Last week we talked about how a bad web site can do your enterprise extra harm than excellent. That column brought a number of emails asking what is the key to building an effective business web site. I replied with the identical answer I generally give: building an successful enterprise website can be a simple matter of definition.
Before the first graphic is drawn or the first line of code is written, you need to define the website’s budget, purpose, target audience, design, navigation, and content.
And when that’s all said and performed you must define the marketing that will bring visitors to your web site.
It sounds simple, but you’d be amazed at how many actually poor business web sites you will discover available. Yours may even be one of them. If so, listen up.
For almost ten years now my business has been building and rebuilding internet websites for every type of organization you’ll be able to imagine: from mom-and-pops to multinationals. We’ve designed (or redesigned) a couple hundred web sites and along the way I have come to the conclusion that most business sites do a pitiful job of working for their owners.
What’s that, you didn’t know your company web page ought to work for you? You feel it must just sit on a server somewhere taking up digital space and collecting digital dust?
Wrong. Each web-site, business or otherwise, should serve a purpose, and that’s commonly where most internet websites falls short. They serve no purpose for the reason that the website owner never gave a lot thought to it. It’s not the website’s fault. A web-site is inanimate. It is only what you make it. The only life an internet site has is the 1 given to it by its designer and owner. If the human element doesn’t do an excellent job of defining the building blocks, the web page will serve no purpose and eventually die a digital death.
Building an effective company site isn’t brain surgery, thank goodness, since that’s how I make a nice percentage of my living. Building an efficient, well-designed web site that works for its owner, that actually serves a purpose, is all about definition.
Every single website, no matter how large or little, need to have a realistic spending budget, with “realistic” being the key word. I can’t tell you how several times I’ve sat having a potential client as they listed off the eight million cool issues they wanted their web page to do, only to find out that their budget was just some hundred dollars. I usually feel like saying, “Well you just wasted 3 hundred dollars of my time, so here’s your bill.”
Every single web site need to have a purpose. Purpose drives everything: the audience, the design, the navigation, the content, and also the marketing. I could do an whole column on purpose, but suffice it to say that you will discover five categories of purpose under which most web pages fall: the purpose to inform, to educate, to entertain, to generate leads, to sell, or a combination thereof. Should you fail to define the purpose of the website, all else is just wasted effort.
Your target audience refers to that segment of the public that you hope to attract to the web site. For example in the event you sell shoes, your target audience could be anyone with feet. Taking it a step further, should you only sold women’s shoes, your target audience would be ladies (with feet) Why is defining your target audience so vital? If you have no thought who your audience is, how can you expect to design a web-site that can appeal to them? Your target audience could be clients, investors, job seekers, info seekers, etc. Define your target audience, then determine how to serve them.
Web page design theory has changed over the last couple of years, primarily for the reason that the search engines now ignore graphic heavy sites and give preference to those that take a minimalistic approach to design. In the event you take a look at a few of the huge boy web pages like GE, Oracle, Raytheon, HP, and others you will see that in many instances the only graphic on the homepage is the company’s logo. Search engines now give higher preference to internet websites that give keyword-rich text over flashy graphics. Do not fight the design trend. You’ll lose.
Bad navigation is the number one reason internet site visitors abandon a website. Navigation refers to the chain of links the visitor uses to get around your web site. If your web site has an illogical navigational hierarchy or too couple of or too quite a few links or is basically impossible to get around, you’ve got complications. We live in a microwave society. We stand in front of the microwave tapping our foot and glaring at our watch wondering why it takes so damn long for a bag of popcorn to pop. Why can’t a three-minute egg be completed in thirty seconds? If it takes a visitor much more than three clicks to get to any page on your internet site, your navigation wants improvement.
Content refers to the information on your internet site, be it graphics, text, downloadable items, etc. Because the top search engines no longer use HTML Meta tag information to index web pages, it’s crucial that your site content be text heavy, succinct and well-written to appeal to the search engine spiders.
Copyblogger has some amazing tips on content writing. Most of them are related to most common grammtical mistakes.
Next, who will build the web site for you? Will you do it your self using 1 of the point and click web site builders or will you hire the kid next door? Will you hire a freelance designer or a professional firm? Spending budget usually dictates the construct strategy, but be warned, when it comes to web page development, you get what you pay for. Sure, the kid next door will throw up a web page for you if you obtain them a pizza or make your daughter go to the prom with them, but you will end up a with a web site that looks like and performs like it was created by the kid next door.
If you build it, will they come? Not on your life, at least not with out a great marketing campaign. Your web site will need to turn into a part of all your advertising efforts, on-line and off.
Put the web-site address on your organization cards, brochures, letterhead, and all collateral. Contain the address within your ads; print, TV and radio. When you prefer to do on the web advertising, determine where your target audience surfs and advertise there.
If marketing is foreign to you, do your self a favor and call in an professional. Many businesses fail mainly because they basically don’t know how you can marketplace their goods and services effectively. This is also the downfall of most company web pages.
Though i have taken utmost care to define the most refined ideas, I have observed while designing my blogs and others website. What is your best idea, do share with us.
The Whole concept was developed by the man you are watching here. I am rakesh Kumar Serial Niche Blogger and SEO Enthusiast. find me onfacebook
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