Tips to Develop an Amazing Website
Did you know this little fun tidbit? Half of the people who visit a website choose to stay or not, depending on its design. Every business, regardless of size, invests in website design and development. These days even brick-and-mortar stores that don't have an eCommerce store need a website. Creating one or hiring someone to do it for you isn't difficult but several parts of it need extra attention.
With the increasing competition online, it's not enough to have a website. So let's look at some tips to make it a standout for prospective customers.
Tip #1: Make Site Speed A Priority
People usually don't spend hours on a website. They open it with a specific goal in mind, browse the site according to it, and then move on to the next website. However, they will be immediately put off if they access a website where they have to wait for every page to load.
The site speed of the website is the least debated one in the website design sphere. Research shows that a two-second delay in page load increases the bounce rate by 100%. The site speed also influences conversions, user experience, and revenue. If the website is slow, visitors won't stick around. Period. Moreover, search engine rankings also change depending on your website speed.
Tip #2: Leverage the Above Fold
There is a heated debate on whether the fold should be an object of focus for a website design. However, even in 2022, 80% of visitors on a website spend most of their time above the fold, i.e., at the top of the website. As they scroll down, their attention span declines. So, it's safe to say that despite the debate, the fold still matters. When developing a website, you need to leverage the above fold and use the space to hook the visitors into staying longer. There are a few ways you can do that:
· Clear & Descriptive Headlines
A clear and descriptive headline should show what the business is and what it has to offer. The headline should highlight the benefits using impactful words. Remember to be brief.
· Main Call To Action
A website must always have a call to action to encourage visitors to stay on the website. It's a business's chance to increase conversion. Above the fold is the perfect place to include your main call to action, as that's where visitors will focus the most. Make sure the CTA is visible, to the point, and understandable.
· Include Media
Research says that only 20% of people remember what they read, whereas most are visual learners. So always add media to your website to emphasize a point. More on that later.
Tip #3: Remember Hick's Law
Hick's Law says the more options someone has, the more difficult it is to choose one; hence they take more time to decide. Actual studies have proved this phenomenon. According to the results, people with fewer choices were more likely to buy something than those with many. You may be questioning how this is important for your website. However, it's important because you can use this to increase your conversions by limiting the user's choices. Here's how:
· Reduce the number of items on the menu.
· Focus on one or two calls to action.
· Display social buttons only for networks you're active on.
· Set one goal per page.
Of course, there are other ways to reduce the number of choices without making your website seem bare. The key is not to overwhelm your users and move them towards the choices that benefit them and you.
Tip #4: Become an SEO Wizard (Or Hire One)
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has the highest ROI in marketing. Doing it right can put a business's marketing on autopilot. It also starts with the website. During website design and development, there are two important aspects: consumers and search engines. An SEO-friendly website will rank better, and consumers can find it more accessible.
Moreover, even though most companies focus on SEO and website design separately, they must work together. A website with a stunning design will be useless if the consumers can't find it. Similarly, social media and PPC ads are great for increasing traffic, but the most benefit comes from organic traffic. SEO web design increases organic traffic, and the better your organic traffic, the higher your search engine rankings will be.
Tip #5: Keep Your Website Simple
An amazing website doesn't need to be overly fancy to be called amazing. Remember that less is more, which also applies to the website. Although visitors prefer visuals, a Google study has shown that website visitors don't like visual complexity. The gist: the simpler and easier-on-the-eyes your website is, the more people will like it. Here are some pointers to remember:
· Websites are ditching sidebars for single-column design because it has fewer distractions and focuses on the content.
· Stick to standard layouts, as many people don't react well to unfamiliarity. Also, stick to familiar design tropes because there will be ways to stand out.
· Have a homepage that answers all critical questions about the business.
· Consider the impression you want your business to give.
