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Monday, 14 January 2019 07:15

[Checklist] How to Design an Effective Business Website - 18 Things You Must Consider

It takes a lot of hard work to build a beautiful, functional, and user-friendly website.

At Bloominari, our San Diego Website Design Agency, we ensure that our client’s websites are designed to appeal to their customers. After all, search engines bots don’t have credit cards to pay for your services, but online users do.

Furthermore, website developers and designers need to work together to ensure your website is visible to search engines. 

More importantly, your website MUST be able to inspire visitors to become customers or religious readers.

This requires many processes. Here’s a checklist of 18 important tasks to consider to design an effective business website:

1. Make Your Site Mobile Responsive

A large portion of internet traffic is from mobile devices. In fact, about 60% of Google searches are done on mobile devices, and 4 in 5 local consumers conduct local searches on search engines.

Consumers Search

With this change in the way people access the internet, it’s vital for any website to be mobile responsive.

This improves your website’s user experience for mobile users. You can reduce your website’s bounce rate and increase its dwell time.

You can check how mobile-friendly your website is by using the Google mobile-friendly test. This will also give you suggestions on how to improve your website’s mobile friendliness.

Mobile Friendly Test

Using a responsive theme that adapts to screens of all sizes will help in this regard.

2. Make Your Site Easy to Find and Navigate

Visitors to your website should be able to find the most important pages on your website without having to go through hoops.

The rule of thumb is that visitors shouldn’t click on more than 3 links before they can access any page they want to.

By redesigning its website to help visitors find vacation locations, Bizztravel was able to increase its conversions by 21.34%.

Bizztravel

3. Place Your Contact Information Above the Fold

This is an important piece of information that visitors need to get in touch with your business.

They don't need to visit various pages before they find it. In another case, some websites provide a link at the top of their page that leads to their contact page.

This is an example of a page that leaves contact information above the fold. A good example is how we placed our phone number right in the menu -- above the fold.Phone Number

4. Focus on Clean Design

You may have the best content on your website. But if you have a poor and cluttered design, you’ll struggle to get visitors to spend a considerable amount of time on your website.

Your website design is the first impression a visitor has about your website.

The interesting thing is that most visitors will judge your business based on your website design. A clean design encourages your visitors to stay around on your website and explore your pages. This reduces your bounce rate and helps you to convert more customers.

According to Credibility Research from Stanford, 75% of users make judgments about a website based on its design.

5. Choose a Memorable Domain Name and a Reliable Web Host

Your domain name is your address online. If people forget your address, how do they reach you? It becomes very difficult.

A memorable domain name makes it easier for potential visitors to access your website. With over 333 million domain names registered, there's a need to stand out.

Doman Name

To make your domain name memorable, 2 tips you can use are:

  • Choose common words that people use regularly.
  • Make your domain name as short as possible.

In all, select a reliable web host for your website. This type of host ensures that your website is online when users need to access it. To select a host for your website, you should check reviews online to find the best one that suits your needs.

A reliable host should have an uptime of at least 99.98%. Likewise, you can choose a premium host for better security and a faster website. We recommend BlueHost as an affordable, professional and reliable hosting company.

6. Use a User-friendly Content Management System

Your content management system (CMS) allows you to organize your content in your blog, pages, and other parts of your website.

It also helps you to manage other parts of your website like statistics, plugins, themes, etc.

The most popular content management system online is WordPress with about 60% of the market share. The second most popular is Joomla, which we used to design this website.

Content marketing systems

This is due to its ease of use and numerous themes and plugins to make your website as functional as possible. You can also use other options like Drupal, Joomla, Magento, etc. based on your needs.

CMS

7. Effective Color Scheme

To give your website a great design, you need to have a color theme. With this, it’s easy for visitors to recognize your website. This also affects the overall design of your website.

You have to use complementary colors to have a beautiful website.

Check out ColourLovers.com as a great tool for colors inspirations and ideas, and checkout Bloominari’s color pallet here.

Grosse Lanterne

8. Make Branding a Priority

No matter what business you do, people follow reputable brands. But how do brands become reputable? By building trust and expertise over a long period of time. When you consider it, there are over 1.8 billion websites online and counting.

Branding

How do you differentiate your business? 

Through branding.

To make this effective, you have to be able to define an edge your business has over other businesses in your industry. Former Google CEO, Eric Schmidt says branding is the way.

Brands are the solution

With adequate branding, more people visit your website directly. More people click on your website in search results and you gain more customers and revenue.

9. Design a Functional Website

To design your website, you need to define the activities you want your visitors to take. Do you run an ecommerce website? Do you offer a service? Or a forum? Do you have a membership area on your website?

You need to make sure all these parts of your website are functional and usable by visitors.

