. Not taking care of things like the content of your website is a serious signal that you probably don’t care about other aspects of your business either. You don’t want your visitors to see outdated content and think your business isn’t active online, which could affect your business. One of the best ways to avoid this is by publishing interesting and informative content on a regular basis. Keep in mind that if any of this content is time-sensitive, you will have to keep an eye on it to make sure it has not become out of date. If your last press release is from a year ago ago, for example, consider removing that page altogether or adding a few new ones to avoid appearing behind the times.
Invest In Good, Professional Photography | Small Business Website Advice
Website visitors can sniff out generic imagery in a second – and they’ll be left with a generic impression of your business. Your company isn’t generic, so show your visitors that by investing in professional photography. You can also consider using videos. Today’s internet is accessible to users at blistering speeds beyond the wildest dreams of the web of 25 years ago. One of the best ways to take advantage of this new speed is to put multimedia and videos to work for your business.