Tip #6: Develop a Website For All Devices
As of 2022, 53% of website traffic comes from phones, while only 46% comes from desktops. Therefore, website development should focus on being accessible to all users regardless of their device. Avoid developing a website for large monitor sizes or pages with complex features. Instead, clean it periodically and ensure it's simple, so visitors from all devices find it easy to navigate. It reduces the website's load time and provides a better user experience. In addition, a responsive design will bump the website in local search rankings. A responsive website design has been part of Google's ranking algorithm since 2015.
Tip #7: Answer The Question "Why?"
Have you ever walked up to a person, handed them your business card, and called it a day? Likely not. Because that's not how you convert customers; if you want people to do something on your website, tell them why they should do it. For example, if you want visitors to sign up for email promotions, don't just add a pop box that says sign up. Instead, have it say sign up for weekly or monthly promotions and tell thhhem what they will get if they do sign up. Offering discount coupons goes a long way. There is ever-increasing competition online, and if you want your website to stand out, you need to show what you offer. In short, it should answer a consumer's question, "Why this business?"
Tip #8: Prioritize Scrolling
Professional web developers recommend that websites not compress information in sliders or accordions. Instead of compressing the information, use one long page to convey the same information. There's a case study by Crazy Egg that proves it to be beneficial. They made a shift from short sales pages to one sales page that was a lot longer. As a result, their conversion went up by 30%. In addition, users prefer scrolling over clicking because many prefer finding information through phones than desktops.
Tip #9: Direct Attention Using Visual Cues
Research says that about 65% of the population learns visually. One of the main functions of website design and development is to direct users to important website sections. Different elements will have different weights, and you can use them to direct focus. More direct visual cues will be even better. For example, there are two ways you can add pictures and content next to it on a website. One is where a person looks straight ahead with the content on the right; another, they gaze towards the content instead. More people will read the latter when they are looking at the content. This is a visual cue you can use to direct attention to your website. You can use both subtle and blunt visual cues to steer visual attention.
Tip #10: Use Lists To Make Information Accessible
Ordered and unordered lists are a great way to make information accessible. However, human attention is fickle, and they won't remember everything they see on the list. This is because of the serial position effect. According to the effect, people are most likely to remember items at the beginning and the end. They're also more likely to forget things they see in the middle section. The takeaway here is to place all the important information where it will make an impact.
Tip #11: Add Contact Information Above The Fold
We've already talked about how the important information should be above the fold, as that's where most visitors focus their attention. This should include your contact information as well. Contact information should be at the top, so visitors have an easier time finding if they want to contact your business. If you use social media to connect to your consumers, it should also be in the website header, where it'll be easy to find.
Tip #12: Trust Professionals With the Development
If you're considering developing a website, you may have wondered about hiring a professional website designer or developing it yourself. Although these days it's easy to build a website using premade templates, a professional will do a much better job. There are various reasons you should hire a professional for website development:
· Building a website, even with a template, is a time-consuming task. You have to work on everything from the planning of the site layout to the design and the development of website functionality. Hiring a professional saves you time and keeps things organized.
· Although website design should not be complex but use familiar elements, you can still add custom designs and make them visually appealing. The design is the core of a good website. Professional web designers have experience making a website unique to the business. They can also incorporate familiar website elements in a custom design.
· Professional developers stay up to date with current technology, so whatever platform they set up for you is less likely to depreciate over the years.
Things To Avoid
As there are things you should do to ensure the web development succeeds, there are things you shouldn't do.
· Lose the mentality of "build it, and they'll come." Developing a website is a start; you must attract visitors and show them what the business offers. Leverage social media, SEO, and other marketing strategies to attract visitors.
· Don't force people to think about where to go from your page. For this, do a three-second test and think like a visitor coming to your website for the first time. If the visitor can't figure out where to go from the particular page, it's back to the drawing board.
· Don't spend all your budget on the website. You must invest in an experienced professional to build a website to ensure it's done right. However, that doesn't mean you leave little finances for everything else.
· Don't add a blog unless you're going to write posts. Blogs are usually a great way to get customers to your website and raise awareness of the business. Nevertheless, if you won't add any, it's better not to have it as it becomes an empty placeholder, and the space can have some other better use.
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