Thanks to the Internet, it’s possible for any SMB (small or medium business) to build a great website and capture a slice of the market. Your business website offers your customers an up close and personal perspective of your company. Getting it just right takes some doing.
Search engine crawlers from Google and Yahoo stand a much better chance of catapulting your business into the limelight if it has been fully optimized for the web. In the days of old, face-to-face communications and word-of-mouth served businesses well. Today it’s all about the quality of your business website.
Setting up shop online needn’t be an exasperating project. There are many effective tips, tricks, and strategies you can employ to fast-track your way to success. Effective web design is built on easy navigation. Your website establishes your business’s credibility with the market.
There are many ways that you can go about building trust with your stakeholders. This includes a rock-solid vision and mission statement, a customer-centric focus, and the provision of excellent products and services. All of this is done within the ambit of a carefully-marketed branding strategy.
Once you have optimized your website with keywords, search phrases, and terms that best describe your businesses offerings, you will have a much better shot at success. These meta tags, meta titles, and keywords are important. But there are many more factors to focus on when building an effective business website.
Here are the 10 most important tips for building a business website:
#1 What is the Objective of Your Website?
You got goals, right? What are your business’s goals? Are you looking to establish a strong online presence, or are you looking to generate as many leads from your website as possible? It’s important to build a marketing strategy based on how many leads you’re looking to target on a monthly basis. Plus, you may want to be running ad campaigns from your site too.
Are you going to be selling products and services online? What about an online payments system and a customer support operation? Your website is the interface between your business and your customers.
#2 Get the Branding Right
How do you want your business to be perceived by your target market? Branding is everything that you do as a company to create the impression of excellence. Branding encompasses the message that your company puts out, the image of your company in the marketplace, and it also includes physical icons, symbols, and artistic representations of how your company gets portrayed to the world.
It’s vital to conduct in-depth market research to ensure proper alignment between your company’s aspirations and corporate culture and the needs of community within which it operates. Branding doesn’t have to cost a lot of money, however, if you have the budget, it’s best to enlist the support of a professional brand expert to bring your concept to fruition.
#3 Don’t Make Silly Mistakes in Website Design
Once you have crafted excellent content, you don’t want to waste it with a poorly designed website. It’s not just about your choice of color, layout, and font. It’s also about the wow effect that your site has with visitors. Nothing is more annoying to customers than a barrage of advertisements on a website.
People also don’t like stale content on sites, so be sure to keep your blog and content updated. Broken links, missing pages, blank content, or incorrect information can turn people away quickly.
#4 Free or Paid Content? You Decide
Some business websites subscribe to a premium-based service for everything they are offering. Unfortunately, people are instantly turned off by this type of content. Only a small number of folks are prepared to go to a website and pay top dollar for information that they’re looking to source. A better way to go about offering things like e-books, instructional guides, webinars, podcasts and so forth is to mix it up. Have some content that is free and some content that is paid. This is known as freemium content.
#5 Make Your Business Website Mobile Responsive
Did you know that the majority of shoppers are now accessing business websites from their mobile phones, tablets, and phablets? It’s true. Most shoppers are finding their products from smartphones today. If your website is not mobile responsive, it’s likely that you will lose customers to your competitors. Any e-commerce site worth its salt will pay particular attention to mobile responsiveness. This is a priority.
#6 Make Everything Easy for Customers
Nobody likes navigating a clunky website. Slow-loading landing pages packed with image-heavy content are a no-no. Limit the number of tabs you have on your homepage and menu bar to a minimum. It’s also important to make it as easy as possible for customers to navigate back to your homepage, without getting lost in the vortex of cyberspace.
An ingenious approach to adopt is having multiple domain names redirecting to your website. This makes it much easier to attract an audience to your business. Transparency is a big part of the deal. Put all your customer contact information out in plain sight, including email addresses, profiles of company leaders, dedicated social media pages, and so forth.
#7 Make your Business Website Sticky
A sticky site is one which has a lower bounce rate. If you are able to attract customers, you certainly don’t want them navigating away from your website. This means you want to entice them with great content, great products, and great customer service. Once somebody lands on your site, encourage them to click on different pages and links to draw them through the sales funnel. The longer customers linger, the greater the chance of extracting important information from them, possibly even doing a sale.
There are many ways to increase stickiness, and all of them are focused on providing high-quality content, value-added extras, and top-tier support.
#8 Search Engine Optimization
SEO is very important when building an effective business website. Think of how many websites populate the Internet? It’s like a gazillion. How are you going to stand out from the competition if you don’t optimize your website with professional SEO in place?
Everything featured on your site must be optimized so that search engines can form the correlation between a user search and your business website. Once you’ve established that connection, traffic will come your way.
#9 Build a Business Without Alienating Your Customers
The hard sell is a tough sell in today’s market. People have wised up to the practices of Internet marketers. People want to feel that the products and services they are buying are actually solving their problems and not just selling them a bunch of malarkey.
There are more subtle ways to build your business up than force-feeding hard sales to your customers. Video retargeting and video remarketing are techniques that uses emotive audio-visual content to resonate with customers.
#10 Analyze Your Business Website Traffic
You will only know how effective your business website is if you study the analytics. There are powerful web analytics tools available to help you identify key variables with your site. Which pages do people land on? Where does the traffic come from? How do they find you? Where do you lose your visitors? Where can you focus more of your attention with your business website? Web analytics is a powerful resource to help build an effective business website.
Once it’s all said and done, be sure to have a fabulous call to action (CTA) to get your customers to buy your business’ products and services.
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