How easily can users log in to your website? How safe is your website if you take payments? In simple terms, a functional website should be able to serve users more effectively.

10. Place Calls to Action at Strategic Locations on Your Site

People tend to see some areas of your website more than others. You should add your most important page elements at these locations.

For instance, if you offer a service, you can add your calls to action buttons where users can easily find them.

You can use a tool like Crazy Egg to find specific areas of your website that visitors click on the most. With this knowledge, you can place your call to action buttons there and track its performance.

Crazy Egg

Related post: You Probably Need More Call To Actions, But Do You Know What They Are?

11. Ensure Short Loading Times

A website that takes forever to load is a website that no visitor wants to visit. The reality you need to consider for your business website is that your website bounce rate will increase as your loading time increases.

For instance, a study found that by the time your website loads for more than 4 seconds, 25% of your visitors would have bounced away from your website.

Website speed

To check your website load time, you can use tools like Pingdom, GT Metrix, or Google Mobile Speed test. This will show you your website load time and other details about your website.

Summary

You’ll also see details about what to change to reduce your website load time. To reduce your website load time, some things to do are:

12. Add an Active Blog

To achieve your website targets, you need traffic. One trait you’ll find common to every website with a huge amount of traffic is that they’re regularly updated.

To ensure this on your website, the best way to go about it is to have an active blog on your website.

A regularly updated blog has many benefits for your website. Apart from getting more traffic from social media, direct, and search engines, you also gain more leads.

In a study by HubSpot, they found that companies that published more than 16 blog posts monthly got 4.5 times more leads than companies that publish 4 or fewer blog posts.

Monthly blog posts

13. Write Clean, SEO-friendly Code

Getting targeted traffic from search engines is a vital part of running a business website. It’s easier to convert visitors from search engines as these people have searched for terms related to your business.

To rank higher in the search engines, you need a website with SEO-friendly code. You can inspect your page elements by right-clicking on any given page and clicking the “Inspect” button.Inspect Element

14. Make Sure Your Site is Compatible with Multiple Browsers

Visitors to your website will use different browsers. It’s important to ensure that your website is compatible with most browsers.

You can view your website on multiple browsers to see if all important website elements display on your website. You can check this page for the most popular browsers.

Browse Market Share

15. Effective Site Security

Unsafe websites can lead to a breach of visitors privacy and other important details like their payment details. On some websites, users are warned of the safety risks before they visit a website.

Connection problems

In most cases when visitors see this, they bounce off your website. Because internet users are wary of malware that hijack their devices or even corrupt them.

16. Add Customer Testimonials

Marketing your business is good and effective. But what of customers doing it for you? Even better. Social proof is one of the best ways to convince a potential customer that you’re the right business for them.

Customer testimonials about how your business has improved their lives or business is a way to show potential customers what you can do.

You should also note that the bigger the business or individual giving the customer testimonial, the bigger the effect.

This screenshot is a good example of testimonials from our happy clients on our website Bloominari.com.

Customer Reviews

 

17. Install Effective Tracking Tools

To know whether the steps you’re taking on your website is having positive effects, you need to be able to measure results on your website.

To do this, you have to install tracking tools on your website that will report your website’s performance on different metrics.

Two vital tracking tools to have on your website are:

  • Google Analytics
  • Google Search Console

Google Analytics gives you details about your traffic. These include the number of unique visitors to your website, number of views, bounce rate, and others. Google Analytics will give you a lot of insight into your visitors and this helps you to adapt your strategy based on these details.

Google Search Console

Google Search Console gives you details about your performance on Google search.

You’re able to see metrics like the number of impressions, clicks, click-through rate, and others. These details could help you to improve your SEO strategy.

Metrics

There are other tools and you can install them based on the details you want to track on your website.

18. Add Original Content to Your Pages

To improve your website and your business reputation, you need to create original content for your visitors. You need to invest time in content that can provide the right information to your visitors.

One thing you also have to note is that content doesn’t have to be in the written form alone. Some other forms you can have your content are:

  • Infographics
  • Podcasts
  • Videos

Conclusion

Designing an effective business website is complex if you’ve never done it.

But with this checklist, you can take the right steps to build a user-friendly website that search engines, will, in turn, crawl, index, and serve to your ideal customers.

Having a professional website is key if you want to grow a successful business online. That’s where we come in, get in touch with Bloominari to discuss your web design project today.

marketing lead generation

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Jaime Nacach

Marketing Strategist

I love helping small businesses with their digital marketing and business strategy. I'm a young man with a passion in entrepreneurship and international experience in business development, marketing, sales, and web/graphic design. 

Find me on: Team Page | LinkedIn | Google+Personal Website

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