In the present digital world, websites have become the first point of contact for most people. Your website is your window to the world. You cannot just leave it unnoticed. People should be able to easily find information about you on the web, and be curious enough to explore further. If you do not update your site regularly, users will get bored and quickly lose interest in your brand and business.
Small business owners know the struggle of running a small business. It can be challenging to grow your start-up, yet it can also be rewarding if you’re able to succeed.
For most small businesses, online visibility is the key to growing their brand and the first step towards this is with a well-designed website.
With more people accessing the web for longer periods, it’s important for small business owners to understand how having a presence on the web benefits their growth as well as their future marketing efforts.
Importance of High-Quality Websites for Small Businesses
Not only are your competitors online, but your customers are too. In fact, there are over 4 billion active internet users across the globe, and 81% of consumers say they do most of their decision-making online before making a purchase in a physical store.
Having no online presence excludes a large proportion of today’s consumers. Even if a brand has a website, it does not guarantee that it will attract consumers. Consumers have higher expectations when it comes to websites and digital content. If a website is poorly designed and inaccessible, users will quickly leave and go to a different online store or website and will never return.
How to Create an Effective Website to Boost Traffic and Sales
So you know you need a good website to grow your business, but how exactly do you go about creating a website that has a good design and is appealing to your consumers?
Your website is your online identity. It is the first impression you make on your potential customers. So it’s crucial to make sure your website looks professional and generates leads and sales for your business.
A poorly designed website, on the other hand, will give visitors the wrong impression about your business and brand and negatively impact your growth.
So how do you design a website that helps your business grow and thrive online?
Below, are the top web design strategies to help you create a better online presence and boost traffic to your site with a limited small business budget.
Research and Know Your Target Audience
Knowing your target audience is marketing 101 for small businesses. If you don’t know who your customer is, you probably won’t be able to design a website that will attract them.
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So before diving right into your web design strategy, it’s smart to first spend some time doing a bit of research on your target audience. You should attempt to answer questions like:
- Who is your average customer?
- What are their wants and needs?
- What does your customer value or care about?
It can even be helpful in this phase to develop customer personas. Customer personas are essentially fake profiles that show you what your ideal customer is like. This means coming up with personality and behavioral traits, demographic and psychological traits, and overall any characteristics that make them seem like a real person who would want to buy your product. Doing this can give you something more substantial to guide you as you create a website that appeals to your target customer. However, be mindful not to take the customer persona too literally. It’s meant to simply be a guide, not the answer to everything.
Focus on SEO
SEO is essential when it comes to designing a website. A website that’s properly optimized will appear at the top of search engine results. Being easily found for important keywords and phrases will increase the visibility of your business leading to more leads and sales.
To optimize your content for Google, you need to:
- Use well-written and engaging content and copy that is easy to read and understand.
- Incorporate keywords into titles and meta descriptions
- Build internal links
- Use Alt Text for images
- Make navigation clear and intuitive
Prioritize Website Accessibility
Web accessibility is another key component when designing a website. Your website may look good, but if it isn’t accessible, then it won’t matter. In other words, if users can’t easily find and navigate your website, it’s not accessible and it’s not going to help drive traffic or boost sales.
This means making things easy to read, using good table organization and labeling, and making sure your web pages load quickly. This also means using Image Alt Text so that users who are blind or can’t see well can rely on screen readers to convey what is in front of them. If a customer of any ability gets to your website and is confused about where to find what they are looking for, they won’t stick around. Prioritize accessibility and this won’t be a problem.
Make Sure Your Website is Mobile Friendly
As the majority of today’s consumers access the internet using mobile devices, you must design a mobile-friendly version of your website. Not all web designs automatically translate over to mobile. For example, some elements that load on a regular website will not load on mobile, or they will take much longer to load, so always make sure that your mobile version is just as optimized and accessible as your regular website.
Security is Critical
Most websites today utilize the cloud for data sharing and storage. However, as more and more information is uploaded to the cloud, that data becomes more vulnerable to cyberattacks and ransomware.
The last thing any small business wants to deal with is having sensitive data stolen or hacked — especially customer data. As such, cybersecurity should also be a part of your web design strategy. If your website contains sensitive information or asks for customers to provide sensitive information, then you need to protect it from ransomware attacks and other cyber threats.
The success of a company often depends on the quality of its website and how much effort it takes to market it. If you have a great website that can be easily found online, then you will have more visitors, more leads, and more success.
With so many resources and options available for creating a professional-looking website, it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg for you to create a high-quality website.
There are plenty of affordable web design companies that can build your dream website if you know how to loo. You can even do it yourself. By paying attention and applying the tips in this post you’ll be able to have a website that will allow your business to grow and thrive for many years to come.