Maintaining an online business presence was always important, but – with the COVID-19 pandemic and the exponential increase in online shopping accompanying it – it is now more essential than ever. And, of course, without the right website, you can never expect to successfully represent yourself in the digital world.
But what goes into making the right website? Not only should it be functional and aesthetic, but it should also be visible to search engines, be able to attract customers, and lead to meaningful conversions. And did we mention code integrity?
All of this might sound overwhelming, but thankfully, we have prepared a guide that will help you create a website that maximizes user experience and compels your visitors to leave as long-term customers.
Designing the Perfect Website – Factors to Consider
The domain name
The perfect domain name speaks volumes without really saying anything (take Hotmail, for instance). Not only should your domain name be memorable and easy to spell, but it should also be able to communicate your brand’s message.
When your domain name is simple, SEO-optimized, and reflective of your brand identity, it has a significantly higher chance of being prioritized by search engines and, as a result, attracting more customers.
The first thing you need to consider with usability is whether your website is usable in the literal sense or not. For instance, you need to ensure that there are no broken links, loading problems, or security concerns.
Secondly, check whether the website is usable from the audience’s perspective. Is the product list easily accessible? Are the survey forms simple and easy to fill out? Are the ads hampering user experience? Ticking all these boxes is important as they can prove to be the difference between an impressed customer and a frustrated visitor.
A neat and attractive website design is just as important as its functionality. You have around ten seconds to make your first impression, and an appealing design will make your visitors stick around. Make sure that the design enables viewers to concentrate on your brand and offerings, and avoid using large blocks of text, irrelevant graphics, or exaggerated color schemes.
Remember that the quality of the website is often indicative of the quality of product or service, so it is essential that you give your visitors the kind of user experience that would instate trust in your offerings and encourage them to make a purchase.
That perpetually spinning ‘loading’ circle is perhaps the scariest nightmare for users looking for specific products, services, or information. Testing your website before its official release will help you identify any issues related to loading times and to solve them before they can impair customer experience and damage your brand’s online reputation.
To ensure optimal user experience and increase customer retention, conduct periodic evaluation of your website loading times even after it has launched. It does not take long for customers to change their minds and turn to a competitor, and your website should be able to load well before that happens.
Social media integration
Social media has been touted as the modern equivalent of word-of-mouth promotions, and businesses that fail to take advantage of this promotional route are left behind.
Through social media integration, you allow your customers and followers to remain informed, provide reviews, and promote your brand. Moreover, including additional social sharing options on your website will enable visitors to distribute your written and visual content across multiple social media platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and even LinkedIn.
1) Active blog:
Website blogs serve the dual purpose of marketing your latest offerings and keeping the customer informed with valuable industry information. By encouraging interaction, blogs are also an excellent way to improve engagement with your customers. Updating your blogs regularly with fresh, engaging, and helpful content will go a long way in establishing you as an industry authority while making sure that your customers keep returning to your website.
By publishing customer testimonials on your website, you show your visitors that your offerings deliver as they promise. Witnessing people purchasing your product and getting the desired benefit will instill confidence within your customers and encourage them to try out your offerings.
You can reach out to your loyal customers and see if they are willing to share their positive reviews with you. A video review, in particular, is an excellent opportunity to promote your product, as recorded reviews are more detailed and seen as more genuine by the viewers (but even written reviews work fine).